1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build - "Honda Cafe Cross"

Ocaspersen

Been Around the Block
DTT BOTM WINNER
Hi again from Norway!

I finished my first cafe build this spring, a 1977 Suzuki GS 400 (project thread can be found here), but sold it to a young guy who had seen my project pictures :)

Used the money to buy myself a new project, a 1987 Honda XL 600 R. Very far from a cafe racer, but with potensial... I hope ;-) My inspiration comes from Classified Moto's build published on Bike Exif, I think its very good looking!!



I dont have the same skills as professional builders, and not all the tools they have either. So with that in my mind a tried to find a rear that fits the frame without to much modification. The choice for rear swingarm became a 1988 Honda VFR 400 single sided swingarm, which should fit nicely into the frame. Found one in the UK, and is now in my garage waiting ;-)


The front end will be replaced with a complete front end from a 2004 Kawasaki ZX10R, which should at least give a good update in brakes from the original crap ones ;-) I'm waiting for a complete wheel and upper triple, should arrive within a week...


My plan is to first tit the rear single sided swingarm and the complete ZX10R front end, then it will be easier to se the lines of the bike. I have an 70's Suzuki gas tank with the offset flip-up cap I intend to use also. The rear subframe will the be modified to flow better with the single sided swingarm. The bottom tubes will be moved many inches up, and the rear will be chopped and looped.

More updates to follow when I start building shortly, really looking forward to this build :-D
 

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1969Honda

Been Around the Block
Re: 1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

NICE! Glad to see I'm not the only crazy person trying to get a single sided swingarm and inverted forks on a great bike!
 

Ocaspersen

Been Around the Block
DTT BOTM WINNER
Re: 1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

Got the wheel today... I cant wait to get this front end on the bike :)

Hoping to get started next week, first things to do is mocking up the single sided swingarm and the front end. Then it it will be easier to have a clear vision of where I´m going :-D
 

Ocaspersen

Been Around the Block
DTT BOTM WINNER
1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

The bike will be a lot lower ;-) (The bottom triple isn´t as high up as it should...)
 

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Ocaspersen

Been Around the Block
DTT BOTM WINNER
1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

Trying to figure out what tires I want on this build... I dont want sport tires or old type tires, but think I'm looking for a kind of tracker look when it comes to the tires....

I have looked at to tires which is sort of supermoto style:

Avon AM43/44 Distanzia 120/70-17 and 160/60-17 (2 pictures)
Pirelli MT60 Corsa R 120/70-17 and 160/60-17

I have also looked at a rougher tire, to sort of remind of the bikes enduro heritage. And I can get a wider rear tire...:

Continental TKC 80 Twinduro 120/70-17 and 170-60-17

What do you people think?
 

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Tim

Administrator
Staff member
Re: 1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

Shinko 705s are the best bang for the buck enduro tires IMHO.
 

Ocaspersen

Been Around the Block
DTT BOTM WINNER
1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

The Shinko 705 looks good as well, dont know how they are to get hold of in Norway... Have to check that out ;-)
 

furu14

New Member
Re: 1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

You can also look at Heidenau K60 scout-also a good tire .I have bought this for my XL 600r tracker..
 

Rusnak_322

Coast to Coast
DTT BOTM WINNER
Re: 1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

I am planning on the same thing. that bike is also my inspiration.
My problem is that since I sold my café CB360, all the XL600's that I see within 400 miles of me are either basket cases or lack a street title. And they all are way overpriced.

I would like the bigger knobbie tire, but I would be afraid that the torque of the big single would tear them up on the street when doing all the wheelies that will inevitably happen.
 

Ocaspersen

Been Around the Block
DTT BOTM WINNER
1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

furu14: Where did you buy your K60's?

Rusnak: Old enduros which are running are expensive here as well, I had to pay 2800$ for mine... I also like the twinduro tire, but you might be right about the wear on them... But there is still some time before I have to decide that :)
 

Ocaspersen

Been Around the Block
DTT BOTM WINNER
1987 Honda XL 600 R Cafe Racer build

Today I have been at the Norwegian DMV. The bike has to be shown before I can start the build, and I had to deliver an application as well. It will take some weeks before I get an answer, but they said it wouldn't be any problems :) Of course I will have to show it again when finished to get it approved...

So... next wednesday the build will start!!!
 

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