Sunday, July 7, 2013
The "Dragonman", a Little Long Island Chopper History.
Mel Bernstien the "DRAGONMAN" I really don't know anything about Mel, but as a little kid riding around Bellmore Long Island, every once in a while I'd see the "Dragon Bike" ripping along on Bellmore Avenue, or wherever. When you are like 10 years old and you see a crazy ass chopper like Mel's, it stays with you for life! My dad was a "bike guy", ever since I can remember, and there must have been a time when he went to Mel's shop in Bellmore to pick up parts for his Panhead or his hot rod Sportster, and grabbed me this t-shirt, a size small, there probably were no kids sizes and it was a cherished possession I'd wear as I'd pedal my ape hanger sissy barred purple Schwinn around town. I robbed a few pics from the Internet of Mels "Dragon BIke" and some of his other stuff for some of you that have no idea what I am talking about. But, this all comes back to the t-shirt that I still have at age 49. I could never bare to sell it, and have no one to pass it along to. It being a great piece of east coast chopper history, and probably the only t-shirt to exist from Mel's old shop, I have decided to donate it to my friend Ted Doering from Ted's Cycle. He started a museum full of fantastic motorcycle history (the good & the bad) in Newburgh, New York. It is a must see for any two wheel freak! Check out motorcyclepedia.org for more info. Ted has one of Mel's crazy trikes, and while we were talking at the museum one day, I told him that I still had this shirt since I was a kid, and it would serve a better purpose on display next to Mel's trike then in a keep sake box under my bed. Well, that's all this blog post is really about. I am giving an old t-shirt to a great Museum! I will do a blog post on my visit and it will include a great collection of Ed "Big Daddy" Roth stuff including the "Mega Cycle" that I restored a few years back Get out in the garage and build something gang!