Hemand Mohandas finds his calling custom-designing motorbikes

One look at the majestic M-Age and you come to believe design is but intelligence made perceptible; and when you meet Hemand Mohandas, the genius who designed this motorcycle, you realise good design coalesces technology, aesthetics, aptitude and human need, to produce something the world would never have expected.

A graduate of NIFT, Bangalore, Hemand works as a product designer with a corporate firm in Bangalore. He was always passionate about automobiles, especially motorcycles. However, unlike those who are content riding a fancy bike or taking part in drag races, Hemand has taken his passion to a whole new level by designing the M-Age.

He says: “This motorcycle is the brainchild of my research, identifying the possibilities in re-designing any existing factory model. M-Age stands for matrix age (a design-oriented name for the green, techno-styled parts on the bike). It is powered by a Bajaj Pulsar 150 engine, loaded with K&N air filters and a lot more on the aesthetics side. It’s the first naked muscle motorcycle on Indian roads. This motorcycle is built for a unique client, a sportsman.”

Four fab years

Hemand has been doing motorcycle design since 2008 and has even worked as a freelance designer with some major custom motorcycle design firms in India, apart from his regular job. In August 2011, his friend approached him to customise his motorcycle, and it took four months to complete the project.

“Perfection and a blast to ride were his expectations for his bike. This roaring monster was built to suit his lifestyle; you could call it a real street hooligan machine.” Going into the specifications of his creation, Hemand says: “To me, aesthetics and function should play equivalent roles to create a masterpiece. A masterpiece is never born twice. It took more than 300 hours to make the motorcycle. Apart from engine and chassis, everything else on this motorcycle is either hand fabricated or from the aftermarket.”

“This motorcycle is designed to cut through regular traffic hassles, giving the rider a light weight riding experience. We have tried to reduce the overall weight and shortened the length. M-Age features an old-school look of spoke wheels, custom FRP fenders, custom gas-tank, air-filter, Butterfly Frames and a tailpiece. The exhaust is slung under the seat, which gives a distinctive look to the overall design.”

Ask him what it takes to pursue this, and he responds, “What you need is only passion and a strong will to do the job. Skills in fabrication of various materials and a bit of technical knowledge would do, qualification does not count much here as it’s a skill- and passion-driven industry. A degree or post-graduation in Transportation design could give one an insight into the technical and aesthetic aspects of automotive industry.” Time will tell if he will make a fulltime profession out of his passion. In the meanwhile, the 26-year-old continues to customise bikes and cars, and has never been happier. For details about Hemand’s work, check out www.bulbfactoryinc.com and http://www.facebook.com/BulbFactory Customs.

This column features those who choose to veer off the beaten track.