Motorcycle Classics has teamed up with Dairyland Cycle Insurance, sponsors of our popular Bonneville Build in 2010, for our next bike project, and this time you get to play a hand by helping us choose what to build. Like previous builds, our next project will be a custom classic motorcycle. This time, we want you to help us choose our subject bike by voting for your favorite in the Motorcycle Classics/Dairyland Cycle Insurance Race To Rebuild.
It’s no secret that we like riders, so for this next build, we’ve chosen four bikes that fit a theme of classic highway cruisers: the BMW R90/6, the Harley-Davidson Iron Head Sportster 1000, the Honda CB750 Four, and the last of the “real” Triumphs, the classic Triumph T140 Bonneville. All we need from you is your vote to determine which one of these classic cruisers deserves to get the Motorcycle Classics custom touch.
Once you’ve chosen our build bike, you can follow our progress online and weigh in with your opinion on what we’re doing and what you’d like to see on our finished bike. We’ll make regular updates on our build page and feature highlights of the build in every issue of Motorcycle Classics. And when it’s done, some lucky reader will ride our custom classic motorcycle home when we give it away!
Voting is easy: Just go to build sponsor Dairyland Cycle Insurance’s Race to Rebuild Facebook page to “like” our project and cast your vote. But hurry, because voting closes March 9, 2012. So log on now to help us decide what classic bike we’ll customize in the Motorcycle Classics/Dairyland Cycle Insurance Race to Rebuild!
As much as we admire people who spend the time and the money to fully restore an old motorcycle, bikes like this 1974 BMW R90S remind us that they're only original once.
BMW's line of air-cooled bikes are known for their longevity and simplicity, especially the early Seventies models. This R90S shows just more than 62,000 miles on the odometer, and appears to be in very nice shape for its age. It still wears its original Black/Smoke paint, a highlight of the R90S models, along with the original seat cover.
The bike had new tires just 300 miles ago and saw recent serverice at a BMW dealer. Though the seller mentions the paint is somewhat faded on teh fairing, tank and tail, we like the fact that this is a bike that could be bought, ridden and maintained without the worries of a new nick here or a scratch there. Someone should buy this and continue to rack up the miles on it.
To visit the auction for this 1974 BMW R90S, go here.
To read the Motorcycle Classics review of the BMW R90S, go here.
Listed with no reserve, this 1938 Triumph Speed Twin is a bike that rarely comes up for sale, and with a starting bid of just $4,000, there's a chance that somebody is going to get one heck of a deal.
According to the auction, the engine turns over with what seems to be good compression. The transmission shifts through the gears smoothly and firmly, finds neutral easily. The body seems to be in fair shape, despite the "dent/crease" at the top front of the fuel tank.
The auction also mentions that the bike currently wears the wrong headlight and supports, but that it does include the original toolbox.
To visit the auction for this 1938 Triumph Speed Twin, go here.
To read the Motorcycle Classics story on a later 1959 Triumph Speed Twin, go here.
This restored 1979 Kawasaki KZ1300 has just under 36,000 miles and looks to be in prime shape for many more. 1979 was the first production year for the KZ1300, and the auction states that the previous owner of this bike spent several thousand dollars performing a fraome-off chassis and engine restoration.
Although it wears a non-stock 6-into-1 exhaust, it otherwise appears to be in very nice, stock condition. The bike is available at National Powersports Distributors in Pembroke, New Hampshire.
To read the Motorcycle Classics story comparing the Benelli Sei 900, the Honda CBX 1000 and the Kawasaki KZ1300, go here.
To visit the auction for this Kawasaki KZ1300, go here.
Though this BSA sounds like it needs a little tuning to be ready for the road, it appears to be in fine original condition. The Firebird Scrambler debuted in 1968 with both high exhaust pipes and lights, and it sold reasonably well.
According to the auction, this bike wears its original gast tank. Though the paint appears to be in good condition, the auction doesn't mention whether it's original or whether it's been repainted. The chrome looks to be quite nice, and the bike appears to be a low-mileage survivor. The speedometer needs to be rebuilt, and one of the Amal Concentrics needs to be gone through, but if you've been looking for a BSA scrambler, this might be just what you need.
To visit the auction for this 1968 BSA Firebird Scrambler, go here.
To read the Motorcycle Classics story on the BSA Firebird Scrambler, go here.
This highly modified Honda CB1100F is just too cool to pass up. It started life as a stock 1100F, when a dealer pulled it right off the dealership floor and, with just a few mods, took it racing at Daytona.
According to the auction, Tryg Westby of Tulsa, Okla., was a Honda dealer and club racer back in the 1980s. In 1983, Tryg pulled the bike off the dealership floor to race it in the Open Super Stock division at Daytona. With just a few minor mods, the bike won its inagural race. After a short but successful career in Open Super Stock, Tryg decided to modify the bike further to race in the premier Open Super Bike Class. The bike features an 1125 pist kit, SuperTrapp header, EPM Magnesium wheels and a long, long list of unobtainable parts.
To read the whole story, visit the auction for this 1983 Honda CB1100F here.
To read the Motorcycle Classics feature on the Honda CB1100F, go here.
If this bike looks familiar but you just can't put a finger on why, you're not alone. Yes, it looks sort of like a 1983 Honda CX650T, the turbocharged V-twin that was availabile in the U.S. for just one year. But the fairing looks different somehow, and it's missing the giant "Turbo" lettering on the exhaust. Why you ask? Because it's not a Turbo.
This 1983 Honda CX650E is the non-turbo version of the CX650 that was popular in Europe, but never sold in the U.S. This particular bike was brought onto the continent through Canada and now lives in Florida. According to the auction, the bike is much the same as the Turbo, "but with out the heat, spool-up time, and low reliability of the turbo bike."
The CX650E shares the same liquid-cooled and shaft-drive set up as the Turbo, and the listing says this bike has no issues other than an "intermittent squeak in the rear suspension somewhere, and faded graphics. Otherwise starts, runs, shifts, stops perfectly. And looks great doing it."
We think it would make a great all-around ride, and the joy of having something unusual just adds to the fun. To visit the auction for this 1983 Honda CX650E, go here.
To read the Motorcycle Classics article on the 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo, go here.