Saying Hi from Australia as I start my first cafe racer build

gt alex

Been Around the Block
Hi, I'm not a young fella but I've been round coustom vehicles all my life. So I was keen to do a cafe racer build some thing I havn't done before. My bike of choice honda cb750, was out of my budget, although I was looking and had a plan, but as it happened I was doing a job at a work shop and I was offered a Suzuki sv650 for $500. Being a bit modern (2002) I intialy didn't accept but then it got me thinking and I draw up a new plan more to my budget. The bikes now Home and a great starting point. This will be a budget build but that will not limit the mods it just means more creativity and work for me.
I have spoken to a local engineer who can compliance my mods for road use. I've ony had vintage bikes before and they were exempt engineer approvals so this part is new to me.

The plan is to have to bike as low as possible while still good on twisties, classic cafe racer layout hump set, inline with flat bottomed tank( may be extended I see what is looks like once the seat is in possy) and small headlight. rearsets a must and droopping clipons above the tripple, mounted on the fork tubes once pushed through.(I have to think of my back)

The engineer has said to bike should be registered standard and the modified to save some problems. Aparrently I should have to much trouble as long as I keep 2/3 of original suspension travel and 100mm ground clearance. keep noise under 94dba @ 5000rpm and use complianced lighting (e marked).

After 2week of tinkering and lots of cleaning it's nearly ready for its standard road worthy.
The camera on my phone is stuffed but I will post some pics soon.
Although I have a plan I am keen to get as much advise as I can to acheive something special once its all done
Sounds fun, the sv650 is agood base for mods.

Will be interested to see how youw plans evolve!
¡plɹoʍ ǝɥʇ ɟo ǝpıs ɹǝɥʇo ǝɥʇ ɯoɹɟ ollǝɥ

would love to see what an sv650 looks like cafe'd out
Welcome mate. Sounds like you must be in NSW or VIC with the engineer approvals.

Start a build thread so we can follow along.
A quick up date. the bikes ready for road worthy inspection and i have most of the bits for the cafe racer transformation. the only mod donee so far is the back has been dropped 1 1/2 inches and the forks pushed through 1 1/8 inch. And i have been testing mufflers and db killers pictures will follow
Post a picture already!

Sounds good that progress is being made. You might want to consider lowering the forks internally rather than pushing them through the triple trees.
I was going to lower the forks internaly but I'm planning at this time to mount the clip ons above the top triple. the current idea is to use the main springs only fro a harley slip in lowering kit but thats not in the budget this months but it doesn't work out i will cut the standard springs to stiffen the front to allow for reduced travel. final drop will be 1 3/4 on the front, then I'll see how it works. its suck it and see approach.
Bent the hoop last week


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Trying to work out the muffler, I have a small yosi , a 2"staight through same length off my old kombi, and the staintune that came on the bike. I will be going with a short muffler. I have been tring db killers I had and some my own invention but I will need a dba meter to help decide, I want a note and not kill hp


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I would be really surprised if you manage to do better than the Staintune thast was on it, in terms of power and noise. That doesn't mean you shouldn't keep trying, but be prepared to go back to that pipe.
The the dbkiller in the staintune was very restrictive i swaped it out for one the flows 50% more for a more mellow note and still quite. My surprize was the yosi, I thought it would be crazy loud but its got the best note. both the smaller mufflers are about the same volume, yes louder than the longer muffler. The yosi was super quite with the epa baffle but I would only use that baffle on a 300cc engine or smaller, maybe duals on a 600.
But I like the look of the old kombi muffler for my project but it will depend on testing. The staintune is out. it just will not fit with my design
I wouldn't lower the front end, it's going to be a Cafe Racer so the mods you make should improve performance or at least not impair it, at least that is my opinion. It's your bike though so you are the boss :)
Yes it is a possiblity I will end up raising it again because handling is an imporrtant part of what it is.
I am trying to make it old school and lowering is a main feature of my plan, so I will spend some time and effort to try and sort the handling with it low.
From what I've read vs650 gen1 bikes like the nose 5mm lowered (sorting standard bike) thats why I'm "starting" 1 3/4 inch down on the from and 1 1/2 on the rear. Custom machines need sorting to be just right and thats half the challenge.
Well, if those experienced with this bike say that lowering the front like that improves handling then I am all for it. I just hate to see guys degrade the performance of a bike just for the look. But of course ultimately, it is the owner's decision.
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