Posts tagged as: herm narciso

Cafe Racer TV Video Pick of The Week – Herm Narciso from Dime City Cycles makes a fiberglass Cafe seat!

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Cafe Racer Season 2 Builder Recap

Due to the foundation of “cafe culture” being established by the building of low budget speed machines with whatever the gents who were turning wrenches had access to the available talent for custom builders is both varied and vast. In season 2 of Cafe Racer TV you’ll see some familiar faces along with some new ones, some of which are responsible for the original cafe movement that took place in London. Take some time and research these guys, look at their websites, check their facebooks pages. They do what do for you, and for the love of the machine and each and every one deserves a bit of your time. We’ve got a stellar cast lined up for you this season folks, we hope you enjoy it! Go Go Cafe Racer!

British Customs

British Customs began with a vision to manufacture quality bolt-on parts that even a novice rider could install and use. With just a few thousand dollars to start, British Customs has grown from an out-of-the-garage home business into the leading manufacturer of aftermarket parts and accessories for Triumph Motorcycles. The initial focus was to improve overall performance starting with air boxes and exhaust pipes, but owner Jason Panther quickly saw the need for styling and designing quality products to specifically match the fit and finish of the Triumph Motorcycle line. With more than 18 years of experience in the industry, British Customs is the expert source and one-stop-shop for all things Triumph.  Their mission is to provide quality, simple to install bolt-on parts while improving a bike’s appearance, handling and performance a perfect segway for the next generation of Cafe Racers!

Bike Specifications: 2011 Triumph Thruxton

Frame: Stock
Subrame: N/A
Engine: Stock
Carburetion or FI System: EFI
Rear Swing Arm: Stock
Rear Wheel (Size): 17”
Front Wheel (Size): 18”
Steering Stabilizer: N/A
Rear Shock(s): Hagon Nitros
Clip-Ons or Bars: LSL Clip-ons w/ British Customs Triple Tree
Seat: Stock
Tank: Stock
Rear Sets: Stock
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: N/A
Tires (Sizes): 130/70-18 Front, 170/55-17 Rear (British Customs Wide Tire Kit)
Exhaust: British Customs 2-into-1
Paint: White Pearl w/ Gold Hue and Silver Accent Striping

British Customs featured in Episodes – 11, 12 & 13

- Original Airs: 10/5, 10/12 & 10/19 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
18426 South Broadway
Gardena, CA 90248
Phone: (877) 999-2748
Email: sean@british-customs.com
Website: www.british-customs.com

Bryan Fuller – Fuller Hotrods

Bryan Fuller is no stranger to cutting things up and making them gleem. Having worked with Chip Foose on a series of one-week custom builds for the TV series “Overhaulin” is no easy feat for any man! In addition to cutting and grinding with the best of them Bryan has also been a co-host for SPEED’s “Two Guys Garage” which is the oldest how-to automotive TV show currently on the air. Combine those elements with the mind to bend metal and chase speed and his talented crew and you’ve got a formula for one heck of a Cafe Racer!

Bike Specifications: Honda CB750

Frame: Modified stock, Fuller Rear Section
Subrame: N/A
Engine: 1969 CB750 w/ 836 Kit
Carburetion or FI System: CR
Rear Swing Arm: Custom Fuller, Retains Engine Oil
Rear Wheel (Size): 5.50-18”
Front Wheel (Size): 3.50-18”
Steering Stabilizer: N/A
Rear Shock(s): Fox
Clip-Ons or Bars: Custom, Fuller w/ Beringer Controls
Seat: Custom Aluminum Fuller
Tank: 1969 CB750 Modified stock, Fuller Custom
Rear Sets: Custom Fuller
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: N/A
Tires (Sizes): 110/80-19 Front, 180/55-18 Rear
Exhaust: Custom Fuller w/ Cone Engineering Mufflers
Paint: JDK w/ Stripping by Papa Studios, Plating & Polishing by Pro Plating Atlanta

