A mechanic in Machilipatnam, Dinesh is a self-taught custom motorcycle builder and started by transforming a Royal Enfield Thunderbird.
I am the co-founder of a startup named Pick My Gaadi, an online automobile service platform based out of Hyderabad. As part of my entrepreneurial journey, I’ve met with a lot of talented mechanics and unsung heroes. Dinesh, a shy introvert yet relentlessly resourceful mechanic, is one of them.
Dinesh is the brains behind a custom-made Royal Enfield Thunderbird that is winning the hearts of bike enthusiasts across the country.
The custom-made Royal Enfield Thunderbird
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Dinesh lives in Machilipatnam, a town in the Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh, and I have known him for close to seven years. Born in a middle-class family of four, he was naturally hard working since his childhood. In his early teen years, one of his teachers subjected him to severe beating and that led him to drop out of high school.
His father is a mechanic, and a stern man. When he heard his son wanted to drop out, he told him to start working in his garage instead. Since then his passion for bikes, especially the Royal Enfield models, has grown immensely. His creativity and enthusiasm were, however, limited by his conservative father who wanted him to “settle down”.
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One day while Dinesh was working on a custom design of his own, his dad challenged him that he can never finish the assembling, let alone design and sell it. This made the young mechanic more determined than ever, not only to finish the project but also to prove himself capable and worthy. He vowed that he would not cut his hair nor shave his beard until he was fully done with designing his dream project.
Designing the bike was truly a Herculean task given the scarce resources at his disposal and the single person team that he is.
Dinesh and his family garage, where he repairs bikes and works on his projects
His first major hurdle was making time for his project. He serviced and repaired the bikes of his regular customers during the day, and worked on his dream project at night.
He faced a lot of roadblocks during the actual build as there were compatibility issues with assembling the parts. For instance, the chassis was a bit narrow and wouldn’t allow the wider and shorter rear tire. This is just one example. At times he struggled to find the necessary capital to buy some of the parts but his childhood friends from school supported him.
He brainstormed and consulted with various senior casters and moulders to get the desired shape for the fuel tank and craft a perfect specimen.
The result of his hard work was a brilliantly refurbished Thunderbird in a vibrant shade of blue, with other colours available on request.
The Thunderbird, before and after Dinesh’s intervention
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Dinesh has also made structural changes to enhance the bike, from a speedometer pointer inspired by a Long Tom Cannon gun to LED lighting and exhausts in three options variations.
A special see-through window is a major attraction of the bike, a transparent window that has been cut and attached with a toughened acrylic glass window. When the engine is warm, the engine oil inside appears to be dancing to the tune of the engine. It’s really a beautiful sight to watch.
His first bike has sold out, and Dinesh is receiving a lot of requests from all over the country to make similar bikes. Unfortunately, he is faced with a lot of challenges at home, including a developmentally disabled brother and lack of funding and resources.
A custom bike enthusiast, Dinesh is a big fan of Jaipur’s Rajputana Customs and is currently looking for employment opportunities. It would be an incredible exposure for this resourceful young man, if he gets an opportunity to work and learn at one of the custom motorcycle enterprises around India.
You can contact Dinesh by clicking here.
(Written by Johnson Bandi)
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