ChopCult.com debuted back in 2009 to cater to the home builders of the world. Our members and readers don’t have a million dollars worth of tools in their garages, but they do possess the knowledge to build something with their own hands with minimum tools. When they get stuck, they call upon a mentor, friend, or the mighty web. One might consider themselves lucky to wrench side-by-side with friends or family members, especially during the recent lockdown. ChopCult member Jack Weidmayer and his father, Mark, spent the downtime building this bike.
Jack is a Senior at Villanova University who is majoring in communications and minoring in history. “I’m from the Philadelphia area and have been wrenching on cars and motorcycles for six years now. Specifically, I have been working on bikes for only the last three years. I mainly work on bikes with my father, who was a Harley Technician for three years and a mechanic for many more. Together, in the years that we have been collectively working on motorcycles, we have built three bikes total and are currently working on a ‘79 Shovelhead now. We have built everything out of the workshop in our basement. We do the paint, do the electrics, the metal fabrication, troubleshooting, even building motors. In essence, we do it all out of our humble home in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Besides the three bikes we have built together, my father has restored a ‘30 Chief, a ‘39 Sport Scout, a ‘45 WLA, and a ‘58 Panhead. We have both accomplished works individually, and collectively. I have started an Instagram account about our work, @shoveitcycles. I would love to make a career out of this, but for now, I am more than content just being a part of the motorcycle community. Swap meets, bike shows, and investigating Craigslist/Facebook Marketplace ads are currently more than enough to satisfy me.”
Owner name, location: Jack Weidmayer, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Chop Cult Member profile: jackweid
Engine, year and make, model, modifications: 74” Shovelhead 1977 Harley-Davidson FXE S&S Carb 2” drag pipes Stock four-speed transmission Kick and electric start
Frame: Stock swingarm
Fork: Paughco springer, a little bit over
Tire/wheel size and style:
Rear - 16” with Avon Safety Master MKII 5.00 x 16”
Front – 21” with Avon Speedmaster Classic 3.00 x 21”.
Favorite thing about this bike: My favorite thing would most definitely be the sissy bar set up and rear fender. The rear fender was initially from our first Harley build together, which was a ‘74 XLCH. My father cut the skirts off, then flared the rear of the fender. Next, a metal rod was added along the tail of the flare to add a lip, giving the fender a more aggressive flare. The fender on its own is visually appealing; however, the sissy bar acts as a bracket to help hold the fender in place, and in doing that, it ties the rear end together. Because we use the sissy bar as a bracket, we could eliminate the stock fender brackets offering a more minimalistic look to the bike.
The next modification will be: I think the next modification for this build would be tiny stuff, nothing too major. Overall, I’m ecstatic with this build. This was our first ever chopper build, and I think it looks fantastic as is. However, there are some small discrepancies I have noticed on the bike. I wouldn’t mind finding or modifying the footpegs for the forward controls because, to me, they look a little too “early 2000s”. The forward controls came with the bike, and since I am a college student with a tight budget, I’m not overly concerned with doing anything about that as of now. Additionally, I wouldn’t mind finding a sleeker front brake master cylinder setup. Other than that, I don’t currently have any plans for additional modifications. Although, one weekend at a swap meet can quickly change that.
Other mods, accessories, cool parts, etc.:
Fab Kevin front mini disc setup
Honda backup lights for headlights modified with Halogen bulbs, hand-fabbed mounting bracket.
Mustang “Captain America” tank
Hand-fabbed and designed wiring harness
Modified Sportster rear fender mounted to swingarm with hand-fabbed sissy bar support.
Early Chevy truck tail light
Horseshoe oil tank
Solo seat with hand-fabbed mounting support.
Billet forward controls
Any building or riding story or info you'd like to include: We got this bike on the eve of the total lockdown for Covid back in late March of 2020. We had been looking for another project bike for about six months. I honestly was looking for another $500 ironhead basket case to build. This is only because ironhead sportys are well-suited for a college student’s budget. Then, suddenly, this bike just popped up on Craigslist, and it was local. The listing advertised a springer shovel at a fair price, and I immediately gravitated toward it. I was able to work the guy down a bit on the price, and the fact that it was in rough shape and didn’t run helped! Truthfully, I could not fully afford this bike at all, and I had to empty the entirety of my bank account to get the bike where it is now, but there was no way I would be projectless with the lockdown looming over. I never regretted it at all, either, because this bike kept me from getting cabin fever. Through this, I was able to find out about the swap meets held at Long Tall Shorty’s. The swap meet held there on August 15th saved this build. I walked away that day with my oil filter with the bracket and all, two front brake master cylinders, both of my Hella headlights, and numerous other small parts. Therefore, I’m happy to have all my money tied up in this bike as it has led me to many positive experiences, increased my knowledge base, and allowed me to meet lots of interesting people
Thanks to my father for all his help in this build, especially the metal fabrication and paintwork.
I want to thank Jack for helping me with this feature.