Author Topic: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened  (Read 2185 times)

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Offline Spikeybike

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The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« on: March 09, 2010, 12:48:48 pm »
 If you have read Cafe Racer Magazine issue #1 . there is a small write up about Mods Vs Rockers here in Chicago , in this little write up there is a little tiny picture of my bike .. when i first saw this of coarse i was really stoked, as any of us would be ,seeing your creation in a printed publication .  i instantly sent Mike at CRM an email simply saying "hey, i saw my bike in your mag. if you would like more pics i'd be more then happy to send them" ....
       Mike responded a few days later , saying that he waited by my bike for about 45 minutes to talk to me about it . That he wanted to do a small one page article on my ride, in the new "Found Bikes" section. Witch i was blown away by.  was really not expecting to have a spread with multiple pics and a write up ......  then i found out I had to do the write up..uuh oh  ::)

    Any of you members that have tried to have a literal conversation with me over the web know .. that i am NOT a very good writer .. i would say barely mediocre....   and now i had to write 600 words .. oh boy
    so i finish the write up, witch was only about the bike, post-fire..and all the work done... i sent Mike an email with it attached, and in that email i linked my youtube video i made, and said "for your own personal enjoyment"  
            for those that haven't seen it and want to..  www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jRDUJwMXdc

a month or so after sending this. i get his response. He watched the video, and wants to know all about the fire .. i have to re-write .. now he wants a full two page article ..About me and how i got into cafe racers, tell more about the fire.....  1000 words...  i think  "cool      ..#$%*."     (i hate writing)

     while re-writing i realized that 1000 words really isn't enough to tell the story he wants.. so i asked for more.. he said no because he wanted more pictures on the pages then words ... uh ok ...
  
 we were suppose to meet up at the next MVR for a photo shoot, but he never showed. Now through several emails i've sent with no response at all i've come to the conclusion that Mike just didn't like what i wrote .. or how i wrote it .. or something (oh well)

  Now i'm really not bitter over getting the axe... i'm just a little burned cuz i put so much effort into the writing... witch i suck at..

Getting to point of this thread.        
  All this happened about a year ago , and i had swept it under the rug.. then i see SkonnieBoy's thread about getting in a magazine. and remembered  "....oooooh yeah, i wonder what ever became of that"
     So i dug through my files on the PC and found it ... added a few little parts (i had changed the bike since then)  
   and sent yet another email to Mike at CRM .. with the new version and a #$%*load of pictures.   ...to witch i got no response.

So i say to hell with it ... Now just pretend if you will , your flippin through your latest copy of Cafe Racer Magazine and see this


« Last Edit: March 09, 2010, 01:25:14 pm by Spikeybike »

Offline Spikeybike

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2010, 12:50:02 pm »
   My love of cafe racers was really just a stream of "not so random" coincidences.
I’ve always danced to the beat of a different drum. Most of my tastes fall into the obscure. So I’m always looking for something no one else has... or even wants.
  I’ve always loved custom cars, or pretty much custom anything. My motorcycle love affair started with the bobber. I was getting into all the chopper magazines and just admiring the lifestyle. When I was a little kid, I was a skinny short little scrub who always got his ass kicked.  Now I always went down swingin' … but I almost always went down. So the tough guy, bad ass biker image was always appealing. I knew when I was done putting myself through school for welding that I would have a bike. But when the Discovery channel started shoving the OCC garbage down everyone’s throat, I slowly found myself sick of the whole chopper/bobber revival and wanted something different, but wasn’t sure what.
   Now skip a couple of years...to my buddy having a bike he wanted to get rid of . Now at the time, I had no idea about the CB. My first thought was “I’ll beat the crap out of this lil thing and get something better.”  It wasn't till 3 years later, when I was researching parts online and stumbled into the SOHC4.net forums, and started to realize that what I thought was a "bic lighter" was really a "propane torch"! I had really underestimated the power of this little fourbagger . That is where I learned what a cafe racer was. As well as typical ways in which they were built, and made some awesome friends as well.  This is where ,what I would consider “my building style” really took shape.  
  Now as far as the bike, oh man, where do I start ... definitely not in sequential order.
  The first thing everyone always wants to know is "What's up with the leopard print?" To explain it simply, ...it's a hot rod/psychobilly thing, either you get it .. or you're looking all confused, or throwing gay jokes at me. It was originally a table cloth from a company that rented them out for parties and weddings. I had an insider swipe me one because it seemed they weren't for sale. It's a velvety, fuzzy feeling material that has a plastic backing so it's waterproof, and of course I scotchguarded the hell out of it ,just in case.
  The frame's modifications are really what makes it stand out to me; the rear frame support was cut off and moved forward four inches, to make room for the fender to come forward almost six inches. I sacrificed a basement shelf to make the cowl section behind the seat, bringing the frame into the foreground, so to speak. I really love the way the rear fender and seat go INTO the frame, not just sit on top of it. Some have said that notching the frame for pod air filters to fit is really overdoing it.... well they would be right. Those notches are reinforced with 3/8” steel plate on the outside, 1/4" plate on the back, and the pipe is capped with 1/8” plate. Those notches saw more cutting, welding, and grinding then the rest of bike hands down. The exhaust bracket was cut out of  ¼” steel plate with a plasma cutter, and ground smooth with about 20 different Dremal bits. One part of the frame no one ever notices , the horn mount, or the goatee as I call it.
  The seat is the original seat foam; I cut a piece of sheet metal for the seat pan, glued the foam to it ...then went at it with the angle grinder. Then wrapped it in the leather from an old couch cushion. The seat upholstery  I’m actually not that happy with and someday it will get redone

  The motor was completely rebuilt, stock bore. It started with a new Megacycle camshaft, valve springs, and new rocker arms, then after the head was ported it got new Honda repro valves, I also port matched the intake manifolds and added a heat wrapped Mac 4 into 1 exhaust on the exit. The K&N air filters were squeezed into their notched home. Behind the polished fins of the ignition cover lies a DynaS electronic ignition, which draws the power from the Deka gel cell battery, sending its juices up to the Dyna 5ohm coils, through the Dyna wires and into the NGK  spark plugs, sending me flying down I-94 at 100 plus on a nice sunny day.
  As for the front end, I’ve always liked the look of clean shiny exposed forks. But my 550 had gaiters (fork boots) and headlight ears. The fork tube’s condition after spending 30 plus years underneath all that, was way less than desirable. So the rusty top half of the tubes was sanded clean. Then the bottom half was taped off before getting shot with engine enamel. The fork lowers were polished. A tapered steering stem bearing kit was installed. The brakes were taken from an early model CB750, the caliper’s fins were polish and the rotor was drilled .A chrome headlight and mounts are a perfect compliment for all that in my opinion.  
  The gauges were completely disassembled and re-done by hand, now when I say by hand, I mean the gauge faces were painted then each digit was laid down individually with an Exacto knife, and then clear coated. All new chrome covers and backing plates were used upon reassembly. And let’s not forget all the chrome plated nuts and bolts, they have got to be the most costly thing on the whole bike. I must have spent at least $500 on fancy chrome bolts and colony spike nuts . The hand controls are all stock Honda, I wanted to keep that vintage look. But clean it up at the same time. So my thinking was to clean up the cockpit area so I made a gauge mount to bring the gauges closer to each other and the bike. I then relocated the key to the crotch area.
 The rear hub was laced to wider Harley rim, to accommodate the wider 130 tire. Both hubs were polished and let me tell ya...  polishing hubs sucks. Then that whole sha-bang was wrapped with Maxxis whitewalls

  Then one day, I walked out into my garage . . . and saw the worst… scariest... heart wrenching thing any of us could ever see….
                                   My bike had burned to the ground…
   There are many theories on how the bike caught fire, which is truly irrelevant to me (then and now). There was a flannel sheet over the bike, which caught fire. The sheet also helped keep the fire going. I should probably let you know right about now that the gas tank, seat, and side covers were not on it. So the fire could have for sure been worse.
  Every single electrical component was toast. Every wire, every single piece of rubber, think about it… carb boots, tank mounts, peg cushions, grips , and so on …. Not just tires. All the bondo work had to be redone. Lucky for me I had tons of the leopard fabric left over (still have tons actually). The only part that was in the fire that managed to come out unhurt was the insides of the gauges.
  
   Let me tell you, from one gearhead to another… I cried …. I cried like a toddler that just got his favorite toy taken away for something he didn’t do.

  I worked on that machine day and night. It truly became an unhealthy obsession. I didn’t eat much, or sleep much. Almost all my extra money went to the bike, some that shouldn’t have. (Oops)
  Then when it was all said and done , I rode it up to Mods vs. Rockers in the lovely city of Chicago, and won myself a trophy
  It took about 3 months to get it back to where you see it today. That’s how it got its name. The Phoenix, risen from the ashes.  It took the help of a lot of good people and a lot of nights with no sleep to get it done that fast.  
And if it’s ever destroyed again?
I’ll rebuild it again… period.









