Check Out This Insane Apartment Built Buell Blast Custom!
Armed with a Buell Blast, a couple of square meters, and a few hand tools, Alex built THIS!
Updated August 23, 2018
This incredible Buell Blast custom was built in a small Chicago apartment, with limited tools, in a guy’s spare time. We’ve seen Buell’s turned into custom works of art before, but this is the first time we’ve seen the entry-level, 492cc single cylinder Buell Blast machine get turned into something that looks as exclusive as one of the Magpul Ronin machines. This is the story of Alex, a Romanian dental technician with a passion for building dirt trikes and motorcycles in his spare time, who moved to Chicago in search of the American Dream.
After being encouraged by his friends in the USA to move over here, Alex decided to take a gamble and book a flight to the US. Working as a carpenter’s assistant by day and as a bedroom-bound bike builder by night, Alex has just finished this incredible build…which was constructed in his Chicago apartment.
Is This The World’s Coolest Buell Blast Custom?
After paying his bills, Alex saved up for a TIG welder and built himself a small fabrication table in his apartment. Next up, he invested in a selection of appropriate hand tools, including a handsaw, a hammer, a Dremel and a vice…and then he sourced himself a Buell Blast. It just goes to show that you don’t need expensive tools to make expensive lookin’ things. Hell, you don’t even need the space – you just need a few square meters, oblivious neighbors, and an understanding girlfriend.
To get things in motion, Alex decided to take the Buell Blast after hours at his work place and transporting it to his apartment in pieces. After getting the whole thing in, and eventually settling on a direction, Alex got to work designing a whole host of small parts. However, since he was new to the country, he sent his designs back home to Romania and had his friends fab them up and mail them to him – he deemed it easier than trying to find out where the best local engineering firms were in the States, and trying to communicate what he wanted made, too!
Then the work truly began. Alex chopped off the rear section of the frame and stripped the remaining front section down. He then relocated the rear shock mounts, and began mounting his specially designed brackets. The front end girder unit came from California’s Chassis Design Company, who faithfully recreated Alex’s bold, modernist design. With the front end in place, Alex welded on his own headlight brackets and installed the essentials: a front wheel from a V-Rod, a Buell XB swing arm, rear wheel, and brake, and a rear shock from a Buell 1125.
Finally, he added a Biltwell seat, a small fuel cell, an electrical cover and a specially made one gallon tank – small, but effective. All in all, the only parts of the original Buell Blast that remain are the front section of the frame, the carb, and the engine. The engine wasn’t left alone though… Luckily, the previous owner treated the Buell Blast with a Dynojet Jet Kit, and Alex decided to compliment it with a Uni filter and a franken-exhaust which is part custom and part off-the-shelf.
Alex’s final additions to the Buell Custom included Biltwell grips, new handlebars, an LED tail light, a custom smartphone mount, and more custom fabricated lugs and machined details than we’d care to count. Talking to BikeExif, Alex explained: “It was fun and somehow frustrating without a garage. Always trying not to disturb the neighbors, and waiting for a day off. And everything taking so much time to do. But it was all worth it in the end, I’ve built the “Franken’Blast” exactly like I wanted to, I didn’t get bored to death and it helped me meet cool people and make friends!”
This isn’t the first Buell Blast custom we’ve seen, and it’s not the first apartment build we’ve seen either – but it’s definitely the most impressive of both categories – and we think you’ll agree.
First seen on BikeExif. Photo Credits: Whiplash Racing Media.