Seeing this great cafe racer Honda for the first time made me want to find out more about it and about the man behind this beautiful machine. After getting in touch with Paul he was kind enough to share his story with us. Here is Paul.
I, like many bikers, had the idea of one day doing a project bike. That came at the time I lost my job, December 2014. I had talked about wanting to do a proper build for some time. My very supportive, beautiful wife Heleen asked me, what are you waiting for? “Hey, now you have the time so let´s do it!”
And as things goes, call it -the law of attraction- Ronald, a friend of mine offered me his ’78 Honda CX500. “You want to do something with a bike, don’t you Paul? Well, take it and do something with it. Sell it and we split the profit”.
I was blown away with the kindness of the opportunity that Ronald offered me. During the same time, Sven (an old student of mine) offered me a working spot in his well-equipped classic Porsche workshop Haverkamp Speedgarage. I offered him my marketing experience for his start-up in return of offering me space, tools, technical backup and Friday’s meatballs.
Once stripped back this Honda cafe racer to its basic components I set to work grinding off all but the most necessary. Then I cut and brace the sub-frame and manufactured the tail piece. Due to a tight budget the aim was to reuse as much parts as possible, only if it fits the stance and the overall look of the bike.
In fact, everything you see is re-used or second hand stock. The mufflers are for instance handmade from empty spray cans and the exhaust pipes made from a secondhand Fireblade unit.The only new parts are the battery, the seat (made of a kitchen chopping board, bought at a Chinese restaurant wholesaler and the polyester from a pocketbike), the rear- and front LED-lights (local scootershop), and the dirttrack number plate was ordered in the States.
The engine was in great condition and needed only a new gasket for the water pump, some coat of paint and a thorough carb clean. The handmade mufflers play a decent tune and the stock CV carbs on pod filters have been re-jetted to suit. With a couple of extra horses available the StreetTraCXer should put out around 50hp, which doesn’t sound mind bending for this Honda cafe racer but combined with the considerable weight it offers a pretty spirited ride.
The brakes were overhauled and the electrics rewired. The battery, in case you are wondering, is now hidden underneath the drive shaft. It’s a relatively small bike and it handles great. A perfect city bike. The bike was sold the first day it was on eBay. During 2014 I found a “regular job” but I keep working on new custom motorcycle projects. Today it is a Kawasaki Z400, offered by my brother and after finishing it will be my oldest son’s new bike.
Over all I would say this is a great looking bike that Paul has built and I was also surprised when I found out how many parts he was able to reuse and modify to fit the bikes style. I am definitely looking forward to see more bikes that Paul will make. And If you have not yet seen the top bikes of 2015 check out the post and tells us what bike you like most.