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Custom Bikes Of The Week: 19 July, 2020

The best scooters, restomods and custom enduros from around the web
A funky Cushman scooter bought on auction, a BMW R100 GS given the Dakar treatment, a stunning Suzuki Katana restomod, and did you know that there’s an Egli-framed Ducati 900 SS out there?

Custom BMW R100GS ‘Baja-California’ by Cafemoto
BMW R100GS ‘Baja-California’ by Cafemoto Forty years ago this month, the BMW GS changed the face of motorcycling. The R80 G/S and its successors reshaped the image of BMW over the decades, moving it away from a slightly staid, luxury niche into a brand popular with the overlanding crowd and weekend warriors.

This R100 GS ‘Baja-California’ captures that vibe perfectly, although it’s probably a little more suited to rough off-roading than most modern GS machines.

Custom BMW R100GS ‘Baja-California’ by Cafemoto
It comes from Georg Godde and Holger Maninger of Cafemoto, a custom BMW specialist based in Gelsenkirchen. It’s been a daily rider for years, and constantly tweaked and refined by the shop owners.

“The idea was to sharpen up an early Paralever R100GS,” they tell us. The inspiration came from the Joe Bar Team comics: “We wanted to create a ‘Joe Bar’ style hard enduro, designed with a little more fun than the many serious HPN conversions.”

The front end has been adapted from an HP2 Enduro, including the forks, yokes, and brake system. (“Which was not easy.”) The rear frame has been slimmed down and rebuilt, to contrast with the Paris Dakar style tank. The rest of the vintage-MX plastics are from Jeroen Wijlens of the Dutch specialist UFO.

Custom BMW R100GS ‘Baja-California’ by Cafemoto
A fat 18-inch rear wheel conversion and a well-padded seat boost both comfort and looks, but there’s a performance fillip too. Cafemoto have reworked the R100 cylinder heads, and in conjunction with a Leo Vince muffler, they reckon engine output has gone up from 60 to 75 hp. To make the most of those new horses, a quick action throttle grip and shortened 1st and 5th gear ratios have been fitted. “Just pull the throttle in second gear and wheelies are so easy!” [Cafemoto]

Cushman Model 62 Turtleback
Cushman Model 62 ‘Turtleback’ Ever since we saw Colby Thompson’s amazing collection, we’ve had a soft spot for Cushman scooters. And this 1950 model is one of the coolest we’ve seen lately, even if it does need a little work.

The Model 62 packs a mighty 4.8 hp, with a 221cc single-cylinder side-valve engine hooked up to a single-speed drive. And despite weighing 260 pounds, top speed (when new) was a claimed 45 mph.

Cushman Model 62 Turtleback
This particular Cushman was originally sold by Jim’s Scooter Parts in St. Paul, Minnesota, but it went under the hammer at the Mecum auctions last week. The winning bid was just $2,200, so someone got a bargain.

Cushman Model 62 Turtleback
Although the patina is strong, the engine is still working—and was started a couple of months ago. It shouldn’t take much to make this ‘Speedy Delivery’ scooter cutie roadworthy again, and we reckon it’d be perfect for zipping around town or doing the grocery run. [Via]

Suzuki Katana restomod by VSB Moto
Suzuki Katana by VSB Moto At a glance, this Katana looks like a tasty restomod—but there’s a lot going on under the hood. It’s the work of Tony Bucci at the aptly-named VSB (Vintage Super Bike) Moto, and it’s actually the first in a series of four planned bikes.

Tony’s goal here was to improve on the things he didn’t like about the original Katana: most notably the lines of the rear section, its weight, and its spindly forks. For this build, he started with a 1982 GS750 Katana frame, then braced and modified it. The swing arm is a period CALFAB GS1100 unit with a 1.5” stretch, the shocks are from Öhlins.

Suzuki Katana restomod by VSB Moto
Up front are a set of 1992 GSXR-750 forks, held by a Honda CBR954 triple with a CNC-machined drop-top clamp. And the wheels are 17” GSXR-1100 hoops, and the brakes are a mix of Suzuki parts with upgraded Arashi rotors.

The motor is equally special. It’s a 1981 GS1100E 4-valve mill, bored to 1,134 cc with Wiseco pistons and a race ported head. It’s also running with just about every internal upgrade imaginable—from stainless steel valves right down to a race crank and uprated cams. The carbs are Mikuni VM33s, and the exhaust is a Moto GP Werks stainless system.

Suzuki Katana restomod by VSB Moto
Tweaked OEM bodywork and a Wes Cooley-inspired livery add the perfect visual hit to this 145 hp retro sportbike. Who else wishes they could go for a ride? [More]

1986 Egli-Ducati 900 SS
1986 Egli-Ducati 900 SS Feel like owning something truly special? One of legendary frame builder Fritz Egli’s bikes is up for sale on Classic Driver, right now. And it’s an absolute stunner.

This rare machine features the L-twin, bevel-driven desmodromic motor from a Ducati 900 SS, housed inside an Egli frame. The year model is listed as 1986, which means the engine is more likely from the later model 900 S2 (it’s virtually the same unit though).

1986 Egli-Ducati 900 SS
The bike not only features an Egli frame, but a full complement of Egli bodywork too, along with yokes and forks from the Swiss shop, and Brembo brakes. The bodywork is exquisite, and aptly conveys what Fritz Egli was trying to achieve: build a road legal race bike. Finished entirely in red with a nickel-plated frame, it’s just that one step more exotic than any other Ducati from that era.

And if you’re questioning its provenance, don’t. Classic Driver say they have proof of ownership, including a letter from Egli confirming it. And the price? Well, it’s one of those ‘on request’ situations. Which means if you have to ask … [More | Thanks to Tim Huber for the tip]

1986 Egli-Ducati 900 SS

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