Near the intersection of Silver Lake and Sunset boulevards, Illuminati Motorcycles is a pit-stop bike shop that waits for sick and aging two-wheeled vehicles to be fixed, cleaned up and re-released onto the streets of L.A., where rising gas prices have led to a growing population of bike enthusiasts. Illuminati's proprietor, Barron Gunter, not only repairs motorcycles, he sells them, too — specializing in older versions of Japanese motors like Honda, Suzuki and Yamaha. His shop is a tangled mass of rusting gems, rehabilitated antiques and beloved bikes, all in line to be restored to their former glory by Gunter and his team of adroit mechanics. Between overhauls, Gunter also takes reclaimed motorcycle parts and fashions them into household items such as lamps, putting those orphaned headlights to good use. But he's reluctant to turn his side hobby into a business just yet. 966 Vendome St., Silver Lake; (323) 868-5723,

—Tanja M. Laden

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