William Rae, 34, is a courier. His 600 Fazer cost him £10,000
Fazer 600s, good bikes. They helped prove budget bikes didn’t have to be blighted with soggy suspension and limp power curves. They also proved steel cradle frames weren’t ready for the dustbin just yet. Good value, reasonable insurance, a good way to get on the road without spending a fortune, a pretty bloody sensible choice all round. Or they are until a bloke like William Rae gets his hands on one and manages to spend £5000, the price of a brand new Fazer, modifying the humble Yam.
" I’ve been building bikes since I was 11 years old. Standard bikes don’t appeal to me. " When I first saw the Fazer I thought it was pretty ugly. But I look at bikes differently. When I see a bike now I look at it and say, ‘I can do something with that.’ Like recently there was a picture of the new Honda VFR all stripped down in MCN and I thought that would make an excellent street bike. It was just waiting to get radiator scoops and a tail unit built. With certain bikes I can see through what’s already on them to imagine how easy they’d be to modif. "
William’s current day job is a driver for a courier company, but he’s concentrating on getting his motorcycle modifying business, Moto Ecosse (07711 270622) off the ground. The next stage of his project is going to be modifying a FireBlade electronic speedo drive to suit the Fazer. The new front wheel did away with the standard drive and the modifiers favourite bodge of a mountain bike speedo just won’t do. Also, the race paint features a number 6 with 600cc painted through the big numeral, because it’s illegal for a bike to carry race numbers on a public road. Having said all that, the Shark exhaust looks a little tasty.
" My favourite modification is the seat, " says William surprisingly. " It’s a work of art. It was re-covered by a French company called Sellerie Concept and it’s absolutely gorgeous. "
" I mostly deal with European companies. I’m always hunting for something new and unavailable in this country. "
It hasn’t all been plain-sailing even for an experienced modifier like William, though. " I cut the lugs off that fixed the fairing to the frame to tidy it up and sent the frame to be plastic-coated. Then I found German radiator scoops that I wanted to fit, but they used the brackets I’d cut off so I had to make new ones. "
One-off exhaust using Yoshimura downpipes and Shark end can
R1 forks with anodised stanchions and nitrided sliders
Billet Harris yokes
Braking rim disc front brakes
Marchesini front wheel
Acerbis Blitz headlamp unit
Moto Ecosse belly pan
Moto Ecosse undertray
Sellerie Concept seat
Bike Paints race replica paint
Carbon radiator scoops and airbox covers
Moko exhaust hangers
Total spent: Bike (£4, 995) + tweaks (£5,000) = £10, 000