Owens Bootleg Cycle

  • By chelseajaie
  • 30 Jan, 2015
Bob Owens is one of the best kept secrets in Genesee County for Harley Davidson history, motorcycle repair skills, selection of parts, Champion Trike Kit upgrades, and the rebuilding of bikes from the ground up. There are only a couple of things which Owens does not do in his shop, and that is chrome and paint. Owens enthusiasm for his business is evident, not only in what he says, but in how he says it. His passion for his work is evident as he explains how loyal his clients are and how some of them have been with him for over 25 years.

“We try to use local or [American-made] parts when available, but sometimes they just don’t exist,” Owens explains. At any given time, Owens Bootleg Cycle has about 10-30 bikes in waiting to be fixed by his staff of three: Paul, Vickie and Owens, himself. His love for motorcycles began when he was quite young, watching his father, Bill Owens, who raced Harley Davidson sprint bikes. Here he is pictured at age two and a half on top of his father’s Zundapp Motorcycle. Then later, when he was nine, Owens followed in his father’s footsteps and started racing his own bikes in competitions.

After graduation from high school, Owens worked for Mobil, delivering supplies to local area gas stations. Later, he hired into Buick where worked for 12 years on the assembly line. When he was laid off from that job, Owens wasn’t sure what he was going to do, but eventually, through some racing connections of his father’s, he applied for and got a job with Dennis Atherton at ABC Harley Davidson in Waterford. “That’s when I realized what I really wanted to do. I couldn’t believe I could actually get paid for doing something I loved!” Owens exclaims. “I was able to ride and fix motorcycles all day long for seven years, and life was good.”

In 1993, Owens moved back to Burton, returning to work on the assembly line at Buick, but this time, he only lasted eight months because he was miserable. He missed working on bikes. So Owens called his old boss, Dennis Atherton, who referred him to Bert Cummings at Cummings Harley, and he was able to get back into the industry he loved so much. This is where Owens really honed in on his skills and learned even more about customer service and the bike repair business.

Then on January 5, 2005, right in the middle of the worst economy Flint has seen in years, Owens Bootleg Cycle was born. “People thought I was crazy, but I knew it had to be done,” he says. Owens operated out of a warehouse, which he rented for several years -- until the building next door became available - which he then purchased in 2009. Right after he moved into his new building, he retired from racing his bike after 38 years. However, he still enjoys going to the races each year. At one particular Grand National Flat Track race in 2009, Owens invited a photographer who was there on behalf of a Japanese racing magazine to come over to see his place, and the man was so impressed, he published an article about Bob Owens and Owens Bootleg Cycle later that same year. Today Bob Owens is known for his uncanny skills in detecting what is wrong with his clients’ motorcycles. Even after clients move away, they still ship their bikes in a crate to Bob Owens when their motorcycles need repairs. He has many clients in Las Vegas, Florida and even Canada, to name a few. Many of the bikes his clients own have only had Bob Owens work on them. Owens Bootleg Cycle is also a sponsor of Bikes on the Bricks, which is held every year in September in Downtown Flint.

Owens also specializes in converting existing motorcycles into Trikes for his clients. One client, in particular, was suffering from mobility issues and thought they signaled the end of his riding career. His doctors had told him that pretty soon he would not be able to ride at all. He was having trouble shifting gears with his leg, and his balance was not good, so it was not safe for him to be on the bike. “As [this client] was telling me the story about how sad he was to give up what he loved [so much], it got me thinking about what I could do to modify his bike. You see, these Trike Kits are pretty cool; they allow people to keep riding longer because [the riders] don’t have to balance on two wheels anymore. Plus, I knew I could add an electronic shifter so [the man] could change gears with his hand on the handlebar instead of with his leg,” Owens explains. As anyone can imagine, this was the answer to a prayer for his client, and word about the Trike Kits traveled fast.

Today Owens Bootleg Cycle is the local distributor for Champion Trike Kits.

