The Keino Cy­cles 2018 In­dian Scout Bob­ber

THE KEINO CY­CLES 2018 IN­DIAN SCOUT BOB­BER

Hot Bike - - Contents - WORDS: JEFF G. HOLT PHO­TOS: RYAN HANDT

Keino Sasaki is orig­i­nally from Ja­pan but has lived in New York City for more than 20 years build­ing his brand of cus­tom mo­tor­cy­cles. When Keino landed on these shores he had a chance to meet with the in­fa­mous builder In­dian Larry. Their re­la­tion­ship evolved fairly quickly, and, along with the leg­endary met­al­smith and leather­worker Paul Cox, Keino found him­self part of In­dian Larry’s Grease Mon­key Garage build­ing some of the great­est pur­pose-built chop­pers the world had seen.

After Larry’s un­timely death in Au­gust 2004, Keino opened his own shop a lit­tle while later in Brook­lyn, New York’s Red Hook district known only as Keino Cy­cles. And the rest, as they say, is his­tory.

Keino has since built a plethora of bikes in a myr­iad of styles all his own. Whether build­ing a racer, chop­per, tracker, cus­tom, or clas­sic, Keino knows no bounds when it comes to cus­tomiza­tion. His small but well-stocked shop is filled with old and new Har­leys, BMWS, and a mess of Ja­panese bikes in var­i­ous stages of con­struc­tion wait­ing to be­come the next in a long line of Keino-built cus­toms.

Ev­ery time we visit Keino it is a real treat to see what he has been work­ing on and what he has just fin­ished. He is a builder’s builder for sure. And this is why in the be­gin­ning of 2017 In­dian Mo­tor­cy­cle com­mis­sioned Keino to build a cus­tom bike us­ing a fac­tory-fresh 2018 In­dian Scout Bob­ber as the bones. Un­til the bike was de­liv­ered to him, Keino had never even thrown a leg over a new edition of the Scout, but once he fired it up and took it around his Brook­lyn block he knew the 100 hp and sub-500-pound ma­chine was a great ba­sis to build a bike with.

At the same time Keino was fix­ing to tear apart the box-stock Scout Bob­ber and get to fab­bing up the tank and fend­ers, he had been read­ing books about the ’20s and ’30s Aero and Stream­liner train de­signs, and so an idea of Art Deco meets the fu­ture of trans­porta­tion was born in­side his mind.

Soon after, Keino got busy hand mak­ing all of the bike’s sheet metal in alu­minum, which, as you can guess, takes an in­fi­nite amount of time. He also put in many per­sonal touches along the way, and in three short months the bike you see here was born.

“KEINO KNOWS NO BOUNDS WHEN IT COMES TO CUS­TOMIZA­TION. HIS WELL-STOCKED SHOP IS FILLED WITH OLD AND NEW HAR­LEYS, BMWS, AND A MESS OF JA­PANESE BIKES IN VAR­I­OUS STAGES OF CON­STRUC­TION.”

We love that Keino’s cus­tom Scout Bob­ber has a char­ac­ter all its own and that the fab­ri­ca­tion is stun­ningly beau­ti­ful. We also ap­plaud both In­dian and Keino for com­bin­ing forces on such a dra­mat­i­cally different bike and show­ing all sorts of gen­er­a­tions of bike builders and rid­ers what can be done when go­ing your own way.

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