I must confess that I’m no sci-fi fanatic; an early memory put me off for life. In a stroke of genius by Derbyshire Education Authority, the Daleks visited my nursery when I was three and scared me half to death.
This particularly well-crafted cutdown is a scooter I remember in its previous incarnation as Bitter Fingers
To be fair to me they were real Daleks and most of my young classmates perished that awful day. Thankfully, I was smart enough to run away up the steps to avoid extermination, but it has made me very wary of such things to this day.
Yellow Brick Road
Science fiction imagery certainly makes a good basis for a custom scooter though and there have been countless scooters with films, comics and B-movie characters used as inspiration for their paintwork. This particularly well-crafted cutdown is a scooter I remember in its previous incarnation as Bitter Fingers. A Vega of the same name inspired the paintwork on that one, a scooter Alan Legge remembered seeing in Chesterfield in the late 1970s, although the murals he chose for his own interpretation actually came from an Elton John album cover. Alan said “The music was shite but the artwork is very 70s and different.” Although Elton John is an unlikely candidate for scooterist
musical taste, Bitter Fingers was still an eyecatching machine in its own right – as Alan’s trophy cabinet will prove.
A change is as good as a rest though and a chance encounter with a local artist meant a sequel would soon be under way, this time as homage to the Hellboy films. In usual far-fetched sci-fi style, Hellboy is a demon who gets rescued as a boy from the Nazis and decides to fight for the good guys. Our red-faced hero ends up saving the Earth in Hellboy II so we should all be quite chuffed really.
Like many custom projects they’re often seen online these days before they’re even finished and as Alan built Hellboy last year, photos began appearing on his social media profile page. I followed the build as it progressed and things were looking good… then disaster struck. Evil fought back, the world turned black and Alan’s new paintwork reacted with the flamboyant old boy, Elton lurking beneath. The silver basecoat under the red turned to what looked like talcum powder, heart breaking – as any scooter builder will understand. Not all superheroes get things right first time though, it’s just one of those things that happens from time to time and the problem was rectified as quickly as demonly possible.
With fresh paintwork based on the two Hellboy films the rebuild began again and this time Hellboy was victorious. I think you’ll admit the finished scooter looks fantastic with its 80s style cutdown and chopped frame; lashings of chrome and those extended twisted forks. It’s a retro custom harking back to those hedonistic scooter boy days we all sort of remember…