ChopCult member Josh Allison is building a name for himself within the motorcycle industry. But it’s not for fame or fortune; it's for building one solid machine after another. I had the pleasure of showcasing Josh's 1951 Panhead last year which the readers enjoyed. Josh continues to strive for perfection, and you can tell by the images below he hit his mark. Josh has chosen to leave his nine to five and open Cry Baby Cycles with his wife, Sarah. Some of the services Josh will provide is building custom motorcycles, hot rods, and offer high-end metal fabrication. Josh is also developing a custom parts line that will hopefully drop soon. I would like to wish Josh and Sarah the very best and thank them for allowing me to feature Black Gypsy here. Enjoy!
“So here it is! The name of the build is the "Black Gypsy." It's a 1975 shovel with a 4-speed ratchet top tranny and a mix of old chopper parts and handmade parts. The vision for this build started from an old building that I saw in Austin, TX. The vintage architecture had big lines running up and down in the building. It also had a cool, old patina on it from the rain and weather. Then when we got home from our trip my little boy was watching Batman - Gotham City which had the same old buildings with that Art Deco kinda of style. That's where the idea of the beads and the style of the bike originated. I was able to score some old Harley parts from a buddy who buys and sells a lot. The frame is a 1956 Panhead straight-leg frame that had been choppered out back in the ‘60's. The neck had been windowed with a minor rack into it, brackets cut off, and bondo everywhere, but as you can see I got rid of the bondo! It was the perfect frame for the build! I started with the tank first, which is entirely handmade, as are most of the parts on this bike. I wanted a skinny small tank, and with the beads, it set the look of the whole bike. I made the rear fender with a sissy bar that now holds an old microphone tail light. The oil tank is a horseshoe design with beads to continue the Art Deco style through the build. I made a bronze cover for the oil tank, so you don't see the battery. I made the seat to match the rear p pad, and the inner is also bronze. Next, it was time to make the bars. To create a skinny bike I made the bars with tight bends and kept them short for great rideability. I wanted dual pipes to continue the theme. I got a section of rippled pipe and made shotguns with a kickup at the end. The air cleaner is made out of bronze as well as the rear axle plate covers, also pulling the beads through them. One of the unique pieces on the bike that I scored from The Light Asylum is a 1920’s Orlow headlight that fit the bike perfectly! The gas cap is brass with a Pontiac emblem in the center from the 50's. The forward foot controls have been handmade with a bronze footpad with brass footpegs and a kicker pedal to match. The beautiful shifter is from After Hours Choppers. So, the last step was to make it look old and rough. This was a bit of trial and error, but eventually, I was able to achieve an old patina look! The bike now has a vintage feel. With a mix of old parts and the stories they come with, this brought to mind an old gypsy that had been traveling around from town to town. And the "Black Gypsy" it was!”
Owner name, location: Josh Allison, Greeley, CO.
ChopCult Member profile: JoshAllison
Engine, year and make, model, modifications: 1975 Harley Shovelhead 88 cu in
Frame: 1956 Panhead straight leg
Fork: Harley springer
Chassis mods: Windowed frame with custom cross/motor support
Tire/wheel size and style: 16” rear Start Hub with Allstate diamond tread. 21” front spool hub with an Allstate tire
Favorite thing about this bike: Gas tank, seat, headlight and air cleaner
Next modification will be: nothing
Other mods, accessories, cool parts, etc: Very rare front Orlow head light. Handmade tank, seat, rear fender, bars, air cleaner, oil tank, pegs, exhaust. Original rear panhead brake, Bitch Switch, custom shifter
Thanks to Gabe from After Hours Choppers for the amazing shifter. Thanks to Flying Choppers for the awesome Bitch Switch. Thanks to The Light Asylum for the headlight and taillight. Thanks to Lowbrow Customs and JP Cycles for parts, and to Rad Brad for the hook up on the vintage chopper parts! -Josh
Be sure to check out Josh's new website and give him a follow on Facebook and Instagram. Big thanks to Joshua Maranhas for helping with some of the imagery.