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Gold Standard: Unik Edition’s stunning Honda Seven-Fifty

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
We love to hear success stories from builders, and Tiago Gonçalves and Luis Gonçalves of Unik Edition are on a roll. The Portuguese duo first hit our radar four years ago, and now have a crew of seven in their shop. In the last two years Unik have ‘gone pro’ and delivered 28 customs.

Despite the shared surname, Tiago and Luis not brothers—but they have a common vision and a good eye for style. This elegant 1996 Honda CB750 Seven-Fifty is the latest machine to roll out of Unik, and it was a somewhat tortuous journey.

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
“This project was particularly challenging,” says Tiago. “The first time we met Francisco—the owner—he was researching workshops that could customize his CB750 Seven-Fifty.”

That was back in 2016, and Francisco eventually chose another builder. But after the bike was dismantled there, nothing else was done. Earlier this year it arrived in Unik Edition’s garage in Moscavide, just north of Lisbon, as a box of bits.

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
“It was a mix of new parts, old parts to repair, and parts to throw away,” says Tiago. “A mess! Other builders will know the feeling.”

To complicate matters even further, the client did not know what he wanted. “After seeing thousands of photos, he wanted everything he saw,” says Tiago. “It was a challenge to find common ground, and manufacture parts to complete the bike.”

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
The mid-90s Seven-Fifty was an air-cooled middleweight with a detuned version of the CBX engine, which delivered a solid 73 hp. Known as the Nighthawk in the US, it’s turned out to be a tough and reliable machine that’s still popular today on the secondhand market, despite the bare-bones spec.

That makes it an excellent candidate for a custom job, and Unik Edition have gone to town on this one.

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
The staid UJM now looks simply stunning from front to back. Leading the way are GSX-R forks, hooked up via a CNC-machined custom triple tree with an inset Motogadget speedo. The new forks are matched to a pair of Öhlins shocks, for a lowered stance that also raises the handling dynamics.

There are new 17-inch Kineo spoked rims front and back, adding a touch of symmetry and dropping a few pounds in the process. The rear rim is on the wide side too, for a beefier look than stock, and shod with 180/55-17 rubber.

The braking system has been completely rebuilt, and the rear caliper relocated to work with the Kineo wheel.

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
The inline four motor is virtually bulletproof, but the Unik crew still opened it up for an overhaul. They installed a new cylinder head, and rebuilt and re-jetted the carbs. The engine covers were refinished, and a custom exhaust system was hooked up.

It’s now a 4-into-2-into-4 setup, TIG welded using stainless steel. New intakes with K&N filters free up the breathing, so there will be a useful power boost.

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
The back end of the bike is all new, with a classic leather café seat echoing the curved indents of the stock tank. The battery and several electrical components have been relocated to a small box under the new subframe, freeing up space under the seat that’s partially hidden by new side covers.

There’s a new wiring loom connected to a full suite of Motogadget buttons and turn signals, plus an m.lock RFID ignition system and a Koso ‘Thunderbolt’ LED headlight, mounted on a neat custom bracket.

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
After crafting a pair of tire-hugging fenders, the Seven-Fifty went off to Johnny Ink for black and gold paint, and the effect is stunning—especially the striping on the sides of the tank.

“Francisco wanted to ‘raise the bar’ for the finishing standards of a Unik Edition,” Tiago explains. “Even the screws on this bike had to be more than perfect—something we have achieved, while keeping a ‘retro futuristic’ look.”

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition
Francisco has called his Honda ‘Laurus,’ a reference to the Laurus nobilis leaves used for the traditional laurel wreath presented on motorsport podiums. “The #01 painted on the side cover was a customer choice and has the same meaning,” says Tiago. “It mirrors the spirit of cafe racing—to be the first, or become a winner.”

Unik’s own winning streak is likely to continue: orders are now coming in from international customers, who appreciate the quality of Portuguese craftsmanship. A well deserved tick of approval.

Unik Edition | Facebook | Instagram | Images by Balaklava

Honda CB 750 Seven-Fifty cafe racer by Unik Edition

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