Says Ron; "The bike was all complete but had been sitting quite some time. Included is a before picture after an initial cleanup. I decided to do a budget build, so I lowered it at both ends, trimmed off all the frame parts I didn’t need, and made some drag bars. The aftermarket parts added were headlight, tail/brake light, rear fender, speedometer, mirror, and solo seat. The ignition switch has been relocated to right side under the side cover.
I did all of the paint work in my garage with rattle cans. Used some higher quality clear coat with hardening agent, and it seems to be holding up really well.
It was fun to build and has been a blast to ride. Goes down the road great. I have about 1400 miles on it since completed this spring. This has been my first bike project, but now thinking I need to do another!"
Another jewel of a bike found on the Moto Rivista website and I wish I knew the author of these next few words but here they are...
Japan has to be my ultimate destination for a number of reasons. First one is pretty obvious which is bikes like the feature of the day a Kawasaki W650 and the others are the culture, history and food.
Kid Custom Factory from Fukuoka Keyago Japan has sent us their classic bobber creation a custom Kawasaki W650 aka Wild Berry. The workshop is owned and operated by Shintaro Kido, Kid Custom Factory focuses on building tastefully customized domestic and American bikes.
Japan’s contribution to motorcycles goes way back in time; Kawasaki W650 was designed to reflect the legacy of a Meguro motorcycle. Meguro is one of the oldest Japanese motorcycle companies which later became a partner of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd.
Kid Custom Factory’s Wild Berry is based on a 2004 Kawasaki W650; hammered aluminum plate is used in almost the entire exterior of this build. The killer fabrication work has introduced great lines on this bike, the straight line from the tank to the seat is exceptional.
The customization work on this Kawasaki W650 includes KID Custom Factory’s handle bar, a hand fabricated fuel tank and a custom frame. Hand fabricated front and rear fenders were also hammered in stainless steel and the W650 engine is assembled with K&N air filters. Wherever you look on this bike you will feel a “line”, such as the elegant, flowing silencer and exhaust pipe which were manufactured in accordance with the frame line.
The switch was moved to the side cover, a genuine consideration for a small owner. The side stay original number plate mount was made for this custom bike, produced from solid aluminum by making full use of equipment such as a lathe. The finished bike rolls on metzeler ME880 tires and was painted in house by KID Custom Factory.
The bike above is not just an average custom bike, almost every part of this bike has been fabricated in-house. Wild by name and wild by nature, Wild Berry is proudly owned by a fearless lady! No wonder I am desperate to visit Japan and drooling over custom shops like Kid Custom Factory!
I found this website recently and they really are craftsmen. They are amongst the few that do Kawasaki bobbers using KZ440s and not just the retro W650. In fact now I've got a bee in my bonnet about the Kawasaki 440. I'm thinking it might be a great, inexpensive and easily converted UJM. There are just not that many millions of Kawasaki bobbers out there so I'm glad NoggDesign has helped me fill out this page just a bit.
Paul Crowe from a great site called The Kneeslider says this about the Aussie custom bike shop called Deus Ex Machina;
"There's an Australian motorcycle shop by the name of Deus Ex Machina that is guaranteed to make you feel a bit slighted by the Japanese manufacturers. You see, in Australia, it seems they can purchase brand new Kawasaki W650s and Yamaha SR400s (W650s? I didn't know that!). And just to rub salt in the wound, Deus Ex Machina takes these bikes, along with a few Triumphs and Sportsters, and turns them into some of the nicest custom cafe racers and street trackers you could possibly hope for. Subtle, not over done, just right. If you liked Bratstyle, you'll really like these guys.
The SR400 can be ordered in a variety of configurations from the Stage 1 Rocker or Stage 2 Custom to a Stage 3 Manx or Grievous Angel. Each one has a style that would stand out on bike night and look great on the road but, of course, unless you dig up an old one on eBay, you can't build one of these. The same goes for all of the variations of the W650."
Yamaha SR400s are very popular in Japan and Europe and in Australia, too, it seems, but according to some folks these would not sell in the U.S. No one would want a nice, light, easy handling motorcycle that can be customized into a gorgeous little cafe racer. Absolutely no one and it would be really hard to start selling them here because they would have to ship some over here along with the rest of the bikes already coming over. How could they do that? It's probably way too much trouble. ... Right.
You know, we could make a pretty big list of all of the cool bikes sold elsewhere that someone has decided couldn't possibly sell here. How hard would it be for the Japanese manufacturers to try re-introducing a few models and see what happens. Bikes like the SR400 have a huge aftermarket overseas. If someone were to set up a custom shop selling bikes here like Deus does in Australia, just see what would happen. What could it hurt?
Deus Ex Machina seems to be one of the few pros to regularly use Kawasaki motorcycles with which to create quality bobbers.
classic-japanese-bikes is certainly a fan.