January 04, 2021
What is Happiness? Is it reaching a million followers on Instagram? Banking a billion by airing your family dysfunction on basic cable for 20 years? Beating a fat kid in a hotdog eating contest? For one sponge rider I know, just eating a burrito from Gilbert’s El Indio feels like winning the lottery. An affable FXR obsessive with smart goals and refined tastes, Greg “Beaver” BeBout suffered a harrowing loss two years ago that forced the talented mechanic to assay his life to find the mettle that makes him tick. Now, Beav finds joy on a daily basis through wrenching and relaxing—not a bad way to live.
OK Beav, give me the pertinent particulars.
Greg BeBout, but everyone calls me Beav. I’m 35, from Mar Vista, California. I got the nickname from friends I surfed with at Topanga Beach 20 years ago. Every time I got in the water, I’d bite my lip
Pump the brakes—surfing? Word on the street says you’re a dick dragger. Do you own a boogieboard?
Man, why you gotta bring up the past! Yeah—I was the varsity boogieboard team captain at my high school. I went to surf contests every weekend. The coolest part about boogie boarding was every wave was overhead!
OK, so now you’re in over your head with motorcycles. What’s your first memory of two wheels?
I remember watching Moto GP when I was a little kid—my mom loved any kind of racing. I was 14 when I got my first motorcycle: a ’79 XR75. My brother had a Ninja 250. I just sold that XR75 a couple weeks ago.
What did you learn working at other motorcycle shops before finally striking out on your own?
I’m thankful for getting the experience at other shops, because when I was getting into wrenching all I wanted to do was learn. Now that I’m on my own, I love working alone. My time, my rules, my world.
What kind of motorcycles do you like working on?
Anything Harley Evo powered. I love FXRs. I love making motorcycles better. Better brakes, better suspension, better carb, better pipes. Better everything.
Better is always better, but there’s got to be a story about something bad. What’s the worst customer ever?
Oh man—where to begin! I used to wire a lot of Sportsters. Super simple chopper stuff. I wired this kid’s XL and gave him the bill, and his mom called to ask me for a student discount. Totally blew my mind!
So now you’re a Dyna guy. What was it, the socks?
Nah, man—my ex-girlfriend’s name is Dina. I can’t do the socks—I got cankles! But yeah—I recently got an early Twin Cam. I like learning. If I’m not into it, I’ll sell it. If I like it, I’ll ride it.
You into the swapping game?
The early days of the NorCal Cycle Swap were insane. I’ve been pretty burned out on swaps lately—it’s become a sport for some fools.
Let’s switch gears. Ranch or Italian?
Ranch all day!
Best burrito spot in your ‘hood.
Gilbert’s El Indio in Santa Monica.
Pitbulls or ankle biters?
Small dogs forever. Norman for President!
Who would win in a fight: Uncle Jimmy, or JD Sansaver from Flying Monkey Fabrication?
What kinda fight? I’d have to put my money on Uncle Jimmy—sorry JD!
Goals for the future.
Learn more. Love more. Get a legit shop, and only work on FXRs.
Favorite place to ride.
Honestly—the Santa Monica Mountains. They’re only 20 minutes from my house, and it’s paradise. You could get on Pacific Coast Highway and look at the same fancy cars and hot chicks, but there’s nothing like the canyons in SoCal.
Bucket List ride.
Take a month off and go ride around America to visit friends I haven’t seen in years.
Who inspires you in the motorcycle business? In life in general?
I like the bikes more than most of the people who ride ‘em, but I’m thankful to have some amazing friends in the motorcycle business. Life in general? That’s hard. I lost my mother in November 2018. She was my best friend. Mom was in a coma for 20 days. It was the lowest point in my life. I talked to my mom when she was in that coma, telling her what I was going to do. I started @Beavsspot for her. The next day, she woke up. Finding inspiration after she passed has been hard. All I try to do is make today better than yesterday. Remembering how proud she was of me keeps me going. She was my biggest fan, my cheerleader. I’ve got a great family, so I can’t complain. Life is good.