Traditionally, Japanese have a deep respect for that which is well-crafted, requiring patience or meditation to master. They also highly consider that which has aged beautifully, which they describe with sabi — the quality of a rustic patina. One of our favorite British artists, Death Spray Custom, recently collaborated with Satoshi Ugawa on a pre-60s Triumph bicycle that still preserves great sabi.
Restoring vintage Harleys is the usual domain of Satoshi Ugawa, but he also works on bicycles from the same era under the moniker of Bell 45. The Triumph project was a contract for the owner of the Delight Cafe & Bar in Tokyo. The badly rusted original was bought on eBay, dismantled and repainted by the London-based DSC studio, while Toshi restored the components and sourced some new parts.
Toshi installed a Raleigh Grifter saddle, along with rare Bakelite Bluemel‘s grips. The 26″ Weinmann rims received special attention, rebuilt and shod with vintage, English-made Michelin whitewall tires. The old Pletscher two-leg kick stand is period correct but is also reminiscent of the old-world motorcycles Toshi loves. See and read more on the Bell 45 blog. Big thanks to DSC for the tip.