You gotta love a guy like Rob Adams of RA Custom Motorcycles in Hamilton, New Jersey, who’s kind of a one-man-show building phantom Panhead choppers on his own late into the night. Rob does a serious bit of everything there from engine work to, well, whatever he’s got to do to turn out some very good looking rides with the best accessory of all ─ license plates. They’re all real world custom bikes with a million-dollar style to people who want to ride it as well as look at it.
With this bike, though, Rob seems to have pushed things a bit more to the show side and why not? A guy with a custom motorcycle business has got to grab your attention to show you what he’s capable of and what he can do for you whether it’s a ground-up or a new set of bars on a Road King. It doesn’t hurt to have a “guy” who knows what he’s doing after you get totally infected with the custom bug after your first change has been made. That’s where guys like Rob Adams come in.
Taking a look at his custom Softail you can’t help but notice the vibrant green paintwork covers the relatively miniscule combo of frame and bodywork. The solo-rider design is so elementally compact three’s just not that much of it to go around. Nothing wrong with that as it’s a very tidy yet striking design. The fuel tank is not only blends in gracefully, but ties everything together too. From the custom frame to the bodywork, it’s all Rob.
The smoothest-ever (so it seems) chromed forks grab a fat-spoke laced front wheel that is spool hub and nothing else like a brake in sight. Out back a wide fat ass tire brings on the bad ass look that still haunts a hell of a lot of people’s wish lists on another fat spoked wheel that also doesn’t have a brake in sight either. What’s going on? No brakes? Taking another look I found a trans brake lurking behind the counter shaft gear. Never tried to stop a bike with just a small-disc trans brake so I have no idea if this is really viable or not, but on the show circuit it certainly is.
And then there’s the engine. Rob calls the bike Evolution Pan so I’m not exactly sure whether that’s based on a Harley-Davidson Evo engine before it got Panned-out or not. A smart guy stays Harley so I’m going that’s what Rob did. The Panhead covers do their best to stand out in the star burst of polished aluminum and chrome that engine puts out. The wicked cool dual-throat carb reaching way forward so its velocity stacks don’t miss any oxygen molecules they can find. I can’t say I’ve heard it run, but I know it’s going to be a smite loud with that custom 2-into-1 straight-through exhaust. Probably couldn’t be simpler or louder.
The thing that’s also a bit weird about this bike is that there’s no foot or hand clutch for the whip-it-good hand shifter. There’s nothing, no obvious controls on the bars at all it seems although you assume there’s a hidden throttle on the right. The right foot control has got to be for the brake and the left’s got nothing so I’m going to jump to a cranial conclusion like old guys are wont to do. That only leaves an auto clutch of some kind is incorporated into that rather wide open belt primary. It’s just the way I see it.
Rob Adams and RA Custom Motorcycles have knocked out a nice range of builds over all different models and styles of bikes. He’s just a guy living his dream in New Jersey and if you’re in the area you should check him out. Visit his website for more info at