MARK Daley, the owner of Thunderstruck Custom Bikes (TCB) and the builder of “Sniper”, is no stranger to the world of top flight custom bikes, having won the 2009 edition of Artistry in Iron in Las Vegas. He was therefore a natural contender to compete in the 2010 World Championship of Custom Bike Building with his radical build “Sniper”.
Throughout the World Championship, a constant stream of people stood staring at “Sniper”, all trying to figure out what it was that was different about the engine in the bike. The immediate answer was the bank of Kehin FCR33 downdraft carbs, originally found on a Honda CBR600, bolted to the side of the Indian Power Plus motor. However, closer inspection had people asking the question: how does it work, since the manifold on which the carbs were mounted splits and enters the cylinders where the exhaust ports normally would be? And in turn, the exhaust pipes ran from what normally would be the inlets on the inside of the V of the cylinders. In order to get the engine running in this configuration without resorting to reversed heads on each cylinder, Mark welded up the ports in the heads and then reground them to allow the correct valves to be used in the “wrong” positions.
The final touch was the installation of a reverse ground cam especially created by Andrews. The engine work was completed with Carrillo con rods, Keith Black pistons, S&S roller rocker arms and JIMS lifters. Externally, the engine was dressed with TCB’s own “Sniper” rocker boxes and cam cover, both of which are now available for sale, and a set of hard oil lines. The power was taken from the engine via a unique open primary, constructed by TCB and finished in black and gold ceramic coating, that featured three separate belts and an outboard bearing support. Behind this was a right-side drive Baker six-speed Torque Box. The frame which Mark used to house the drivetrain in “Sniper” began life as a stock Independent Lowlife. However, it did not stay that way for long. As Mark says, he wanted to “make the bike so different that people would keep looking at it.” In order to achieve this, once he had the frame in his jig, he simply cut the top half off from the headstock back all the way down to just above the swingarm pivot.