Saturday, 15 January 2011

Von Dutch Falcone

Thanks to Nick who sent us the link to this fascinating Guzzi Falcone presently on US Ebay here

Richard H. Cormany, a Numerical Control Programmer, built this gorgeous Guzzi over a five-year period. Purchased used in 1961 for the sum of $574 from California Moto Guzzi dealer Branch Motorcycle Sales in Los Angeles, Mr. Cormany rode his Falcone for a year before spending close to 5000 hours on the customization process.

Starting with the rear fender shroud, Cormany built a male mold on the bike itself, and when he had the required contours a female mold was pulled. Cormany contracted Kenny Howard (Von Dutch), who in-turn created molds carved of wood for the headlight nacelle and front fender. Small diameter dual headlights were decided upon, and each headlight has an individual on-off switch at the back of the nacelle. The headlights themselves are adjustable for elevation while in motion.

The stock gas and oil tanks were retained, and the entire coachwork was painted gloss black by Von Dutch, with a signature fine gold pinstripe applied to define the contours of the custom bodywork.
Cormany decided to strip the frame of its paint and cadmium plate it. Due to the size of the frame, he was forced to spend many hours removing the plating stains with a rubber eraser.

The engine was dismantled, engine cases refinished, and other components chromed or polished, while Von Dutch artfully machine turned the flywheel.
Modified handlebars replaced the originals, and suitable control levers sourced. The racing type seat was fabricated by Cormany, and is secured in place by a spring-loaded latch operated from the back of the rear fender. Beneath the seat is a compartment large enough to carry tools, gloves, and a light jacket.

Cormany was invited to enter his custom Moto Guzzi Falcone into the 1971 Cycle World Show, and walked away with the Best Street Custom award. In the August issue, Cycle World Magazine featured a two page photographic spread on the bike and wrote, Dick Cormany won the street-legal custom category with his 1959 Moto Guzzi Falcone, which is no surprise. The bike is strikingly original, departing from the main stream of custom art to combine the complexity of the classic Guzzi 500cc single-cylinder engine and suspension components with a sleek, flowing fiberglass shell.
The current owner procured the motorcycle from Dick Cormany’s estate in the mid 90′s, and it has resided in his private collection ever since

No comments: