Originality is rare.
Expert craftsmanship is equally hard to come by in modern times.
Michael Cole, dubbed “Copper Mike” by his industry peers, is a member of this rare breed. He is a unique blend of artist, metal worker, and master motorcycle builder. At Gravesend Cycles, Copper Mike challenges himself day in and day out to create handmade motorcycles that are a fusion of vintage design and contemporary function. The result is a refreshing blend of custom motorcycle and rolling art work.
Copper Mike was born in the Gravesend section of Brooklyn. At a young age he enjoyed dirt bikes and began taking apart his street bicycles, and adding forks to create customs. At 18, Cole bought his first motorcycle. After a little more than a decade in luxury retail construction, as a true testament to what raw passion can accomplish, he began building his first bike—a ’58 Harley Panhead. Soon after, he bought into an existing motorcycle shop. This venture served as a stepping stone for what would become his expression of unmatched artistry and love of motorcycles. Cole ultimately refined his own design vision and opened “Gravesend Cycles” in Lindenhurst, New York.
The name “Copper Mike” was given to Cole by peers within the biker industry based on his master copper metal work. Each design is influenced by art, antiques, vintage motors, music, and time spent traveling around the United States and Europe. In true artistic fashion, Copper Mike pushes himself to combine his style with various inspirations: creating a copper bodied resonator guitar for example. Gravesend Cycles is more than a bike shop, it is a design house.
Every piece is born in Cole’s mind, refined in his soul, and executed with exacting detail through his hands. Not shy to admit his influences such as New York’s own Indian Larry or the West Coast’s Jesse James, however, instead of following his idols’ designs, he embraces their philosophies: creating handmade motorcycles that are forever cool. Copper Mike prides himself in his abilities to marry this philosophy with his own artistic vision to create hand forged customs that are as stunning visually as they are mechanically. He has become known for a style that is truly original. And after all, originality is rare.