Velocity's Cafe Racer TV Season 1 Build
1968 Honda CB450
With a deep and luxurious scheme shod with black and brass the Brass Cafe pulls hues from the Steampunk genre which is so curiously being explored today. Sporting hand-tooled, solid brass accents and plating, it will follows all the classic cafe lines while forging a path for new ideas and inspiration to be explored by the next generation Cafe Racer builder. Leaving nothing unturned, all the trimmings will be present making any Ton'r more than pleased with the final product.In an effort to pay homage to classic DIY Cafe Racer culture, as much of the original 1968 donor bike was used as possible while modifying the remaining elements for a hand-hewn and "factory-like" look and feel.
Herm and Jason's desire with the Brass Cafe was to produce what could have been a factory concept bike from the 60's were Honda tailoring their efforts towards rich tones and style rooted in Cafe Racer culture. The tank for example, is an original item that was cut on both sides and the top with new hand-made pieces being grafted in creating a look similar to that of the stock Honda with a little Dime City flair. The fuel cap is a hand forged item and the brass vent line is a completely functional item.The rear frame section was modified, braced and finished off with DCC's signature rear steel loop. The finishing touch being their "Wasp" rear tail section. Crafted by hand and sculpted from potting foam and then transfered to fiberglass, the design compliments the width, height and lines of not only the tank, but the complete bike for a rolling look and feel that adds to the element of visual movement seen even when the bike is sitting still on the side stand. A thin pad that acts as cushion offers roughly the same amount of comfort found in 50's and 60's Cafe Racers. None.
Keeping true to the rich and deep scheme many items were blasted and powdercoated gloss black including the wheels and forks which were finished off with stainless steel spokes, brass nipples and original hubs which have been re-worked with Dime City signature vents found on both the front and rear. Hand finished by file, the vents allow the brakes to breath under heavy load while complimenting the entire scheme of the bike with it's brass and black tones. The finishing element, nickel plated hubs for a slightly muted tone so's not to overtake the wheels themselves.
From a performance perspective no expense was spared. A completely rebuilt CB450 engine now boasts approximately 505cc's of power through an overbore kit, custom cams, worked intake and exhaust and a set of Mikuni carburetors of course, finished off with hand spun brass velocity stacks. The exhaust system consists of original equipment headers grafted to new upswept sections mated to original Norton style mufflers for that iconic Cafe Racer look and sound.And as for chasing the TON, that illusive mark of speed, the Brass Cafe will not only exceed the ton it will pull the front wheel of the ground affording the rider a full-on wheelie should he feel bold enough to crack the throttle and snap the clutch.
All in all the vision behind The Brass Cafe is one of purity, both in style and heritage. Dime City will pursued classic forms in metal working, paying respect to the builders of the 50's and 60's and what they stood for...while simultaneously hoping to inspire a renewed interest in the motorcycle as the ultimate expression of form and function.