In 1969 Don became the proud owner of a 1939 OLE 45 with sidecar as a result of a game of eight-ball, best three out of four. In 1977 Don bought a 1966 XLCH and customized it. Working maintenance at Chevron and tinkering with bikes on the side led Hotop to sell and hock all he had, then borrow all he could to enable him to go into business for himself. That was 1977.
In 1979 he began to advertise in the custom bike magazines that he had been reading for years. Don outgrew the two-car garage he used as a shop.
Now Don’s Speed & Custom manufactures its own parts and has its own machine shop and fabrication facility. He does complete bike building, R&D work, service and repair.