Bryan Fuller featured in Episodes – 1, 2 & 3

- Original Airs: 8/3, 8/3 & 8/10 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
250 Arizona NE
Atlanta, GA 30307
Phone: (310) 704-3855
Email: bryan@fullerhotrods.com
Website: www.fullerhotrods.com

Classic Bike Experience

A bunch of guys who like to work on old British bikes (and yes, occasionally some other stuff).  Their group includes many former Brit bike mechanics, racers and aerospace engineers.  They started as a small club operating out of a heated garage, dubbed “The Classic Bike Cooperative”.  And cooperate they did, to the point where we outgrew the space!  And now, their favorite parts supplier in NH has decided to do more retirement related activities.  So, after purchasing his inventory and a move into their new location in Essex Junction VT they open for business turning out some the most classic cafe iron running the streets.

Bike Specifications: Norton Commando

Frame: Norton Commando
Subrame: Stock Norton Isolastic
Engine: 750 Norton Commando
Carburetion or FI System: Mikuni 2 into 1 -  34mm
Rear Swing Arm: Stock
Rear Wheel (Size): 19”
Front Wheel (Size): 19”
Steering Stabilizer: N/A
Rear Shock(s): Stock
Clip-Ons or Bars: Norman Hyde “M” bars
Seat: Corbin Gunfighter
Tank: Commando Roadster
Rear Sets: N/A
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: N/A
Tires (Sizes): Avon 19”
Exhaust: Pattern Dunstall
Paint: Custom

Classic Bike Experience featured in Episodes – 14, 15 & 16

- Original Airs: 10/26, 11/2 & 11/9 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
104 Center Rd. 05452
Essex, VT
Phone: (802) 310-878-6961
Email: jack@classicbikeexperience.com
Website: www.classicbikeexperience.com

Greg “Doc’s Chops” Hageman

Back for another season of Cafe Racer, Greg Hageman is still bless for an eye for finding “Pickers” quality treasure among trash-heaps, transforming old and forgotten, Japanese commuter bikes from the 1970s into stunning café racers. Greg’s specialty is everything from Yamaha’s XS 650 and shaft-driven XS 750 to Honda’s CX 500 transverse twin as you all know, but this year he’s taken on something new, a Yamaha Virago. Hageman hasn’t let us down yet, but lets be honest people, this is a Yamaha Virago one of the ugliest motorcycles every produced. Greg’s gonna have his work cut out for him so stay tuned and you be the judge!

Bike Specifications: Yamaha Virago 750

Frame: Stock
Subrame: Handbuilt
Engine: 750cc
Carburetion or FI System: Dynojet Carburetion
Rear Swing Arm: Stock
Rear Wheel (Size): 15 x 3″
Front Wheel (Size): 18 x 3″
Steering Stabilizer: N/A
Rear Shock(s): Showa
Clip-Ons or Bars: Tarozzi
Seat: Moto Lanna
Tank: Benelli Original NOS
Rear Sets: Tarozzi
Radiator: Stock
Fairings: N/A
Tires (Sizes): Front 120/90-18, Rear 140/90-15
Exhaust: Jardine
Paint: Custom by Kenny Chains

Greg Hageman featured in Episodes – 15, & 16

- Original Airs: 11/2, 11/9 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
Email: docschops@yahoo.com
Website: www.docschops.net

Dave Degens – Dresda Triumph & Triton Tuning

Dave Degens, while he didn’t build a specific bike for Cafe Racer TV Season 2 deserves mention amongst our fantastic list of builders. Why? Because along with folks like Mark Wilsmore of The Ace Cafe, Degens helped pioneer “Cafe Racer Culture” and has been instrumental in its furtherment around the globe. In Daves’ words- “The whole idea was a racer you could use on the road, or the nearest you could get to it.” And was he ever right… Famous around the globe for tuning Triumphs and his most famous game-changing production bike, “The Triton” the youth of cafe culture owes a great debt to Degens. Here’s a sampling of what Dave likes to do in his later years, custom one-off purpose built machines. In this case, a rare Rudge. If you’re going to watch any of the features in Cafe Racer TV, this is the one!

