This Yamaha motorcycle came to Killer Paint from an agency working with Progressive Insurance on a show display piece.

1377101_10152767951655605_7849107734219958167_n2This design of this bike has a bit of a retro-throwback feel, which made it a great choice to do a vintage military aircraft homage theme. This motorcycle was in great condition, so very little in the way of prep work was needed, and work could start right away.

1979848_10152767949935605_6992829823427173134_n2The intention for this bike was to keep it simple and elegant, so the color palette is pretty basic. Green, white and black, with  splashes of red for a little bit of extra eye-catching pop. The helmet that accompanied the motorcycle was also painted to match.

1919620_10152767950345605_3419123836873770979_n2 1505382_10152765291655605_1074460653902061839_n2

While some of the parts were being prepped for paint, others were sent out to be powder coated. The wheels, rear grab bar, some of the hard lines, and a few other pieces were coated in bright red. The frame stayed black.

The seat was also removed and sent out to be re-upholstered brown, to be more in fitting with the vintage feel that was the aim of the project. Some green military patches were sewn on the sides and top of the seat too.

When it came back in, a metal bombardier pin was attached to the rear end of the seat as well. (click photos to enlarge)

10649731_10152765285660605_3823455336886367583_n2After the wheels came back, the the edges of the rims were painted white to create a classic faux-whitewall tire look. If you look closely, there is a green pinstripe as well, to tie it in with the color on the rest of the bike. (click photos to enlarge)


After the emblems were painted on, many of the green parts (and the helmet) were given faux rivets and simulated panel lines. Mike also decided to invert the rearview mirrors for a retro motorcycle racing feel.

All of the paint was finished in a matte clearcoat, to make the whole bike seem more like a military vehicle than a glossy finish does.

10525702_10152769555075605_1292179426129559045_n2A little something extra was finally delivered while the rest of the bike was in progress- the additional fairing that Mike had ordered just for the project. It got the paint, rivets and emblems treatment as well.

Part of the windscreen was painted green too, in order to give it the appearance of having a little more substance. A pair of faux intake vents were painted on each side, too. Once it was attached, it greatly changed the look of the whole project.


As a final extra touch, Mike went to a local Army Surplus store that had an authentic vintage dogtag stamping machine, and had a pair of Killer Paint dogtags made to serve as the keychain for the bike.

We received a few photos later of the motorcycle set up in the display at a show. The bike and helmet each got their own spaces.

10352938_10152825148530605_2487004093684065343_n2 10730861_10152825148460605_3774126945926903063_n2

The project was completed relatively painlessly, without much in the way of unexpected problems or delays, and the customer was thrilled with the result.

The customer gave us pretty much full reign on the design, which was fantastic. When a customer dictates too many specifics on a job, or micro-manages the work being done on a project, it does more to bind one’s hands creatively.

Artists usually do their best work when creativity isn’t stifled or restricted by a laundry list of requirements or details. Otherwise, they can’t do anything beyond the scope of what they are told, and the job can be no better than such a list asks.

In this case, allowing creative license made the whole project turn out that much better.


We hope you enjoyed taking a look back at this project. Let us know if there is anything you would like to see us post here in the future!


Maybe this project gave you some ideas, or you already have an idea in mind for your own car, truck, motorcycle, refrigerator, etc?

If you would like to contact Killer Paint about working on your own project, visit our website, or contact us at

Related Links:

The Original Killer Paint Facebook Page:

The Official Killer Paint Website:

Killer Paint’s “True Fire™ Basics” Blog Series:

True Fire™ Instructional DVDs:
The Secrets of Airbrushing True Fire™ – Part 1
The Secrets of Airbrushing True Fire™ – Part 2

True Fire™ Freehand Templates: Artool Freehand Airbrush Templates, True Fire Template Set

House of Kolor Official Website:

Progressive Insurance Website:

Yamaha Motor Website: