cafe racer

cafe racer

Posted on by Maxx Biker 1

Want to have the new kind of café racer? Do like Larry Houghton: take a 1983 6-cylinder Honda CBX and build an origami-like frame for it from a one-inch thick aluminum sheet and then bring in a pair of 17-inch Marchesini wheels from a Ducati 916. Create a radical front end, but retain the Ducati’s single-sided swingarm and the thing can go off the stand.

The engine and gearbox is pretty much all that remains from the Honda CBX and because the powerplant makes it look so wide it’s called ‘Wide Boy’. But it’s no Harley, just a custom bike trying to make it in this business. It actually came third in the Freestyle class at the latest London Ace Cafe Motorcycle & Custom Show, so it rides on the good track.

Source: bikeexif
Posted on by Maxx Biker 1
1973 Moto Guzzi 850 T3 café racer…from crap to splendid

This old Moto Guzzi 850 T3 was sitting in a junkyard in Trenton, NJ for ten years when Hal Wiley saw it as a good opportunity to build himself a nice café racer. The bike had suffered a small crash in the past and the elements also helped at basically turning it into a piece of crap, but not one that couldn’t be radically transformed with a lot of work and a fair investment.

The Guzzi was entirely stripped down only for the new owner to find that the engine, which had previously powered the bike for 55,000 miles, was top notch on the inside, so it only required a new timing chain, gaskets and seals and it was bolted back to its original shape. Well, not entirely as the original 30mm Dell’Orto carbs had been at some point in time replaced by 36mm Le Mans items. Also, the V-twin now breaths out through a set of EMGO shorty mufflers.

After sandblasting and painting the Tonti frame and bead blasting most of the aluminum parts, reconstruction could begin. But the actual parts that turn the bike into a café one – gas tank and fiberglass cafe seat – had to be ordered from eBay. Also, Hal choose to mount Lester rims with Avon Venom tires for an enhanced retro look. Finally, gloss black was the color of choice.

Like most similar projects, this is still a work in progress. Hal plans to upgrade the engine to 1000 cc and bring in a lighter flywheel so that it will even rev faster. Just what the doctor ordered!

Source: eviltwinsbk
Posted on by Maxx Biker 1
1976 BMW R90/6 café racer made the easy way

The original BMW R90/6 was a very reliable touring motorcycle and many of those maintained properly still ride strong today, so a 1976 model year should be a bargain. But taking a look at the bike you suddenly realize that this is no mean machine to make your neighbor jealous with. The quickest solution to make such bikes visually attractive again (and the neighbor finally jealous) is by turning them into café racers.

Rob Snow from Salt Lake City, Utah did so with his 1976 BMW R90/6 and with approximately $450 he turned the old Goldwing competitor into a veritable café racer that simply cannot be ignored. Looking at the before and after pictures, it’s kind of hard to believe that the radical change was achieved with only a new tailsection, seat and taillight as well as handlebar and mirrors. Obviously, the huge fairing had to go and it is now replaced by a much cooler bikini-style one and the new black paintjob does help a lot too. More photos after the jump.

Source: caferace
Posted on by Maxx Biker 3
1977 Billetproof Customs KZ 400 Café Racer

Take a look at this 1977 Kawasaki KZ400 in the small photo and at the veritable café racer above only to find that there are little similarities, enough to have you say we’re talking about two different bikes. But it is precisely the ease of transforming an old Japanese bike into a café racer what impresses us the most about this project.

Billetproof Customs bought the bike for $300. The reliable engine still ran good, so it was worth stripping everything off of it in order to see what can be done from a fresh start. Said and done. They started with the frame, which was seriously modified and then they built the wheels and brought in lowered front shocks and custom shortened rear shocks. The old Kawi was now 2 inches lower and got itself a much more aggressive stance also thanks to the shortened clubman bars.

The bodywork was next. A refurbished 1979 Suzuki GT 500 fuel tank found its place on top of the frame together with the one-piece seat and rear tail section, which were custom made out of fiberglass by the builder. The reconditioned engine was now ready to go back on and it was fed through a single carb instead of its original dual ones. Also, it now features custom made and wrapped exhaust pipes and so they obtained a retro look instead of the classy one that chrome would have given the bike.

After adding a disc front brake and custom drilling the rear drum as well as hiding the battery under the tail section, the bike was ready for painting. Like all the above mentioned, this was done by the manufacturer and olive drab was the color of choice. Other nice details worth mentioning are the headlight, bar end mirrors and speedo, taillight as well as the custom stitched seat in between. Hit the jump for a multitude of photos.

Source: jkvstudios
Posted on by Maxx Biker 1

Take a look at what the guys over at Adrenalin Moto in the UK did to a Harley-Davidson XR1200 . It looks neat and fast to us and, if you can believe it, this is actually a café racer. Harleys are probably the last bikes you’d want to modify in such a way, but the XR1200 model loves being fitted with parts such as the Ducati 900SS fairing, projector headlight, carbon fiber side panels and a high level two-into-one stainless steel exhaust system, just to mention a few.

While overall weight is reduced with no less than 83.8 lbs, the XR1200 Café Racer gets a paintjob replica of Cal Rayborn’s XR750TT racebike. The only thing we don’t like as much about it is the fairing, which kind of makes the bike look dated. Most likely a bikini fairing would have looked better, but I guess they needed wind protection.

Clearly, those brits can transform any motorcycle into a café racer. Sadly, this one is not for sale.

Posted on by Maxx Biker 1

The café racer style may not have started on Japanese bikes, but it does help turn some of these into absolutely gorgeous machines. For example, this 1975 Suzuki GT550 (I know, it looks brand new) is probably the coolest café racer approach on a classic Japanese bike.

Thomas Leeming from Montana recently finished building it and he doesn’t forget to mention some of the changes he has done: "pipes by Omar’s. Electronic ignition. Battery, oil tank and electrics are hidden under the seat cowl."

What we like the most about the Suzuki GT550 cafe racer is the racy and yet classy look given by the bike’s stance and the multitude of shiny bits and parts. More pics after the jump.

Posted on by Maxx Biker 4

If you’re looking to buy a nice café racer to ride the summer on, we just came across one that is worth taking a look at. It originally started as a 1976 Honda CB550 which seems to have ended up in the right hands and after being fitted with parts such as the café seat, clubman drop bars with mini chrome gauges and 4 into 1 MAC exhaust, it is now worthy of the Honda CB550 café racer designation.

The owner claims “the bike only has 8604 miles on it so the engine is rock solid” and the only thing it needs is a new paintjob. How’s that for a way to make it suit your taste?

Considering the $2,900 asking price, this café racer looks to us like the find of the day. Hit the jump for the entire list of changes.

Posted on by Maxx Biker 1

You can spend a lot of money on a custom bike designed and built to suit your taste and still feel like the thing isn’t even yours? Maybe it is because you haven’t put your blood, sweat and tears into it. Take this case for instance. This 1976 Honda Gold Wing GL1000 powered by a gold four-cylinder engine was found on eBay and after being bought and given a magic touch, it has turned into a veritable café racer.

A simple look at it is enough to suspect this bike required some serious modifications, but we’ll have to say that a black and gold paint job, new tail section and fairing as well as new exhaust pipes do the trick in this case. The rest is just what makes the bike feel like belonging to a rider – all the time and energy put into it.

So, was it all worth it? Well, the thing is now Bike of the Month, March 2010 over at Naked Goldwings, so you decide.

Posted on by Maxx Biker 1

Although the paintjob on this café racer makes it look like a Norton, this is actually a very special Triumph Thruxton that pulled the lucky card when ending up in the hands of Austrian Triumph dealer Jurgen Schnaller. The ‘Greymouth’, as it is called, gets upgraded engine and chassis components enhancing the sporty side of the already great British bike.

The engine, which now features high compression pistons, ported and polished head and high lift camshafts while being fed through new flat side Keihin carbs and fitted with a Raask exhaust, is claimed to be 26bhp more powerful than on the stock bike. On the chassis side, the upgraded Wilbers front and rear suspensions are meant to cope with the extra performance.

You decide if the Schnaller Thruxton is worth €18000 ($24,340) as we can’t help but wonder how it feels when ridden.

Source: MCN
Posted on by Maxx Biker 0

Honda barely introduced their latest big four model, the CB1100 and Japanese tuner Mugen has already released a package of bits and pieces for future owners to easily turn their nakeds into café racers worthy of the 1970s.

The café racer kit is mainly composed from a silver headlamp cowl and a racy looking seat, while the matt black fenders and sports exhausts are just the right touches to help set this bike further apart from the naked crowd and closer to the café racer one. Hit the jump for the Mugen CB1100 café racer action video.


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