Meet Paul Yaffe

Paul Yaffe's Bagger Nation

Paul grew up in SoCal’s San Fernando Valley. All the hoodlums in Paul’s neighborhood rode dirt bikes, inline Honda 4’s or Kawasaki GPZ’s. Paul’s dad had Enduros and Triumph choppers that Paul would ride when his dad was away. When he got his first Harley, he immediately took a saw to it in his parents’ garage.

Paul is a self-taught bike builder who is still learning every day. He hung around local shops growing up or anywhere something cool was being created. He is fascinated by anything custom.

In 1989, he moved to Phoenix to attend the Motorcycle Mechanics Institute to gain knowledge in all things motorcycle. He got a ground-level education in 2 and 4-Stroke Engine Theory, Electrical Theory and current and early model HD Service, an education he uses every day.

The neighborhood hoodlums were Paul’s heroes in the early days. Later when he got into Harleys, he followed Billy Westbrook, Arlen Ness, Grady Pfeiffer, Alan Deshon wherever they may have been showing their bikes.

The first bike Paul customized was a Sportster. The first ground-up bike he built with Jack Gould, Paul’s service manager to this day, was a rigid frame shovelhead. Paul sold it soon after it was done. It financed his first shop which opened in Phoenix in 1991.

Choppers came on hard and fast in the late ‘90s. Along with their incredible popularity came a booming aftermarket. By 2001, there were companies popping up like 7-Elevens offering “custom” choppers built entirely from aftermarket parts.
This flood of choppers basically destroyed the trend in the industry. “I was lucky,” Paul said. “I had already turned my eye to the Bagger platform.” Customizing Baggers wasn’t new. Paul had tried to introduce a line of custom Bagger parts in 1998 and “failed miserably!” Things really changed in ’06-’07. Paul had customized the first 2006 Street Glide and unveiled it in January ’06 at the Easy Riders Shows along with the Bagger Nation brand.

It seemed like the moto world was ready for the winds of change. Paul published the first Bagger Nation catalog, filled with the parts he tried to introduce 10 years prior. Now he couldn’t make them fast enough!