The Cal Rayburn Style KR tank

KR-001Notice longer tapered lookIn the summer of 2012 Chris Rudy, AHRMA racer from California contacted me about making a rare Cal Rayburn KR tank. Chris had a KR tank but it was terminally consumed by ethanol. Ethanol eats the resin in unprotected glass tanks. Premium without ethanol will not eat your tank.

You can purchase this tank two ways:

Tank, polyester resin for premium (non-oxygenated) fuel only
Tank from mold in white for painting, petcocks, cap $375
Tank in XR black, petcocks, cap $395
Tank in XR orange, petcocks, cap $395
Sand/polish orange, black or white to glossy surface
(You can skip this step if you know how to finish a gelcoat tank)
Tank, made from anti-ethanol resin for regular fuel
Tank from mold in white for painting, petcocks, cap $410
Tank in XR black, petcocks, cap $425
Tank in XR orange, petcocks, cap $425
Sand/polish orange, black or white to glossy surface
(You can skip this step if you know how to finish a gelcoat tank)


(Higher material cost, new quality supplier)

Chris had seen a KR tank on an early Mert Lawwill bike which was longer and more tapered in the rear than his stock KR tank. He said it was called the Cal Rayburn style so that's what I'm calling this tank. It is about 1 3/4" longer than his stubby bathtub tank. The longer tank is preferred by his fellow racers because it butts up to the seat without a gap.

kr tank bike 1 thAbout the time Chris and I were working out the KR details, Freddy Adams from Odessa called for a tank for his Sprint. I convinced Freddy that the Rayburn would be perfect for his bike too. He got one and now he has one pretty Sprint. So I can make this tank with mounts for both KR and the Sprint (without the upturned carb). This tank will fit 900 Sportsters too since its frame is very similar. Late in 2013 I learned this tank will not fit ridged Sprint frames. Make sure of my tanks specs before you order.

KR-002 KR-003The specs on the new Cal Rayburn KR tank are:

  • White, XR orange or black gelcoat with coating, cap & petcocks
  • Overall length – 19" (end to end)
  • Length of channel – 18 ¼"
  • Width – 10"
  • Height – 6 ¼"
  • Tunnel width – 2 1/8"
  • Capacity – about a gallon
  • Resin – Polyester with new anti-ethanol coating
  • [2] ¼-20 steel threaded inserts for mounts
    • Specify KR, rear location
    • Specify Sprint, front location
  • [2] 1/4” petcocks with levers
  • Brushed finish gas cap with internal vent

rudy-krThis is Chris Rudy's KR with my Rayburn tank. Chris is an active vintage racer on the West coast and has done a marvelous job restoring the bike with which to do combat. When I mentioned to Chris that '87' was Breslford's number I got this in reply:

"A lot of people think I run #87 on my vintage bikes because of Mark Breslford, but that is not the case. Here is the rest of the story.

HeadrickRudyLarry Headrick and Tom Sifton, circa late 1940's "My dad raced for Tom Sifton in the late 1940's. His number was 66. His teammates Bob Chaves and Larry Headrick were numbers 20 and 87 respectively. Years later, when we were growing up, my brother and my cousin and I rode our bicycles around and played that we were racers. My older brother Gordon got first pick and he took my dad's number 66. My cousin Tim took 20 because his dad and Bob Chaves were best friends. I had third pick so I took 87, Headrick's number.

chris rudy trackChris Rudy on a KR at speed at Sacramento"""From that time on we had 'our' numbers on our bikes. We all ended up racing when we got older and each of us was lucky enough to eventually be assigned 'our' number by the AMA. So I have officially been '87' since 1982. (Shown here is a photo of my dad and Headrick.)

"When I first saw Brelsford race as a kid I rooted for him because he was 87. Of course later he became a hero of mine because of his great talent. I am happy to have my bikes be a tribute to him as well. Not to brag on my dad too much, but here is a cool story about him."

Canadian sneaks across border and puts ‘whoop-ass’ on Americans

cook kr racer 1Ken Cook lives up dar in Edmonton Alberta (ehh) and built himself a pretty KR rigid frame racer.  Ken earned himself a fourth on the Sacramento mile this season aboard his KRM. Not bad.

He selected my Cal Rayburn KR/Sprint tank to highlight his mount. Honorable mention are his anodized rims and USD fork. Thank you Ken.

Vintage Harley KR Race Bike made in Germany

Andreas Steinhofer assembled this terrific looking dirt tracker. A project of this nature must be extremely difficult (and expensive) from a country not America. Here we have parts even though they are hard to find. Imagine trying to source parts needed in the DU from the USA. Andreas must be a part time international investigator. Well he did it! He said, “I just would like to let you know that I am very happy with the Cal Rayborn KR gas tank I purchased from you. Looks great and everybody loves it. See pictures.”

steinhofer kr 1 steinhofer kr 2

We are Andreas, and we like ‘em. Good job. Notice he found all the right parts, even classic tires and pipes. Oooooo neat!