Custom: Sesto Cycles R1

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Unveiled yesterday at the International Motorcycle Show in Long Beach, this custom Yamaha R1 is the winner of the Custom Showdown Pro Builder contest. To create it, Sesto Custom Cycles fitted a single-sided, hub-center steered front end, radically stretched and fitted with a 240-section tire to match the rear.

Paint and all the copper-colored metal are meant to reference Yamaha’s musical history. That company’s original logo from 1898 — a phoenix clutching a tuning fork — is recreated on the bike’s bodywork.

Doubting that such a drastically stretched motorcycle is unrideable? Tony Sesto rode it to the show from his shop in Stanton, California. A total distance in excess of 20 miles.

  • contender

    My head hurts. I can’t understand HFL’s lack of derision towards this mess.

    • Wes Siler

      I think your sarcasm detector is broken.

      • contender

        Probably so. I got confused when this followed the Victory news…

      • Streetfighter

        I like how you have to sign in to downvote…

  • Core

    Man oh man, that’s actually awesome at least in appearance. Now if the the rider had been all in black leather, maybe his solid black helmet and visor had a bit of gold lining on it to match the bike… and blend it all in.

  • Joseph Knudsen

    I would be so embarrassed to be seen on something like that, and who cares that he rode it 20 miles. People ride Harleys farther than that, and they’re the biggest pieces of junk around.

    • Ricardo Gozinya

      Actually Harleys are pretty well built. They’re not cutting edge technology by any stretch of the imagination, but those things will go forever. Every trip I make out on 8 East through El Centro, always see some grey hairs on their hogs. They might not be fast or nimble, but they’ll get where they’re going.

  • DucMan

    Haven’t we passed this stage in the bike show biz? It’s a cliche now. This stuff is so far past lame, it can’t catch a bus BACK to being lame.

    • CK613

      I couldn’t agree more

  • Ben

    I’m sure Yamaha loves this magnificent tribute.

  • JB

    I fell for it up until this gem: “A total distance in excess of 20 miles.”

    Well played, Wes. Well played.

  • Jason Sagaci

    Like a tired old whore. Way too much makeup and plastic.
    Low class men think it sexy

  • Robotribe

    This is one SPECTACULAR example of simultaneous waste of time and money.


  • Hooligan

    One thing is for sure, that bike will not fit into the parking bays in London.

  • Ricardo Gozinya

    Being a hub-center steering bike, I can’t help but compare it with the Harrier and Slugger, where it comes up way short. All form, no function, and no fun. Heck, I’ve seen some HD customs that look more fun to ride than that thing.

    This one comes to mind:

  • Kerry Swartz

    Is the fellow’s hat brim flipped up due to the exhaust pipes blowing into his face during those twenty arduous miles?

    • Damo Von Maciel

      Those are the intakes, not the exhaust, Sir.

  • rohorn

    Take the custom aircraft world – think EAA & Oshkosh – where one can find garage built aircraft that are far faster, aerobatic, and vastly more beautiful than anything made by any factory. And they are flown there (unless they don’t have enough hours on them).

    Take the custom car world – sure, they are stuck in a rut and lets ignore the freak show stuff (think Ed Roth/Tom Daniels/T-buckets/mini-pickups/donks/etc…) – but whether ’33 Ford rat rod w/flathead V8 or ’33 Ford Factory Five w/blown modular, it still is far faster than the original car, more fun to drive, and might be faster than anything you can buy new for the same price. And they look fun to drive.

    Take the custom bike world. When was the last time you saw a custom bike show featuring any bike that did ANYTHING better than the stock bike? Are low performace bikes the results of low performance minds? The only exceptions I can think of were some of Roger Goldammer’s and Curt Winter’s BTR (Which placed 3rd in a class that was supposed to be performance oriented – I guess they meant “Strippers” class). 99% of the custom bikes don’t look even remotely fun to ride, except for maybe for some “Hey, look at me – I’m defying death!” effect. Why does the custom aircraft and car world generally involve performance, yet the custom bike world wallows in some bad guy thing where they obviously yearn in some freudian way for getting their butts pounded by something large, round, and black?

    I hope I live long enough to make a difference – or at least see a change happen.

    • F H

      On the whole I agree, although the performance level of most sport bikes (especially liter bikes) isn’t exactly lacking in the way a stock ’30s Ford might. There are exceptions but this requires a much better understanding of what a motorcycle is lacking and how it could be fixed. Lipstick on the pig or gilding the lily, customs now seem to be more about “How can I make this bike ‘worth’ $100,000.

      • Ricardo Gozinya

        Depends on what you start with, and how you define performance. Some people try to turn HDs and other cruisers into high performance machines, with varying degrees of success. Still others try to make a bike as light and nimble as possible. Guzzi 1000SPs are a popular choice for that. If you want to see interesting custom work, you pretty much have to look outside of the US, but it’s there, and there’s some very cool stuff.

        • rohorn

          Guzzis do seem to be mostly immune from dysfunctional custom bike syndrome.

  • Glenngineer

    It’d be kind of cool if the wheels came back to where they where supposed to be.

  • Jordan Jones

    As if the current generation R1 wasn’t convoluted enough, somebody went on a limb and made this thing.

    I would like to set this thing on fire and crash it into a Nickelback concert.

    • Jordan Jones

      I can’t believe somebody made a bike more disgusting to look at than my entire online dating experience.

  • Scott Jones

    Dark Night meets West Coast Customs.

  • nick2ny

    I dig the velocity stacks.

  • Ricardo Gozinya

    Oh, for some contrast, here’s a Brutale custom, made to look like something like a 70′s racer. Beautiful, and rideable as fuck.

  • luxlamf

    Can this show please be moved out of Long Beach from now on, The city of Long Beach apparently doesn’t want this show or its visitors there as they decided on the only Full Day of the show (Saturday) to shut down several lanes of the only freeway that goes there, the 710. There was no construction etc.. to be had, no just a guy putting out traffic cones making the trip down there that is usually 35 minutes closer to 90 with all the traffic in a 6 mile stretch. Dangerous for MC’s as the autos where changing lanes last minute out of frustration etc.. If the City of LB doesnt want it then go downtown or many other venues around the Los Angeles area.

    • Scott Sweeney

      The 605 ends in LB too, just 15 minutes further South.

      • luxlamf

        actually the 605 merges into the 405 well before the convection center well east of the convention center

  • Sid Widmer

    For our next trick we will cut the wings off this airplane and turn it into a back-ho….a gold plated back-ho…….

  • Speedo007

    He should have sent that extra money to feed starving kids in Africa instead. Would have made the world a better place. This bike certainly fails at that.

  • Shaun Groomes


  • Levent Barlas

    Yeah. Those are what the styling of this bike and your dreams about super soldiers in black leathers with golden lining remind me of (not that there’s anything is wrong with that)