I guess that Lemmy Kilmister needs no introduction to most of you, but just in case, let's start with a few words about this rock'n'roll legend.
Motörhead, a band formed in 1975, is one of rock 'n roll's greats and perhaps even more so is their lead singer, bassist, and frontman Lemmy Kilmister. Few if any personified rock and its spirit better than him, which made him almost universally loved by all sorts of people around the world. From punk to doom metal, fans of any type of rock-based music will most likely agree that he was one of the greats. Or if you ask me, the greatest.
Personally, I only have two idols in life - bodybuilder Ronnie Coleman and Lemmy Kilmister. Not exactly prime examples of healthy living, and some people might find it strange or even wrong to have someone like Lemmy as an inspiration. After all, he led a life full of booze and drugs. Motörhead is actually slang for a heavy (ab)user of speed, and not as in riding fast but as in amphetamines. But on the other hand, he truly went his own way in life to an extent most of us can only dream about. And in doing so he stayed true to himself and really didn't care what naysayers said.
So even if one definitely doesn't have to agree with everything he said or did, there's something to be found there. And not to forget, great music to be played loud.
Lemmy passed away in December 2015 but his spirit lives on through his music and legendary persona. Even before his death, I wanted to build a Motörhead-themed bike since it would allow for such a cool style language and for the personal meaning to myself. And while I fell a bit short by not having a square bottle cage to fit a bottle of Jack Daniel's, here it is at long last.Frame and Paint
The project started with me getting hold of a "paint sample frame," more specifically a Scott Scale RC World Cup. Sometimes brands have actual frames painted to see how various design ideas work out since it's always best to see things in real life and not on a screen or piece of paper. So while the frame was quite stunning with a transparent color shift paint and bright yellow splatter, it definitely wasn't the right look for this bike.
The Scale RC World Cup is definitely a race-proven design by now. Released in 2017, the current generation Scott Scale RC features a quite conservative geometry by today's standard but in a lightweight and responsive package. In fact, one could argue that the not exactly long or slack geometry can be a good thing for some riding since it makes for a really fun and playful bike to ride on easier trails. And that's exactly where you'd most likely ride a hardtail I guess.
The "HMX" grade carbon frames weigh in at 964 grams including paint and hardware, which is a bit heavier than its "HMX SL" brother but still a competitive number. To give the frame an even cleaner look I also went through the warranty-voiding procedure of removing the chain guide mount, and I also covered up the right side cable port.
Coming up with the Motörhead-inspired paint job was a lot of fun. White on matte black was a given, but the challenge was to have something that screamed Motörhead without using the band's actual logos or such. So I ended up having some fun with the classic band name font as well as adding a bunch of small details on the frame. From having the frame say "World Tour" instead of "World Cup" to the track list from their first album painted on the down tube.ComponentsSuspension
Up front, there's a RockShox SID Ultimate with 35mm chassis. The stock 2-position RaceDay cartridge has been swapped for a 3-position version. Usually, you find these on Scott full-suspension bikes, matching the 3-position rear shocks, but I find these to be just as great on hardtails. The middle mode firms the fork up making the bike a lot more responsive while still taking care of any bigger bumps. Since you're often light in the saddle while riding a hardtail, especially compared to the more seated position that a full-suspension bike allows for, it's really nice to have a fork that doesn't dive as much when standing up and putting down some power.
The fork came stock with 120mm of travel, which is a bit much for this bike and frame geometry. With the worldwide bike component shortage, I couldn't get hold of a 100mm air shaft, so I simply brought out the hacksaw and drill to modify the stock air shaft. The fork now sits at about 104mm of travel.
Except for the rock 'n roll theme of the bike, another goal was to have a clean-looking cockpit, and part of that was to create a minimalistic remote lever for the fork. Based on a 2017 Scott Rideloc (the single cable variant of Twinloc) there's a custom polished and Dremel modified remote that bolts onto the Trickstuff brakes via a Matchmaker adapter. The reason for going with the older model design is simply that the base plate is angled differently than on the newer ones, making this modification possible.Cockpit
Here things get really interesting with the SRAM BlipBox hidden inside the stem and paired with Zirbel Twister WE01 controllers, as well as some transparent grips on top of that.
