Hephaestus is the latest creation by Daryl Villanueva and his band of pirates at Beijing-based garage, Bandit9. They named the bike, Hephaestus, in honor of the Greek God of blacksmiths, craftsmen, sculptors and artisans.
An evolution of the 1988 Honda Bros 400, Bandit9 shed the bike’s original plastic exterior and refitted it with a more modern aesthetic; sporting an armor-like exoskeleton forged from steel. There’s nothing soft about the bike, except for maybe hand stitched black leather seat. The tank, gas cap, cowl, side covers and fender were all handcrafted from stainless steel.
The tank was designed to have a mid-line bevel that carries through to the cowl and the fender. The side-covers with a dotted grill pattern were crafted from sheet metal. The handlebars were replaced with clip-ons designed by Bandit9. The rear lights function both as turn signals and brakes. When you signal to turn, the corresponding light flashes. However, both rear lights flash red when you hit the brakes.
There were characteristics of the original Honda Bros that Bandit9 kept. The diagonal cross bar made of an aluminum alloy guided the overall design. The exhausts were shortened to expose the original single swing arm; making the rear wheel appear to float.
This year, as Bandit9 grows, the shop will expand their craft beyond the Chang Jiang. In Beijing, it’s “all systems go” for Bandit9, as they plan to increase their output and build more international custom motorcycles throughout the year. Hephaestus is just their first step.
Special thanks to Sofia and Niamh. Hephaestus motorcycle would not be possible without their dedication and contribution.