Speed Read: A Paul Smart-inspired Ducati Monster S2R and more

The latest motorcycle news, customs, classics and restomods
Our friends at Australia’s Purpose Built Moto lead the charge this week, with a stunning custom Ducati Monster S2R that recalls the iconic Paul Smart Ducatis. We then hop over to Indonesia to profile a sassy Yamaha MT-25-turned-adventure bike, look at a vintage Triumph T140 from Spain, and drool over a classic Honda CB450 with a modern engine swap.

Custom Ducati Monster S2R by Purpose Built Moto
Ducati Monster S2R by Purpose Built Moto Hotdogs and ketchup, pasta and Parmigiano Reggiano, Ferrari and the color red; some things were just made for each other. For us, it’s Ducatis with teal green frames and silver metallic bodywork.

This used to be a bone-stock Ducati Monster S2R 1000—until the team at Purpose Built Moto got their hands on it. Tom Gilroy and the gang were minding their own business when a guy named John walked into their Gold Coast workshop and asked them about Ducatis. He didn’t own one (yet), but he had a dream and a referral from Cube Performance—another Queensland local who specializes in Ducati tuning.

Custom Ducati Monster S2R by Purpose Built Moto
PBM helped John track down a Ducati Monster S2R donor a casual 1,000 miles away, in Melbourne. Regardless, the guys had the bike packed up and shipped so they could start work.

In the meantime, John had found a body kit for the Monster, designed by the Italian automotive designer, Paolo ‘Tex’ Tesio. Since he was so head-over-heels over it, PBM had one shipped to them too. With the donor bike on the bench, the team started by installing the Paolo Tex fairing with a PBM LED headlight.

Custom Ducati Monster S2R by Purpose Built Moto
Neatly tucked away behind a polished aluminum windshield, and keeping the dashboard minimal, is a tidy Daytona gauge. Biltwell Inc. grips were fitted, along with a Domino throttle, PBM switches, and alloy brake and clutch fluid reservoirs. The whole bike was naturally rewired with a PBM control module too.

The body kit also included a stunning, sculpted yet sumptuous single-seat rear end, which is just to die for. The PBM guys fitted one of their shop’s tail lights into the back, but made a custom lens for it so it integrates neatly with the Paolo Tex seat. Jamason from Timeless Auto Trim made the seat pad and upholstered it in black Alcantara.

Custom Ducati Monster S2R by Purpose Built Moto
Jutting out from beneath the seat is a custom exhaust system. The twin Termignoni mufflers that cap it off don’t usually come in black, but the crew made them that way just for John.

While the body kit was going on, PBM stripped the engine out of the bike and rebuilt it with fresh heads, and high-compression pistons. The ECU was then flashed by the aforementioned Cube Performance.

Custom Ducati Monster S2R by Purpose Built Moto
With everything back together, the frame was painted in that glorious Paul Smart colorway; the cherry on top of a perfectly delicious cake. This custom Monster’s desirability is absolutely off the scale, especially with current S2R prices. It might just be one of our favorite bikes of the year. [Purpose Built Moto | Images by Tristan Tolley]

Yamaha MT-25 adventure bike by Batakastem Workshop
Yamaha MT-25 by Batakastem Workshop It’s no secret that adventure bikes have gotten way too big for most riders. Even though most factories’ flagship dual-sports are bristling with the latest tech and suspension mod cons, all of them are tall, heavy beasts. This Yamaha MT-25 adventure bike from Indonesia’s Batakastem Workshop is the answer to this problem.

Abraham Simatupang, head honcho at Batakastem, was approached by a customer who had recently bought a 2015 Yamaha MT-25 and was looking to spruce it up. Dakar styling, with design cues from the Yamaha Ténéré 700 and Husqvarna Norden, was the brief. Not only would it transform the MT into a go-anywhere, do-anything bike, but it would also suit the customer’s tall frame.

Yamaha MT-25 adventure bike by Batakastem Workshop
With the bike in the workshop (which is just outside Jakarta), the crew got to work. The factory-cast wheels went in the bin, replaced by a set of dirt-friendly spoked wheels in proper off-road sizes. A new front end was grafted on, along with dirt bike tires and a pair of Brembo calipers up front.

Details around the bodywork are slim, but if we know our friends over in Indonesia, we’re betting that everything is handmade. The fairing, tank shrouds, and side covers look so good, they could be OEM.

Yamaha MT-25 adventure bike by Batakastem Workshop
This is exactly the kind of approach that Abraham had with the entire bike; it had to look like it had just rolled off the factory line. The tall, narrow seat is generously proportioned which fits both the owner’s frame and the Dakar vibe. A custom luggage rack was fitted to the rear and would look absolutely on point loaded up with bags.

The dashboard is another nice touch. To keep it stock-ish, and for all the electronics to function as Yamaha intended, the factory dash was relocated into a rally-style navigation tower, tucked behind a custom screen. LED lights were fitted all around, with the headlight sporting a grille, flanked by Norden 901-esque yellow fog lights.

