Welcome to re[motor]cycled!
If you have clicked through to the 300th page of google to find my site, congratulations! If you have accidentally discovered my site whilst trying to recycle your motorbike (is that a thing?)…..don’t just yet!
This blog is all about turning a bike which would look more suited to a scrap heap and transforming it into a jaw dropping bike that still looks like it belongs on a scrapheap…All jokes aside, I aim to share with you my journey as I progress and learn the skills required to transform an old motorbike into a cafe racer/tracker inspired machine.
From a young age, I have always had the urge to take things to bits, figure out how they work and kind of put them back together again. I have never been one to shy away from a task, whether it be working around the house doing DIY or helping my dad work on cars. I had an outlet for this passion when I used to live at home in the form of a project car. I swapped out the engine, lowered the car, fitted an up-rated (much louder) exhaust and changed the interior. Unlike working on your main car that you will need to drive to work the next day, with the project car there was never any stress, it was all about learning. When I started the project, I didn’t not know much. I used the information available to me at the time i.e. Haynes manuals, forums, my dad. This allowed me to get stuck, work through problems and give me confidence to tackle most things mechanical.
Having moved away from home and now having a much smaller, not so amazingly equipped garage, I have been desperate to get another project. Already being the proud owner of a Harley Davidson (see about re[motor]cycled ), I wanted to take my passion for motorcycles and put my own signature on it. I want to take all the elements that interest me about a motorbike and amplify them through transforming a tired old motorbike and giving it a second lease of life.
Why create a blog?
I want to go through the same learning experience I went through with the project car. I want to share this experience with you. I want to hopefully encourage and inspire others to do the same. There may be some of you who don’t have the confidence to take on a project because of X,Y & Z, but I want to break through these preconceived ideas. If I can do it, you can too.
I will run through the entire build process sharing every step of the way. I will share my cost’s and time spent on the project. It’s unlikely that this will be a specific how to for a specific bike, but more a detailed guide on how you can do the same to any bike.
I get a thrill out of teaching people and sharing knowledge, and I welcome any feedback you may have on my posts. Even any ideas!
Without further ado, onto the main event.
I would like to tell you there was grand plan in place for finding the perfect motorcycle, that I had spent months researching what bike I wanted and already had the thing built in my head. In actual fact the whole thing kind of happened by accident…
I regularly use Bikeefix for inspiration and had my sights set on a big 600cc single cylinder scrambler style bike to use as a base for the project. There was two issues here: They were still expensive (£1000+) and the majority were in the arse end of England (being based in Aberdeen this is not ideal). I had missed out on a couple nice bikes through the usual bidding wars on Ebay and was left unmotivated.
A change of tact led to me setting the Ebay search for “project bike” and distance to 100 miles. Enter the tired looking 1979 Yamaha XS 750 you see in the pictures below. It was 50 miles away and had been sat for 10 years…I added to the watch list and forgot about it. 4 hours before the auction finished I got an email reminder. I was sat with another experienced bike enthusiast at the time and we had another closer look….The bike looked honest in the pictures, the advert was full of detail and the deciding factor…it was £130…determined to get a motorbike but not willing to bankrupt myself i put a maximum bid of £200 on. To my joy (well, for now its joy) 4 hours later I was the proud owner of a project bike….for £165!
£30 van hire later and my friend and I picked the motorbike up on Saturday. The bike is now back in my garage and ready to be given the once over. Comments received include “are you serious” “oh my god, look at the state of that” “that’s probably the worst thing i have ever seen” ….thanks guys!
What I aim to do
First things first, it has no keys so i need to get that sorted. Secondly, with it being sat for so long, I want to get it started up, to make sure that it runs and there are no catastrophic issues to tackle before i get too deep into the project.
Total cost’s so far
Bike purchase – £165
Van hire – £30
Total – £195
In the next blog post I will share a detailed project plan and what I intend to do to get the bike running again.
To be continued,