from the UK&Ireland region for 2018

After nearly three months of building and a month of online voting, the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings (BOK) has finally culminated with picking the UK&Ireland winner out of the five finalists that were shortlisted earlier this month.

The Alley Rat, built by Syc Kustoms, the custom side of Sycamore Harley-Davidson of the UK got the best credits by the judges at the Carole Nash MCN London Motorcycle Show. The Alley Rat will now go head to head with the finalists from other regions at a Grand Final to take place at Milan’s EICMA exhibition in November 2018 where the “Custom King” will be crowned.

The "Alley Rat" becomes the finalist of the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings
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Every year, the Milwaukee motorcycle brand organizes a custom works competition that commissions top builders to work with the dealers to put their best foot forward and present a bike worthy to be called as the ‘Custom King’. This year, Harley gets the “Battle of the Kings” in its fourth year, and 274 dealers from 21 countries participated in earning the ultimate crown.

The theme of the build this year is to reflect 115 years of Harley-Davidson. The dealers started building their bikes back in October 2017 and were to be finished and submitted by 31st December. The dealers had to create a unique, road-legal motorcycle, and make use of Harley’s massive accessory catalog onto their build.

The "Alley Rat" becomes the finalist of the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings
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The "Alley Rat" becomes the finalist of the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings
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Out of the five finalists, four of them underpinned their creation using Harley’s popular Softail Street Bob. The Alley Rat was the only build here underpinned by a Dark Custom Forty-Eight. (Harley allows dealers to make use of one of the selected machines that comprise of the Iron 883, Forty-Eight Roadster, Street 750, Street Rod, Street Bob and Fat Bob for their build.)

The Alley Rat had to be completed within a strict budget of €6,000 ($7,400) of which at least half of it has been spent on choosing amongst 10,000 official Harley-Davidson parts and accessories.

The "Alley Rat" becomes the finalist of the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings
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The "Alley Rat" becomes the finalist of the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings
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The bike is an urban-brawler styled AMF machine inspired from the ‘80s. The paintwork on this is purposefully shabby and rusty. “A celebration of the original shed-built bikes and the freedom for imaginations to run riot with a raw, stripped look,” says Todd of Syc.

The build includes a 4.5 gallon custom fuel tank, Chrome retro air cleaner, side-mount vertical licence plate with stop and brake light, Coker tyres, Nostalgic black grips, Screamin’ Eagle exhaust wrap, Brass collection Derby cover, Daymaker headlamp, Screamin’ Eagle fuel pack, Tall Boy Sportster bars, 1200 Custom front brake line, 115th anniversary poker chip and more.

The "Alley Rat" becomes the finalist of the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings
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It also gets custom brake lines, a solo seat, Kellerman and Hines indicators, and a custom fabricated rear fender.But they say, the hardest part of this build was to come up with an actual name for this tasty Dark Custom Forty-Eight. Sure it looks all soiled, dusty and rusted, just like the rat in one of your Alleys.

This event is basically a marketing tool that showcases the “wealth of in-house custom talent and the extensive range of Harley-Davidson Dark Custom parts and accessories readily available to support customization requirements of Harley-Davidson customers.”


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