Fell into motorcycles to be honest, did 16yrs working on cars then
joined John Shaw on the service side of his turf business, this soon changed when the Turf side
was sold and Harley Davidson was discovered. The passion for two wheels came
naturally and the competitive streak in us all was to be the best.
Where do all the ideas come from?
The ideas come from interacting with the customers and really
getting a mood board together, understanding their backgrounds and passions, lifestyles,
and looking at bikes that we have done before or others we feel we reflect
their desires. We then see how we can reinvent the Harley that fits the build
and build something new and fresh, we are always trying to push the boundaries,
and love to mix Retro with new, everyone loves the old styling, so if you can
add some freshness you are onto a winner.
How did you get started and where is the
Shaw Custom shop going?
We've been a Harley-Davidson Dealer for 10 years this year,and in
2009 we lost Buell, we did well with Buell and won awards for excellence so
suddenly we had a big gap on our floor and workshop.
We have always customised bikes from day one, and in 09 we thought we would
take it to another level with a cool Speed Shop consultation area over looking
the workshop floor where the bikes are built and working really closely with
customers, consulting, project managing, having meetings with the custom paint
team, and having the customer involved from day one. It's been hugely
successful and now we work on many International Clients bikes, from Australia,
Russia, Dubia, Monaco, Milan and Angola.
The Speed Shop has grown organically, so we are happy to carry on and see where
it takes us. Our seven technicians in our workshop never went without a tool in
their hand over the cold winters, and now we re taking on projects for 2013. I
guess one day it would be very cool to have a vibe and feeling like you guys at
We’ve noticed you taken to custom dirt
bikes lately, what’s the story there?
We are getting a lot of young new comers to HD in our
Dealership, with customising Sportsters we have seen a new following. These
guys are from different back grounds from Road Race and Motocross, the MX feel
of some of our bikes was part customer wanting to be different and out there,
and the Speed Shop wanting to try new looks but ones that reflected the past.
I’ve seen you dance, you are good. Any
chance we might see an internet video compilation any time soon?
No compilation plans, but maybe in the future we might do
"the Best of Steve Willis" dance moves.
You seem to enjoy a night out, what is
your typical night about town and where do you like to go?
When I do make it out, I like to sample fine wines and beers and
dance expressing my feelings.
Longest jump you’ve ever completed?
.... Getting Married..
Fastest you’ve been on two wheels?
Off the clock.
Probably caused a few.
World Champion, how does that feel and
what does it mean to your team?
The World Championships in 2010 really kicked everything up a gear
and really made us believe in ourselves. The win lead to more interest in our
bikes and detail that we put into the projects and put the Speed Shop on the
Who’s the team on the Shaw Custom side
and who does what to whom?
The Speed Shop Team is lead by myself and our Chief Customiser Neil Sefton,
Neil's eye for detail is exceptional and his ideas are new and sometimes crazy
but he has the ability to carry them out with true perfection.
Dave is our Fabricator, super talented and his own worst critic. What he can
do with a sheet of metal is fantastic. Our other team members are all very
talented and specialize in their own areas, Tom, Gareth, Craig, Ted and Joe
back everything up and finish the projects in the Speed & Custom way.
The unsung Heros are our Parts manager Peter, and Simon who leads the service
team... and of course Image Design Custom, without Tom Fuller and his team doing
magnificent paintwork the custom bikes would lose that "wow factor?,"
I heard you used to sell lawn mowers?
We did, American made TORO, specializing in Turf care, Golf clubs,
football stadiums etc
You make all kinds of funny voices, why?
Are you covering up the real Steve?
Didn't realize my voices were funny, that's the way I
Fruit or Veg?
Fruit especially Toffee Apples....
What’s it all about really?
Good question. To me it's about doing the best job you can and
looking after the ones you love x
When you wake up in the morning what’s
the first thing you think about?
Depends on what I did the night before..If I didn't go out its the
kids, if I did go out its shit! Did I dance??