Dave Degens featured in Episode – 1

- Original Airs: 8/3 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
Howells, Friday Street
Rusper, West Sussex RH12 4QA
Phone: (011) 44 1293 871 887
Email: dave@dresda.co.uk
Website: www.dresda.co.uk

Dime City Cycles

Back for another season, the boys in red at Dime City Cycles have arguable become the go to guys for vintage Honda parts. In addition to their access to hard to find Honda items, they’ve also managed to amass and build what may be the largest source of universal cafe racer parts on the web.  Loaded with high quality product images and witty product descriptions it’s confirmed, these boys love to have when it comes to work.  So whether you’re building a vintage Honda or Yamaha or even a modern Triumph they’ve got it all! In addition, they also turn out some of the coolest Honda Cafe Racers pounding the pavement.

Bike Specifications: Honda CB400F Super Sport “The Four Hundred”

Frame: Modified stock chromoly track frame
Subrame: N/A
Engine: Yoshimura 466cc CB400F
Carburetion or FI System: CR Race on big-bore carburetors
Rear Swing Arm: Modified stock chromoly track swingarm
Rear Wheel (Size): 18” Aluminum shouldered
Front Wheel (Size): 18” Aluminum shouldered
Steering Stabilizer: Custom valved hydraulic
Rear Shock(s): Progressive
Clip-Ons or Bars: Tarozzi
Seat: Handbuilt fiberglass
Tank: Replica fiberglass Ducati GP
Rear Sets: DCC/Loaded Gun
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: Customized replica Ducati GP
Tires (Sizes): 120 Metzler rear and 110 Metzler front
Exhaust: Custom DCC/MAC stainless steel & ceramic coated
Paint: Custom by Tribby, Pin Striping by Liza aka: Von Dutch’s Daughter

Dime City Cycles featured in Episodes – 7, 8, 13, 14 & 15

- Original Airs: 9/7, 9/14, 10/19, 10/26 & 11/02 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
2025 Lake Ave. SE, Unit C
Largo, FL 33771
Phone: (727) 386-9735
Email: thecrew@dimecitycycles.com
Website: www.dimecitycycles.com

Framecrafters

Framecrafters is a performance motorcycle fabrication shop located in northwest Illinois. Originally a design and fabrication shop for chassis only, Framecrafters has methodically expanded their focus to the entire motorcycle. While still specializing in frame and associated parts fabrication, Framecrafters also offers their expertise of building, converting, and restoring motorcycles to their customers. Randy, Justin, and Karsten are life long motorcycle enthusiasts who ride and race. Street, trail, track, each type is viewed by Framecrafters as an important part of motorcycling that should be fun and exhilarating. From building a ground up racer to resuscitating your old street bike, Framecrafters is up to the task and a solid member of the Café Racer team!

Bike Specifications: Framecrafters Custom YZ450F

Frame: Custom, Bi-Metallic
Subrame: Custom, Solo Aluminum
Engine: 06’-09’ Yamaha YZ450F
Carburetion or FI System: 42MM Keihin
Rear Swing Arm: 06’-09’ Yamaha YZ450F
Rear Wheel (Size): Galespeed Aluminum 5” x 17”
Front Wheel (Size): Galespeed Aluminum 3.5” x 17”
Steering Stabilizer: 100MM Shindy
Rear Shock(s): RaceTech G3-S w/ FC Linkage
Clip-Ons or Bars: Vortex
Seat: Battle Factory Honda RS250 Fiberglass
Tank: Custom, Aluminum
Rear Sets: Battle Factory Honda RS250
Radiator: Custom, 06’-09’ Yamaha YZ450F
Fairings: Battle Factory Honda RS250 Fiberglass
Tires (Sizes): 120/70-17 Dunlop KR106 Front, 165/55-17 Rear
Exhaust: Custom Stainless Steel
Paint: N/A

Framecrafters featured in Episodes – 10, 11 & 12

- Original Airs: 09/28, 10/05 & 10/12 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
Email: randy@framecrafters.net
Website: www.framecrafters.net