Starting with the Zirbel controllers, these are plug-and-play with the SRAM BlipBox and offer an alternative to the standard and rather bulky AXS controllers. What might come as a bit of a surprise is that they actually offer great ergonomics. In fact, they're my favorite shifters out there for most types of riding. The "shifter rings" work thanks to small but strong magnets instead of springs, and can also be 3D printed in various shapes depending on how small or big you want your paddles. The design offers a very tactile feel and has a lot more "travel" compared to the button-like action of the standard option, making them a perfect blend between electronic and mechanical shifters.
Since you don't have to apply much force to them, you can comfortably push them backward with the knuckle of your thumb, and of course press downwards like with a regular shifter. They also offer a twist-shift version.
The cables are then routed under the grips and through the Schmolke Carbon TLO 720mm handlebar. Ultralight at just 101.8 grams, it's also custom-made for internal routing with a hole in the middle that has been reinforced correspondingly. Handmade in Germany, this and other custom options are offered to anyone. They can, for example, also make additional holes if you want the cables to enter the handlebar close to the shifter.
Inside the Intend Grace CC 90mm, -12 degrees stem sits the BlipBox. With its wide and heavily machined design, it should offer quite the strength-to-weight ratio at just 85.9 grams, but it also means that it's big enough to house the BlipBox. It can either be pushed in from the front or by sanding the edges a bit you can push it in from the other end, making installation and battery changes a lot easier.
To top it off are the transparent grips from Freeze Components. Also made in Germany, these can be had with various stickers which are placed on the handlebars, and then you simply slide the grips on. They recently launched a custom service so that you can have essentially any color, pattern, or motivational saying under your grips. While it's perhaps not very rock 'n roll, I'm sure these would look absolutely incredible with some neon color stickers underneath.
Another cool thing - they can recycle your grips when they're worn out by shredding them and using the material for new products. Finally, there's a bit of foam inside both the stem and handlebar to keep things silent and nice, and everything spins on an integrated Leonardi Racing headset.Brakes
Trickstuff brakes have been a common sight on my bikes ever since I ordered my first two sets in 2017. Expensive and a long wait (for me as well), but there's simply no going back once you're used to them. And not just in terms of braking power, but the super light and silky smooth lever feel make some other brakes seem like they run with cables rather than oil. With that said, you can most definitely stop well with most other brakes, but there sure is a performance difference.
The beautifully machined and very lightweight (the lightest out there) brakes you see here are of course the Piccola Carbon model. Carbon brake lever as the name suggests, each one running on four small ball bearings and paired to their 2-piston C22 brake calipers. Instead of mineral oil, they use Bionol, which is actually a vegetable oil but with an even higher boiling point of 300 degrees Celcius. They're paired with Trickstuff Dächle UL brake discs, with UL being short for ultralight. The caliper bolts are titanium from r2-bike.com and the brake disc bolts are also titanium but from Kogel.Drivetrain
With very few parts you'll find on a stock build, there are quite a few interesting things to see with the drivetrain as well. To start with, the pedals might look just like any other XTRs but, in this case, they have titanium axles from Meti and weigh 258 grams compared to 311 grams for the standard version. Meti is a small company in Italy run by Dante Codeluppi, making various titanium parts like these pedal axles, thru-axles, or even more bespoke stuff like axles for the very exclusive 3D printed titanium Sturdy Cycles cranksets.
With no rider weight limit, they're a great little upgrade for anyone looking to save some weight from their tried and tested XTR pedals.
They're mounted to a Leonardi Racing Capo crankset, also manufactured on a relatively small scale, which is a cool alternative to more mainstream models. One really nice thing is that they come with a DUB axle and you can choose between a 3-bolt or 8-bolt SRAM chainring interface. That means that you can essentially run most direct-mount chainring models or you can run them with a Quarq power meter spider. As far as I know, it's the only aluminum crank option out there for that. They're also an option if you have a bike with the new MTB Wide 55mm chain line since it's essentially impossible to get hold of 8-bolt SRAM cranks in that standard at the time of writing this.
Weight is 497 grams (not including chainring or spider) and they're spinning on a Kogel Bearings ceramic bottom bracket, this time the Cross Seal version. They have slightly higher seal friction than the Road Seal equivalent but on the other hand, they're much better protected against the elements.
