Gary Raphael’s Kory Souza Original
Article By: Travis Bickle Photos By: Missi Shoemaker
Originally Published In Torque Performance Volume 1 Issue 2 – Winter 2021
Read The Whole Article On The Torque Performance Web Site
I love a clever name, especially when it has a clever story attached to it. A few years back, the owner of this 2019 Road King became acquainted with custom motorcycle builder Kory Souza. It was through that friendship that the “Bus Boy” Road King came to fruition.
The process of having a custom motorcycle is an experience that is very different depending on the shop that you choose to make this happen. In the case of Kory Souza Originals in Sarasota, Florida, before you have the opportunity to ride a KSO custom motorcycle built for you…Kory has to get to know you.
If you spend any time around Kory, you will find that most of his customers become friends long before their one-off custom motorcycle ever hits the lift in Kory’s shop. Kory is a bit of an outlier in that he employs several talented individuals in his shop, but his hands and creative control carry through the entire build from concept to reality.
This particular motorcycle started over a few drinks at the customer’s home bar when the conversation turned to the subject of custom motorcycles. Not everyone agrees to what makes a motorcycle “custom.” For some, it is bars, boards, exhaust, and the basic bolt-ons. If you talk custom motorcycles to Kory, you’ll get a very different set of parameters to work from. If the frame isn’t modified even slightly, you’ll likely not get the nod from Kory. His bikes are known to be somewhat over the top in the paint and fabrication departments, but what you may not know is that Kory is a horsepower junkie. That is kind of how this project actually got off the ground, so to speak.
After the conversation with Kory the previous evening, Gary realized he wasn’t riding a “custom motorcycle” as his friend would define it. One thing led to another, and just like that, Kory and Gary were on their way in the truck to pick up a 131 Screaming Eagle engine for an entirely ridiculous price from a local dealer. While that deal was going down in the parts department, Gary disappeared for a spell. The next thing Kory saw was a Cheshire grin on his friend’s face, and they loaded up a brand new 2019 Road King into the trailer along with the 131 engine.
After all, the smack-talking banter between the boys was over, Kory proceeded to remove everything (including the engine) from the brand-new motorcycle at the customer’s house. Kory figured that if his friend wasn’t going to waste anytime grabbing up a new motorcycle to have built, why should Kory waste anytime [or space] pulling and storing stock parts that aren’t of any real value to a custom builder anyway? While the ink was still wet on the title work, Kory and Gary crafted a plan, placed some orders and by the time Kory got back to Sarasota a few days later, parts had already started to arrive.
Here is the rundown of the parts used: 23” Fat front wheel from SMT Machine, Full TOL Designs front clip, chain conversion and Baker Drivetrain transmission, Burns exhaust all held together with ARP polished stainless steel hardware. The handlebars and controls are “all business”. LA Choppers Kage Fighters and Rebuffini Hand Controls handle the steering and front brakes.
Originally intended for standard style upgraded performance suspension, the bike ended up with air ride. Now, before the performance snobs scoff at the idea of air ride on a performance bagger, Gary needed the ability to exit and mount the bike with ease. The air ride system allows for that. The only other “non-performance” part on the bike is the audio system which consists of a Sound Digital 800/4 amplifier and Hertz Speaker system and the Dakota Digital instruments.
This bike stands out in the crowd. I instantly was drawn to it like a moth to flame. If you want a flame job you go to the master, and by “master” I mean Dave Perewitz. Regardless of anything else you know about his fabrication skills, building skills, his eye for design…Dave’s flame jobs are all one of a kind and they are the pinnacle when it comes to proper flames. Truth be told, if you don’t have a flame job by Dave…you have a flame job that is done by someone that copied Dave, end of.
Kory rode the completed bike for 50 miles before it was loaded into the transport and shipped to San Francisco. From there Gary rode it, with ZERO failures or issues for 3200 miles. It won the TORQUE Award at Paul Yaffe’s Baddest Bagger competition in 2021 and that is why you are looking at it here. If you want something bad ass like you see here, call Kory Souza and tell him that TORQUE sent you!
Bus Boy Tech Sheet
Owner: gary raphael
City/State: flagler beach, fl
Fab. By: kory souza originals
Model: road king
Value: $20 bucks is $20 bucks
Time: 8 Months
Model: Screaming eagle
Builder: kory souza originals
Pistons: Screaming eagle
Heads: Screaming eagle
Cam: Jim’s Performance v-twin 550
Air Cleaner: Trask performance
Shifting: 6 speed
Rake: 44 degrees
Stretch: 2 up 2 out
Type:Air over oil
Builder: kory souza originals
Triple Trees: hawg halter
Wheels, Tires, Brakes
Front Wheel: smt lucky 7
Front Tire: v-rubber
Front Brake: Galfer wave rotor/Brembo caliper
Rear Wheel: smt lucky 7
Rear Tire: dunlop american elite
Rear Brake: Galfer wave rotor/Brembo caliper
Painter: ryan hathaway
Bars: la choppers cage
hand controls: rebuffini
Foot Controls: Arlen Ness/RSD
Fuel Tanks: Stock
Front Fender: Steel RWD
Rear Fender: TOL Designs
Seat: kory souza originals
Windshield: Klock Werks
Headlight: Daymaker H-d
Taillight: alloy art
Photographer: missi shoemaker