Threesome Cycles: Builders of Hot Rod Trikes
Mike Faria, owner and fabricator at Threesome Cycles was brought up around cars and motorcycles. His parents were big into racing; they had a Bonneville Salt Flats car and a dragster. Motorcycles were always in the picture for his grandfather his dad had Indians. The first bike he ever rode was a Honda 305 Scrambler back in the 60's in Malibu where he grew up. He worked at his parents Muffler shop in Santa Monica until he got into the computer medical billing industry, installing computer systems into medical offices and hospitals for Siemens and Kaiser Permanente. Mike is an above the knee amputee from birth born without thigh and muscle structure on his right side. In April 2005 the stress and long hours was taking its toll and he decided to semi retire. At that time started thinking about Trikes and what was available for to start riding again.
“I knew I wanted a Harley based ride but with my physical challenges needed to make sure that I could do it safely. Not too long after this a friend introduced me to Johnny "Chop" Vasco and had a couple of meetings with him and offered my services to assist him with his growing popularity and business ventures. I took over his mail order business and assisting with his scheduling and appointments Mike stated. When I mentioned to him that I wanted to build a trike he was very excited stating that he had always wanted to build one. With that in mind I started to my research, the availability of rear end kits and what bikes they would fit.” Over the next few months they continued their research and found and found Mystery Designs independent suspension that suited the design. “Unfortunately in March 2006 we lost Johnny way too early and my plan to continue with a trike was on the back burner now”. Mike states.
Mike knew that this was going to be a full custom build and asked Chucky at HBMC if he could have the items shipped there and work on them after hours and rent space, well one thing led to another and started hanging out at the shop, running errands, getting lunch, sweeping floors and so on. Eventually he started learning to wrench and saw that the custom bike market was starting its down slide and talked the guys from HBMC to start service and repair for that would start to pick up. They agreed and Mike got more involved. He went from being there a couple hours a day to full time answering phone, ordering parts and wrenching.
“I got all my parts and started working on that first trike. I had a picture of the family’s race cars, came across the belly tank we had and also my brothers 1/4 midget race car and the concept of the Sprint trike was born. Over the time I worked on the trike at the shop I learned a lot about Harley's motors, braking and did a lot of research on trikes. I was doing much more work at the shop, biz was good and moved into a larger and better digs. I had gotten known for helping folks that were physically challenged so they could get back on bikes and focused on the options to help with options for 3 wheelers.” Stated Mike
“in 2007 a customer came in saying that he had fallen on hard times and needed to sell his 2003 Dyna Lowrider. In my research found Frankenstein Trikes and have talked with Frank many times I became a dealer and ordered my first Frankenstein Kit. I did my first true conversion and got on the road. During that time I worked on getting the braking system perfected for right side amputees. and also found a used pingel electric shift kit at a good price and worked on understanding that so I would be able to assist left sided amputee's and with both sides taken care of a possibility for paraplegics” he stated.
His first on the road trike was a great learning experience but the only challenge was that at 6’2" the Dyna was a bit small for him and decided to find a Softtail. He sold the Dyna to a lady in Riverside who just loves it and found a 2004 FXST Softtail Standard to convert. Again he chose the Frankenstein kit for this bike. The first go round on this the bike was pretty much stock but open wheeled. He was changing things around to see what personalization options could be done but knew he did not want to build Full-bodied trikes like Harley, Lehman, and Champion. He was calling his conversion style Hotrod Trikes.
“I decided to take it over the top, worked out a color and paint scheme, pulled motor apart, tore trike down for a complete rework. By this time I had worked out the items I needed to be safe on the bike, the end result is the Orange trike in the state it is in today”
FINALLY, his very first project he started with Johnny Chop was going to get done! The Mystery designs independent suspension Sprint Trike. Mike mulled over a bunch of ideas and came up with a mini body that looked like a roadster. I found a metal fabricator and said he would give it a shot. After 6 more months of part time fabrication the Sprint trike was finished. In Sept 2011 I decided that I was going to have it ready for the 2012 Easyrider show for it was a tall order for lots needed to be done. He made a list, stepped it up and by December 15th it was debuted at the Easyrider show. “I believe Johnny would have been proud of what I built even though not quite his style”.
Threesome Cycles has built 5 other custom trikes, one for him, 3 others for customers 2 ladies and one guy (Sporty "Gramps") and currently building one for a wounded during Vietnam war and is a paraplegic. Oh yeah and did the Sprint Trike win any accolades?
January 7th 2012 - Easyrider Bike Show Anaheim, California
1st 3-Wheeled Custom
January 27-29th - Grand Nationals Roadster Show Pomona, California
1st 3-Wheeled Class Best Motorcycle (out of 40+ Bikes)
February 11th - Easyrider Photo-shoot Hollywood, California
Stay tuned for the story on his build “Gramps”
Photos and story: Triking Viking