The chainring is a Garbaruk with 40 teeth. Quite large but depending on the terrain where you ride, it kind of makes sense considering it's a hardtail and the wide-range cassette choice. With a 12-speed Rotor 11-52T cassette, you're losing the 10 tooth cog for both good and bad. The 40 tooth chainring compensates for the lack of a tiny cog in the rear, but the benefit is slightly lower chain friction and slightly better wear life. Marginal gains for sure, but still gains. And with the 52 tooth big cog, I'll hopefully survive most climbs around here anyway. The cassette is very light at 325.6 grams and comes in several other sizes, including a very interesting 11-46T for those wanting tighter gear steps.
To go with the Motörhead theme, Kogel stepped up and made a custom Cerakote white version of their Kolossos derailleur cage with oversize pulley wheels. Cerakote is a ceramic-based paint so it has a very different texture and look compared to anodizing but is still durable, making it perfect for an application like this. Except for the use of ceramic bearings and a super-stiff machined cage, the oversized pulley wheels offer slightly less chain friction for more marginal gains.Wheels
Aiming to add a little bit of comfort and generally improve the ride characteristics, I wanted 30mm inner width rims paired with some relatively big tires. I teamed up with my now partner company r2-bike.com (up until now they've been my go-to shop for my bike builds for years and where I've spent billions and billions and billions) to have wheels built that fit the bill while also matching the silver component theme of the bike. Not very difficult since they have what's like a candy shop full of hubs and rims to combine.
We ended up running Newmen Fade hubs which are lightweight while being quite robust, and they're also quite silent if that's your thing. They're laced to Duke Lucky Jack SLS 6ters 30 which weigh around 330 grams with Sapim CX-Ray spokes, making for a really responsive and nice riding wheelset coming in at 1,346 grams.
The tires are Pirelli XC RC Lite in 2.4" width set up tubeless with Syncros Eco Sealant. These are actually very lightweight at around 620g, so we'll see how they'll hold up but so far so good and they're definitely very fast-rolling tires. The grip is good and comparable to many other cross-country tire options, although I personally prefer a little bit more grip at the front so I might end up running something with slightly bigger side knobs. In fact, that's my constant question in the tire jungle - why aren't there more cross-country options which are front-specific with taller and beefier side knobs? But I guess having bikes with Assegai tires can make you a bit spoiled when it comes to grip.Seat and Seat Post
To finish the build there's a custom polished RockShox Reverb AXS seat post with 125mm of drop. The saddle might look like just any other saddle but it's actually quite unique with a one-piece rail and shell construction. The Syncros Tofino R SL is made using a resin transfer molding where dry carbon is used instead of prepreg carbon (weave prepared with resin). So they put the dry fibers in the mold and then inject the resin under high pressure, which is then cured before coming out as a single piece of carbon. This makes for a very strong yet lightweight construction.Scott Scale "Lemmy Tribute" - 9,16kg / 20.19lbs
I'm quite sure that Lemmy himself wouldn't care much at all for sports drinks, mountain bikes, or fast and loose riding. At least not as long as there were Jack and Coke, bass guitars, and other things fast and loose. But that's not the point either, since that's the nice thing with inspiration - it can simply be something that gives you the drive and energy to do your own thing. No matter if it's something big in life or if it's just hearing a killer song that makes you want to ride faster.
For good and bad, depending on who you ask, Lemmy can also be a source of inspiration when it comes to the length of your shorts. When questioned about them by Scott Ian of Anthrax, he had this to say:
Scott: Hey, we've just all been wondering...
Lemmy: What's that?
Scott: What's the deal with the shorts? Like seriously?
Lemmy: What? What do you mean?
Scott: They're reaaally short. Like, we see your ass every day. It's kind of weird.
Lemmy: What? It's hot out. These are shorts.
*Lemmy steps back and takes a look at the other guys wearing regular shorts*
Lemmy: Those aren't shorts, those are pants. These are shorts! I'm cool.
So at the risk of having to endure some more questionable but very logical clothing choices, feel free to keep up with my ongoing bike projects via my Instagram
until the next full presentation here on Pinkbike. There you can also find a more detailed how-to on that hidden BlipBox setup if you're interested.
Warning and disclaimer:Please keep in mind that any modifications such as paint stripping, repainting, sanding, or in any way modifying frames, components, or safety equipment is potentially dangerous and can lead to crashes and injuries. It will always void any and all warranties and is strongly advised against by SCOTT Sports and all other manufacturers, who take no responsibility. If you choose to modify your bike anyway, always make sure to do so with safety in mind and remember the points above.