Yoshi Kosaka – Garage Co & Jay LaRossa – Lossa Engineering

Lossa Engineering and Garage Company have teamed up to build one of the baddest RD’s out there.  By far one of the fastest and most popular 2 strokes from the 70′s, the RD 350/400′s were the bike of choice for those looking for white knuckles.  Jay and Yoshi wanted to build a purpose built vintage race bike and still make it street-able.  No modern stuff here folks, just parts and style straight from the 70′s.  Yoshi rebuilt the RD350 motor and hand made the 2 stroke exhaust from flat steel while Lossa built the tail from a old SR500 gas tank and stretched n lowered the Dayton Special gas tank.  The Lossa team also de tabbed the frame, made the seat hoop and reinforced the whole frame.  Garage Co. supplied the rare Yamaha TZ front end with clip ons and a flanged hoop.

Bike Specifications: Yamaha RD400

Frame: Stock
Subrame: Stock
Engine: Rebuilt, RD350
Carburetion or FI System: Dual Mikuni
Rear Swing Arm: Custom Aluminum, Lossa
Rear Wheel (Size): 18”
Front Wheel (Size): 18”
Steering Stabilizer: Kawasaki H1
Rear Shock(s): Hagon
Clip-Ons or Bars: Vintage
Seat: Custom Steel, Lossa (From SR500 Fuel Tank)
Tank: Custom RD400 Daytona Special, Lossa (Stretched 2-1/2” and Lowered 1”)
Rear Sets: Loaded Gun
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: N/A
Tires (Sizes): Dunlop
Exhaust: Custom, Yoshi
Paint: House of Kolor Black Gold w/ Chrome Yellow & White Striping

Yoshi & Jay featured in Episodes – 14 & 15

- Original Airs: 11/03 & 11/10 @ 8:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info: (Jay)
2659 Junipero Ave
Signal Hill, CA 90755
Phone: (562) 899-8389
Email: info@lossaengineering.com
Website: www.lossaengineering.com

Contact info: (Yoshi)
956 W. Hyde Park Blvd.
Inglewood, CA 90302
Phone: (800) 393-3766
Email: yoshi@garagecompany.com
Website: www.garagecompany.com

Joker Machine

With roots in aviation product design Joker Machine holds itself to the absolute highest level of standards in the industry. Begining under the name C&W the Joker emblem was scrawled on a hand-full of custom parts produced for their first v-twin project and it was an instant success! Thus, the name was changed to Joker Machine. With a list of distributors of their over 700, manufactured in-house skus, like Drag Specialties and Parts Unlimited it’s no surprise that the brand and company took off with great success. As they’ve developed their brand and parts list they’ve produced quite and offering for the Honda CB750 which is arguable, the most iconic Japanese Cafe Racer ever built.

Bike Specifications: 1975 Honda CB750 SOHC

Frame: Stock
Subrame: N/A
Engine: Stock CB750 SOHC
Carburetion or FI System: Stock Keihin Carburetors
Rear Swing Arm: Stock
Rear Wheel (Size): 18” Aluminum Excell
Front Wheel (Size): 19” Aluminum Excell
Steering Stabilizer: N/A
Rear Shock(s): Hagon
Clip-Ons or Bars: Flanders (Triple tree & controls by Joker Machine)
Seat: Classic City Cycles
Tank: Stock Honda CB750
Rear Sets: Joker Machine
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: Customized replica Ducati GP
Tires (Sizes): Bridgestone Battleax 19” Front, 18” Reart
Exhaust: MAC 4-into-1
Paint & Powdercoat: Corsair Powdercoating & Specialized Coatings

Joker Machine featured in Episodes – 7, 8 & 9

- Original Airs: 9/7, 9/14 & 9/21 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
1931 Yeager Ave.
La Verne, CA 91750
Phone: (909) 596-9690
Email: rpw@jokermachine.com
Website: www.jokermachine.com

Morrie’s Place

With an eye for the original, the team at Morrie’s Place found a gem in a Norton Chopper and along with the rest of their classic custom works, have created a stunning original representation of what the chopped up, raked out metal sled resembled in it’s hay-day. With a major basis of their business being resurrecting English iron, they have the tools, knowledge and experience to revive even the most forgotten of motorcycles!

