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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've spent the last few years mostly helping buddies in my club build their bikes, so it's about time I build one for myself. My first kid is coming in May so I'm not sure how much time I'm going to have for this project. I'm hoping to knock out most of it during the cold months before he/she's born. We'll see how it goes.

I've had a Triumph bobber for years and a few other daily riders, but I've really been itching to build a Cafe for the last few years. The real impetus for this project though, is that a couple friends of mine I've just got started building there own featherbed frames. Check out Billyfry's thread here to see what I'm talking about.

Billy hooked me up with one of his early frames and it looks great:
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
With a kid on the way my budget for this build is next to nothing so I'm really going to have to scrounge my junk/parts pile and the loft for as many parts as I can get.

I've had this Kawa 550 sitting in the shed for years. A buddy was going to chop it but lost interest and I don't have a title for it anyway, so it's sawzall time:


If I measured well this swing arm should fit nice. It's actually a little longer than the original Norton would have been:


Now I just need the front forks. Out of all the junk I have laying around these look the best. I have an original Triump front setup but someone has done some real ugly work lengthening them so I think I'm better off with the jap forks. :
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Here's the Triumph donor. I've had this for years. Originally it was going to be for 650 bobber to replace my 500 bobber. It came with a bolt on hardtail and an extra bolt on plunger, but none of the original rear frame or swing arm. Otherwise it might have been turned into a Triumph cafe years ago.



A quick mockup of my days treasure hunt.:


Now that I have all the major components all that's left is everything. I hate these wheels so maybe a little more digging is in order to find some spooked wheels that aren't too bad.
 

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"Out of all the junk I have laying around..." My favorite words. Looking forward to seeing how this build progresses. Back in the late 60s/early 70s Peter Williams raced the Arter Matchless (I think his best finish in the Island was second to Ago's MV in 1971) with alloy wheels. Described back then as artillery or wagon wheels. At the time he was the only one with alloy wheels. I always thought it looked cool and have a couple of the same Kawa wheels just in case. I think they look good and were it me, I'd run them.
 

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Tell me whats wrong with those? I think they would look great on your Triton. And drive a few "purists" nuts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Tell me whats wrong with those? I think they would look great on your Triton. And drive a few "purists" nuts.
You guys have converted me. I like that they're at least a nice simple aluminum 5 spoke. It could be worse, I have an ugly set of Com-Star wheels in the junk pile as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Had some time Saturday to get a little work done. I cleaned up the headstock from the Kawa donor. In hind sight it probably would have taken less time to make a new one, but since this is what I had and I didn't feel like bothering a friend to use a lathe, this will have to do.



I'm hoping to find time this week to put the frame in Billyfry's jig to make the final cuts to attach the neck. I also pulled the 650 from it's original frame to start test fitting it. I don't know if there's some trick to getting a 650 motor out of the frame without taking the heads off, but I gave up and just cut the frame apart. I didn't really want to chop up the original frame but It's a reconstructed title so all I really needed was the VIN tag and motor.



The 650 fits in Billy's frame really nice. Since it's not an original Featherbed frame and doesn't have any of the original mounting tabs, I'm going to make up all my own mounting plates.

I also, tossed on the original Triumph tank to see how it looked.


I'd like to try and make this work for the bike. Partly because it's what I have and don't want to spend any money, but mainly because I've always loved the way Triumph tanks look.


I could probably get away with just mounting the tank on top the frame but the hot rodder in me is saying to section, widen, and channel it down over the frame. It already has a few dents and is far from pristine so why not cut it up.
 
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