Monday, June 29, 2009

Dago's Speed Shop-Part 1

A couple of weeks ago I had a chance to drive to Whittier and meet up with Rene Astengo of Dago’s Speed Shop. I wanted to shoot his 78' Shovelhead that he had built and the 68' Sportster XLCH that was a project that he and his nephew built together. I arrived late in the day and Rene was getting cleaned up from a hard days work of laying a brick foundation for his new addition he is doing to his home. He showed me the progress he has made to the addition and said a lot of it is help of friends and trading hours of work with each other. He builds them bitchin bikes and they help him get his dream house together. Not bad because he is saving a boat load of money doing the add on himself.

The Shovelhead is a 78' FXE. “I bought it only because it had a good motor in it, everything else was so funky on it. It had a King Sporty tank in bare metal, the forks were about 12” over, the rear wheel on it now was the actually the front wheel and it had a 16” in the back. So you can just imagine how funky of a look it had with a wide front wheel with a 12 over glide.” So Rene went to work and put his own touches into the bike. The bike had a full fender which Rene has since removed and modified to fit another bike he has got going in his shop. “The front wheel I ended up putting in the rear.

That’s the only reason it’s on there, because I would never have gone with a 18” aluminum wide wheel like that. That’s just not my style. But it kind of just worked out that way and it works. Everything on that bike is just stuff I have laying around the garage and swap meet finds.” Other modifications include the rear fender which is actually a Vulcan front fender. The stock strut is cut and reformed. “A lot of people are tripping out on that.

This is something I’ve always done. This is kind of the formula that I always go by.” There is full travel in the shocks as Rene has used a 12” shock. “They look so much lower because the way the fender sits on the tire. You create that illusion, that’s what it’s all about. Normally everything I build is super low. My thing is to get them as low as you can possibly get them.” The Bates front light is also another swap meet find. “ My thing is to try not to buy stuff out of the big catalogs for parts. I rather get a Harley part and modify it.”
The second part of the story will continue with the 68 Sportster.

1 comment:

steveb said...

beautiful bike and accompanying images...nice job...