Return of the Cafe Racers - Honda CM400 Cafe Racer

Honda CM400 Cafe Racer

This year citizens of the USA are being spoilt rotten with 2 instalments of See See Motorcycles legendary One Motorcycle Show! After a hugely successful show in Portland, Oregon the One Moto Show is now heading to Austin, Texas on the 19th of April. If you’re one of the lucky sods that can make it along here’s one bike you’ll be able to get up close and personal with. It’s a custom Honda CM400 Cafe Racer built by Junior Burell of Retro Moto. Jim sent his bike through along with the build story for all of those who can’t make it the show to enjoy.

“The bike was originally an ’81 Honda CM400. I purchased it the day after my previous build was stolen. At the time it was just frame, wheels, and a locked up engine. I was able to find an ’82 450 engine with a six speed gearbox which I also purchased to go into this build.”

“Since I was building this bike for myself, I wanted to fabricate as many of the parts myself as possible. The Honda CM400 isn’t a very popular bike because of the shape of the subframe. I cured that issue by chopping it off and building a new one with a much a more aggressive look. The tank was formed by hand from steel and was inspired by old Italian race bikes.”

“I built the tail to follow the lines of the tank and the seat is wood base with padded leather inserts. I freshened up the engine and had the head ported and polished. I joined the clipons to the tacho and headlight to make them a single piece reducing clutter on the fork tubes. A couple of buddies of mine talked me into building the under-tail exhaust, and I’m glad they did. The rear sets were constructed using parts from the original oil pump and a pocket bike transmission. The bike is a blast to ride and I do so every chance I get.

 

Junior is a fabricator from Fort Worth, Texas who runs a part-time motorcycle fabrication shop called Retro Moto. It’s a single man shop which specialises in hand-forming steel tanks. Taking inspiration from old craftsman that didn’t have technology at their disposal. “I chose to build motorcycles because the options and possibilities for creativity are endless. I build with an aim to transform raw steel into art”, I’m happy to say I think he’s done a pretty good job of that with this bike.

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