Buckets of Badass Bikes at Willie’s Chopper Show 2012

//Buckets of Badass Bikes at Willie’s Chopper Show 2012

Buckets of Badass Bikes at Willie’s Chopper Show 2012

I’ve made no secret here on the J&P Blog about my opinion of “custom bike building” and how this segment of the industry has turned into a joke over the past few years. I have little use for super shiny themed “choppas,” built on reality television shows by folks with thin skin, getting their underwear twisted up when someone doesn’t care for their “design”.

And I’m no fan of these so-called production customs, which sounds like an oxymoron to me — with the emphasis on moron.

What I do have an incredible amount of love for is real ingenuity. I like functional bikes that are designed to ride. And I like garage-built machines. That’s why Willie’s Tropical Tattoo Chopper Show is such an attraction to me. There’s a reason why it’s called the “Old School Chopper Show.”

We made our way down to 825 South Yonge St. in Ormond Beach, to witness the 10th anniversary of the best bike show in the Daytona area. We arrived around noon to an already jam-packed lot, filled to the property lines with motorcycles and people. We managed to wiggle our way through the crowd to get a good look at what graced the parking lot and we weren’t disappointed.

The story is, Willie’s tattoo artists were so busy inking customers during Bike Week that they never got a chance to see any of the chronic chrome action in town. So about a dozen years ago, Willie decided to bring all this handlebar hoopla to his shop. It was all here again this year —panheads, shovels, a Ford V8-powered hardtail, and a host of other examples of two-wheeled baddassery.

Check out the video below to see all the chopped up, homemade goodness.

You won’t see any production customs on this lot — just basic bikes built by riders.

By |2015-04-14T16:57:55+00:00March 22nd, 2012|Categories: News/Events Articles|18 Comments

About the Author:

Patrick Garvin began his stint with J&P Cycles at the start of 2008 after doing some installs for us at Daytona and Sturgis for two years. Currently, Patrick splits his time between the eCommerce team and purchasing, finding new and exciting products for our website and catalog. When he’s not at his desk, he’s zigzagging across the country with J&P’s event crew. Patrick has an obsession with going fast on just about anything, a trait he shares with his 6-year-old son Race. You can usually find both of them wrenching in the garage or ripping through the fields on dirt bikes. Emma, his beautiful wife of 7-plus years, puts up with his antics and keeps his head screwed on because he certainly wouldn’t be able to find it without her.


  1. hawkeye January 16, 2013 at 7:42 am

    WTF! Guess I won’t be ordering any parts for my “production custom” from J&P…………………

  2. DonnyG April 5, 2012 at 10:51 am

    Freedom of speech is our right as Americans! And it is Patrick’s blog.

    I rode to rallies in my 20’s and 30’s. now I’m 43 and trailor to rallies so that I can take my wife and kids. It’s more imoprtant to see my kids get into the scene rather than worry about people talking crap about my trailor! I put 20,000 miles a year on my bike. You want to give someone a hard time just ask to look at the odometer. That’s what counts!

  3. DonnyG April 5, 2012 at 10:39 am

    Well, this is The U.S.A. Freedom of speech is our right! But, I want all of you talking about trailoring to think about why someone might trailor a bike. I rode to rallies in my twenties and thirties. But, now I’m 43 and would like to take my wife and kids so I trailor my bike and get to see my kids enjoy the scene. I hope this becomes a family tradition. I like seeing my kids become interested in bikes. I can’t wait til they can ride and then we won’t need a trailor. But, until then I’m trailoring. And I don’t care if that’s biker enough for anyone. I’ve been a biker for 25yrs. I got my first softail at the age of 19!

