Bars Bikes, the Bar Hodgson Collection of rare and collectable vintage and classic motorcycles

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Meet Bar Hodgson

Bar Hodgson is a Canadian motorcycle collector, builder and restorer. He has held a motorcycle license since 1953 and motorcycles are his life. He became a custom motorcycle builder (Bar's Custom Motorcycles in Toronto) in the late 50s and a Kawasaki Dealer (Superbike Centre in Scarborough, Ontario) in the early 70s.

In the 60s and 70s he was building high performance engines, into the 90s was restoring motorcycles, and has an extensive collection of over 200 motorcycles. Add to that a mind-boggling stash of motorcycle parts, memorabilia and a massive reference library of motorcycle books, magazines, workshop manuals and historical newsletters, and you can see that he has immersed himself in the world of motorcycling.

Bar Founded 2 Motorcycle Shows - The North American International Motorcycle Supershow (now owned by another production company) and the Toronto International Spring Motorcycle Show - and in the 2000's founded the Canadian Motorcycle Hall of Fame. He is the curator of the Bar Hodgson Collection of Rare and Significant Motorcycles.

Racing has always been a passion; in the 60's and 70s as a drag racer, in the 90s as a road racer visiting dozens of racetracks in Canada and the US including Daytona, and in 2009 attempted to set a world land speed streamliner record at the Bonneville Salt Flats (crashing at almost 200mph and walking away practically uninjured).

The 90s revived his passion for custom bike building, and as a licensed motorcycle mechanic he has been able to continue working on and developing a series of creations that when complete have all been unveiled at either the Supershow or the Spring Motorcycle Show.

In addition to producing Motorcycle Shows and events since the 70s Bar also produced the Canadian Superbike Championship Mosport Round and Track Days at Mosport International Raceway in the 90's.

During the 2000s Bar was the President of three motorcycle corporations. He is also the publisher of a number of motorcycle magazines and books.

Bar and Hedy travel extensively to motorcycle events and destinations, all over Canada and the U.S.

Currently his passion for Vincent motorcycles has him restoring or customizing 3 or 4 rare models at any one time, some of which will be photo documented on this site in our projects section.

Bar Hodgson and one of his many Vincent Motorcycles
Bar Hodgson and Gunga Din

Bar Hodgson and Peter Derry, producers of the Spring Motorcycle Show
Bar Hodgson and Peter Derry, partners in the Toronto Spring Motorcycle Show, discuss 'Show Biz' in front of the sportbike lineup in the Collection.

Bar on a Ducati at Mosport, photo by Flair photography
Photo by Flair Photography

Annual track days like the VRRA's and DOCC's Mosport Rallies are always on Bar's summer calendar. While Mosport is a favourite circuit, Bar has ridden and raced at tracks all over North America.

Vincent Black Chopper built by Bar Hodgson
Bar works on his Vincent Black Chopper, installing the American Pickers engine which he pursued half way around the world knowing it was the perfect engine for this unique custom motorcycle.

Bar and Hedy Hodgson on motorcycle tour in the Rockies
Bar & Hedy with their BMW R1150R touring bike in the Colorado Rockies

As Bar says, "Any day that you can spend either riding a motorcycle, fixing a motorcycle, talking about motorcycles, reading about motorcycles or just thinking about motorcycles, is a good day. There's nothing I'd rather do. I really enjoy attending events and meeting like-minded people who share the passion for motorcycles. And of course when I work on our Toronto Spring Motorcycle Show I'm creatively engaging in bringing motorcyclists together for a great all-encompassing experience. I'm also a member of about a dozen Canadian motorcycle clubs plus a few international organizations and those are all great motorcycling connections to have."

For a video outlining Bar's life of motorcycling you can watch a superb presentation that was put together when Bar was inducted into the Canadian Motorcycle Hall of Fame, including his acceptance speech, in 2009

Bar Hodgson, Chris Manley and Lang Hindle on the Factory Kawasaki H1R
Bar with Lang Hindle (right) and Chris Manley (seated) with the Factory Kawasaki H1R 500cc 2-stroke Triple Grand Prix bike that Chris raced in the 70's. A number of significant race bikes from the Collection were brought to Mosport for the 2011 Road Racers Reunion.

Bar Hodgson and the 1929 Harley-Davidson JD OPP motorcycle and sidecar rig used by the Ontario Provincial Police
Bar with his 1929 Harley-Davidson JD OPP (Ontario Provincial Police) Motorcycle with sidecar.

Bar Hodgson and Kim Coats
Sons of Anarchy actor and motorcycle rider, Kim Coates, gets a lesson from Bar in vintage motorcycle collecting at the 2016 Toronto Spring Motorcycle Show.

Bar Hodgson at Amelia Island with the Gunga Din Vincent
Bar stands by, ready to approach the viewing stand on Best in Show winner Gunga Din at Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance in 2012

Photo by Dave Lloyd

Qualifying (6 runs to get licenced!) at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah

Bar Hodgson at Bonneville in 2008 with the Streamliner
Some last minute pointers from the crew at Bonneville before Bar's landspeed record attempt.

All photos by Hedy Hodgson unless otherwise noted.

MORE INFO: Collection - Bikes for Sale - Projects

Bar at Bonneville Saltflats
Walking away from the 185 mph streamliner crash at Bonneville Salt Flats in 2009.

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