Bike Specifications: 1948 Norton

Frame: Garden Gate Norton Plunger
Subrame: N/A
Engine: 1948 Norton 500cc OHC International Single Cylinder
Carburetion or FI System: Amal TT10
Rear Swing Arm: Stock
Rear Wheel (Size): 20”
Front Wheel (Size): 21”
Steering Stabilizer: Friction Knob Damper
Rear Shock(s): N/A
Clip-Ons or Bars: Clubmans
Seat: British Solo
Tank: 1947 Norton Manx
Rear Sets: N/A
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: N/A
Tires (Sizes): 3.50×20 Rear, 3.25×21 Front
Exhaust: Straight Pipe w/ Megaphone
Paint & Powdercoat: Period Correct Two-Tonw White and Black

Morrie’s Place featured in Episode – 12

- Original Airs: 10/12 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

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Contact info:
5410 Austin Ct.
Ringwood, IL 60072
Phone: (815) 653-7000
Email: morriesplc@aol.com
Website: www.morriesplacecycles.com


Kenny Cummings – NYC Norton

Kenny Cummings is a four-time AHRMA National Champion racer, who campaigns a Seeley Norton Commando and a Manx Norton throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. After many years of building and perfecting his own racing bikes, he has put his skills toward building and tuning bikes for others who want a high level of performance from their classics. Based in NYC, he quietly opened his shop, NYC Norton, to a few select customers last year and was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm. On the lifts currently are several racing bikes in various states of completion, including a couple that will be campaigned by world-class racers at this year’s Barber Vintage Celebration, as well as a handful of high-performance street bikes.

Bike Specifications: Custom Norton Commando

Frame: Seeley MK2, fabricated by Roger Titschmarsh and imported from Minnovation Racing in the UK
Subrame: N/A
Engine: Highly modified Norton Commando 750cc
Carburetion or FI System: Amal MK2 36mm
Rear Swing Arm: Seeley
Rear Wheel (Size): 18″ Flanged Alloy w/Dunlop KR164
Front Wheel (Size): 18″ Flanged Alloy w/Dunlop KR825
Steering Stabilizer: Ohlins Damper
Rear Shock(s): Works Performance Lightweight Alloy Trackers
Clip-Ons or Bars: Minnovation
Seat: Seeley MK2
Tank: Seeley Short Circuit
Rear Sets: Barleycorn Engineering
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: Kirby w/ Belly-pan
Tires (Sizes): KR164 = 130/70, KR825 = 80/80
Exhaust: Steve Maney Racing
Paint & Powdercoat: None – Bare frame exposing absolute TIG-brazing

Spannerland featured in Episode – 11

- Original Airs: 10/5 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
Email: nycnorton@gmail.com

Santiago Choppers

Hailing from France, Alain Bernard is most often found with a hammer in his hand and Elvis playing on the background. Fortunately, for both the hammer and Elvis, he brings them both into the best possible light. An artist who combines the best of all marques, Alain Bernard created a stunning KZ1000 in Season One and is back with his Norley a hybrid Norton Featherbed Frame powered by a Sportster Engine. The crew of Santiago Choppers always delivers with a punch and this season is no exception!

Bike Specifications: 2011 Norley

Frame: JW Motorcycle/Santiago Chopper -
Subrame: N/A
Engine: 74ci Harley Davidson Sportster
Carburetion or FI System: CR
Rear Swing Arm: Norley
Rear Wheel (Size): 17” Norley
Front Wheel (Size): 17” Norley
Steering Stabilizer: N/A
Rear Shock(s): Norley
Clip-Ons or Bars: Ducati Frontend & Tripple Trees w/ Votex Clip-ons
Seat: Norley
Tank: Norley
Rear Sets: Storz
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: None
Tires (Sizes): 17×3.5” Front & Rear
Exhaust: Norley
Paint & Powdercoat: Paint by Craig

