Tagged: cafe racer

Moto Guzzi 850 T3 Custom

Some builders are so prolific that every few months you open your inbox to find they’ve sent through another stunning creation. Others, you don’t hear from for years and you wonder if perhaps they’ve left the game or life’s endless responsibilities have scuttled their creative endeavours. It had been more than four years since we last heard from Frenchman Nicolas Baux, but now we know why, he’s been keeping himself busy building one of the coolest custom creations of the year. From the bare bones of a Moto Guzzi 850 T3, the man behind Motocyclette Certifiée Non Conforme has left no stone unturned in crafting this incredible slice of Guzzi greatness.

Having successfully displayed his last build, a gorgeous Royal Enfield, Nicolas took a short break and then launched himself into the T3 project. The CAD designer by trade first started with a storyboard to build inspiration, cutting out images of everything from automotive marvels to athletes in full flight and detailed mechanical masterpieces. Then he had to find a donor bike and the one he got his hands on had seen better days and came with the full set of panniers, giant windshield and a host of other horrors.

Suzuki TL1000S Custom

A number of motorcycles over the years have earned the nickname “The Widow Maker”, machines that will allegedly launch you into the nearest roadside tree at the twist of the throttle. The original Kawasaki H2 wore the name almost as a badge of honour, big power, and a junk chassis, but it was the Suzuki TL1000S that had motoring journalists predicting disaster, lawyers counting their cash and the Japanese company issuing recalls. Now decades on and the late ’90s bad boy has become somewhat of a cult hit, and our friends at Rajputana Customs have tamed the beast and given it a slick and sporty modern maker over.

With the success of Ducati’s L-Twin sportbikes and Honda showing a new commitment to the V-Twin in increasingly pepp’d up packages, Suzuki decided they needed a powerful 90° twin of their own and set about development. Seems they spent all of the time on the engine, as it was and is a blinder, the problem is the chassis and suspension package was an afterthought. The TL1000S came to market with a rotary style rear damper, separate rear spring and steep steering geometry. And those early journalists who got to test one on a smooth as silk track knew disaster awaited on the open road.

TURNING IT UP TO ELEVEN: 1980 Yamaha XS1100.

Forty years is a long time in motorcycles, and where once upon a time a manufacturer could have a successful touring bike by just bolting a big motor into an existing frame, these days people want all the creature comforts of a first-class flight. But that is where hot rodding comes in, taking that basic combination of a thumping engine in a simple chassis and stripping it back, making it quick and customising it to call it your own. On a mission to build such a project at home to test out the full suite of his mechanical skills, Geoffrey Viola went on the hunt for a big block bike and has taken this 1980 Yamaha XS1100 all the way to create a slice of Americana in the heart of Europe.

MOTO PHOTOS. 2019 Machine Show, Braidwood, Australia

[caption id="attachment_52222" align="alignnone" width="640"] Gasoline’s ‘The Keeper’ BMW R65, made for our good mate Cam Elkins[/caption]

The same thing happened every year. I’d promise myself that I’d go to Australia’s Machine Show and then at the very last minute the reality of travelling three hours south of Sydney would kick me in the family jewels. With a six-hour round trip, it’d either be a seriously big day or I’d have to organise accommodation…