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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,
Just thought I would join this forum to gain a little cafe wisdom from those who have gone before me, hopefully i can be inspired by your stories and learn from your mistakes so I dont have to make as many myself.

Motorbikes for me started with a suzuki RGV 250, after an accident on that bike i had to transplant the engine into a new frame and thats when i started working on bikes, that bike has since left and I now have an 2009 R1 it has new pipes and computer which I also installed. But a friend of mine opened my eyes up to the cafe racer scene and I have since purchased a 1980's Honda CB 250 N she started first time when I went to pick her up it was love at first site the note of the twin had me.

she is going to need new front brake reservoir which I have already purchased, rear shocks will need to be replaced, she will be getting fully stripped sand blasted and powder coated I want this bike to make peeps take a second glance.

I haven't navigated my way around the site yet but I'm eager to do so because i want to see if anyone has used modern front forks on the CB to find out what is compatible.

once I start stripping this bike down Ill post a few progress shots hopefully a few of you out there can shout out any tips along the way until then take it easy

phill
 

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Welcome Phill. Start a build thread, with picts, and let us try to help you BEFORE you start changing the bike. Some of the very things that bring you to the interest actually make the bike worse. You'll have a more successful bike and a less combative time here if you give us a chance to tell you why you don't want to grind off the air box tabs before you grind off the air box tabs... for example
 

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I recently gained some cafe wisdom that I can bestow upon you. A cappucino actually includes half steamed milk and half froth whilst a latte uses no froth, just steamed milk. Bam.
 

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And an Americano is hot water and espresso where water is added to the espresso (coffee on the bottom), A Long Black is when you ad a shot of espresso to hot water (coffee on the top). Believe it or not there is a difference in the taste.


Listening to people tell me how they fell in love with a 250cc commuter bike after they already bought the stupid sacre your underwear brown sport bike is like listening to people be nostalgic about print magazine porn.
 

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here is the stupid question....if your friend "opened" your eyes to vintage performance motorcycles (I just flat refuse to call them cafe racers anymore since that term just means a chopper that doesn't look like one) why didn't you buy a triumph or a norton or you know....a real motorcycle? Why did you buy a 1980's starter bike styled to look like a big fuck off superbike?

if this is what you think the cafe racer scene is....



...then go punch yourself hard in the balls for being a douchebag.
 

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Oh come on guys, he didn't know that he's being set up for frustration and failure by the commercial world that is trying to sell him club mans and pod filters. He hadn't been here long enough to know the faux pas of evoking the word "scene" in the first subject line no less. Give him a chance to learn. If he resist, then release the hounds.
 

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+1

and the site's name here ( caféracer.net ) baits the kids into thinking they are joining a site that supports the "cafe racer scene"

when is the site name changing to vintageperformance.com or classicracebikes.com or whateverthefook.com ?
 

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I drink tea some times, just to show my individuality
 

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If I ever have starbucks, the nearest one is 250 miles away in Fairbanks, I have a hot green tea. That is how I roll!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Bro if your frustrated because your mother only teased you with the nipple instead of breast feeding you as a child that's cool and I'm sure there is an online group therapy session you could join to alleviate some of that pent up aggression you seem to be harboring inside, perhaps instead of drinking tea you should try a decaffeinated alternative. that said bring on the banter in answer to your question why i didn't acquire a Triumph or a Norton is because I'm still waiting for it to rain money in my hood unfortunately the only forecast I have had for the last few weeks have be high 30's with a strong southerly and no chance of money.
If I wanted to go fast I would hop onto my other bike but I wanted a bike that i could enjoy building that I could just cruise on I guess we've all got to start somewhere and the CB 250 N is what i got it cant a wont ever look like a sports bike insert ancient Chinese proverb wise man say you can only piss out of the dick you have.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
thanks Pluto I will definitely follow your advice and post some pictures of the bike Ive only removed the seat so far just to imagine the lines the seat will take before beginning to dismantle the bike. ill post he pick so all and sundry can add in their 2 cents even my good friend Geeto67
 

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A) we are not a serious bunch here, we take the piss quite often. If you take yourself too seriously to get that this may not be the place for you.

B) you bought the wrong bike and you are in the wrong hobby if a all you want is cruse around a two miles an hour so everybody sees you. You should be building a chopper.

C) in the us we only got the Honda hawk whic was the 400cc version of your 250cc super dream. Type Honda hawk into the search bar here and sur back and read. You'll get it after you've read the 3rd or 4th failure with that bike that you are that guy. A slower smaller version of the Honda hawk? No thanks I would rather have herpes. But then again you are Australian, so you probably have that as well.
 

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B) you bought the wrong bike and you are in the wrong hobby if a all you want is cruse around a two miles an hour so everybody sees you. You should be building a chopper.
This. Cafe racers are for going fast. Not fast by modern standards but fast enough to be thrilling. They are about optimizing the package to go as fast as possible within the constraints imposed. Choppers are for posing and trying to look cool. Build yourself a chopper (or brat or tracker or whatever sub-genre du jour tickles your fancy) if you just want something to cruise on and earn scene points from other hipster douchebags.
 

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I get the whole "I gots what I gots and I am going to make it more like what I wants." Pinned to the top of the New Members Read Here! forum is a great meditation on what everyone is told to do to their bikes to make them cool and how it really screws the bike up. In short, three things top the list of performance detractors; Clubmans/clipons, pod air filters, and cutting the rear off of the frame. When you understand why these things screw up your bike then you will have a better riding experience.
 

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What would Butthead say? "Uhhhh, huh huh... he said 'scene' huh huh huh!"

Can you FEEL the love in this room? I can feel it... it's so warm and gushy. :)
 

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It is always about the LOOK. I have been building spoecials including cafe racers since the sixties and trust me, it's about the look. For sure I ported and rebored and fitted different carbs and pipes etc to improve performance and tried to improve the chassis, but did my 57 T100 need a 5 gallon Manx style tank or bum stop seat or sweptback pipes? Of course not. But that sure as heck made it a way cooler bike in a style that appealed to me. It looked as close as I could reasonably get to the race bikes of the time.

We all started with what we had and I don't remember too many people going out to buy a Norton twin because it was a better place to start from. My first bike was a very mild Francis Barnett designed to be a commuter bike - not much faster than my bicycle in fact. It had a villiers engine in it, crap forks, garbage frame and brakes that didn't. But it was cheap and what I had. After a lot of weight was removed, I ported it and fitted an expansion chamber and tried to improve the appearance to make it look more like a "real bike".

CB250/400 were cheap fun transport and are eminently suitable to make into a light fun cafe race styled bike. I personally hate the flat seat Brat style which is not cafe racer, but takes its style clues from stock standard cheap British commuter bikes that we were changing into cafe racers.

With a Superdream, probably the best look is a mini Freddie look that builds on the style that it came with. To make one of those look "right" it really needs a whole new rear subframe and that's a lot of work and engineering.

Have fun and stay safe
 
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