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No more custom bikes?

9583 Views 76 Replies 53 Participants Last post by  knogjärn
From the Hamb.

California has passed a law/legislation that WILL almost completely eliminate custom bike building and essentially destroy the kit bike industry. We will give you a brief overview of the short of it.

For the direct link click here and scroll down to Final Rule for Cleaner Highway Motorcycles (published January 15, 2004).

1) As of Jan. 1st 2006 Californians will only be allowed to build ONE custom motorcycle in their lifetime that is not E.P.A./D.O.T. certified.

2) If you have a "custom built motorcycle" titled/registered before Dec. 31st 2005 it will be grandfathered and will not count against you as your 1 in your lifetime.

3) If you sell, wreck, or lose your custom built bike (grandfathered or your one in a lifetime) due to accident, theft or anything.TOO BAD! NO REPLACEMENT!

4) Custom Shops, Professional Bike Builders, legitimate builders can build 24 bikes a's the can't ride them anywhere except from your home to a legitimate "show" and straight back home. If you get caught "cruising" on your CM stamped bike, it is gone!!!

5) Any bike that is not a Manufactured Vehicle, 100% D.O.T. compliant with title, will not be available except for the 1 in your lifetime.but there is a catch.

6) Within 5 years all motors must be fuel injected, E.P.A. compliant, no exhaust will be allowed that are not E.P.A. approved and NO MODIFYING PARTS to carburetion, air cleaners, custom exhaust will be allowed to be used if it alters the exhaust or emissions of a manufactured vehicle or on "custom built bikes".

7) If you build an Non-E.P.A./D.O.T. compliant bike and then you die, your estate cannot even sell your bike for .5 years!

Here is the bigger worry. The rest of us might also suffer this fate along with California. The Federal government, D.O.T. AND E.P.A., want to adopt this on a national level!!! If this happens, it will kill just about everyone in the kit bike business as well as a lot of exhaust, air cleaner, carburetor, performance manufacturers and others. Custom Chrome was smart enough to see that they can stay ahead of the curve and get their kits to Manufacturer Status so that once you are built with a title you will still be able to build your 1 custom in your lifetime, build as many of their bikes as you want, modify them easily to "custom" status but still play by the NEW rules. No other major kit bike distributor has pursued this. For those of you in CA (and probably the rest of the USA) by January 2006 if you have NOT BUILT YOUR CUSTOM BIKE BEFORE THIS you may only get one chance in your lifetime and you may only get to build one. And it will have to be the way the government wants it to look and run and maybe not how you want it to look and run. SO IF YOU'VE BEEN THINKING ABOUT BUILDING YOUR OWN BIKE OR YOUR DREAM BIKE, YOU'D BETTER BUY RIGHT NOW! REMEMBER, WHATEVER YOU BUILD AND GET REGISTERED NOW WILL BE GRANDFATHERED IN AND WON'T COUNT AS YOUR ONE CUSTOM.
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aj650 said:
i'm not sure, my ride got totalled under a side of dino ribs...
but i'd imagine it's the same deal.

I'm not 100% on the rules, my ultra-ADD kicks in when I read, any clarification is welcome.
As I understand, you can customize as many bikes as you want to as lon as manu date is pre-2004. Provided there is a legitimate title for it in existence. Retitles will fall under the new rule sort of. Key point - Buy a bike without a title? - Bring it back to inspectable condition as in the manufacture date, have it retitled as its manu'd year, then customize it. If you customize it before retitle, it will be retitled as that year and could fall under that laws jurisdiction. If you want to buy a crate package, then you might have to learn the fine art of finagling around.
Django said:
the aftermarket is HUGE. Does Harley have THAT much influence?

This is great. Let's kill off one of the prospering American industries so MORE people can barely afford to eat.
Hey just wait till the 2008 Harley's come out. Plan is no standard fasteners used on bikes. No hex heads, no allen heads, slotted, torx, nothing. Everything requires special Harley tools.
BigDdy31 said:
And yet people still have the balls to scoff when I remind them that corporations are trying to take over the world and succeeding. Remember fellas, revolutions aren't just for engines. ;)
Corporations have more power than governments. Don't think its true - ask someone fired for smoking in their own home. No money, no rights. Corporate Global Economy is the New World Order. Think its a good idea - third world countries will cease to exist and become oversized company towns. What could have been a good idea, can never be now.
Django said:
You know, fastsporty has been after me to move to Cali ever since he moved there. He's relentless in his pursuit. But the more and more of this type crap that I find out about here and there makes me glad I'm staying here, cold winters or not. I think I'll just continue to visit.

I'd rather move to Mexico than Cali.
Bugman said:
You're kidding, right? Like Witworth, only Harley? thats just down right rediculous. It'll kill the bolton market on new bikes.
Only difference was Whitworth wasn't really a single corporate driven move, it was an industry standard. But no I'm not kidding. What it will do is require any bolt-on company who wants to continue supporting HD, to register for license to use the the special fasteners. Then any bolt on stuff will have to go thru a HD dealer. Of course, you could make home made tools to work with. But that could be a tantamount undertaking.
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