RATCHABURI — A former art teacher is enthralling customers worldwide with motorcycle helmets modeled after the famed galactic hunter race.
Although Predator riders are known to criss-cross Isaan in full getups, Suriyan Tantemsin is catering to the casual bike rider who wants to only don headgear. Suriyan airbrushes custom motorbike Predator helmets – but with creative fandom-crossing twists.
A red-and-yellow Predator helmet? It’s an Iron Man Predator, of course. Another with the infinity gems painted on? Thanos Predator. Purple-and-green with a creepy smile? Joker Predator.
“Anyone can be the Predator,” he said.
Suriyan, a former art teacher, started making custom bike helmets after flooding in 2011 emptied his hometown of his students. Soon, orders started pouring in – but they weren’t from Thais.
“Mostly I export one-of-a-kind orders to customers in the US, Europe and the Middle East,” Suriyan said. “One customer in Japan wanted a Samurai Predator.”
It’s his full time job now – each helmet sells for between 8,500 to 12,000 baht. All his helmets are US Department of Transportation (DOT) and Economic Commission for Europe (ECE) approved.
“Before the economy went south a couple years ago, I would make 30 helmets a month, but it’s halved since then,” Suriyan, 34, said.
Suriyan can be contacted through his shop’s Facebook.
Many Thais have an inexplicable love for the Predator. Samai Khammongkul, an avid cosplayer, is known as the Predator of Mukdahan.