Santiago Choppers featured in Episodes – 9, 10 and 11

- Original Airs: 9/21, 9/28 and 10/05 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
6102 Adamo Dr. E
Tampa, FL 33619
Phone: (813) 677-1676
Email: santiagochopper@aol.com
Website: www.santiagochopper.com

Contact info:
Wynne Pendraig
JW Motorcycles
Email: jwmotorcycles@gmail.com
Website: www.the-norley.com

Tim Harney

With a spotty driving record, an almost unusable and impractical education for industrial design (since the US economic downturn) and a desire to go fast, Tim Harney has forged a path as one of the most unique up and coming custom bike builders. With a great emphasis on classic cafe culture, chopping what you have and keeping things on the the leanest of budgets, Tim has managed to produce some fast, flashy and now, reliable Cafe Racers to run around the streets of Brooklyn on. Paying his bills by producing custom metal furniture from his boutique in NYC, Brooklyn Design House, he candidly stated – “Metal is metal, it’s all the same.” And how right he is, folks. Tim is the epitome of cafe spirit, a down and dirty, get it done and have a fun time while doing it stand-up guy and we’re confident you’ll enjoy his spot in Season 2. Just watch out for the smoke cloud!

Bike Specifications: 2011 Harney Bro’s Special

Frame: 1997 GSXR1100
Subrame: Ducati Bi-Posto
Engine: 1987 Suzuki LT250R w/ 6 Speed Transmission
Carburetion or FI System: Carburetion
Rear Swing Arm: Honda Hawk GT
Rear Wheel (Size): 17″
Front Wheel (Size): 17″
Steering Stabilizer: N/A
Rear Shock(s): Fox Double-clicker Honda Hawk
Clip-Ons or Bars: Triumph 675
Seat: Ducati Bi-Posto
Tank: GSXR750
Rear Sets: 2006 Kawasaki, ZX10R
Radiator: Yamaha Virago
Fairings: Custom Aluminum, Harney
Tires (Sizes): 18” and 19”
Exhaust: Sectioned FMF Expansion Chamber w/ FMF Muffler
Paint & Powdercoat: N/A

Tim Harney featured in Episodes – 8, 9 and 10

- Original Airs: 9/14, 9/21 and 9/28 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
Email: harneytim@gmail.com

Union Motorcycles

The team at Union Motorcycles consists of dedicated (dare we say rabid?) vintage motorcycle enthusiasts with a wide spectrum of backgrounds and skills. They say it takes a village? We’ve they’ve got one. (Including the occasional idiot.) Professional mechanics, Fabricators and restorers joining forces with professional designers = Something we like to think of as the Super Friends of Classic Motorcycles. Their 67 Beezer is a testament to the dedication and fun-loving atmosphere such a place creates.

Bike Specifications: 1967 BSA A65 Lightning

Frame: Modified and stripped BSA A65
Subrame: N/A
Engine: Stock, Rebuilt
Carburetion or FI System: Dual Amal Concentrics carbs
Rear Swing Arm: Stock – detabbed
Rear Wheel (Size): 18″ Shouldered Aluminum
Front Wheel (Size): 18″ Shouldered Aluminum
Steering Stabilizer: Modified Ceriani dampener
Rear Shock(s): 1 inch over stock
Clip-Ons or Bars: Dunstall Replicas
Seat: Custom Fiberglass, Union and GFTP
Tank: Custom Fiberglass, Union and GFTP
Rear Sets: Custom, Union
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: Custom Fiberglass, Union and GFTP
Tires (Sizes): 18” and 18”
Exhaust: Stock headers -  modified mufflers
Paint & Powdercoat: Paint

Union Motorcycles featured in Episodes – 6, 7 and 8
- Original Airs: 8/31, 9/7 and 9/14 @ 9:00pm

- First Replay: Coming Soon

Contact info:
6129 Ustick Rd.
Nampa, ID 83687
Phone: (208) 466-4474
Email: unionmotorcycleclassics@gmail.com
Website: www.unionmotorcycle.com

