Featured in Custom Bike, January
Are For Kids
And the bigger the trike, the bigger
Tom Summers of Richfield, Min-nesota,
is a stone Honda freak. He just likes the big Japanese fours and likes
to build bikes to go around them. One of his earlier efforts was featured
in the February '77 issue of Custom Bike, called Get Down & Boogie.
After rid-ing that two-wheeler for a while, Tom decided that what his area
of Min-nesota needed next was a trike. Since there weren't any for sale
that suited his fancy, he naturally proceeded to build one, using of course
the tried and true Honda four engine for the go-power.
Tom started his project with a 1974 Honda
750 that set him back $1800 in slightly used condition. In fact, the bike
was in such good shape that he seriously considered building another two-wheeled
custom, but he decided to stick with his original project of a three-wheeler.
The construction of the trike took place during one of those long cold
winters Minnesota is famous for. What else is there to do, if you're
not a TV addict and you don't ice skate?
After the investment of another $2500, Tom had created the trike you see
here, a show quality bike that does daily service on the roads of Min-nesota,
when they're not buried under two feet of snow, that is.
The Corbin Gentry frame incorpo-rates a
hardhead section by Smith Bros. & Fetrow with a 45-degree rake. The
frame was cleaned up and gus-seted by the owner, topped off by a Santee
fuel tank for a clean custom look. The front section of the frame was mated
to the rear assembly of a Harley three-wheel Servi-Car of parking ticket
fame. Brakes are Harley hydraulic shoes actuated by a Hurst master cylinder
mounted upside down in the frame.
Those big 15-inch Per-macast wheels resemble
the turbines inside a fan-jet engine. And they really put the rubber on
the road with a pair of G50x15 wide grabbers that could do all right even
during those cold winter months when the roads are slick and treacherous.
Fhe fiberglass body is manufac-tured by
Corbin Gentry and so is the two-passenger saddle, while the single taillamp
is from Lucas.
All the paint work was done by the owner,
a brilliant black epoxy highlighted by or-ange and gold striping laid on
by D.J. Eckel. Up front is a Smith Bros. & Fetrow girder with a nine-inch
exten-sion held up by an 18-inch wheel and 2.75x18 tire. The front hub
is a Hall-craft with a Hurst-Airheart disc brake. Steering is by one-piece
drag bars in-corporating the risers, while a Lucas quartz headlamp lights
the way in the dark. Tom didn't bother to mount a
(The Santee fuel tank is painted a brilliant
black with orange and gold striping. Drag bars incorporate the risers in
one piece. Disc brake. Headlamp is a Lucas Quartz.)
(The 1974 Honda four was left essentially
stock for reliability. Brightwork includes chrome, Allen bolts and braided
horn on his creation as he figured everybody
could see him coming.
The Honda 750 engine was left es-sentially
stock for reliability, with standard ignition and carburetors. A Barnett
clutch was installed to accom-modate the additional weight to be hauled.
Exhaust is through Fubar pipes shortened six inches with no mufflers, eliminating
any back pres-sure. He must have a cool throttle wrist when The Man is
around, or the illegal equipment citations could bankrupt him.
The engine is dressed up with lots of brightwork,
Allen bolts and braided oil and gas lines. All in all, a very sanitary
package. And how has Tom Summers' latest pride and joy fared on the competition
circuit? Well, not too bad, considering everything. In five shows he walked
off with four firsts in his class and one second, that one at the famous
Rats Hole show at Daytona. For a first venture at building a trike, we'd
have to concede that's not too bad at all. It makes us wonder what Tom
will come up with next. We can hardly wait.