Hi Justin, have you ever ridden a bike?
This is a discussion on Newbie from South Africa - Introducing myself within the NEW MEMBERS READ HERE! forums, part of the Caferacer.net Forums category; Hi all, My name is Justin and I am from South Africa, and i am a complete and utter noob. I am interested in starting ...
My name is Justin and I am from South Africa, and i am a complete and utter noob. I am interested in starting a Cafe Racer project, as i love the idea of taking a bike and making it something completely unique and special to yourself.
Reading through the forum, I look forward to getting advice from the experienced guys out there, as i am going to need all the help i can get. And in advance, thank you for your time and effort in assisting me.
My ideas for my Cafe Racer were the following:
1. Decide on a bike - the bikes that i have on my list are : Yamaha XJ650, Kawasaki Z650 and a Honda CX500 - Would these be a good place to start?
2. Begin the search for the selected bike - My plan is to look for a bike that is already in running condition
3. This might need to be step 2 - learn all i can about the selected bike, history, pros/cons, get an owners manual for the bike
4. Get to know the bike and start thinking of designs - from all the images i have seen of Cafe Racers - i seem to like the more simplistic/functional designs
5. Start making small changes towards my design
6. In between the above seek advice and criticism from the forum.
My plan is not to use the bike as a daily runner, but a weekend bike. I would like something functional though.
Any thoughts and advice you can give me upfront would be greatly appreciated - on bikes to consider, pitfalls, and possibly things that I have not taken into consideration.
Last edited by gnome3; 01-10-2017 at 04:18 AM.
Gday Justin. Starting with a plan instead of jumping in. Good idea. You'll find the majority here are function way over form and thats a good thing. Woodsmans question is a very good one. Your ridding experience is a big factor to look at for your bike choice. If your starting at zero then something that can handle being dropped and mildly abused is where to look. Starting with something running is the way to go for sure. The more $$$ you put out up front usually saves you ALLOT later on so don't cheap out and go for the "deal" that just needs a little work. Welcome to CR.
If you can't pick it back up, don't ride it.
Buying a bike in "running condition" is a very vague statement. On the other hand, buying a bike that is in rideable condition says alot more.
Just because a bike "runs" doesn't make it suitable for you especially since you started your post by saying that you are a complete and utter noob.
So assuming that statement is correct and you may not have much riding experience I would suggest you take your time looking for a bike that you
can ride. Meaning it is complete and all systems are functional. Cosmetics are not the main issue. Safe operation is. You may spend a little more
money up front but you could save alot more in the long run.
How much is 18,000 R in Pretoria coin? is that a lot?
If I lived in Pretoria and was wanting to buy my first ever motorcycle I know where I would be putting my Rand and it wouldn't be into any of those old bone project bikes on your list it would be into this puppy:
... and if it checks out and isn't already gone I have a feeling you better not be slow to move on it guy says it runs good.
That's a 350 pound full fairing 4 cylinder modern frame and suspension motorcycle with real brakes right there!
Last edited by TrialsRider; 01-10-2017 at 06:34 PM.
I guess the first thing you want to do is work out what you want to achieve with your bike - I mean, if you want something to just putt around on with a Davida and feel like you're "back in the day" then a dressed up CX would probably be OK.
But if you wanted a bike that was more of a racer and made the hair on the back of your neck stand up then you want to look at something more performance orientated than an anaemic CX to start with.
If the latter is the case then go to some local vintage race meets and see what people are racing around the circuits - that will give you an idea of what has race potential and probably a better aftermarket for parts / support.
Those little FZR's are great. Rev to the moon and pretty nimble.
Not so good if you're over 6' though....
Hi all, thanks so much for all the replies, and advice, greatly appreciated.
To answer a few of the questions out there, yes, I have ridden a bike, but by no means a seasoned rider. It has been years since I have been in the saddle - hoping to change that soon.
Yeah, running condition was a bit vague, I did mean in rideable condition, so it might just need a good service, and then cosmetics would be the main issue.
I wanted something with a little power, so in the 650cc range.
I'm a Yamaha fan, so I have kinda ruled out the Honda CX, and the Kawasaki Z650.
My budget unfortunately is not all that great for the initial purchase, I'm looking at something in the R10000 range.
If you could maybe offer some advice on the Yamaha XJ 650/750, that would be greatly appreciated, as I have my eye on that one, as I think with a few small changes it could be a stunner.
Last edited by gnome3; 01-11-2017 at 01:11 PM.