One of the most common emails we get at the shop is how to go about registering a custom motorcycle. Being that we do this on a regular basis I decided to put together this post to help you get your new ride on the road.
Note: We are not registered government officials or lawyers. This information is based off of our own experiences of registering numerous custom motorcycles for ourselves or clients in Ontario Canada.
First thing you need is a detailed list of all the major components purchased for the bike. Along with the list of parts, you should have all the receipts and invoices showing who you made the purchase from and how much you spent. Make sure to include any sales taxes you had previously paid since you wouldn’t want to end up paying it again.
You will also need to include any Manufacture Statement Origin (MSO) sheets that you have. These are documents that show detailed information about the production on new items such as frame, engine, transmission, etc.
The final piece is an affidavit to say that you built the bike using the parts previously listed. Once you have printed this up, it will have to be notarized. You can usually get this done directly at the license office or you can have a lawyer sign it.
I _________, built this motorcycle using parts purchased. The frame (VIN#) was purchased for ($) from (Manufacturer). Engine (Serial#) was purchased for ($) from (Manufacturer)…
If you have built your own custom frame and don’t have an MSO, the Ministry of Transportation will issue you a Home Built VIN# which will need to be permanently fixed to the bike.
If you have bought a custom frame which came with the MSO, the number on the document should match a stamped number on the frame. This will be the new VIN#. If the frame was imported from the United States, you must have the proper importing papers to show taxes have been paid or the MSO will no longer be valid meaning you will have to go with a home built VIN.
Buying a Custom Motorcycle
If you are buying an already licensed custom motorcycle that is registered in Ontario, you don’t have to worry about any of this. Simply take your ownership to the license office and transfer it into your name. To get a plate you will need a safety check and proof of insurance just like any other vehicle.
US Custom Motorcycles are not usually able to be registered in Ontario. They are not made to meet the Canadian regulations. When you show up at the border with it, if they let you bring it across they will not let you import the title and it will be branded as parts only. Some manufactured customs such as Iron Horse or Titan were able to be imported previously, but this should be checked with customs before buying as a precaution.
When it comes to finding insurance for a home built motorcycle, it can be quite frustrating due to the fact that a lot of companies don’t offer the option. So to make life easier for you we’ve decided to come up with a list of known insurance companies that will cover a home built.