Ypsilanti Cafe Racer

John started riding at the age of 4 when his dad put him on a Ruppman mini bike, which is when he simultaneously fell in love with motorcycles. Along with riding motorcycles he was heavy into skateboarding and the punk rock scene from England, and from a young age was influenced by rocker culture.  As an adult in the mid 90s he combined his love for motorcycles and stunts from skateboarding and became a stunt rider until 2002 when he with aspirations to open his first bike shop. With a mind to open a facility that was geared more toward the punk rocker scene led him to the “café racer” style of bikes.  Ypsilnati Cafe Racer was officially started in 2009 by combining Johns mechanical talents with partner Leah’s business savvy. Filling a void in the metro Detroit area they’ve experienced tremendous growth and success in sharing cafe culture.

Bike Specifications: 1976 Honda CB360

Frame: Strock, Stripped
Subrame: N/A
Engine: Stock, Rebuilt
Carburetion or FI System: Stock
Rear Swing Arm: Stock
Rear Wheel (Size): 18″ Stock
Front Wheel (Size): 18″ Stock
Steering Stabilizer: Custom, Ypsilanti
Rear Shock(s): Stock
Clip-Ons or Bars: Dunstall Replicas
Seat: Custom Steel, RAS MOTO/Ypsilanti
Tank: Custom Fiberglass, RAS Moto/Ypsilanti
Rear Sets: Custom Aluminum, RAS Moto/Ypsilanti
Radiator: N/A
Fairings: None
Tires (Sizes): 3.50-18 Rear, 3.00-19 Front
Exhaust: Moto Fiaccone
Paint & Powdercoat: RAS Moto/Ypsilanti

Ypsilanti Cafe Racer featured in Episodes – 6, and 7

- Original Airs: 8/31, and 9/7 @ 9:00pm
- First Replay: Coming Soon

[PHOTO GALLERY HERE]

Contact info:
10 E. Cross Street
Ypsilanti, MI 49198
Phone: (313) 590-3373
Email: johnnycrasher@yahoo.com
Website: www.caferacerypsi.com

Tech Tip: Aluminum Polishing 101 w/ Herm from Dime City Cycles

Ok, so your engine covers are in desperate need of attention. First, you think paint, but having a full winter to work on the project you commit to polishing them. Now the question is “What do you need and how is it done?” Here’s a quick way to get those cases to bling!

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First, get yourself an intern! Then get a good bench buffer. The 6” models from places like Home Depot or Lowes are ok, but will take you twice as long to get the result you want. Try to get at least an 8” 3/4HP 8amp unit (1hp is the real deal).  You’ll thank us later. A bench grinder motor will work fine too. There are a ton of sites on how to set up your own polishing motor from used dryers, washers, etc. Whatever you use, make sure it is no less than 3400 rpm.  Anything less isn’t possible for polishing.

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Next, get some wheels and buffing compounds. We use a sisal wheel, spiral sewn, and a canton flannel wheel along with some emery compound, Tripoli compound, and white rouge. For final finishing I like the Autosol polish as well. All supplies can be ordered from www.eastwood.com. They have a real good supply of buffing and polishing gear. Your local hardware store will have some too. You’ll also need some good wet/dry sandpaper, I like to have all grits on hand, from 220 up to about 1000. And lastly, get a can of aircraft stripper and some rubber gloves. This can be found at any automotive parts store.

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For this scenario, we’ll use an engine case that’s in really bad shape. The cover has a deep gauge in it, and as you look closer the finish also has a coat of that old yellowed clearcoat on it, and to top it off, the aluminum is badly oxidized from sitting for the last 30 years.

First thing we need to do is remove the clearcoat with the stripper. Put your gloves on and be careful with this stuff, it will chemically burn your skin instantaneously.  Trust me, I know! First, scrub the part with some very fine steel wool to break the surface, it allows the stripper to sink in under the clearcoat better. Spray the part thoroughly and let sit.  You’ll see the clearcoat start bubbling almost right away. After about five minutes just brush it off with the steel wool and wash the part real clean.

