Icon 1000's Katana - New Jack
By Ali Latimer - 16 Feb 15
Here in the shed we are very excited to be showing you the world exclusive on Icon 1000's latest build, I'm especially excited as one of their past builds; the Magnificent Bastard inspired my build The Gambler. Icon are renowned for building bikes and clobber that function, last and have a unique edge that sets them apart from anything else out there. Today is Icon 1000's launch date for their new product lines and the bike's release purposefully coincides. The 1000 range of gear, some of which has already featured in our Gear Guide, is as tough and distinctive as their bikes. Before I ramble on about this awesome bike, here's the press release: Legendary, or so conventional wisdom would have one believe, the 1982 Suzuki Katana was a machine before her time. A Nippon-Sax- on gamble that the masses were ready for starship styling to replace their conventional silhouettes. Thirty years on, she’s the darling of the ball, but in ’82 few where interested in dancing with the silver dame. The New Jack is ICON 1000’s reimagination of what could have been. One possible future. Built within the confines our Portland based headquarters, the New Jack uses a host of pilfered Suzuki kit, custom fabbed components, and a splash of Honda. For me a custom motorcycle doesn't have to fit in a box, it doesn't matter if it's a Café Racer, a Brat Style, a Scrambler, a Streetfighter or a mix of types; it needs to make you think and throw out little surprises, I inverted my rear shock on my Ducati Café build, just because I could and it wasn't how the factory designed it, well keeping on the theme of shocks, the Katana was always a twin shock, as is the final result, but once again Icon have done things a little differently by putting them in a mono-shock location, but as a pair, it's a great touch that most builders wouldn't even think of. The Nitron NTR Race Pro shocks, with 3-way independent damping have their remote canisters mounted above, these will keep things properly planted, whether cruising, tracking or stunting, and we expect the Icon team to do all 3 and more with this bike, especially some track action if the Continental Race Attack Slicks are anything to go by! The press release ended with a little mention of Honda, well the front end is Honda, the Yokes are from a CBR 929 Fireblade, whilst the forks come from the 954 and wear carbon fibre protectors, the wheels were liberated from a VTR RC51 SP2, so should shave a few pounds and braking discs have been uprated to Pro-Lites with Pro performance pads. The Icon logo brands the fork legs in a subtle gold to match the disc inners and calipers. Shoehorned into the frame is a 1200cc Bandit power plant, the original 1100cc motor just wasn't ever going to be brutal enough, velocity stacks and a custom exhaust take care of what goes in and what comes out... and we can only imagine that when the gases are exiting, this thing will howl. Now you can't just go throwing bigger motors into bikes and not expect to have to make some adaptations, mainly in strengthening the frame, so the Katana has been braced and reinforced with 1/4” plate for extra rigidity. Out back the Katana gets another upgrade, this time from one of its own; a TL1000R was kind enough to donate its swingarm. The main frame sees more fabrication for the clearance required for the turquoise twins and to house the battery box. The tail unit on New Jack has been fabricated by the boys in Portland to offer a continued theme from the front end's futuristic looks, the original bike's seat unit, whilst practical, comfortable and purposeful; fell behind in the styling department. Up front New Jack keeps the original silhouette of the standard top fairing, but loses the big ugly square headlight and utilises the space with an oversized oil cooler, sitting like a movie villains teeth within a gaping jaw. Above, a clear fly screen ensures the pilot doesn't receive too much blast from both wind and bugs, and the 82 graphics give a nod to the original bike's birth year. An LED light strip within the lower lip allows this tactical fighter to continue through the darkest of nights. A single seat is all that is required for this spaceship; one pilot heading to 'One Possible Future', the latter part being one of Icons many taglines, along with 'Stay Frosty' and 'Go Fast Look Flash', all very befitting to the Katanas makeover, talking of looking flash, the guys often add great fabrication details to their tanks, they did a Triumph Tiger and made the tank resemble a Jerry Can, well here we have the 'Endurance' look going on, it's been dished and the seams have been rolled and whilst I don't think the tank is split, it does looks bloody flash with twin fillers... just as the rear suspension looks great as a pair. Icon are always keen to share the love and let those that help make their bikes function have some of the limelight, so the parts suppliers have their acknowledgment on the side scoops, Nitron for the suspension, PBI Sprockets, Regina chain, Continental rubber... you get the idea! Pointless over engineering at its very best... darn it I want a tank with twin fillers! Now we could have shown you an abundance of additional images, some of them with the bike being ridden hard; we're talking rolling burnouts, power slides and wheelies. We even had images of the bike with a hot chick and a cool truck, but obviously you're all too sophisticated for that sort of thing... right? Well if you want to see more, Icon will be releasing the images on their website in the Bikes section, where you can also see their past builds, whilst you're there, do check out their gear too, they honestly do have some great stuff and we look forward to seeing more of the new products very soon and will undoubtedly be featuring some in a future Gear Guide. Thanks to all the guys at Icon for giving us this exclusive and for building such a variety of cool bikes, keep it up guys. To follow Icon on your chosen social portal, hit the relevant link: Facebook YouTube Pinterest Instagram There's also a video here showing the New Jack in action.