Motorcycles and Choppers

The Motorcycles and Choppers Channel explores how these machines are built and customized. Learn all about motorcycles and choppers at HowStuffWorks.

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1975 Honda GL1000 Gold Wing

The 1975 Honda GL1000 Gold Wing motorcycle launched a touring-bike legend. This bike contained a water-cooled flat four engine which was unusual for most other motorcycles. Find out why and see pictures of the 1975 Honda GL1000 Gold Wing.

1975 Triumph Trident

The 1975 Triumph Trident motorcycle was tweaked for American tastes but fell to Japanese rivals. The bike kept the same three-cylinder engine but it was slower and more expensive than Japanese imports. Find info and pictures of the 1975 Triumph Trident.

1980 Honda CX500

The 1980 Honda CX500 motorcycle wasn't pretty but it got the job done. The bike featured a 500-cc water-cooled engine that used pushrods rather than conventional overhead cams. Find out how and see pictures of the reliable economical 1980 Honda CX500.

1976 Triumph Bonneville

The 1976 Triumph Bonneville motorcycle held to tradition against low-cost Japanese bikes. Unfortunately the influx of high-performance Japanese motorcycles cut into sales of this model. Find info and pictures of Britain's 1976 Triumph Bonneville.

1981 Honda CBX

The 1981 Honda CBX motorcycle was an excellent bike in search of an audience. Most of the competition was lighter and faster which made this bike appear to be all show to the racing crowd. See pictures and learn more about the 1981 Honda CBX motorcycle.

1998 Triumph T595

The 1998 Triumph T595 motorcycle quickly became reborn Triumph's best-seller. These water-cooled motorcycles came in three different types the standard sport touring models. Find info and pictures of the 1998 Triumph T595 motorcycle.

1982 Honda MB-5

The 1982 Honda MB-5 motorcycle was a hybrid of scooter and a motorbike. This bike combined the agility and economy of scooters with motorbike features such as a front disc brake. See pictures and learn about the unique 1982 Honda MB-5 motorcycle.

1983 Honda CX650T

The 1983 Honda CX650T motorcycle was a turbocharged wonder but led to a technology dead end. This bike was the world's first turbocharged motorcycle that made many insurers nervous. Find out why and see pictures of the 1983 Honda CX650T.

1997 Ural

The 1997 Ural motorcycle was essentially a reproduction based on parts from different BMW models. The styling if the Ural is crude but the motorcycle and sidecar could be purchased for a cheap price. See pictures and learn about the Ural motorcycle.

1947 Triumph Speed Twin

The 1947 Triumph Speed Twin was a worthy member of the famous Speed Twin family. It featured an optional sprung rear hub, but it was a disappointment because of its minimal travel. See pictures and learn about the 1947 Triumph Speed Twin motorcycle.

1952 Triumph Thunderbird

The 1952 Triumph Thunderbird helped make Marlon Brando "the wild one." Triumph was looking to emulate the demand for large powerful bikes when they originally designed this model. See pictures and learn about the 1952 Triumph Thunderbird motorcycle.

Executioner: A Chopper Profile

The Executioner is a fire-spewing chopper built for the Discovery Channel's Biker Build-Off. Assembled in just nine days, the Executioner boasts one major customization: a "head" light that spews flames from its gaping maw.

Lethal Injection: A Chopper Profile

Scooter Shooterz has earned a reputation for building exotic choppers, but Lethal Injection sets new standards. This chopper features a V-twin engine and elaborate bodywork. See photos and specifications for this award-winning chopper.

1940 Indian 440

The 1940 Indian 440 motorcycle was an expensive bike for its era at a price of $1,000. The engine it used turned out to be a failure for Indian due to the frequent overheating problems. Find more information and pictures about the 1940 Indian 440.

1976 Hercules W2000

The 1976 Hercules W2000 motorcycle was the first production motorcycle with a Wankel rotary engine. The rotary engine was designed to combine greater efficiency and smoother power delivery that a regular engine. See learn about the innovative W2000.

1946 Indian Chief

The 1946 Indian Chief motorcycle in "Indian Red" was popular with postwar buyers. This model was similar to other prewar Indians and featured a 74-cubic-inch flathead engine. See pictures and learn more about the striking 1946 Indian Chief.

1965 Triumph T120 Bonneville

The 1965 Triumph T120 Bonneville had unit construction and a compact design. These motorcycles featured 650-cc engines that were capable of reaching speeds over 100 miles per hour. Check out info and pictures of the 1965 Triumph T120 Bonneville.

1953 Indian Chief

The 1953 Indian Chief motorcycle was the final Indian model and is highly collectible. It featured a V-twin that was considered outdated but was coupled with a more modern ignition system. Check out pictures and information on the 1953 Indian Chief.

1969 Honda CB750

The 1969 Honda CB750 changed motorcycling forever. It featured an inline four-cylinder engine with single overhead cam four carburetors, prominent four-into-four exhaust and 67 horsepower. See pictures of this groundbreaking motorcycle from Honda.

1967 Triumph T100C Tiger

The 1967 Triumph T100C Tiger was a popular bike for on- and off-road. This bike featured a smaller fuel tank headlight and high-mounted twin tail pipes which were designed for off-road riding. Find info and pictures of the 1967 Triumph T100C Tiger.

1970 Triumph Tiger 650

The 1970 Triumph Tiger 650 motorcycle was a better everyday bike than the Triumph Bonneville. The Tiger used the same basic engine as the Bonneville but featured a smaller carburetor for easier starting. See pictures and learn about the Triumph Tiger 650.

Chopper Baby: A Chopper Profile

Chopper Baby has a 93-cubic-inch engine that's designed to look like a 1950s Harley-Davidson. It features 18-inch-over Redneck springer forks set at an incredible 52-degree rake. See photos and specifications for this radical ride.

Sabre Tooth: A Chopper Profile

Fearless Choppers always sets its sights on building high-end machines with no equal. Sabre Tooth is a unique high-end custom chopper with a 114-cubic-inch engine. See photos and specifications for this hand-formed custom-built chopper.

1986 Suzuki GSXR750

The 1985 Suzuki GSXR750 motorcycle brought hot street bikes ever-closer to racing machines. The GSXR had a 750-cc engine that was capable of producing up to 100 horsepower impressive at the time. See pictures and learn about the 1985 Suzuki GSZR750.

1986 Suzuki RG 500 Gamma

The 1986 Suzuki RG 500 Gama motorcycle was too high-strung for everyday street use. Experienced riders saw the bike was capable of tremendous speeds but novices rarely tapped this potential. See pictures and learn about the 1986 Suzuki RG 500 Gama.