Archive for the ‘build’ Tag

Benjies Cafe Racer Update

It’s been a while since I posted anything out of the BCR shop, and lo-and-behold, there are some new parts and projects out of the shop. Check out the linked photos below to see a sampling of what he’s got going on…

benjies cafe racer 07_09 01
benjies cafe racer 07_09 02
benjies cafe racer 07_09 03
benjies cafe racer 07_09 04
benjies cafe racer 07_09 05


What makes a cafe racer a cafe racer?

Often times, when writing about one particular cafe racer or another, I end up complaining about some missing piece. It might be a bike that is done except for rear-sets, or maybe the bars haven’t been swapped out for clip-ons or clubmans, or maybe my friend Paul complains in a comment about the JC Whitney mufflers gracing some otherwise nicely-built cafe racer.

But what it really comes down to, is that each of us thinks about cafe racers in a slightly different way. We all pick different bikes to build, and we each pick a different set of componentry to graft on to it. The net result is a cafe racer.

To try to get to the root of this issue, I made the little poll below to try and figure out what everyone who reads this blog thinks are the most important things that make a cafe racer a cafe racer. I set the poll so you can only choose one thing, so pick what you think is most important when building a cafe racer. Have fun, and let me know what you think…

Pristine 1975 Yamaha XS650

As you may know, I often vacillate between wanting to keep older classic bikes in one piece, and saying to rip them to shreds in the quest to build great cafe racers. In this case, I am unsure which way to go…

What a clean restoration of an early XS650. And what a great platform for a cafe racer build! Go for it, I say! And build a beautiful bike! Think about the finished product. No rust. No dings. A fresh motor. Almost like building a cafe racer back in 1975. Sweet!!!



Nice CB350T Race Bike

Here’s a nice AHRMA race bike being built by the folks at and posted in the forums at I like all the detail work that has gone into the build. I especially find the hand-built front fender pretty sweet!

They have also built a nice street version of this bike, as well. I’ll post that one soon…



1961 Aermacchi 250 Cafe Racer (Reposted again (otherwise titled “An Open Letter To Lossa Engineering))

Dear Lossa Engineering,

I believe this is at least the second time this bike has been posted on eBay for sale. I wrote about it before, but apparently that did not help enough as it didn’t sell back in December. Although I no longer work at eBay, I will hazard a guess that your reserve is too high. I once posted about a bike that had an opening price of $100K, but that didn’t work out so well for the seller.

I really appreciate all that you have done to this bike, but perhaps the price is too high for eBay? I’m not sure what it costs to build such an awesome bike as this (Click here to see previous post). However, I am sure it is quite a lot. It is an awesome bike, but I need some new material to blog about. Perhaps you could lower the reserve a bit so that you could fund your next awesome cafe racer build-up. I have posted about two other bikes you have cafe’d, and I really like your style a lot, but there is only so much I can do with relisted bikes. If you would like, I would post a permanent post as a sale listing at the price you really want to get so you can continue providing the world with very cool motorcycles.

As a side note, I have a friend who thinks that you sometimes go overboard with the colored parts (red frames, headlight shells, etc.) on some of the Honda-based bikes you have done. I, however, disagree. Please keep up the good work building cafe racers that are not drenched in flat black. You make the world of motorcycling a little more colorful…


I Love Cafe Racers!!!



Interesting Cafe Racer Seat Idea…

I guess I had never really thought of constructing a good looking cafe racer seat in this manner. I’m used to looking at fiberglass or metal constructs that leave the stock seat-pan behind. The eBay listing for this says that it is for an early Kawasaki, but what’s interesting is that it is a stock seat-pan with a fiberglass cafe racer hump attached. And it looks pretty good, not kludged together.

Thoughts on this? Done right it seems like a cost-effective way of building a seat for just about any bike that starts out with a usable seat-pan…

How They Built It...

How They Built It...


Guy builds a cheap cafe racer, and then he dances…

Here’s a little video of a guy building a cheap cafe racer (<$500 supposedly). Stick around for the end. He dances…

27 Minutes and 33 Seconds of your life…