A Western Canadian motorcycle shop pioneer, best known for cranking out some sweet custom, performance rides, is hanging up his wrench.
At 79-years-old, Mick King has built what is likely his final bike – a YamaHonda 1000 R1.
King, a Spallumcheen resident who moved to Canada from England in 1968, founded Superformance Motorcycles in Vancouver.
Along with selling and racing bikes, King is best known for his two-wheeled inventions.
“I’ve been doing it ever since I was in England,” said King, who is heavy into building notable brands.
“I always put a later motor into an older frame.”
His award-winning creations have captured the attention of online motorcycle publications and bike enthusiasts worldwide.
But now the father of three grown children, plus all his bikes, has built his final masterpiece.
“It’s the last one I can put that kind of work into.”
King started the project last year, while looking around his shop and wondering what to do with all the bike parts lying around.
His son Nick suggested building a street fighter and although a little reluctant, King finally decided to do just one more.
He dug up a 1987 Yamaha FZR 1000 Genessis chassis he had under his bench, which he claims was the best handing bike around in its class until very recently.
He also located a carbureted Yamaha R1 1000 cc power plant.
After a lot of jigging and moving the engine ahead four inches in order for it to fit, King had built his Trans Canada Express.
It took 14 months to build, mainly of Yamaha parts, with some help from Myles at Vernon Motorsports, and a pile of Honda CB600RR fairing and cowlings. Hence, the name YamaHonda.
“It was as though the Yamaha frame was dying to be resurrected and was duly content with the FZR1 egnine,” said King.
“It was an ancient and modern blend of power and good handling.”