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Cafe Racer with a twist

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

  1. pabon customs

    pabon customs XS650 Enthusiast

    nice find ,that kind of tanks are the most difficult to find at least here in P.R. ,it took me 2 months to find a tank in good conditions.i really love the bike looks so far
  2. Hackett Classic

    Hackett Classic XS650 Racefurler

    I like the tank,nice work
  3. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    Progress has been slower than I’d like, but managed a few hours on the bike again yesterday to remake the lower shock mounts on the Radian swing arm.
    I finally worked out a suitable shock to suit what I wanted, after a bit of research on IKON shocks. Hava look at the link, it's very good for shock sizes and fitting details.

    Not yet ordered any fancy Hagon or Ohlins until I’m completely happy with the way the bike sits when it’s complete.
    Just got some straight forward replacements which are designed for a Kawasaki Z1300 1979 – 83 or Suzuki GS650 Katana 1981 – 86.
    The top and bottom eyes are the same as XS650, the eye to eye length fully extended is 367mm, which is what I worked out would be good for clearance and ride comfort.
    If it all works out good, I can just get an off the shelf unit now, but adjust them to suit. And it’ll work out cheaper than a complete custom made shock. :thumbsup:

    Since the Radian arm is wider, the mounts are spread further apart and the shocks would be angled.
    I made copies of the existing mounting brackets, worked out the centre lines and transferred the measurements of the original 650 arm onto the Radian arm.
    Now the shocks are nice and straight. :bike:

    Next is the caliper tie rod mount and then the whole lot can go off for soda blasting.


    Attached Files:

  4. can you post pics of how you mounted the seat?
  5. racerdave

    racerdave ^ Gone not forgotten ^

    Frank, I will be doing the Radian arm swap also. Did you keep the new swingarm shock mounts on the Radian arm the same distance from the swingarm pivot point, as they were on the XS arm?
  6. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    I bought my seat from VonZeti, which is a company based in Devon/UK.
    It’s of very good quality and came with 4 studs already bonded into the fibre glass.
    I turned up some extension pedestals and welded 2 braced across the seat base of the frame onto which the seat now bolts to.
    My ignition and battery are also located under the seat.

    Attached Files:

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  7. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    Hi Dave,
    I welded the new shock brackets in the same position as the original radian mounts, which means they are now approx. 18mm (11/16â€) further back from the swing arm pivot as on a XS650 arm.
    I know this has also increase the angle at which my rear shocks are now mounted and is even further away from the ideal upright position, but I didn’t want to alter the position and increase the stress on the rear of the Radian arm. Don’t know if that would make a huge difference, but in theory if the distance from the shock mount to the axle centre line is increased, the leverage/stress is increased.

  8. racerdave

    racerdave ^ Gone not forgotten ^

    Frank, anything new? A pic from the side with rear tire on ?
  9. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    I’ve been quite busy with work on the house and other stuff, but progress on the bike is slowly being made.
    Haven’t even been on here much to snoop on other projects so loads to catch up soon.

    Started fitting up the frame and have most of the front end together now.
    I’m still modifying bits as I go along, but have my goal of outing the bike at Easter firmly in my sight.

    Sorry about the grainy picture, only took it with my phone and it was late last night.
    I’m sure you get the idea.

    Will start on the wiring loom next.
    The tank and seat unit are being sprayed this week, but I won’t show them until the bike is done. It’ll be a little surprise. Both will be the last things to be fitted.

    Dave, I can’t yet mount the rear wheel, as I’ve not got a rear tyre. It’s still got to make its way across the pond.
    I buy large and performance parts, which are expensive over here in Europe, direct from the States.
    A friend of mine lives in Stanton, CA and he ships cars and vans, so I always have something coming over in the trunk.
    I got nearly half my Beetle Drag car build this way, with roll cage, seats, slicks, engine block etc.
    If I’m not in a rush to get the part and can wait, it’s worth it to save a few bucks.
    Aside from the rear tyre, I’m also waiting for a small battery to fit under the seat for the bike.

    Cheers Frank

    Attached Files:

  10. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    Not much else has happpend on the bike itself. I've got the wiring loom done.
    Still waiting for the rear tyre, but keeping myself busy with other projects :doh:

    I'm aiming to get it out for Easter, which shouldn't be a problem. I'll either take it to Surrey Street Rodders Wheels Day or a local bike show. Just depends on the weather.

    However, got a picture from my sprayer last night. The tank and seat are nearly done. Just some flattening, signage and laquer.. then some more flattening and laquer.
    Ooh I love freshly painted things, gets me exited every time.


    Attached Files:

  11. JP50515

    JP50515 XS650 Junkie

    Very nice. That doesn't look like your first time painting something ha
  12. Frank,
    Nice blue is it metallic.

  13. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    No credit to me. The paint is done by my buddy who owns a bodyshop. We used to work together in a car restoration workshop.
    When it folded years ago, he set up on his own and has always done my cars and bikes.

    All the colours are the same shades as my old 5EB R6 was. Yamaha blue metallic, brilliant white and light and dark grey for the pinstriping.

  14. XSFrank

    XSFrank XS650 Enthusiast

    I know it's been an eternity since I posted any updates, but as it with all best laid plans, they don't always work out.
    I left work and set up my own company last year so have been busy and not much time to crack on with things.
    The Easter 2013 dead line I set myself back at the end of 2012 expired pretty soon, but hey, one year later the bike is now (nearly) done.
    Apart from some minor finishing off, like changing the carb needles and painting the downpipes, I took it for it's first ride this weekend and everything works as I envisioned it. :D
    I've booked it in for it's MoT on Tuesday afternoon and then in the evening I'll take it to our weekly bike night at Poole Quay. :bike:
    I know it's not a fully spankling show bike, but I wanted it reliable and usable as a sunshine ride and not spent hours polishing it, every time I take it out.
    As you can see, it's full of bits of my old R6, even down to the exhaust can, which I actually just cut in half to get right for the bike.
    I would have liked to build a completely new bigger engine with all the usual mods in true "Cafe" style, but since the original one has only done 13,500 miles and works absolutely perfect, I've just left it for now.
    Also the money is better spend on my other projects. I've got my eye on another bike to build another more traditional racer, so will have to see how it goes.


    Attached Files:

  15. bornleader

    bornleader XS650 Enthusiast

    Very nice, I like the mods you have have done, good one!
  16. timbeck

    timbeck XS650 Junkie XS650.com Supporter

    Great detail work Frank, you should be very proud. tim
  17. shawn00sa

    shawn00sa XS650 Addict

    Good looking bike.
  18. SpongeBobbed

    SpongeBobbed 650 Simpleton

    Love it! I'm sorry if you've already mentioned it, but where are you hiding your battery at?
  19. Trex

    Trex XS650 Addict

    That's purty right there! Nice job!
  20. azman857

    azman857 '80 XS 650SG Rider XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    If it runs 1/2 as good as it looks, it's gotta leave the road smoken where it rolled! Great bike!

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