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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,

I'm new on the boards. Getting into the motions of building a cafe. Not really looking for a full tear down project. Have been looking at 70's/80's japanese bike's. Looking for something running i can do a face lift on and tinker for my first one.

Have experience on a 97' 750 gsxr.
Have experience with track cars and drift cars.

Looking for recommendations on reliable bike's good for cross country stints.

Some bike's i have seen for sale include

- 79' XS 750cc SE - Runs/ recently tuned pretty but id gut it $750


Dream bike is a wide line triton. Love the brushed steel and black look. :D
 

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GS1100. Lots of potential, not as common a cafe as some others, built like a brick (kinda looks like one, too), will b e comfy on trips.

Ken
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the tip Ken, Im a little weary diving into the 1100cc bikes, I can handle the weight but there will be a fair mount of city driving. And i imagine tired night home from work stopped at a light with clip ons the heavy the more likely i may mis handle it and drop it.

Also found

1981 Suzuki GS 650G - 1300 21,000 kms looks immaculate
 

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The GS650G is a good choice, too. The G is shaft drive if that matters to you. In this instance, I don't think it would matter one way or the other. It will certainly be able to take some longer cruises without any issues and they are considerably lighter than the 1100. I would say pick whichever one will need the least amount of work.

Ken
 

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If you are going to go cross country, then you are going to want a GT bike more than a repli-race cafe bike. so no clipons, unless they are adjustable, and a more sporting upright riding position (think sport tourer).

Honestly: go buy a 1979-1982 CB750F or 900F super sport. you should be able to pick up a really clean one needing no work for $1500 in good shape. they have great early 80's superbike look to them, are super comfy with a superbike style bar, and will do 100mph all day long. If you really feel like you need to have the cafe expirence then chop the tail (basically flush the tail light and cut down the lower fender and plate mount), shave the seat, and put on an endurance racer fairing lettered to the hilt with early 80's racing graphics and contingency stickers. A set of dual hella's mounted to the front of your racing fairing will let everyone know you mean badass business.

"cafe racer" bikes are not all that gay checkers and 59 club bullshit. there is a real history here besides what the rockabilly assholes call culture.

here is some inspiration:

laverda:




honda:





 

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Get a late eighties VFR750 and slip on some more modern wheels. It's fast, comfortable and handles well.

Forget Laverda V6 racers or Honda RCB endurance race bikes from the late seventies/early eighties and look at a decade newer.

VFR is under rated as a sporting bike, but a certain W. Rainey Esq did just fine on one as did Bubba.

There are few bikes that fit that sport-touring mold better. A gentleman's express of motorcycles.
 

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quote:Originally posted by thatoreoguy


Looking for recommendations on reliable bike's good for cross country stints.
The GS's are good (the G models being shaft - which are great no mess / low maintenance bikes).

Don't rule out the Yamaha XJ's (the Secas, not the Maxims). XJ750 and XJ900 are stiil relatively cheap and bulletproof. Surprisingly quick for what they are, too.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the advice guys. I will be riding the cross country along side my friend who picked up a 2011 moto guzzi 750. Keep your suggestions coming the GT touring suggestion has got me intrigued. As i could just remove the front fairing for city driving if i still wanted a more street look.

Dual heads are sick. I think for my first project the shaft drives are probably best as im probably NOT going to be playing with gearing at all.
 

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Lets clear up some terms:

A GT bike is a bike that is the precursor to the sport tourer. It doesn't have to have a fairing but it is known as a slightly more comfortable sporting motorcycle.

An Endurance Racer is a race bike that depending on the even may be fitted with lights to be able to run at night, in the rain, etc. It usually has a fairing, and might have a slightly more comfy riding position though it is still a clipon and rearsets race bike.

to put this into comparison - a Ferrari or a Corvette is a sports car, an Aston Martin DB or a Jaguar XK is a GT car. Both are sporting but the Aston has more comforts to enable you to drive the car longer distances and use it everyday. In the new bike world a CBR1000 is a sport bike, a VFR is a GT bike (now known as a sport tourer). Int he old days you had one basic bike to do everyhting. So if you had a CB750 and wanted a cafe racer you would try to get as close to a CR750 factory race bike for the street as you could. To make the same bike a GT you would fit euro bars (what we now call superbike bars), sometimes euro pegs (honda used to sell a sport kit for the DOHC bikes, not quite racign rearsets but certainly further back than stock pegs), cut down mirrors and signals, sporting exhaust, a racing style seat with thicker padding, and better brakes and suspension. It was a fast bike you could ride all day basically.

Now, if you are going to ride cross country here are 2 solid rules:

1) set the bike up for the entire journey right from the start. If you are going to do a fairing, don't expect to be removing it unless you need to service something. You will probably need to adapt on the trip anyway, so having in your head a baseline helps.

2) keep it simple and be prepared for anything. I like fairings for cross country trips because they keep the unwanted elements like rain and snow and such from pummelling you as badly. it also keep the wind from wearing you out as fast. And it will happen. however, if you need the room, and need to service things, removing it is a PITA. So you have to make the decision early on. bringing tools to remove and install your fairing (in addition to the tools you need to carry) is not keeping it simple.

I like the idea of someone going cross country on an endurance style bike because they were meant to be raced in what ever weather happened to be for that 24 hour period. that is a useful thing to have when you are going to be riding into unknow weather situations.
 

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you know, a ZRX might not be a bad mount. Yeah they are a newer bike but patterend after the old ELR. Used ones even in NY go for around $2-3K for an 1100 with some mileage on it.
 

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grab the gs1100. then if you get bored with it, you're quite feasibly dead.

rode mine yesterday and the rapide today.

p.s. if you get bored with it, sell it to me and i'll tour your land on it one of these days. they eat miles and are comfortable and surefooted.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Ok update i have a chance to pick up a 79 yamaha 750 triple se which i realize has longer front forks and a different gas tank then id need for my project.

It runs and has 80,000kms

Thoughts?
 
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