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Bobbee Singh's love for all things old led him to dedicate his life to the Royal Enfield Bullet. He loves old music and movies and even his motorcycle customisation company is called Old Delhi Motorcycles.
So far, Bobbee and his team have customised 50 Bullets and have a handful of assignments. "Every part is hand-made and it takes around three months to complete one assignment," he says. He has a team of master mechanics. Shahid Bhai does the denting work, Ustad Ashiq Ali makes seats and Dharminder works on engines.
"Customising costs around Rs 3 lakh but the cost is in no way equivalent to the amount of hard work we put into it," Bobbee says. Each motorcycle is made exactly to order, and if he is not on the same page with the client, Bobbee refuses to take up the assignment. He gives them the vintage Royal Enfield feel.
Bobbee's love for motorcycles started at a very young age when he saw his uncle's Yezdi. "One day, I along with my friend stole the bike and went for a ride. After that, there were no stops," he says.
Bobbee drew inspiration from his neighbour, Rajan, who used to work at the American embassy. "Every night in his one-room house, he used to bring a bike, dismantle and rebuild it. I used to sit there with him, pretending to be a part of the work. I even used to apply grease and oil on my face and hands for effect," he says. "My idol is an Army officer, Capt Vikram Singh. With him, I made a bike based on the World War II theme and that opened the gates for many more ideas," he says.
Bobbee has five Royal Enfields. His first bike was gifted by his mother in 1968. He has painted it in two colours and calls it Bobbee Twins. His favourite is a Royal Enfield 535 cc, which he calls KG. He wants an Interceptor 750 cc. "Royal Enfield leaks oil just like we excrete. They are also called Royal Oilfield," he says. The heart of the Enfield is its old crank, which gives it the dhugg-dhugg sound. "But now the cranks, used to increase mileage, are lighter and the difference is clear," he says.