Years ago, as their kids tore up the yard on dirt bikes, Rick Fairless and his buddies would flip on the stereo, pull cold ones out of an icebox, and hash out their motorcycle nirvana: a custom shop with a bar where they could drink alongside their choppers instead of leaving them out front to be tampered with by passersby. Fairless had put in 20 years selling paint for Glidden before he decided to make a couple of calls, just to get the stupid idea out of his system. He opened his shop a year later, in 1996.
Strokers Dallas encompasses 2.5 acres off Harry Hines, offering everything necessary to get into the motorhead subculture. In the retail store, you’ll find the whacked-out Rick Fairless custom bikes on glorious display, plus plenty of gear and get-ups. Grab a pair of chaps, but don’t forget to cover your ass: Strokers is a licensed Allstate agent.
Strokers mechanics service American-made bikes and produce five to 10 custom builds each year. A Rick Fairless design doesn’t come cheap. His kaleidoscopic Woodstock bike would set you back about $100,000. If you have a classic auto that’s been collecting dust, Punch Wally Garage will get it car-show ready. Taz’s Detail makes your hog sparkle, and outdoor vendors will accessorize you with silver skull rings and custom-designed patches.
Behind Strokers Ice House, the asphalt courtyard fills with everything from Big Dog V-twins to Stella scooters and, of course, a hell of a lot of Harleys. The clientele isn’t discriminatory. You’ll find old-timers and infants, Southwest Airlines’ white-collar staffers who cross the street for after-work drinks, babes as hot as the decal on a mudflap, tattooed outlaws, and fresh-faced tourists who may have caught one of Strokers’ reality shows, Texas Hardtails and Ma’s Roadhouse (the latter spotlighted Fairless’ salty-mouthed mother, rest in peace). If you’re looking to witness a barstool-shattering brawl, however, ride elsewhere. “A lot of bike clubs come here, but we’re all cool,” one full-patched 1-percenter told us. “This is neutral ground.”
We spent a recent Sunday at Strokers to knock back a few beers, eat the Herschel Walker-raised chicken (the football great is their most loyal custom bike client), and experience the Rick Fairless pipe dream in full-color high definition. It turns 25 years old on October 1, and Stroker’s is celebrating with a weekend full of events, headlined by Warrant.Read More