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Cafe Racer with a twist

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by XSFrank, May 11, 2012.

  1. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    Hi Guys,

    I’m newly registered on here, but have been hovering for a while on this site, to get some ideas and info for a build I’ve recently started.
    After years of riding plastic clad sports bikes I've got a craving for something old and easier to work on.
    I live in Bournemouth on the south coast of England, the old England across the pond this is, but fancied something a bit more reliable than the famed 50’s and 60’s British tin.
    Also having the brake and gear change the right way round, as I ride my bikes all year round apart from when it snows.
    Eventually decided to get an XS650 as they are so easily available and always fancied the Cafe Racer Style which they are just begging for.
    Then I dropped my ’99 R6 one morning in February in the rain when a truck pulled across my lane, so the fate was sealed.
    I decided to start my first bike build, using left over parts from my R6 to build an XS-R650. See what I’ve done there :D

    So first of all, my main inspiration and ideas came from and thanks go to bobber33, rude and olddude13. I like your styles.

    This is what I’ve started with. A fugly ’81 Special imported to the UK from Ohio a few years ago with low mileage (13.5K), some paperwork and really good condition. Only managed to pick it up and ride it to my workshop, then started cutting it up.


    This is the plan. Complete R6 front end including brakes, but with stock 19†XS mag wheel.
    18†XS500 rear disc mag wheel with R6 rear sets and master cylinder. Just found an ‘86 Radian rear swing arm, so will see if I can work that in too.
    Haven’t decided on the colour scheme yet, but will get the bike all build first to get a better overall picture and then strip it down again.
    I will have full electrics as it’s going to be a daily ride again when done.

  2. willyguzzi53

    willyguzzi53 XS650 Addict

    I like where this one is headed.
  3. Frank I am going with the yammie R6 front end the early forks



    My yokes should of been ready last week but he has been super busy.

    I am keeping the centre line of the R6 front end so I have made a couple of spacers as there is a 18mm differance


    These go behind the discs so that the front end centre line stays the same.

    Like what you are doing with the frame nice welding,,,if you ever want to have a look at how not to weld let me know and I will send you some photos of my attempt at welding :D
  4. pregrid

    pregrid XS650 Guru

    Leslie you're such a post whore! Just kidding! Looks like you fellers are goin' in sort of the same direction (although cafe and tracker are not exactly the same..................you know what I mean).

    Welcome Frank, please take lots of pics and share!

  5. pre,
    I think biker lads are same all over the world.

    Take your tracker, when i was looking at doing one your tracker was exactly what I had in mind.

    In fact I had to try and change a few details as I didn't want to copy your great build.

    Just shows that bikers are bikers wherever they are from.

  6. pregrid

    pregrid XS650 Guru

    Yup, I believe you're right!
  7. GreasyC

    GreasyC XS650 Addict

    Looks like a cool project. What's the plan for getting the 17mm I.D. XS wheel onto the 22mm R6 axle?
  8. GreasyC,
    My local bike shop sourced me a set 22mm bearings.

    They are Honda RC51 bearings that is the Honda SP1 & 2 over this side of the pond,

    Last edited: May 12, 2012
  9. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    Hi Leslie,

    Looking good. I've not seen your build thread but will have a look later.
    Do like the Flat Trackers too.
    What are you doing with the rear suspension?

    Regarding converting the Mag front wheel to the 22mm R6 axle, I was going to get some sealed bearing from a local place who specialises in bearings. We use them all the time for work. Shouldn't be to much of a problem. Are the Honda SP 1 bearings 47mm external like the XS bearings?

  10. Frank,
    I hope pregrid doesnt see this but I have plagiarized his ideas from his absolutely fantastic high quality/engineered tracker build and used the Redwing Hammerhead rtear shocks I got them from Omars

  11. [​IMG]
  12. pregrid

    pregrid XS650 Guru

    Geez Leslie, you got me blushing!:D
  13. Credit due where it's due

  14. Damm I was going to use XS-R650 It will have to be XS-FT650 now:laugh:

  15. 650Skull

    650Skull SSSSSSSSSlither Top Contributor

    :hijack: Leslie, don't mean to be harsh but you should start your own thread.

    Welcome XSfrank.
  16. racerdave

    racerdave ^ Gone not forgotten ^

    Skull, Leslie is a stubborn bloke. I told him that also, because we need More tracker threads!!
  17. Sorry Lads I will remember that in the future

    Racer not stubborn more like stupid

  18. GreasyC

    GreasyC XS650 Addict

    Looks like this honda bearing is the right dimensions, not sure if that's the same one you mentioned leslie but it fits several models so could be.
  19. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    Yes that is the right size bearing. Just ordered mine today. Opted for the type with rubber seal rather than the plain, open sided ones.

    Made some progress the last couple of days.
    Seat is now fitted. I bought this one from vonzeti on ebay. Very nice quality and strong fibreglass. Well made, but as it's not specifically for an XS it's a bit too small, so I'll have to take the cover off and put a bit more padding on to shape it to the frame rails and close to gap to the tank. Then make a new cover.

    Fitted the tank and welded the R6 filler cap in. Will get the tank blasted with the frame before painting it.
    Also got the new tappered roller bearings for the R6 head stock last week so that went on. Both top and bottom bearings are 48x30x10, same as the stock XS bottom conversion.

    As soon as I get the new wheel bearings, I'll work out the wheel spacers and R6 brake disc adaptors.

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