Is This The best Custom Bike Magazine?
Since 2004, Dice Magazine has been pricking the pomposity of the custom bike cultureby Harry Fisher, on LISTEN 03:13
Bored of watching guys who should know better arguing and throwing things at each other in the office of their multi-million dollar custom bike workshops? Well, maybe Dice Magazine is the perfect antidote. It’s time to get back to grassroots.
Dice Magazine Is The King of Custom Bike Magazines
Back in 2004, big money was creeping into the custom bike scene, with both magazines and TV shows concentrating on a certain type of custom bike, all glitz and chrome and built to order using off-the-shelf components for owners who wanted to buy into the culture. Nothing wrong with that: after all, not everyone has the skills, space or time to build their own chopper or custom bike, but it was rather ignoring the grass-roots of the movement, the guys working on their own and producing some amazing bikes from whatever was lying around.
Two young Londoners, Matt Davis and Dean Micetich, took a look at this state of affairs and decided to do something about it.
As the Dice website explains, ’The bike scene at the time was all about fat tires, chopper tv shows, billet aluminium and theme builds. 2 young punk rockers in London weren’t seeing the things they liked, so they did what they had to do. Matt Davis and Dean Micetich got friends with bikes together, shot some photos and started DicE Magazine.
’Over the last 17 years they’ve exposed people the world over to motorbikes with their inclusive, fun, DIY approach that is a breath of fresh air in the often uptight biker world.’
It goes on to say, ’If you have gear-head tendencies and want to see motorcycles being put together in the basements, garages, and woodsheds around the world ... the kind of machines that are fondled by the wild-eyed and sleepless ... then here you are.’
Published quarterly, Dice Magazine has often been copied but rarely, if ever, bettered and, with the 100th issue looming, is better than ever (they’re on issue 93 at the moment).
From the start, Dice was a love letter to the custom culture as brewed in dusty home garages around the world. It featured the sort of custom builds that you or I would be able to create and they ranged from the artistic to the basic, from the metal-flaked and pinstriped to the flaking paint and rusty. But there is one thing that linked them all: passion.
Moreover, it was done with a sense of irreverence and fun and remains that way today. Not for nothing is one of the magazine’s mantras, Life Is Too Short to be Serious.
From the start, Dean and Matt saw that the design of the magazine was as important as the design of the bikes. The cover art, for example, is some of the best you’ll ever see and wouldn’t look out of place framed on a wall.
From the original magazine has grown a small industry, with the Dice brand covering merchandise, accessories, events in both the U.S and the UK and podcasts, which are as good a way of wasting a couple of hours as I’ve ever come across. At its heart, however, are the bikes and the people who build them and each issue is a fascinating glimpse into an incredibly creative world.
For more information, head to the Dice Magazine website here.