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Build a Bike from Scratch or Refurbish with Custom Chopper Parts? Build a Bike from Scratch or Refurbish with Custom Chopper Parts? by Christine Harrell

There's been a lot of publicity about custom built choppers, but is building a motorcycle from the ground up the right thing for you? Building custom choppers from scratch or from custom bike kits can definitely be a gratifying journey, but you must be certain that you're prepared for the amount of work, skill, and perseverance it will take to build a bike from nuts and bolts. If you're not sure you want to go the road of custom bike kits, there is a middle ground between a complete build and a stock bike through refurbishing with custom parts.

Custom bike kits:
If you want full bragging rights or a really unique design, custom bike kits are probably the best choice for you. With custom bike kits, you can choose a frame and get all of the necessary parts in one package while still having full reign on every ounce of the customization.

Whether starting from scratch or from custom bike kits, there really are no design limitations unlike when refurbishing a stock bike with custom parts. The more unique the bike, the higher it's resale value will be if you ever decide to part with it. Unlike stock bikes that are a dime a dozen and lose resale value, custom bikes hold or even increase in value.

The potential downside is that even if you're using custom bike kits, building a motorcycle from the ground up is not as simple as many kit manufacturers and producers of DVD training guides make it out to be. Starting from custom bike kits and working your way up is going to be a challenge-which isn't a bad thing, but something you'll want to be honest with yourself about. If you think you won't see the project through for one reason or another, you can still build a killer bike by customizing a stock bike with custom chopper parts.

Refurbish with custom chopper parts:
With the right custom chopper parts, you can easily give an old bike a completely custom look without the time and frustration of building every single intricate element. Refurbishing with custom chopper parts also means that you're going to experiencing the freedom of your bike a lot sooner than those who chose custom bike kits.

When choosing a bike to refurbish with custom parts, the most important thing to look for is the frame style. There are chopper parts that can easily replace just about anything on an existing bike, but the frame is essentially the backbone of the bike and won't be easy to replace. The gas tank however, is among the custom chopper parts that can be replaced and can make a big impact on the overall look and feel of your bike. Find a shop that will paint your tank with your design concept and you're well on the way to owning a bike that reflects your personality.

Other chopper parts that make a major impact in the overall look and feel of the bike are the wheels, tires, mirrors, exhaust, pedals, and handlebars. A brief look at the huge number of styles of custom chopper parts out there are you'll soon realize that it's feasible to completely change the personality of a stock bike with a few select custom chopper parts.

The decision to build from scratch, from custom bike kits, or to refurbish with custom parts is as unique as every individual is. If your goal is to get out there on the open highway and enjoy the freedom of riding, you may want to spend less time in the garage and make your bike your own with a few select custom chopper parts. On the other hand, if motorcycles are your life, if you want to challenge yourself, or if you desire to create a truly unique machine, then building a bike from the ground up is probably the route you'll want to take.

Author is a writer for Jireh Cycles who specialize in aftermarket and custom chopper parts. For more information you can visit

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