Car video reviews:
Frank Is a Custom Triumph Speed Triple With Beefy Rear-End Anatomy, Looks Savage
To some extent, it actually reminds us of those 4,000-hp Caterpillar mining trucks and their massive tires.

Frank Is a Custom Triumph Speed Triple With Beefy Rear-End Anatomy, Looks Savage

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After he was laid off by the advertising agency he’d been employed at for more than a decade, John Ryland decided to take a gamble and set up his own motorcycle customization workshop. Consequently, what we now know as Classified Moto (CM) began to take shape back in 2011, and it’s difficult to overstate the sheer level of popularity this operation had attained as the years went by.

At first, Classified was headquartered in John’s very own residential garage, but the whole shebang ended up going a step further as of 2013. Having relocated to a much larger standalone workspace in Richmond, Ryland continued to push the boundaries of his know-how with each and every project, regularly leaving his cozy comfort zone in search of greater things.

In the coming years, the guy was joined by a small team of bright minds to help him manage the increasingly demanding workflow, but he still handles most aspects of CM’s custom projects by himself. Although we’ve not seen a new build from these folks in quite some time, we really hope to see them return with guns blazing as soon as possible!

Meanwhile, a quick throwback to one of Classified’s most outstanding exploits is in order. As a matter of fact, the bike pictured above is arguably the raddest machine you’ll find in their entire portfolio, and it goes by the name of Frank. Based on a 2007 MY Triumph Speed Triple, this project was commissioned by Rebel Bourbon of Louisville, Kentucky.

The reputed whiskey distillery tasked John Ryland’s firm with creating one of six giveaway motorcycles for a promotional campaign, though the overall design brief remained completely open. As for the donor’s technical specs, its fuel-injected 1,050cc inline-three powerhouse can spawn up to 131 ponies and 77 pound-feet (105 Nm) of torque at the crankshaft.

Ultimately, these figures translate to a top speed of 150 mph (241 kph) and an eleven-second quarter-mile time. With this much power on tap, the Speed Triple wasn’t exactly in need of any major performance upgrades, so the CM pros chose to limit the powertrain mods to a tailor-made three-into-one exhaust. The new stainless-steel pipework ends in a reverse megaphone muffler located underneath the seat.

But of course, what will really catch your attention is the humungous rubber found lower down. The fat ATV-spec tire hails from STI’s inventory, and it embraces a gorgeous 14-inch ITP Hurricane rear hoop made of aluminum alloy. In order to connect these items to the main chassis, Ryland’s squad undertook the painstaking task of manufacturing a chromoly trellis swingarm from scratch.

Needless to say, getting its proportions right was no walk in the park, and even the process of obtaining the raw material proved to be a challenge. Generally, producers only sell chromium-molybdenum in large quantities, so Classified Moto had to dig pretty deep until they’d managed to find a suitable provider.

The rear-end anatomy is topped off with a 465 Series monoshock from Progressive Suspension, and an X-ring D.I.D drive chain links the wheel to the Speed Triple’s powertrain. Up north, the factory configuration remains virtually unchanged, but there’s a dual-purpose Kenda Big Block tire complementing the STI Black Diamond installed down south.

You’ll find a Motogadget Motoscope Pro gauge taking pride of place in the cockpit, while the electrics draw power from a Shorai lithium-ion battery. The OEM subframe was tweaked to accommodate a bespoke saddle upholstered by Roy Baird – a Richmond-based leather expert and regular collaborator.

Last but not least, Frank retains the factory fuel tank, though it too was modified with epoxy before receiving a rugged yellow finish and hand-painted script detailing on its knee indentations. Meshed side covers complete the visual pizzazz, and one of the headlights is now tinted amber to keep things looking wild.


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