Custom Indian Scout Bobber
The Indian Scout Bobber exploded onto the scene only a few short years ago, since then it has carved out quite a foothold in the custom community. With pre-loved examples getting cheap, all manner of customs are starting to pop up. Purpose Built Moto has been patiently waiting for our turn to set our sights on one of these bikes. Late in 2020 we got our chance.
This Indian Scout had received the Bobber treatment in all the wrong ways. It had been stripped down and slapped back together pretty haphazardly and after a while on the road it started to show.
Broken fender mounts, intermittent starter failure, bad paint chipping off, and as it rolled into our shop I could tighten the rear axle nut with my fingers. That just wouldn’t do. The clients who own this bike are happy owners of our Yamaha Scorpio 225 build, so decided PBM would be the one to fix it.
This is how the Indian looked like at the start of the project:
Starting with a tear down, the old fenders and brackets were removed, tractor seat frisbeed across the workshop and the cheap lighting and bad wiring removed. Once that was tidied up, we could stand back and look at a bare frame, engine and wheels to see just how this Indian Scout should be treated.
The idea was simple: make it mean, keep it sharp. The Indian Scout Bobber has a strange blend of flowing top lines made from sharper angular corners. A lot of customs I’ve seen seemed to ignore the tank shape and put more classically styled round fenders on the bike during the build. I wanted to go our own way on the styling but had a few things to work through first.
Number 1 job was a hand built exhaust, 2 into 1 on the header with a split muffler that was built into the pipe hiding any sign that the bike had been muzzled. Shaped with care out of stainless steel, welded and given a brush finish with all new mounts on the rear.
Along side this we rebuilt the front end with our Flashpoint X 5.75” LED Headlight, using a race plate style mount and some round bar detailing to add a little bit extra on the new face of the bike.
Complementing this, was a hand made fender mount and wide front fender. Body work finished in a deep satin black, bar work treated in a high gloss to give contrast.
Before moving on to phase 2 of fabrication the Indian was given some new kicks: a set of Shinko E270 double white wall tyres. Running the same 5.00-16 front and rear. This evened out the stance, and gave us a starting point on the wild new tail I was about to embark on.
Like all things in life there comes a point where your ideas exceed your skills, or so you think. At these cross roads I have come to terms that theres nothing for it but to rip in, and work like mad until you come out the other end with a result you’re happy with. Sheet metal shaping is completely foreign to me, but so were bikes 5 years ago. So I set the bike on a bench, grabbed our work experience kid Benny and we got to work.
Starting with a simple aluminium sheet back bone, I started cutting out paper templates and working toward the shape I had imagined. Something that would continue to speak the language of the fuel tank, while framing the rear wheel and tyre. Cut, check, cut, stick until I had some origami bullshit shape that resembled a tail. Sort of…
Then the fun started, cutting, annealing, shaping and welding the aluminium tail up, then finishing it back to be prepped for paint. On the other end of this 3 day job, I couldn’t be happier with the result. Straight, symmetrical and fitting with the style I wanted. I couldn’t have asked for more. On top of that, the client just about fell off his chair when he saw the idea take shape.
To complete the tail a new wrap around plate mount was built, and an LED brake light fabricated into the tail housing. Showing off our 3 in 1 Hollow Tip Turn Signals on the rear. Run by a Badlands brake module that is needed when fitting aftermarket lights to these bikes.
One last bit of fab work was to remove a fake air cleaner that had been bolted onto the engine bracket and shape a nice metal shield that would wear the PBM logo upon completion.
Once the dirty work was done I started to throw my time into the paint design. Pouring through colour books, and having a few custom logo designs made by my mate Max to perfectly fit the tail shape and other body work we’d made.
The end result is a bike that’s finally to the standard the rider needs, with a great street presence, rumbling exhaust note and a truly unique take on the bobber style. The Indian Scout Bobber is a lot of fun to ride off the factory floor. All we had to do was make it look and sound as fun as it rides.
There’s a lot of work gone into this, and more hours put into it than I’d usually care to admit. Sometimes you just need to put your head down and work to push through that progress barrier.
As our final bike release for 2020, I couldn’t be prouder to release this bike back onto the street and look forward to our next set of builds. Thanks for joining us for the last year, let’s see where this goes in 2021.