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Norman JW

For years John had wanted to build a motorcycle using a couple of radial engine aircraft cylinders.

When he finally decided to just "DO IT", he ended up building this motorcycle as a way to incorporate a little bit of the many things he has learned to do over the years ... wood-working, welding, sheet metal fabrication, auto mechanics, plaster & metal casting, upholstery, aircraft building and restoration, and more ... all into one, single entity that he refers to as his "Pratt-Hog".

Utilizing his abundant and varied skills, he has welded, machined, cut, cast, sewed, and simply CREATED, this 'monster' motorcycle out of bits and pieces of various materials he had on hand ... and a very few pieces he needed to purchase!

a collage print showing the name "Norman, JW" in the lower left corner; two Pratt & Whitney aircraft cylinders situated on top of a gear box with a Pratt & Whitney logo attached at the center of the gear box in the upper left corner; a closeup of the Pratt & Whitney logo that shows an eagle in flight heading toward the right and the words "Pratt & Whitney Aircraft" above the eagle and the words "Dependable Engines" below the eagle situated in the upper right corner of the collage; two exhaust stacks in the lower right corner.

John started out by constructing a cardboard 'model' of the engine he planned to build, using two Pratt & Whitney 985, radial engine, cylinders.   Then he placed the engine 'model' on his workbench, and drew the frame that would house this engine on the wall of his shop ... around the engine 'model'   He then purchased the materials and built the frame he had drawn on the wall.   Once he built the cases, he kept going until he had machined the pistons and rods as well.

one half of the engine case
one half of the engine case
set of master rods in the foreground with pistons in the background.
two halves of a case on the left with the master rods and two pistons on the right all sitting on a bright red cloth

 John had to build his own fuel tank to fit around the unique shape of the engine he had built. 

He wanted the headlight and taillights to blend in with the design he had envisioned, so he built them as well. The taillight lenses are half red ... to illuminate the brakes when they are on ... and half amber ... to illuminate the turn signals when they are on. 

John built the fenders to blend in with the rest of the bike & they each have birds-eye maple accents on the sides. 

a custom built motorcycle with "Norman JW" on the fuel tank and birds-eye maple insets on the fenders

John made plaster molds of his hands as he held the exhaust pipes in his hands.  He then cast the 'hands' in aluminum to build the unique exhaust pipe clamps for this motorcycle.

two aluminum cast "hands" cut off at the wrists and bonded together that appear to be "holding" the exhaust pipes they are attached to.

This machine was licensed in 2001 in Washington state as a "JW Cycle".

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