Art on Wheels - Craigh Rodsmith's BSA Bantam

Art on Wheels - Craigh Rodsmith's BSA Bantam - TheArsenale

Bobby Hass, a Dallas-based motorcycle collector that has been funding custom motorcycle builders for a few years now is soon to open his museum; a 20,000 square-foot space called Haas Moto Museum. 110 vintage and custom motorcycles will be shown, many of which have become true thanks to his support. The latest piece to enter his collection is Craig Rodsmith's last creation, the BSA Bantam. 


Haas met Craig at the 2017 Handbuilt Show in Austin, where he fell in love with his Turbocharged Moto Guzzi. A few hours later, they shook hands on the purchase of the same bike and set on to create another one. After a simple sketch, they were both set on the build and Craig began to work his wonders on the bike. Described as a slick board track style bike, it is built around a vintage 1950s BSA Bantam two-stroke wrapped in an aluminum encasing body. That's where the Corps Legér comes from, meaning light body. They decided to use all-white button tires mounted on clincher rims. 


Clinchers themselves are a nightmare to put together and to stay together, so Craig had to ask for help one of the few people in the world who still use them; Max Hazan. Funny enough, the bike started from the wheels. Getting them to work and making them from scratch was one of the biggest challenge. Instead of a front light, there's an "intake" with a steel mesh screen. The handlebars poke out of the bodywork allowing for some maneuverability. There are brakes only in the rear with a single anchor. The drum was made out of an integrated sprocket and a modified BSA backing plate for the calipers. 


This is not a bike that has smart features, will automatically turn on when you approach it or have ABS. It is a raw creation of metal that honors old-fashioned craftsmanship and metalworking. While it might not be the sweetest ride to the downtown bar, we doubt there's anything to match the aesthetics of this sweet, vintage-inspired build.

Image credits : BIKEEXIF