First things first you’re gonna need a bike so where do you start? Well for me cost is an issue so I need to take in to account that whatever I buy I’m going to have to get it to my home. Best bet would be to source a bike on the local market through the newspaper or a specialised automotive trading site. In Australia, you can use the tradingpost.com.au, Bikesales.com.au or bikepoint.com.au. I’m sure every country has similar sites available and they will usually allow you to do some pretty specific searches to find a bike in your price/year range, location and even mileage. If you can afford the extra cost you may consider sourcing a bike from an overseas location (keep in mind you will have to pay import taxes). One place where you can sometimes find a great deal on a classic is Ebay, but make sure you check the seller’s history and whether they can assist you with the shipping process before you bid.
Once you have the bike or bikes your build will cover 2 areas…the engine and the body. This post will focus on sourcing body parts and accessories, I will do another one soon about engine parts soon. Accessories are what will make your bike…YOUR BIKE. The following is a list of sites that produce parts designed specifically for Cafe Racers but you don’t (of course) have to go for the ready-made stuff…part of the fun is making or modifying your own to suit your bike and your taste.
Motorstage.co.jp – Produce parts for mostly Japanese bikes such as the Kawasaki W650, Yamaha SR400/500 but also have a few to suit Buell, BMW and Triumph cycle. (translation required).
The Tank Shop – Beautifully designed and constructed alloy tanks ready-made or custom built.
Deus Ex Machina – Australian company producing ready-made racers. Lotsa style and attitude at a good price…the ex Mambo guys know how to make a good-looking, fun bike.
Ton Up Cafe – Specialising in CB750 restorations and parts as well as some great clothing and badges to make sure your look matches your bikes.
I’ve started to collect a fairly extensive list of web sites where you can source parts for just about any Cafe Racer project you may want to start. UK sites dominate the British bike market but if you look hard enough (or obsess enough) you will find quite a few European sites and a plethora of Japanese ones…