New Twist on an Old Favorite

October 29, 2020 | By Mike Seate

Loads of work going on in the CRM garage these days as the first cool breezes of fall are making themselves known. We’re all ready to wrench, and the new three winter issues will reveal some serious modifications of our fleet of test bikes and long-termers. We were recently in touch with the talented team at Illinois’ Framecrafters, Karsten and Randy Ilg. These two brothers have fabricated some of the finest-handling chassis ever to grace a ton-up ride their designs winning more vintage motorcycle races than they can realistically count. One of Framecrafters’ finest projects is something they call the Fat Featherbed. Regular readers will know how much we dig Norton’s fine-cornering, road-holding chassis and the Ilg brothers came up with a means of welding together top-flight replicas suited for modern motorcycle engines. Back in issue #48 we ran one of the 21st Century Tritons built on a Framecrafters chassis and the images stick with us. The bike was both beautiful and functional, serving up modern Britbike reliability with the sure-footed handling the featherbed is renowned for. Lucky for us, The Ilg brothers have offered to build a Fat Featherbed for a project bike. Though space in the garage is limited at the moment, we’d be crazy not to take Framecrafters up on their offer. So while we search for a late-model Hinckley Triumph Bonneville engine to bolt into that lovely chassis, we’ll be bringing you regular updates here and in the print magazine. Meanwhile, it should prov fun selecting running gear, bodywork and other details of what should prove one of the most fun bike’s we’ve yet built. Ride on!