Thursday, August 25, 2011

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Motorcycle Club

Motorcycle Club

JAPAN CAFE' RACER & SAMUARI SWORD CULT


Siamo sempre stati affascinati dalla storia e dalla cultura del Sol Levante.

La spada dei Samurai rappresenta per noi uno dei primi e più importanti punti di fascino della cultura dei samurai giapponesi.

La spada, detta genericamente katana, veniva prodotta secondo antiche tradizioni e seguendo spesso rituali ancora oggi in parte segreti.

Se guardiamo alle spade dei samurai da un punto di vista tecnico, storico o culturale, le argomentazioni potrebbero diventare pressoché infinite, ma non è questo il nostro scopo.



Se guardiamo invece alle spade dei samurai da un punto di vista del design non possiamo che rimanere ugualmente affascinati dalla semplicità delle linee, dalle curve pronunciate, dalla lucentezza del metallo e dall’ombreggiatura del filo della lama.

Lo strumento in sé, esprime Equilibrio, Forza e Potenza.



La spada fu lo strumento dello Shogun per tenere insieme un impero, ma era anche e rimane tuttora, uno Status Symbol, oltreché l’espressione di un altissimo artigianato.



Ora, forse l’accostamento può sembrare bizzarro, ma il nostro pensiero vola al mondo delle moto, in special modo a quelle di scuola giapponese, e ci chiediamo quali tra queste “Cafè Racer” del lontano oriente meglio rappresentano lo Stile, il Design, la ricerca sottile e quasi infinita che era alla base non solo di un oggetto come la spada, ma di una vera e propria filosofia, come il bushido.


Buona visione

P.S.

Poiché il materiale raccolto riguardo a questo argomento è piuttosto voluminoso, questo post verrà suddiviso in più uscite

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We have always been fascinated by history and culture of ancient Japan.
The Sword of the Samurai is for us one of the first and most important points of appeal of the culture of Japanese samurai.

The sword, known generically as “katana”, was produced according to ancient traditions and rituals, till now still remain partly secret.

If we look at the samurai swords from a technical, historical or cultural point of view, the arguments could be almost endless, but this is not our purpose.

If we look instead to samurai swords from the point of view of design we remain as well immediately fascinated by the simplicity of the lines, by the sharp turns, by the shading and brightness of metal blade.

The instrument itself, express Balance, Strength and Power.

The sword was the instrument of the Shogun to hold together an empire, but it was and still it is a status symbol, besides the expression of the highest craftsmanship.

Now, perhaps the combination may sound hazardous, but our thoughts fly to the world of motorcycles, especially those of Japanese school, and we wonder which of these "Cafe Racer" coming from the Far East school are better fitting the Style, the Design, and the hard and almost infinite Research that was the basis not only of an object like the sword, but the foundation of a real philosophy, such as bushido.

Enjoy

P.S.

As the content of this post is quite huge, it will be split in various issues










Motorcycle Club

2004? Harley Davidson Sportster – Full Cafe!!!

I’m contacting the seller about this bike to try to get more details and more photos. If this is, in fact, a 2004 Sportster, then it is the first full conversion (including tank but minus some cool 18″ wheels) that I’ve seen. A tank like that is exactly what I want to do to my bike. I’ll post updates as I get them.
BTW, the reason I’m not sure about the year is the oil tank. I can’t tell from the photos, but it is either a 2003 tank (non-flush oil filler cap) or it is a 2004 tank with the side cover removed. If anyone has an opinion, please let me know…






1971 BMW R60 with R90 Motor

No matter how many times I rant and rave about bikes missing some key cafe racer feature, I always manage to find these bikes again and again. Here we have a 1971 BMW R60 that’s been cafe’d out… almost. Everything is there except the bars. I know, I know, the bars are more comfortable than clip-ons or clubmans. But they just don’t work with the rear-sets. And having your feet behind you doesn’t work so well if your hands are up high.
However, if you want a BMW cafe racer, this is a perfect bike for you to finish up by selecting your perfect set of bars or clip-ons that fit you perfectly. The price is relatively low at $1,800 with 2 days left and a fair number of bidders. I expect it will close higher, but not sure how much. It’s a clean bike with most of the cafe mods done already…







1977 Harley-Davidson XLCR

Not a lot of info on this bike in the listing. There is what appears to be a low serial number, and the bike doesn’t seem to be too far from stock if at all (unrestored and very clean looking). Low miles, but no good pictures of the VIN. Current bidding has the bike at $8,700 with 11 bids and 14 hours left. However, reserve isn’t met, which means there’s a good chance the bike won’t sell. I’ll repost if it comes back up for sale and maybe we will see what a nice XLCR can sell for in this economy…








Cool SL70 Cafe Racer

Here’s a drool-factor bike I found on the advrider.com forum (I ride a KTM Adventure 640, too). The person who posted the pic originally thinks it might be an SL70, but it is so stripped down at this point, I have no idea what the original bike might have been. Doesn’t matter though, it’s a beautiful motorcycle…

