King Audio’s eye-popping Road Glide
By Wayne Scraba • photos by Don Kates
Joe Kingswan’s business, King Audio, is all about killer mobile sound systems, specifically well-integrated sound systems for baggers. Years ago, he worked for bagger audio specialist Soundzcutomz before leaving to start his own sales and installation shop. Joe left on great terms with the folks at Soundzcustomz, and today he still works with them at a half dozen bike shows nationwide.
At Sturgis in 2015, Peter Jensen’s Soundzcustomz team needed a Road Glide to showcase the ease of installation of their product. Joe ended up purchasing that bike. It was fitted with Soundzcustomz’s Level IV setup, which includes an Arc Audio moto amp, Focal 6.5″ coaxial speakers up front, and a set of Soundz’ 5″ X 7″ speakers out back. It’s all controlled by a reprogrammed factory head unit. The result is crystal clear tunes that can rock your helmet off at triple digit speeds. Better still, the entire system is so cleanly integrated, it looks like it was factory-installed. That’s the entire premise behind the whole operation.
Fair enough, but how did the bike go from a demo bike to slammed and customized? Well, the off-season was rolling around, and Joe figured he needed another version of the Road Glide. He simply rode it into the service area of his audio shop and promptly stripped it down. The front end was treated to a set of Progressive Suspension’s monotube lowering kits while the lower legs were swapped for a set of shaved Arlen Ness pieces. Out back, the Road Glide is slammed by way of an air ride setup. Rolling stock witnessed a massive change. Joe swapped in a 21″ forged Execute wheel from Xtreme Machine USA. Out back, a matching 17″ job was installed. Rubber consists of a 120/70-21″ Metzler up front with a 200/55-17″ Metzeler out back. The front brake consists of a pair of stock four-piston Brembos on a single front rotor, while the rear is based on Harley-Davidson production line parts.
The bodywork also saw some radical changes. The front fender is a Misfit Industries Hybrid piece, and basically everything else came directly from Topshop Carbon Fiber. Topshop offers several different kits, and Joe went with its Moneymaker package. The Moneymaker includes tank, bags, rear fender, and side covers, along with a license plate frame. All of the Topshop bags come primed and carpeted. All of the carbon fiber components are vacuum-infused with a high-end resin and then oven-cured at high temperature, which helps with consistency and strength. The swoop bags are sound system ready, plus the whole kit has been engineered so that the floorboards scrape the ground before the bags. Joe points out that the parts are over-the-top fabulous in terms of quality and fit. They only needed to be lightly scuffed prior to laying down the color.
Speaking of the color, Joe shares a shop with a guy named Gary Buckley. His company, Metalrodika, specializes in spraying hot rods and custom bikes, and he also does major work for an OEM. When it came to the carbon fiber on this machine, the base color is a factory Harley-Davidson Carbon Gray but with a lot of extra flake added. The green is what Gary calls Key Lime Green. And, truth be told, a big part of the inspiration for this paint scheme was Arctic Cat’s factory race snowmobiles. It uses a similar green, and as mentioned before, Gary lays the color down on those factory race sleds, too.
Joe wasn’t quite finished yet. Upstairs, the bars were swapped for a set of Paul Yaffe’s popular Monkey Bars. The hand controls are stock, but they’ve been upgraded with custom levers from Roaring Toyz. The pegs and floorboards are from the folks at Kings Customs in Oklahoma. Ditto with the trick billet foot controls and taillight. The saddle is from Danny Grey’s Buttcrack series.
When it came to building steam, Joe figured the ’15 Road Glide was strong enough, at least at this juncture. As a result, the engine never came out of the frame. It’s essentially stock, but it’s well dressed with chromed and dimpled Covington cam and primary covers. The air cleaner is a S&S Cycle piece, and the exhaust is a Covington Destroyer. The gearbox is a stock six-speed Cruise Drive. The bagger wears a stock belt final drive.
Once all of the paintwork was complete, Joe reassembled and readied the bike for the upcoming show season. Believe it or not, the entire build took Joe and buddy Gary Buckley a whopping three weeks! Yeow! Talk about an instant custom! While the machine is essentially a booth bike for both Soundzcustomz and King Audio, Joe also enters it in other shows. It has won multiple awards including a class win at a Baddest Bagger event. But one thing Joe wants to make perfectly clear is the fact he really does use this machine. Last year, just prior to parking it for the winter, he racked up 700 miles in a matter of weeks. In fact, in 2016 Joe figures he rode his baggers (he has two of them) a whopping 35,000 miles. There’s no question the guy likes to roll down the highway!
Ride or not, another thing Joe likes to do is to mess with his motorcycles. When we interviewed Joe and inquired about his plans for the machine, he laughed and said this bike will hardly be recognizable in the 2017 show season. We hear the thing was the recipient of a major rework including a honking power transfusion. We promised to be tight lipped with regards to those changes, but let’s just say Joe’s ride will be blowing in the wind. Three-week wonder or not, it’s most definitely an eyepopper! AIM