Category Archives: 2003 Harley-Davidson Road Glide

Not every project that gets a High Performance Finish is a restoration. This Harley-Davidson owner just wanted to juice up the paint with a higher quality finish … and some ghost flames.

Nice bike!

The owner was kind enough to bring this beautiful bike by so I could admire it and take a few shots for the web page.

If you look carefully you can see some of the ghost details in a few of the shots.

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You may have to squint

If there is one thing I don’t like about ghosted details is that it is almost impossible to get a picture of them.

I took several shots of the ghost flames on this bike and this is the only one that you can even begin to see them. If you look carefully you can see the flames on the leading edge of this bag.

Now that all the ghost details are done I am ready to spray it all in clear to bring up the shine and to protect the color.

The ghost in the paint booth

Now the fun starts!

After the silver and red base coats were applied, it is time add some pizazz … Ghost Flames.

Ghosting is adding a detail that has a very subtle difference in color from the base color. Done properly a ghost detail is difficult to see unless you are paying attention, sort of like a ghost.

This Road Glide is going to have quite a lot of details, details like flames, a screaming eagle and the Harley-Davidson logo, ghosted in.

In the first series of shots you can see where the flames, eagle and the Harley logo are masked to the various parts of the bike. The eagle and logo are stencils but the flames are hand cut by me so there won’t be another bike out there with the exact same look.

After the masking is complete I then resprayed the various pieces with another two coats of the red base, but with a twist. These extra coats of paint contain a different metal flake than the original base coat, so the combination of more paint and a different metal flake will show as a subtle difference in the color when finished.

A very special project

This 2003 100th Anniversary Special Edition Harley-Davidson Road Glide is in the shop for a make over. The owner wanted something special for this bike, but he didn’t want to paint over the original bodywork, so he spent years collecting body parts from other, I assume damaged, bikes of the same year and model. When complete he will remove and carefully store the original bodywork and replace it with this second set of bodywork.

To acheive the look the owner wanted is going to require an extended stay in the paint booth because of the number of steps required.

The bodywork was delivered to me with some of the bodywork already in primer, as seen in the first photo.

The first step was to paint everything silver. This provides a back color to the red that follows and will make the red jump off the bike.

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