Yamaha MT-25 adventure bike by Batakastem Workshop
ProTaper handlebars were bolted on, along with a set of crash bars and a chunky belly pan. The bike was then finished off with a custom paint job (heavily featuring Yamaha blue, of course) and a custom exhaust pipe.

Is Batakastam’s adventurized Yamaha MT-25 the antidote to displacement (and size) creep? We think so. [Source]

1972 Triumph Bonneville T140 by Bolt Motor Co.
Triumph T140 by Bolt Motor Company Bolt Motor Company specializes in high-performance café racers, often outdoing themselves with each new build. However, when a customer presented them with his grandfather’s 1972 Triumph Bonneville T140, they chose a more sympathetic route.

The bike was in a bad way, but because the client had such a strong emotional attachment to the bike, the Bolt team was happy to collect parts until they had everything they needed to revive it.

1972 Triumph Bonneville T140 by Bolt Motor Co.
The front forks were torn down and rebuilt with fresh seals and springs, and the Bonnie got all-new brakes, wheels, and paint. A set of stainless steel guards was installed, along with a new headlight, handlebars, and grips.

The client had delivered the bike to the Bolt Motor Co. workshop in two old orange-picking boxes—so this became the inspiration behind the splash of orange paint on the tank. The rest of the tank is pearl white, which, together with the vintage Triumph logos and round side plates, creates a classic look that will never go out of style.

1972 Triumph Bonneville T140 by Bolt Motor Co.
The 50-year-old engine needed a lot of love, as did the gearbox. So they were torn down and completely rebuilt with fresh components, guaranteeing another half-century of use. Bolt rewired the bike next and refurbished the brakes with new parts.

There’s a bit of a desert sled vibe going on, so an aluminum bash plate was fabricated and installed in front of the rebuilt motor. A two-into-one high-mounted exhaust was fitted too, complete with a Supertrapp muffler.

1972 Triumph Bonneville T140 by Bolt Motor Co.
The original seat pan was (surprisingly) still serviceable, but the padding was too far gone. With fresh foam, the seat was upholstered by Tapizados Llop (Bolt’s go-to trimmer). It’s thinner than the factory unit, but it cuts a more modern line with how it follows the frame all the way around.

This vintage Triumph T140 might not be as gutsy as Bolt’s usual offerings—but we’d be proud as punch to own it. [More]

Honda CB450 restomod by Ellaspede
Honda CB450 by Ellaspede
A lifelong car guy, Stephen is a lover of all things Japanese—especially Hondas. So when he decided to get into motorcycling, he settled on a 1971 Honda CB450 as his first bike. But when he rode it down to Ellaspede’s workshop in Brisbane, Australia, he quickly realized that he hadn’t picked the easy road.

“I thought I knew the history of the CB450 when I bought it, but this quickly turned out to be inaccurate,” explains Stephen. “I can vividly recall Leo at Ellaspede asking me how I managed to ride this bike over mountains down to Byron Bay, let alone the short ride from my place across the river to Ellaspede. The engine was kaput with horrendous compression and a cracked top end, which certainly explains how bloody hard it was to start.”

Honda CB450 restomod by Ellaspede
Dropping into Ellaspede to do a simple café racer build, Stephen discovered that the engine rebuild alone was going to cost twice what the bike originally cost him. Going back to the drawing board, the guys at Ellaspede suggested an engine transplant from a modern Honda. Stephen thought it sounded like a much better idea, so he went off and bought a complete 2013-model Honda CBR500R.

The original frame, tank, and side covers are all that remain from the 71 CB, with the guys choosing to transplant everything else from the newer CBR. The front end went on, as did the swingarm and wheels. Not only has it refreshed the look of the old CB, but it’s also given it a longer wheelbase, a pair of 17” wheels, and modern suspension.

Honda CB450 restomod by Ellaspede
The mono-shock swingarm was converted to a twin shock arrangement with a pair of YSS shocks. The wheels are wrapped in Pirelli Diablo Rosso II’s and the lighting is a mix of Motogadget and Koso items. A single Daytona Velona gauge keeps the rider’s cockpit focused and clutter-free.

The engine was shoehorned into the frame and was ready to go after some slight modifications—like relocating the oil filter and fabricating a new airbox. A pair of radiators from a KTM SXF motocross bike were fitted, along with aftermarket cooling fans. The bike also uses an external fuel pump, and custom stainless steel exhaust system with a Yoshimura Japan R11 MotoGP muffler.

Honda CB450 restomod by Ellaspede
Lastly, the rear end was shortened to make way for a custom seat. A modern interpretation of the original perch, it was upholstered by John Moorhouse Ergo Seats. Rothmans’ racing blue on the tank and side covers adds extra style points.

The refreshed Honda is a brilliant mix of old and new that’s as unassuming as it is clever. We hope Honda is taking notes. [Ellaspede]

Honda CB450 restomod by Ellaspede

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