Thursday, June 28, 2012

Coffee stop for cafe racers

We've had some neat cafe racers and classics come through the Mid Life Cycles workshop this week and the repairs have been fuelled by coffee and ciabattas courtesy of our neighbouring cafe, Est.1983 Espresso.
Morgan's Honda CB200 outside our fave cafe.

The first bike through was Morgan G's Honda CB200 (ex-Adelaide) which needed a few final touches before it went onto Club Permit (Historic rego) with the Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Club.
The bike had a fair birthday courtesy the guys at Gassit Motorcycles when it was first delivered and then needed a bit of re-wiring, a couple of globes and a thorough check-over before passing its safety inspection. If the mid-winter rain ever eases, Morgan should have it out on the urban prowl...
Then there was Irish lad Ben - set upon riding around Australia on a near-forty year old Honda CB550. The bike itself wasn't in bad shape, apart from clogged carbies and float levels all over the shop. A few hours patient care from Dr Roger and the 550 was back together and running well. Now we just have to persuade Ben that a 20-litre plastic jerrycan strapped to a packrack is NOT a great auxiliary fuel tank.

Next up was one of our favourites - a really neat Yamaha SR500 that had been restored and then needed a few extra jobs done for enthusiastic new owner Tom.
Tom's 1978 Yamaha SR500 is ready to ride.

Maybe it's just us, but it seems no matter how good the restoration (or refurbishment) is, there are always a few detail jobs that don't get done first time round. The SR has been nicely done, with just a few custom touches such as clip-on bars, and a new cafe racer seat that we had in stock. It deserved that little bit extra attention, especially when we found the forks had been over-filled with oil and needed to be pulled, drained and re-fitted. In the course of that job, it became obvious that the head-stem bearings should be replaced, so a new set of tapered bearings went in there (after a bit of a search around our suppliers). The fuel tap had decided to leak, so that got a new kit courtesy of Cykel. So Tom should be bike-mounted in the next few days.

But back to cafes - our new best coffee friends Est.1983 Espresso are right next door to Mid Life Cycles in Cremorne St, just off Swan St in Richmond and a couple of hundred metres from Richmond Station - itself a short train ride from Melbourne's CBD.
Ioanna knows the value of a good coffee...
New owners Ioanna and Melinda re-opened the business mid-April after refurbishing what had become a tired old cafe. Now with a trendy service window opening onto the street, some inside benches and tables on the footpath, and (most importantly) great coffee courtesy Single Origin Roasters in Sydney, they've become the hot spot for locals and passers-by. Call and see them Monday-Friday for coffee and cake or something more substantial.

1 comment:

  1. Just flicking through and saw my first ever cafe racer build from 5 yrs ago in the form of the green cb200 at the top of the page. I built that up in sydney and sold it to a bloke in Adelaide. Bought with a seized engine and 20yrs worth of rust due to it being outside uncovered. I rebuilt the little engine since I'm a mechanics, a panel shop mate painted it in a 2pk lovely Mazda green colour from the 1970's with the gold pin stripe setting it off and the gold and black stripe over the seat I made as well. Someone has replaced my great small chrome gauges with the original big ugly ones but otherwise it looks as I built it including the 2pk brushed aluminium silver rims. Just about everything was new on the bike from the switch blocks to the indicators. I rode it around sydney for a short time and it got massive attention where ever it went before selling it. I've since built another cb200, cb350/4 and a cb250k4 that got a mention and a pic in two wheels magazine. All except one of the builds has ended up in Melbourne. You must love the hipster look down there. Glad to see its still going well 5 yrs later and being enjoyed.