Ben Hardy builder of the Captain America Bike

Truly one of the most famous bikes ever built. Some of you may know that it was built by an African American, some may not for those of you who didn’t know. Here it is:

Peter Fonda, the producer of Easy Rider, hired Cliff Vaughs to coordinate the motorcycles for the film, and Cliff tapped Ben Hardy for the actual construction of the machines. I’ve heard a rumor that 3 ‘Captain America’ replicas were built. Ben Hardy had created the ‘Captain America’ and ‘Billy’ choppers for the film Easy Rider. Ben Hardy used standard H-D frames, ca. ’48-’56, and used Buchanan’s frame shop to alter the steering head angle to 45 degrees. The steering head was cut off and repositioned, and the resultant extreme rake required a 12″ extension to the telescopic forks. A set of A.E.E. fork clamps are used, with extended handlebar clamps (‘dog bones’); the handlebars have a rise of 13″ – not yet in ‘ape hanger’ territory. Cliff Vaughns hired Dean Lanza to paint the bikes, and Peter Fonda specified the tank on one to resemble the sheild of comic-book character Captain America – hence the name of the motorcycle.


1 Comment

  1. I did not know this. Now I do. very interesting. Thanks for posting

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