OWENS BOOTLEG CYCLE | 1055 S BALLENGER HWY | FLINT, MI 48532 | MONDAY - FRIDAY 10 AM – 6 PM

Around The Town with Chelsea

By chelseajaie 27 Jun, 2017
Behind Your Design is excited to announce the logo design and responsive website launch for Linda Lucas Design. Linda Lucas owner of Linda Lucas Design is dedicated to creating an environment that reflects her client’s personality and lifestyle, by capturing their design dreams and making them a reality. With over 13 years’ experience, Linda offers a wealth of knowledge in both new construction, and remodeling an existing space. Linda understands that listening to a client’s needs is key, and is committed to working with you to create a beautiful living environment, while embracing your style through inspiration and imagination. She completed her interior design studies through Interior Design Institute, a Certified Interior Design (C.I.D.) approved program. To learn more about Linda and her services please click here . Contact us at  Behind Your Design  to help you design your next website.
By chelseajaie 02 Jun, 2017
Behind Your Design is excited to announce the launch of Bella Vita's new responsive website. Bella Vita Senior Living will be opening their doors this summer in Grand Blanc, Michigan.  At Bella Vita they believe in an  our all-inclusive service and care with an all-inclusive rate makes the decision of placement for your loved one a lot simpler. It allows you to budget your family member finances consistently without the stress of a changing add-on rate provided by other companies. They provide many services such as life enrichment programs, laundry, housekeeping, beauty shop, dining services and more. To learn more about the Bella Vita and their services please click  here   . Contact us at   Behind Your Design   to help you design your next website.
By Chelsea Mills 02 Jun, 2017
Behind Your Design is excited to announce the launch of the Corner Bar and Grill's new responsive website. The Corner Bar and Grill is a rock ‘n’ roll gastro pub located in Fenton.  If you are looking for a great place to dine with a terrific atmosphere the Corner Bar is the place to be! Their weekend brunch menu is sure to please everyone in your family with plate such as chicken and waffles, speciality brew cakes and loaded omelettes and lets not forget their mimosas and beermosas! They also feature live music every Saturday. So make sure to check them out the next time you are in Fenton! To learn more about their menu please click here Contact us at   Behind Your Design    to help you design your next website.
By chelseajaie 10 Apr, 2017
Behind Your Design is excited to announce the launch of Mansour Realty's new responsive website. Mansour Realty, Inc  is local company provides strategic, high-quality services and solutions for commercial real estate owners, investors, managers and users. Although their named changed from Mansour Developments to Mansour Realty, Inc. they have 50 years of experience in researching, purchasing, developing and selling properties. And for the last 15 years they have been putting their expertise to help other companies with their commercial real estate needs. To learn more about the Mansour Realty and its services please click here . Contact us at  Behind Your Design  to help you design your next website.
By chelseajaie 24 Mar, 2017
Behind Your Design is pleased to announce the launch of the Holly Hotel's new website. The Historic Holly Hotel is a family owned large restaurant in the heart of downtown Holly. It has been a hub for social activity since the early 1900's. Known for its themed events and dinners it is a the perfect venue for group outings. From comedy club nights to Sunday brunch the Holly Hotel is the place to be. While The Historic Holly Hotel is known as a destination restaurant for elegant dining, it is also a perfect setting for weddings and other private social gatherings. Even the smallest dinner party takes on an air of panache and sophistication when held at the Holly Hotel, and weddings, anniversaries, and other milestone events become memories of a lifetime. To learn more about the Holly Hotel and its services please click here . Contact us at  Behind Your Design  to help you design your next website

By chelseajaie 06 Mar, 2017
Behind Your Design is pleased to announce the launch of a responsive website for Prescription Exercise. Prescription Exercise is a personal training, lecturing and consulting business. Frank Musumeci owner and founder of Prescription Exercise created the company in 2004. His mission is to educate the active aging population through lectures, seminars and individual assessments, on how to make proper exercise choices to lessen one's need for pills, shots, and surgeries, for common age related pathologies. To learn more about Exercise prescription and their services please click here . Contact us at  Behind Your Design  to help you design your next website
By chelseajaie 03 Mar, 2017
Behind Your Design had the pleasure of recently launching a new website for GFAC Goal. GFAC Goal is a special needs activity club/support group based out of Genesee County. This group provides special needs kids and their families the opportunity to participate in activities without having the demands of leagues and competition. GOAL provides families living with loved ones with disabilities the opportunity to share life’s adventures. They support and celebrate with one another other through life and its many surprises. The families are there for each other to exchange stories, good, bad and indifferent. To learn more about this wonderful support please click here . Contact us at Behind Your Design to help you design your next website.
By chelseajaie 23 Feb, 2017
Behind Your Design is excited to announce the launch of a responsive website for Evolution Soccer Training. Evolution Soccer Training is  Mid-Michigan's premier soccer training program. Based out of Fenton, Michigan, they offer classing, clinics and training camps all year round. They offer small group training  to help your child or teen take their game to the next level. Their coaches are highly certified with years of experience playing and coaching soccer. To learn more about their classes please click here.  To learn more about how Behind Your Design can help you create your new website please click  here  . 

By chelseajaie 14 Feb, 2017
Behind Your Design is excited to announce the launch of a new responsive website for GenStar Management. GenStar Management is a full-service management team designed to provide everyone with the opportunity to own thoroughbreds regardless of their level of knowledge of the industry. They provide an approach that maximizes the opportunity to win races and make money.  From brand new to seasoned owners, including existing stables, they can help manage all facets of ownership including horse selection to trainer communication. To learn more about GenStar Management please click here . To learn more about how Behind Your Design can help you create your new website please click here
By chelseajaie 10 Feb, 2017
Behind Your Design had the pleasure of creating a new website for their sister company Freeze Frame Photo Lounge. Freeze Frame Photo Lounge is a photo booth company based out of Fenton, Michigan. Unlike most photo booth companies Freeze Frame Photo Lounge is an open air photo booth. Having an open air photo booth allows more people into the photo as well as giving you the option of green screen usage. They also have many  add on options such as ipad digital uploader (where you can upload a digital copy of your photos onto social media), TV Slideshow, 4x6 prints and much more! Freeze Frame Photo Lounge has been in the industry for over 5 years and is capable of handling any of your photo booth needs from open houses to corporate events. To learn more about their packages please click here . To have Behind Your Design create your next website please visit our website here .
More Posts
Share by: