What's old is new again, and the newest trend on the block is Cafe Racers.
Written by well-known motorcycle and automotive author Doug Mitchel, How to Build a Café Racer starts with a history lesson. While those first bikes were built in the UK for racing from cafe to cafe, the current rage for Cafe Racers has definitely spread to the US.
Converting a stock motorcycle to a Cafe Racer requires more than a fairing and a few decals. The book starts with chapters on planning and choosing an appropriate bike, followed by chapters that detail the modifications that will likely be embraced by anyone converting a stocker to a rocker. From shocks and tires to engine modifications, Doug's book lays out each type of modification and how it's best carried through.
The center of the book holds a gallery of finished bikes. These are not just Triumphs or Nortons, but nearly every brand imaginable from Japan, Italy, the UK, and Germany.
The final chapters include two, start-to-finish cafe builds. This is the chance for the reader to see how professional shops take a stock Honda, Triumph, or Ducati and convert it into a fast, sexy, and functional Cafe Racer, ready to race from cafe to cafe on Saturday night, or around the race track on Sunday afternoon.
Doug Mitchel started his career as a professional journalist over 20 years ago. Today he is listed as author of over 20 books, all illustrated with his own very high quality photographs. Doug is also a regular contributor to a variety of magazines, from American Iron to Iron Works.