Honda Cub: Dirty Donkey

Honda Cub
The Honda Super Cub is the best-selling two-wheeler on the planet. Since 1958, it’s sold more than 60 million units. So, as you can imagine, there are some pretty cool custom Cubs around — but few are as cool as the machines being turned out by Holland’s Super Motor Company.

This is the latest build from SMC, nicknamed Dirty Donkey. “Yes, it does sound like the title of an obscure 70s porn movie,” admits SMC main man Dimitri Hettinga, “but it‘s nothing to do with that. It’s a bike meant to be happy on the dirt track.”

Honda Cub
Dirty Donkey has been built to race, with tongue firmly in cheek, at the Dirt Quake event organized by Sideburn Magazine in the UK. And it incorporates a few lessons learnt from SMC’s Salt Shaker build, one of the biggest hits on Bike EXIF last year.

Honda Cub
SMC’s inspiration came from vintage motocross, desert racers and dirt trackers: CZs, Maicos, and the Harley/Aermacchi Sprints used in 60s flat track racing. Salt Shaker was pretty but “a bitch to start and ride,” says Dimitri, so he’s kept the YX 140cc SOHC engine stock this time. It delivers a mighty 15 hp to the back wheel.

As with all SMC builds, the Cub frame has been modified with the help of welding wizard Jaap Volkers. A Honda C50 rear fender has been expertly grafted on, and the tank is a Honda Camino item that’s been cut-and-shut and flipped 180 degrees. The suspension is custom, as are the side covers. The hand controls are vintage Tommaselli.

Honda Cub
Dimitri’s grandmother upholstered the seat unit in a silky-smooth ‘desert beige’ suede. “There’s a gap between the seat and tank, but it also gives it a bit of that 60s desert racer feel. Which I like,” says Dimitri.

Hiding the wiring was a challenge, but worthwhile: the front end is especially neat. “It took me over a day to make it work. Now I understand why even the bigger motorcycle brands don’t, because it’s just too labor intensive to justify the cost.” Dimitri had the exhaust fabricated before painting, and after a few issues with the rubber mountings, a synthetic rubber bushing solved the problems and Dirty Donkey was done.

Honda Cub
The bike went on show in Milan during the EICMA exhibition, and it’s now for sale, complete with EU registration documents. And with a catch, too: “It must attend Dirt Quake and Wheels & Waves next year,” says Dimitri. “Or we will deliver it to you afterwards!”

Images by David Finato Photography. More details on Super Motor Company’s custom Cubs are on their website.

Honda Cub