Anything with a motor is of instant interest for Hogan, this is something that has been passed down genetically from his father. Once their combined collection of unique and strange machines is seen, there’s little doubt to this claim.
Growing up with a father who was into all kinds of motor racing, Hogan had little choice but be surrounded by bikes and cars of all makes. The weapons of choice for Hogan however would bikes of the smaller variety, which would culminate into an eclectic collection that is wrenched on in his garage before being taken out on the roads and dirt for some wholesome Christchurch hoonery.
The glory with little bikes is that you don’t need much money to pick one up and get it going, and once they are going they’re a ton of fun despite their lacking in many performance departments. This is what would draw Hogan to these often overlooked machines. “I knew the guys from Quake City Rumblers through some old car clubs. It all spiralled out of control from there – their passion is contagious. I want to get a real sized bike one day when money allows, but for now it’s the little belters.”
Upon wandering through Hogan’s space, it’s littered with various tiny bikes that have been picked up in various states of not-working before quickly being torn down and fixed up. One bike that immediately grabbed our attention is a bright yellow BMX, although upon closer inspection you’ll realise isn’t a BMX at but a “HMX”. “I’d seen a photo from Japan of a Honda C50 built into a BMX lookalike. I fell in love with it and decided I needed to make one; only mine would be way more like a BMX. So I picked up an old C50 frame from a swap meet and started chopping. The swing arm, engine mount, bottom tube and steering tube are all standard C50 so I never had to worry about wheel alignment, and the forks are off a Suzuki FA50.”
The fuel tank on this unique bunny hopper are the top and down tube under the seat, with the seat post unscrewing to allow precious fuel be to poured in. “The front brake lever is actually the throttle. This is because it’s all about the look not ride ability. This makes for epic whisky throttles though because you instinctively go for the brake and actually get a load of throttle instead. This has caused many a wheel stand. The HMX 500 is a pretty well known old NZ BMX so most of the styling was a homage to this, only this bike actually owes me less than it costs to buy a HMX 500!”
Despite there being many projects on the go for Hogan and his housemate Zain, their fair share of procrastinating and slamming tinnies of delicious Lion Brown is had. “When I get too drunk I usually end up doing burnouts on whatever is running at the time, but we also come up with new random ideas for a bike or project. Zain’s great to have around the shed because we’ll start shit talking about something we want to do, like putting a 185cc in a 50cc frame, or moving roof trusses so we could put in a stripper pole. Zain will then disappear for an hour and come back having researched on the net finding out everything we need on the subject.”
“If I’m committing to getting something ready for an event, I’ll be in the garage every moment I’m not working, but that usually means an hour or two each night. This is also the first time I haven’t had a racecar in a while so instead of being focused more on getting cars ready, I got more time for bikes. Currently in the garage there’s a Honda St90, big wheel Honda st70, Honda c70 that’s modified for my partner to ride, rv90, g4tr Kawasaki, Suzuki a50 – probably my favourite one cause it just keeps going and can do nearly 90km/h from a standard 50, Honda c50 BMX, Yamaha gt80, and a Yamaha Enduro 50 repowered with a 185.”
We mentioned Hogan’s father before, who can rightly be blamed for Hogan’s love of motors. We were invited to go check out Hogan’s father’s place, “he’s got a bit of a collection” says Hogan. Inside and incredibly unsuspecting warehouse space in the middle of an unsuspecting street would be something that’s just a “bit” more that a collection.
In this gorgeous, immaculate space sat machines that would get the blood flowing in just about anyone; anyone with a pulse at least. “In later years Dad got back into bikes after a bit of a hiatus from racing them due to many broken bones. He’s been buying the bikes he’s always wanted, to collect, ride, and enjoy. I don’t know where it came from, but he picked up a thing for pedal mopeds. He bloody loves them, any time he finds one he hasn’t seen he’ll buy it. My last count he had 24.”
A real jewel that was amongst this collection was an old Bedford van that has treated Hogan’s family well over the years in providing adventures and continues to do say to this day. “Dad was standing in his driveway nearly 20 years ago and this old Bedford van drove past, running on 3 cylinders; so of course dad runs after it. After he caught up to it he found out it was a trade in from a caravan place around the corner. The bloke driving it said if dad gave him $300 it was all his. The money was there, the bloke jumped out of the van and gave dad the keys while he walked back to work. Ever since it’s been used as a family camper. Once us kids got older dad have it a complete repaint and tidy up which put it in the condition you see today, and it still gets taken out and used.”