Electrifying the Custom Scene: <b>The Energica EVA by deBolex Engineering</b>

Electrifying the Custom Scene: The Energica EVA by deBolex Engineering

A custom bike project loaded with contradictions, yet looks so right at first glance. Meet deBolex Engineering’s take on the Energica EVA, created for the Oil In The Blood documentary, proudly supported by REV’IT!. Read about why more was at stake than just a build.
04-03-2019
Urban

Article

deBolex Engineering
#OILINTHEBLOOD

For savvy individuals immersed in the custom motorcycle scene, deBolex Engineering needs no further introduction. The team, consisting of Calum Pryce-Tidd and Des Francis, has given us countless exquisite creations, made with the highest level of craftsmanship. For example, their silver-and-blue Ducati 749 as a personal favorite (we encourage you to Google that one later). But that was all in a fuel-powered, high-octane environment.

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Calum Pryce-Tidd and Des Francis

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AN ELECTRIC BASE

Starting with a base bike that was frowned upon by many - an electric one - to serve as the flagship for a documentary called Oil In The Blood, set the bar high from the get-go. Ultimately, it increased the risk of potential ridicule and the risk of losing a devout crowd of purists. Did we say anything about contradictions?

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Preparations

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CALM LIKE CALUM

Although perceived as a challenge by many, Calum went about his business in his signature serene manner. Known to put in countless hours to hide - or specifically, reveal - certain parts on his previous builds, the Energica proved to be a pleasant surprise as you look in vain for fuel lines or exhaust plumbing.

“In order to get started on the bodywork, the bike needed just a few modifications. Basically the ABS module stuck out too much, meaning we needed to relocate it, as was the case with the water pump.” He makes it sound easy, but this is the only part of the job that gets filed under “preparations.” The real work hadn’t even begun yet.

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ALL JUST A MATTER OF TIME

Coincidentally, we weren’t the only Dutch brand to team up with Gareth Roberts for his Oil In The Blood documentary. Our fellow countrymen and timepiece makers, TW Steel, joined in on the fun by commissioning the build under their “Son of Time” flag. We’ve partnered with TW Steel on various occasions, making sure the people riding their builds were well protected.

But we also encountered hostile territory when taking the crown from their turbocharged “Tempus Fury” at the Glemseck 101 Sprint. Luckily, all ended in good spirit, and it proved to be just a matter of time before we found ourselves back on the same page, and both contributing to Oil In The Blood in unique ways.

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BEATING AND BUILDING

With the “easy” work of preparing the base bike for its new shell behind them, the boys at deBolex went on with shaping the bodywork; transforming the futuristically shaped Energica into an elegant, one-off motorcycle that would have even the most fuel-infected motorcyclist begging for another look.

With just two months between the delivery of the Energica to the Croydon-based workshop and Oil In The Blood’s premier screening in downtown London, the “easy preparations” were quickly forgotten as there was a lot of panel-beating to be done. Seeing Calum and Des at work reminisces of the bodywork carried out by Italian coachbuilder, Zagato, albeit working on two wheels, using true craftmanship to hand-shape the Energica’s new body work from sheets of aluminum.

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Preparations

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TIME IS TICKING

Building a bike together with a watch brand doesn’t buy you time. And time truly became deBolex’s worst enemy as they refused to cut corners when it came to the quality of the design and the finish of the build. Countless hours went into optimizing the littlest details in order to get the overall balance required to earn the deBolex signature.

More importantly, the build of this bike came with a promise: if it’s electricity that will power the future of motorcycling, this bike was going to show those with even the thickest of oil in their blood that passion for motorcycles was all but lost. Looking at the end result might make it sound easy, but there was a lot more at stake while building this zero-emissions bike than meets the eye.

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KNOCKED IT OUT OF THE PARK

Blood, sweat, and perhaps a few tears were needed to finish the bike in time. Just. As we enjoyed the first-ever, long-anticipated showing of Oil In The Blood after three years of filming, a quick look around the room showed two empty seats reserved for deBolex engineering. Upon arrival at “The Bike Shed” for the screening’s aftermath, it became clear why.

Calum and Des literally used every precious second at their disposal to create this truly remarkable bike that makes you want to go out and ride, exactly like you remember it from encountering the bike that made you want to ride in the first place. In just two months, the guys at deBolex pulled it off and knocked it out of the park. And ironically enough, they turned a bike commissioned by a watch brand into a timeless piece. Rest assured; there’s a place for oil in the blood in the future, even when there’s none burned in the bikes.

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Every year, we meet countless fascinating individuals from inside the custom motorcycle scene at events around the world. Be among the first to know about our endeavors and adventures inside this creative space by following us on Instagram, and keep an eye out so you will be among the first to see the deBolex bike in action on track!