KISS Chopper

Jason's KISS Chopper

It all started more than six months ago in the home garage of Tom Buttera of “Papas Back Alley Choppers “in Lakeland, Florida, (Yes, the same Lakeland where Ace shocked himself back in the 70’s). Tom and I shook hands and agreed on building something fantastic, so home I went to design my dream bike.

I wanted to, of course, do a KISS theme, like if there was another one I could have done. But I did not want to do a retro black and white version. I have seen various KISS bikes, cars, and what not, and they all use the retro KISS artwork, I wanted something different, something to stand out from the crowd, so I chose a Psycho Circus theme, from the Psycho Circus Comic books from the late 90’s. The artwork in the comics are phenomenal, so I had my work cut out for me to try and find something I could use, as everything I saw was so kick ass. What I decided on was a mural of the 4 original members for the gas tank, Issue #7, the cover. I wanted to show all four together, and this piece worked out great. I then needed a drop dead, kick ass graphic for the rear fender. Knowing that I was going to use a fat rear tire, and knowing the fender was going to be wide, I had to come up with something to cover that large fender, but not to busy and to not take anything away from the bike, so I decided on the devil man himself, Gene, to cover the back fender, in all his fiery glory from the Year Of The Fox part II, issue #15, the first page. Next I had to do something with the front fender, and I saw an image in the same issue of Eric Carr, on the last page. I wanted to put him somewhere on the bike, and what better than to do him right up front. Eric Carr as you all know was a much respected member, and loved by all, and, he happens to be my favorite member, so to place him in the forefront was the only way to go.

Now that I have my paint figured out, I had to design the rest of the bike, easy right! We knew what frame we were going to use. It is a Papas Choppers frame, built from cold rolled steel tubing. The frame for you tech junkies is 8”up, 14”over front end, and I think 2” stretch in the backbone, might be 3”. I also did a single down tube in the front as opposed to a double tube look, like every other chopper out there, and to cap it off we made the tube 2”, and turned it into a spike at the bottom to match all the points I was going to put on the bike. The sheet metal is after market. The tank is a West Coast Choppers one, and the fenders are Fat Katz as well as the oil tank. We put a S&S 96 cubic inch motor in it, show polished, & rejetted the carb with a new spearhead air intake.

As far as odd accessories, on the left side, I had a custom cover made for the coils in the shape of the KISS Army logo, which was made by Gregg Reading of S&B Sheet Metal in Lakeland, FL, and then placed KISS Army logo chrome lettering over the black painted cover. The shift linkage was also custom made in the Psycho Circus font from the comic book covers.

To keep the point theme going we custom made the bars, and purchased some risers for the bars from Martin Brothers out in Texas, as well as the pipes are Martin Brothers, and the forks are from Mean Street, some of the finest forks ever made.

The paint was finished by Chris Cruz Artistry of Deland, Florida. I let him have free reign on painting the frame. The only things I wanted exact were the artwork for the tank, fenders, and the down tube artwork which is the PC symbols of all four characters.

I hope you enjoy the bike, and I hope I have not bored you to much with my small tale. It took 6 months to complete, and very well worth the wait. I am a KISS Fanatic from the 70’s, and my dream is to have the guys and the bike pictured together and maybe some autographs, and the chance for me to look them in the eye, shake hands, and say thank you for all the years of great music. This is my KISS Tribute, enjoy!

Jason Holliday
Lakeland, Florida