FRAME
1975 CB550F
notched for air filters
many custom ornamental brackets and mounts
ignition relocated
all welds smoothed and molded

ENGINE
Barrnett clutch plates and springs
Megacycle cam (126-01)
Megacycle valve springs
slotted cam sprocket
NOS valves
NOS rocker arms and cam chain
Ported head (done by me)
Mac exhaust w/ unmodified baffle
DynaS electronic ignition
Dyna 5ohm coils and wires
NGK  spark plugs
polished stainless allen head case screws

CARBURATION
stock Keihin carburetors - re-jetted
110 main jets
 needle 3rd from the bottom
air screws 1 3/4 turns out
K&N air filters


BODY
tapered steering stem bearings
chrome headlight and visor
hand made tail light mount
hand hammered and molded gas tank
formed sheet metal seat/tail section
rear fender chopped and relocated
lowered rear end 2"
every piece of aluminum was polished
chrome colony spike hardware

BRAKES
CB750 front caliper and rotor
Goodridge stainless steel lines
chrome banjo fittings
drilled front rotor
drilled rear drum

SUSPENSION
CB550 forks with CB750 dampeners
MDI/Forsa Shorty shocks
Progressive Suspension fork springs
Bel-Ray 10w fork oil

GAUGES
NOS chrome backing plates
chrome gauge covers
hand laid digits and lettering
needles polished
chrome colony spike hardware

LIGHTING
J&P Cycles turn signals
J&P Cycles halogen headlight
Custom Chrome halogen tail light

WHEELS & TIRES
Stock front wheel rebuilt
Harley rear wheel laced on stock Honda hub
All Balls bearings
Maxxis Classic WW front100/90-19
Maxxis Classic WW rear 130/90-16


« Last Edit: March 09, 2010, 02:24:03 pm by Spikeybike »

Offline sangyo soichiro

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2010, 01:08:11 pm »
That beats a lot of the articles I've read in the past.  I can't imagine why it didn't get published.  It was very interesting and entertaining.  Maybe it will still get published....
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1972 CB 750 http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php/topic,57974.0.html
1971 CL 350 Scrambler
1966 Black Bomber
Too many others to name…
My cross country trip: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php/topic,138625.0.html

Offline Spikeybike

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2010, 01:23:22 pm »
thank you my man ... i know they're probly pretty busy guys .. runnin a magazine and all .. but... yeah whatever

Offline HavocTurbo

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2010, 02:03:30 pm »
You'll prolly get in.... but when you least expect it.

Magazine editors are looking for the latest thing. When they cannot find it... then they use what's available. Since MvR isn't going on... might not be what he's looking for at the moment.

Given it's locally famous past, Phoenix should be a good read for all of us!!
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Offline Industrial Cafe

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2010, 02:07:01 pm »
It was the OCC schpeal... they're all for equal rights at the CRM and didn't approve of your haterism
everything I say is pure speculation and
I have no idea what I'm talking about  ._.


                                    Marla              .:71CB750:.CAFE

Offline HavocTurbo

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2010, 02:08:39 pm »
HA!

I thought it was a pre-requisite to hate on OCC?
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Offline Spikeybike

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2010, 02:15:35 pm »
 >:( >:( i'm such a hater  >:( >:(

Offline HavocTurbo

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2010, 02:18:05 pm »
While I admit some of their ideas were cool.....

99.99999999% of that show and that shop is a load of crap.

We rode the Caterpillar bike. Like a lumbering box of rocks that started whenever it wanted to. Keys in it or not, rider or not. Whenever it thought it was necessary.
'48 HD Panhead - Exxon Valdez
'78 CB550K - Fokker CB.3
'78 Honda CB750K - Mavrik
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Offline Industrial Cafe

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2010, 02:20:39 pm »
you sure went into detail on the write-up.
 I didn't know you notched the frame for pods...
musta skimmed over that in the build thread.
everything I say is pure speculation and
I have no idea what I'm talking about  ._.


                                    Marla              .:71CB750:.CAFE

Offline Spikeybike

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Offline CaféElite

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2010, 08:42:48 am »
Whats the deal with mike seate's mustache? Is it just me or does anyone else notice its kinda off on the left side (his left).

I wouldnt get to caught up with it not getting published yet since I agree with havocturbo about its sometimes just timing. I do think it says a lot about Mike's character though. Its not hard to say I have not found a place for your bike in the mag yet or he doesnt feel the story fits the image he is trying to push.

I say send it to motorcycle classics and see if it gets published there. Its a far better magazine anyways.
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Offline 754

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2010, 10:59:51 am »
Kill this thread and try to sell it to a mag..

 You have to kill it as they dont want it, if it is already published..FWIW..
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Offline Spikeybike

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Re: The Cafe Racer Magazine article that never happened
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2010, 12:56:04 pm »
Whats the deal with mike seate's mustache? Is it just me or does anyone else notice its kinda off on the left side (his left).

i think it's issue #2 ... there's a picture of him in the late 80s early 90s  ... with a pompadour..  not to sound racist, but .. a black guy with a pompadour is a weird sight .


754, thats why i made this thread ... it ended up being a pain in the ass, and really, i just wanted someone to read it.. if i get a response from mike,  i would delete this thread. but as far as sending it to another mag.  i wouldn't even know witch ones would be interested

 

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