  4. Attitude April 4, 2012 at 9:54 am

    I agree.Those asswipes that can’t,won’t,or are too fuckin’ lazy to build their own ride would of course buy something produced to attempt to make them look cool while trailering their shit in.Why don’t they just buy a Honda and full face hel and go on their g**-assed way?met

  5. Dirts fer Taters April 4, 2012 at 8:38 am

    Yeah I agree with Pat on this one. @ Handknut you sound like the opinionated bloke here…Maybe it would be better if he didn’t give any opion at all just so he doesn’t offend anyone??? What are you a lawyer? Would that make you happy?
    Maybe it would be better if the whole world was gray and nobody had any opinions…

    What a putz!

  6. Greg Devlin April 4, 2012 at 8:34 am

    Hey Gang, it’s not WHAT you ride that counts, it’s THAT you ride that counts. As long as you’re building, painting, riding or talking about your motorcycle you’re one of my brothers or sisters.

    Damn, can’t we all get along?


  7. Eric April 4, 2012 at 6:55 am

    I couldn’t agree more with opinion of the custom bike builders. People need to see what true custom bikes are all about instead of the trailer queens built for corporations or wealthy posers.

  8. handknut April 4, 2012 at 2:10 am

    Clearly no one deserves your respect. All those thin skinned jokes making blingy bikes (that must be un-ridable) are just encouraging the morons to buy stretched and raked poser production bikes… right?

    Any one who didn’t build up a bike from parts found on a farm is beneath you? Does a stock Harley rider earn your respect? How about a Harley with $4,000 or more paid to the dealers for bolt on chrome? When do we become worthy to stand beside you?

    You sir are an opinionated fool, and a hack journalist… J+P would be wise to distance themselves from your blogging opinion, seeing as you see fit to name call the large majority of the customer base.

    Shut up and wave your damn hand as others ride by.

    • Patrick Garvin April 4, 2012 at 11:07 am

      Jerry, I wasn’t aware that I was king…?

      Hanknut, you have implied an awful lot in your comment and I’ll do my best to make myself clear to everyone.

      I don’t choose to respect someone solely based on what motorcycle they ride, that would be a bit shallow don’t you think? I believe respect is something to be earned over time and I don’t expect the blog readers to respect me based on my opinion on motorcycles. This article and any I write are based on my love of motorcycles and motorcycling – while I do try to report interesting things, I would not classify myself as a journalist. Ultimately this is a place for us to dialogue about what we all love – motorcycles, I have an opinion and shared it and would encourage you to share yours.

      I think you both have missed the point of the article. If you want to ride a 330 chopper that looks like a helicopter then knock yourself out. I prefer to be creative with bikes no matter if its a $300 CB750 or a $30,000 custom. My point is to be creative, ride your motorcycle and work on your own bike.


      • Marine1984 January 15, 2013 at 8:21 am

        To your last sentence: amen brother!

  9. Simon Florian April 3, 2012 at 11:27 pm


  10. Simon Florian April 3, 2012 at 11:26 pm

    Really cool bikes. Pity theyre not in Malta!

  11. Jerry April 3, 2012 at 8:09 pm

    Who died and made you King It is suppose to be about what you like if I like what Jesse. Paul Jr .or anyone else builds is my fu@king business not some.one elses.I remember when it was about riding and good times .What happen to that?

  12. Feral April 3, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    I have been trying to attend Daytona for 35years ,maybe next year, that’s life Cheers from Tasmania

  13. Jude Francis April 3, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    Yes ,I agree theme bikes suck those so call choppers all like alike

  14. Bill Schuckhardt April 3, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    Patrick – Tell us how you really feel! I think some of these bikes (not all of them) are ugly and awful looking! Same way I feel about some, not all, of the “shiny choppas” that are ugly, “over the top”, and awful looking. Just my opinion. I could be wrong. What is it they say about beauty being in the eye of the beholder?

  15. Ken April 3, 2012 at 10:12 am

    Hell yeah, I’ve just been motivated to visit Daytona, after checking out the real iron, looking forward to meeting and chatting up some people with real imaginations & the ‘iron’ to put these rides together.

  16. Don Gunritz March 27, 2012 at 11:15 pm

    Looking for saddle bag mounts for 2003 H.D. duece hard bags.Not haveing much luck !Don

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