1962 Norton Featherbed Cafe Racer

A while back I posted a listing for a Hogbitz Sportster cafe racer that was the most expensive bike to ever hit the blog ($25K asking price). It was relisted at least once, if not multiple times. This Norton comes in a close second with a Buy-It-Now price of $22,500. As is this the second Norton in a row I’ve posted, it is interesting to compare the bikes, and what differentiates an unrestored Norton Commando from a fully restored and cafe-racerized (including lots of motorwork) Norton Featherbed/Manx. I guess the difference comes down to this 1962 Norton being what is essentially a show bike with a hopped-up motor you could ride, versus the 1971 Norton Commando posted before being an unrestored daily rider that has a frame in good shape with “no visible cracks”.
You decide. $22.5K for a beautiful bike that has been gone through with a fine-tooth comb, or $7.5K for a bike that you might put a little elbow grease into over time (and maybe a motor rebuild while you’re at it). It would be interesting to see what this bike sells for, but it is a Buy-It-Now with Make Offer (2 offers so far), so we won’t be able to watch any climbing auction prices.








1971 Norton 750 Commando Cafe Racer

Here’s a nice looking example of a first-gen Commando that has been converted to cafe-racer duty. Overall, the modifications are spot-on, but I do have one minor quibble: the rear ride height. Shocks one inch longer would really balance the bike front-to-rear, and lifting the back end up would also probably quicken the handling just a smidge.
Other than that, this is an unrestored runner that is currently not seeing much action in the auction. There is a a day and a half left in the auction, and the current price is $4,550. Reserve has not been met, but there is a Buy-It-Now price of $7,500, so we can probably assume the reserve is set somewhere around $7K. With only two bidders so far, it seems there isn’t a huge chance the bike will end up selling.








1967 Triumph TR6R Trophy

I believe I’ve posted two bikes from this shop before (an XS650 and a Sportster) that tended to polarize visitors to the site. I really like this bike. Purists will leave comments complaining about the color of the frame, the blue fuel tubing, or something like that, but I don’t care. It is nicely built, and as much as any of us can complain about how particular bikes look, at least these guys are building cafe racers. And honestly, I think their bikes are improving over time.
If you click through and read the listing, it appears that the motor has been thoroughly gone through with some pretty cool hi-performance parts. The suspension seems reasonably well done, although with custom-wound front springs, there’s a reasonable chance the front end may be too stiff. Have to ride it to tell.
As for the aesthetics, the green frame is definitely a love it or hate it thing. I tend to like bikes with contrasting frame and body colors, and while I probably wouldn’t choose these colors for my own bike, I think it is an interesting choice that works well.
The bike is currently at $5,100 (reserve not met) with 15 hours left. I have no idea what reserve would be set at for this bike, but my guess is that bidding will max out between $6-7K. Good luck if you are bidding.








1979 Yamaha SR500 Cafe Racer

Ahhh. SR500. Always a good, clean-looking cafe racer. Not much else to say. On eBay. 11 hours left. 21 bids, $2,100 dollars. Bid by tomorrow morning if you are interested…








1971 BSA A65L Cafe Racer

Up for auction on eBay with about a day left is this nice-looking BSA Lightning. The seller seems to have done a lot of work to it (details copied from the original listing and pasted below), and it certainly looks the part. Interestingly, the bike seems appear to have a mechanical/hydraulic hybrid front brake (see the last picture below). I think it wouldn’t be inappropriate to have a brake reservoir on the clip-on givent hat it is a disc front brake, but I appreciate the stripped-down look. Overall, a very clean build with classic good looks.
And I forgot to add this in originally: no chain.
ENGINE MODIFICATIONS
    Lightened and Beveled Crank Shaft Balanced Rotating Assembly Raised Exhaust Ports with +.100 Exhaust Valves Lightened Valve Gear 274-274 Duration / .375 Lift Megacycle Cam New Valve Guides and Valve Job +.020 Forged Pistons 10:1 1 3/4″ TT Pipes with Custom Alloy Tips Custom Alloy Intake Manifolds 36 mm Dellorto (Pumpers) Carburetors with Alloy Velocity Stacks Dyna High Output Ignition Coils
CHASSIS MODIFICATIONS
    Modified T-160 Triple Tree & Forks Modified T-160 Rear Hub & Alloy Sprocket Front & Rear Lockheed Disc Brakes Custom Fabricated Alloy Brakes Reservoir 19″ Front and Rear Wheels with Stainless Steel Spokes & Nuts Alloy Fenders and Custom Made Alloy Brackets Custom Made Alloy Clip-on Handle Bars, Instrument Cluster, Side Covers, Chain Guard & Tail Light/Licence Plate Bracket Custom Made Rear Set Shift and Brake Lever Assemblies and Linkage Alloy Brake and Clutch Levers Vintage Alloy 2 Cable Throttle Modified Pre-1971 A65 Seat