At the age of 17 most girls aren’t dreaming of building a custom cafe racer, but Danielle Thompson has had a passion for two wheels since the early age of 4 when she started her motocross racing career. During the Michigan winters there’s not many opportunities to race motocross so she decided to find a good winter project to help pass the time. After seeing some custom cafe racers on social media, she took interest and started searching the internet for custom build ideas. With a limited budget she found a very clean, low miles 1981 Honda CM400 for sale in the fall, which she bought right away.
After getting the bike home she stripped the bike down to just the frame and engine. Going off the build she picked out, allot of work was ahead, She started off by cutting the rear frame off just past the shock mounts where the new Gold 12.5” (320 mm) piggy back air shock were installed. The original seat pan was cut down and formed to the smaller size, and using a local upholstery company to stitch and wrap the new seat.
The tank, case covers, fenders and other misc. parts were removed and professionally flat black powdered coat by Slacker Garage Shop in Grand Rapids, MI giving the bike a fresh new look. The engine was sent into Rowley’s Powersports where it was gone through and freshened up making sure everything was good to go for another 35 years!
Updating the rear lights with LED and LED turn signals, making sure people notice not only the cool bike but the indicator lights as well. Other new features added were the clubman handlebars, gold chain, speedometer, rearview mirror, filter pods, chrome slash cut mufflers and tires.
This was a great winter project that finished up just in time for spring riding. Danielle plans to ride this beauty for a bit before putting it on the market for a new owner.