‘Crazy for building MAD stuff’
The city of Roosendaal in the south of the Netherlands harbours a small outfit run by a big (1.96m) guy. I got to know Daan Borsje a couple of years ago when we were both sitting in a jury for a build off competition. Daan is an automotive technician by trade and has been working on scooters, cars, and motorcycles since the age of 14. At this young age, he had already decided customizing was a better way to make money than stocking inventory in supermarkets like his pals were doing.
His first bike was a Honda CBR600 Hurricane, which is also the bike that brings back fondest memories. As a youngster he did a 400km road trip with a friend, traveling light and packing just a couple of shirts, shorts and flip-flops. I guess this was a trip in the summer and they were heading south…
Birth of Adonis
In 2012 our 29-year old friend decided to turn pro and launched his company ‘Moto Adonis’.In this relatively short period of time, nearly 100 customized bikes left the workshop to start a fresh life with a new owner. But that’s not were the ambition ends. Moto Adonis’ leading man hopes to one day build “the most famous and beautiful bike mankind has ever seen!” How’s that for setting high standards?
This project is already in the works and is extra special as Daan started it with a mate of his who is no longer with us. “I will build this bike. Even if it takes me 5 years. I don’t care. It will have to be stunning and perfect. The design is done and I am starting to get to grips with the art of working aluminum” Daan responds to our question on planning.
Asking builders about people who inspire them or their personal heroes is always an interesting question as it often puts their designs more into perspective. Daan uses Roland Sands and the bikes from Hazan Motorworks to drive his imagination. Pretty awesome inspiration if you ask me.
In terms of brands, Moto Adonis have no real preference. The bikes produced by Daan and his team have different continents as their birthing ground. However, Two cylinders seem to have a special attraction to Adonis. Many of their bikes have a body containing two throbbing (often air-cooled) hearts. At the loading dock in Roosendaal, you will see a variety of designs leaving the ‘factory’, again no real preference in terms of types. Mostly cafe racers, bobbers, brats or trackers. Not so many choppers, as Daan is not a huge fan.
BMW R 1150 GS
To prove their point about being a two-cylinder fan Adonis suggested we feature the BMW R 1150 GS they recently built for a client from Belgium. This was the ideal project; a well-used bike in not too good condition and ‘carte blanche’ from the owner. Out came the cutters and the grinders and the boys set out to work. Who said they did not like ‘choppers’ as this is exactly what they did.
All stuff that had no real use being there was eliminated. The bike was taken to pieces only to be built again from the ground up. A wider rear frame was installed to house a comfy wide seat. Brackets were made for the rear to hold all the lighting on the back of the bike. Same thing in the front to which the “big ass fog light”, the oil cooler and blinkers were mounted.
Other stuff added:
- replaced the brake pump, gas lever, and steering control
- added a new scrambler style handlebars
- replaced speedo with an Acewell 2853 AS and mounted it on the headlight
All parts that were re-used ended being completely restored and custom exhaust pipes were added for some extra fun. The front of the exhausts are coated with ceramic and the engine was painted black before mounting it into the frame again. The tank of any bike is always a real eye catcher. It can really make or brake a design. In this case everything came out exceptionally smooth on such a rugged looking bike.
To top off the bottom freshly coated rims were used with special rubbers from Heidenau (K60) covering them. As the pictures prove the end product made the owner a very happy ‘teenage grandfather’.
It is not very often that we give special attention to the exhausts, but the ones fitted to the BMW attracted our attention. Turns out Adonis has just launched ‘Mad Exhausts’ as a sub-label in honour of Daan’s friend Wouter van Egmond who sadly passed away in 2017. Adonis stands for perfection and so do the exhausts. They are produced in close cooperation with a friend who has left his mark in highly competitive arenas such as Formula 1 racing and the Moto GP. A true specialist when it comes to exhaust systems, who brings a treasure of expertise to the brand.
If you are looking to attract an audience with your custom bike, I suggest you take a good look on the Mad Exhaust website before making purchase decisions.