UPDATE: An Exquisite Reader CB550 Gulf Racing Tthemed Cafe Racer

Update: Chris had actually sent me links to a a pair of photo albums and he actually pointed me to the better of the two… which I promptly forgot about and posted the lesser quality of the finished pics. So I thought I’d update this oversight by sorting it out now. These are much better and more representative shots of the finished product. Someone really does has a nice touch with the lens Chris. Thanks and orry for any confusion..

Chris Trotter send in this very special build. I absolutely love the Gulf Racing colors. Oh and these are just a very small taste. Be sure to check out the slideshow folks. SLIDESHOw OF THE FULL BUILD

Hey Steve,
So I bought the original bike a 1975 Honda CB550K in October of 2010, which was stock except for the exhaust. With the exception of the engine, which was in great shape, everything on the bike was replaced, refurbished or built anew. The subframe was built to match up to the tail, which was built to echo the tank. Both tank and seat/tail are constructed from a mix of fiberglass and Kevlar. That was an eye-opener for me; due to Kevlar’s uncooperative nature, I have to say the next build will exclude it entirely! All of the 36 year old bearings and bushings were replaced for peace of mind. Many members of the forum Do The Ton contributed to this build whether by encouragement or hooking me up with parts. For instance, the rear sets and top triple clamp were machined by a forum member, and the logos were airbrushed on by a friend and fellow forum member, with the stencils being made by another! The paint scheme and name are in honor of Gulf Racing’s efforts at the 1975 24 Hours of Le Mans race.

Thanks Steve! Let me know if you need anything more.

Really special bike. Well done.

Here’s a progress pic…

And the before pic…



  1. Hey, sweet bike! I dig all the open spaces. That bike went on a serious diet. Where did you get the headlight & brackets from. I also have a 550 that’s getting itself a little bit cafe’d up. Just having some issues with the lighting/wiring. In Canada it needs all the lights to get registered. Suck!

    1. Hey Kip, the headlight is a Lucas bucket with a Bosch H4 lens. The brackets can be found at any site that sells “cafe” parts, or ebay. Just look for 35mm headlight brackets.

    1. Thank you sir! I spend most of my time in Bozeman, but may be in Great Falls, Helena, or Kalispell this summer. Hope to see you around.

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