“A bike you could ride to the race, win, and ride home…”
From our first interaction with Steve Jones of Jonesbilt, it was clear that the former diesel mechanic and fabricator invests his heart and soul into each and every build that rolls out of his shop. Says Steve:
“I’ve spent my life with my hands on a wrench, my face under a welder’s mask, my heart connected to every project, and my soul on display in the finished product.”
Steve, who has a passion for flat track, wanted a bike that could ride to the track, win, and ride home. The result is one of the meanest Harley street trackers we’ve ever seen, the Jonesbuilt Hooligan Tracker — a 1250cc Harley-Davidson Sportster rolls on dual 19” Maxxis DTR-1’s, sits on Ohlins suspension, and blasts through the night with a 24-LED custom headlight bezel.
Sportster Hooligan Tracker: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.
If it goes fast, it’s for me. I’ve spent my life with my hands on a wrench, my face under a welder’s mask, my heart connected to every project, and my soul on display in the finished product. From my early days riding and fixing, to my time as a diesel mechanic and fabricator, and now in my custom bike shop, I’ve always known what the metal wants. Most guys would walk past a 20 year old bike and never look back. I, on the other hand, immediately see it in its final state, and can’t stop myself from turning that vision into reality. Of the many bikes I’ve “Bilt” my current personal ride Augustus is one I’m particularly attached to. If you knew me, you could pick that bike out of 1000 others and know it was mine. In the same vein, my new line of Jonesbilt Hooligans are easily identifiable, to know them is to know me.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the bike?
1998 Harley-Davidson Sportster 1200 Custom
• Why was this bike built?
I have a passion for the dirt track, and wanted to build a bike you could ride to the race, win, and ride home.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
I took a minimalistic approach, using dirt track specs as a guide. As well as something you’d see in Mad Max.
• What custom work was done to the bike?
The heart got pumped to a high compression 1250 cc, and every critical component replaced by track proven bits from S&S, Screamin’ Eagle, and Manley. She rolls on dual 19” Maxxis DTR-1’s, suspended on Ohlins, Saddlemen tracker tail section, Biltwell bars and pegs, and a complete delete or replacement of the original chrome. All lighting necessary to be road legal is a custom design of mine.
• How would you classify this bike?
She’s a Hooligan Tracker!
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
I stuffed 24 huge LED’s and two strips of marker lights into a custom made bezel. It’s insanely bright! People have been asking me left and right to make one for them, so it’s become another revenue stream.