Inside Look: RideOnADV Custom Adventure Bike Parts
Jaxon Fyffe is a wild card. I'd been trying to interview him for a month, and when we finally connected it was because he'd had an ATV accident and was forced to sit still for a few days. Bruised and battered, but still laughing about it, he related what a wild ride this business of motorcycling has been.Jaxon Fyffe is a wild card. I'd been trying to interview him for a month, and when we finally connected it was because he'd had an ATV accident and was forced to sit still for a few days. Bruised and battered, but still laughing about it, he related what a wild ride this business of motorcycling has been.
Fyffe founded RideOnAdv (formerly Wild Card Customs) more than 15 years ago. He’s always been an adventurous rider, racing dirt bikes when he was young and then moving to self-supported motorcycle travel before it was labeled “adventure riding.” It’s an interesting twist of fate that his first motorcycle industry notoriety was in building custom choppers and metric bikes.
It all began with a woman. While working for a Honda dealership, he sold a motorcycle to a lady. She came back after the sale for a custom seat, and couldn’t quite find one she liked. Fyffe, who was already fabricating custom parts for his own motorcycle, offered to make one for her. The rest, as they say, is history. Fyffe still has that first custom seat, and the lady rider is now his wife.
Word got out that he was skilled at creating custom parts and, as he already had his own shop, the leap to doing it fulltime was natural, almost subconscious. Fyffe’s first project after the custom seat was building a custom Honda. He won First Place when he showed the bike, and within 12 months he left the dealership to attend what became a booming business.
Fyffe rose easily to the top of the custom motorcycle fabricator game. Being a hands-on kind of guy with an engineering mind, he built the parts, put together the bikes, and continued to win awards for his efforts. The first and only builder to have a metric bike featured in Easy Rider magazine, his bikes have been on the cover of numerous motorcycle magazines, written up in hundreds more, featured in a multitude of shows, and to this day he’s regarded as a rock star in the world of custom bikes.
His Fort Worth, Texas, office walls are lined with trophies for every manner of custom motorcycle. The irony is that Fyffe’s personal bike was always an enduro. And over the years he developed a good working relationship with Yamaha Motor Corporation, so when the Super Tenere came to the United States, Fyffe’s two worlds collided.
Wild Card Customs found themselves designing, manufacturing and building custom parts for Fyffe’s own bike. It was an organic progression for the business. Heavily involved in the YamahaSuperTenere.com forum, folks who knew Fyffe and his company’s background began pouring in their requests. Wild Card Customs has since evolved into RideOnAdv, and now makes parts exclusively for the adventure motorcycle market.
“My passion has always been camping, riding off-road and having fun—in a nutshell, the ADV world. Although I had another life with custom motorcycles, it was superduper easy to focus more on where my passion lay in the ADV industry,” says Fyffe.
When RideOnAdv was asked to make a custom fuel tank for Michael Kneebone, of Iron Butt Association and Guinness World Record fame, for a round-the-world trip on his 2012 Yamaha Super Tenere, more custom requests began pouring in.
Since then, RideOnAdv has specialized in products you just can’t get elsewhere, and they do a lot of their own CNC fabrications. The company’s signature products include a skid plate for the Super Tenere, hydraulic lines, suspension parts, light brackets, rear suspension protection, lighting solutions, racks and custom light switches.
“We’re a niche market in the ADV industry, but we don’t just offer parts, we walk the talk. We’re not just sales people who get in their Chevy trucks at the end of the day. We ride ADV bikes to work, we ride ADV bikes home, and we ride them on the weekends,” says Fyffe.
Last year Fyffe and his good friend and fellow Super Tenere rider, Karson Van Meeteren, cooked up the first ever Super Tenere Rally. The event was held in Ouray, Colorado, which some say is the heart of adventure in the west. Almost 200 people rode in from all corners of the United States. The duo did a bang-up job of attracting sponsors for the event, coming up with almost $15,000 of giveaways.
Fyffe rode his Super Tenere to the event from his native state of Texas, making a grand adventure of it. He routed through several New Mexico National Forests, through Utah’s Mexican Hat in Monument Valley, and almost all the way to Moab, before turning back east to Ouray. It was such fun riding and camping off the beaten path all along the way, they decided to organize another Super Tenere Rally.
This year the event is scheduled for October 20–24, 2014 in the Ozarks. They expect double the number of attendees, double the bikes, and most certainly double the fun. There’s even talk of a factory truck coming to the event, and more door prizes and special events.
All in all, it sounds as though Fyffe has played his cards just right, now that he’s on the ADV side of the industry. RideOnADV.com
This story first appeared in the Sept./Oct. 2014 edition of Adventure Motorcycle Magazine.