We’ve had a run of retro motorcycles recently, and I’ve had a few subtle hints via email that a more modern machine would be welcome. So here’s a gixxer for you. This bike started as a brand new 2004 Suzuki GSX-R 750 that Joshua Hofhine bought new. “I had been riding old Triumphs and Suzukis for a few years, and this was my first new bike. After six months I was doing a track day at Willow Springs when the engine let go: turns out the oil pickup was clogged, and the top of the engine was dry as a bone.”
The bike was stored for a couple years and Hofhine sold off most of the stock parts. “Eventually I was left with just a frame and swingarm hanging from the rafters in my garage!” Then eighteen months ago, Hofhine picked up an engine from a friend at Yoshimura. “I decided to build a modern take on a cafe racer, because that’s always been my favorite genre.” Hofhine inherited a love of building bikes from his father, who used to restore 60s British iron. And growing up in Southern California meant he was also influenced by hot rods: evidence of this can be seen in the paintwork done by Concept Five.
The suspension on #44 is mostly stock—and so is the engine, apart from a BMC filter, a Power Commander, and the carbon fiber Termignoni muffler, chopped down to ten inches. The headlight is from a Harley V-Rod, and the race tail was made by Catalyst. That cool overflow bottle? It’s fashioned out of a spun aluminum water bottle. Hofhine Snr would approve. [With thanks to photographer Peter Lombardi.]