Award-winning hand-forged motorcycles, customized bikes, and expert Harley Davidson service
By Jane Keller Gordon, Contributing Writer
Business name: Stone’s Motorcycle Company (SMC)
Address: 89 Main St. (Route 20), Northborough
Owner: Steve Stone
Contact information: 508-393-6816
Hours: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., through November
Northborough – For more than 45 years, Steve Stone has been designing and building one-of-a-kind motorcycles, customizing existing bikes, and reliably servicing Harley Davidson bikes.
His website boasts: “We take raw steel – bend it, shape it, weld it into the motorcycle of your dreams… Our custom paint shop can create the exact look you want – mild to wild.”
Stone honed his skills under the tutelage of Fay Butler, a world-renowned master metalworker and fabricator. Jesse James, known for his 2002 to 2006 show, “Monster Garage,” also trained under Butler. His designs have won numerous regional, national and international awards, and been featured in many magazines.
“There are very few shops like us. Our customers come from all over the world: Europe, China, South America, Hawaii and North America,” said Stone.
He spoke to the Community Advocate in detail about his business.
What’s the process of manufacturing a motorcycle?
“Customers come in and talk to us about what they want. They usually bring photos from magazines or online sites. They might like a bike, but not the color or the length of the front end. We talk about the type of engine that they want.
“Once we have a price range, we come up with a drawing. The bike needs to fit the person. We just built one for a firefighter who is 7 feet tall.
“We make the basic structure of the bike ourselves, including the frame, gas tank, fenders, and handlebars. We bend the metal cold, using a hydraulic machine. We use another machine that rounds out the ends so pieces can be more easily welded together.
“We either install a crate motor —one that is completely assembled —or we buy an engine that’s not assembled so that we can paint parts different colors. Unlike in a car, the engine is visible in a bike. It’s part of the look.”
What about painting?
“We have full-time painter who is really an artist. People put a lot of effort into personalizing their bikes. We talk about color and design. Painting is a big process, which takes time. We just did a bike with a wolf head, howling at the moon.”
Is there a warranty?
“We are a federally licensed manufacturer. Each Stone Motorcycle Company bike is registered and stamped. We warranty our manufactured bikes for one year.”
What’s the cost of a Stone Motorcycle?
“Our manufactured bikes start at $30,000 and go up.”
What’s a customized bike?
“A customized bike is one that was manufactured by another company, which is altered.
We just worked on a Harley Davidson that a customer bought. We stripped it to the bone and customized all of the parts. We painted parts of the engine. The bike is bright orange. It’s really unique.”
Do you offer advice to people who are building their own bikes?
“Yes, a lot of people come in and say ‘I want to do this and that. How do I do it and what do I need to buy to accomplish that?’ We offer them parts from several manufacturers, including Harley-Davidson, S&S, RevTech, Performance Machine, Arlen Ness, and Custom Chrome.”
What type of Harley Davidson’s service do you offer?
“We’re certified as a Harley Davidson technician. We don’t do warranty work, but we do service work, like oil changes, new tires, and we fix transmissions and blips in how the engine is running. Our prices are competitive.”
Do you do inspections?
“Yes, we’re a Massachusetts RMV Motorcycle Safety Inspection Site.”