Now the sanding begins. If it weren’t for that deep gauge you could go right into the cutting, but we need to try and get rid of it first. Start with some 400 grit. Wet sand until it’s gone. If the rest of the part is ok, you can move to 600, then 800 throughout the entire part. This could take some time and will be messy, so have at least a six pack nearby! (Depending on how deep the gauge is you may have to start with lower than 400 grit.)

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Now we’re almost ready for the fun to begin on the buffer.  But before you start here’s a few setup tips;

Wrap a towel around the base of the buffing motor, maybe duct tape it down so it doesn’t get caught up in the wheels. Also put an old blanket on the floor and on the bench. Believe us here: The buffer will at some point grab the part and cause it to FLY OUT OF YOUR HAND.  It will happen!

Use cotton gloves.  The oils from your fingers will drastically alter the compounds effectiveness. I have a few different sets of gloves, one for each wheel. Nothing sucks worse than having to go back and forth to take out emery scratches… well, parts flying out of your hands sucks pretty bad too.

dime city cycles,cafe racer,aluminum polish,polishing,honda,tech

Use only one compound per wheel.  NEVER, EVER, mix them. Use a sharpie and label your wheels.

If your part gets too hot, let it cool. A cool part polishes much better and the compound won’t cake up. Alternate your parts while letting each one cool by a fan.

Put compound on the wheel often. How do you know if there’s enough on? When you feel dusty-like bits touch your face and you can’t help but wipe, then it’s enough. Make sure you’re wearing safety glasses, of course.

And, MOST IMPORTANTLY, aluminum oxide is a direct cause of Alzheimer’s disease so wear a mask or wet bandanna always when sanding it or polishing!

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Ok, now we’re ready, let’s get to work!

First step, use the black or ‘emery’ compound and that new ‘sisal’ wheel. This process will remove any leftover oxidation as well as the small scratches left by the sandpaper. The compound will ‘cut’, but don’t expect it to do a lot real fast. Take your time here and DO NOT push the part against the wheel very hard. Get a feel for it and be careful not to feed any irregular angles into the wheel or it will launch! Keep cutting until you have even color and all scratches are gone. Don’t expect or try for a mirror finish just yet. Also remember to let the part cool down from time to time.

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[Hey Herm, where's that mask?] – [Huh, what mask? Who's Herm?]

Now the blingin’ begins! Move to the Tripoli compound and a ‘spiral sewn’ wheel. But first, clean your part. The best way is to wipe it with a clean cotton rag and some all-purpose flour. The flour soaks up oil microscopically, and doesn’t scratch the surface. Again do not push hard into the wheel and take your time. Sometimes if the oxidation is not too bad, and if we sanded up to 1500 grit we can start with Tripoli instead of emery. But if there’s oxidation emery is a must.

Tripoli finishes are pretty good for most people including the crew here at DCC. We like it because it gives us the vintage feel and look we like for most of our bikes and it’s real easy to maintain. But if you want a real mirror finish move onto the white rouge.

This final step is where your part will emerge with some serious professional looking results. This part is called ‘coloring’, as opposed to buffing. You’ll need the white rouge compound and the canton wheel. Again, clean your part with a cotton rag and flour before starting. With rouge, you need very light pressure on the part, and don’t let the part get hot! It’ll change the color of finish and not get you the results you want.

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In some cases you might need to break out the Dremel to get into the tiny areas that can’t be reached with the buffing wheel. Use the same steps with the small buffing wheels on the Dremel which can be had from any local Home Depot or Lowes.

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Your part should have a mirror finish now. If you’re happy with it, once the part is completely cooled, use the Autosol. The Autosol will basically give the part a final cleaning and leaves a protective film to help prevent future tarnish and makes it easy to clean and buff while on the bike every now and again.

dime city cycles,cafe racer,aluminum polish,polishing,honda,tech

dime city cycles,cafe racer,aluminum polish,polishing,honda,tech

dime city cycles,cafe racer,aluminum polish,polishing,honda,tech

- Herm Narciso