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Skillzmans XS 400 Cafe build...yep another cafe!!

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by skillzman1, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. So this is my first attempt at a cafe build...picked up an '81 XS 400...lots of work to come...but so far today I got the 'knee dents' done...and into primer...more to follow!!
  2. HoughMade

    HoughMade XS400 Guru Top Contributor

    Nice work on that tank. First rate!
  3. Thanks..now I need to plan out a paint scheme...decisions,decisions!!LOL
  4. 78whiteorbs

    78whiteorbs XS400 Member

    Nice man !!! Looks top notch ! I have an xs400 cafe project as well , do you have any spare parts?
  5. thanks...I have a few stock take off parts,...rear fender stuff,directionals,couple of coils....maybe the wheels...not sure yet
  6. HoughMade

    HoughMade XS400 Guru Top Contributor

    You're doing the right thing by going cafe with that bike. The sooner we forget XS400s once had "king and queen" seats and those awful pullback bars, the better.
  7. hammerlo

    hammerlo Iron Horse Riders

    Wow that tank looks great....cant wait to see the paint scheme!!!:thumbsup:
  8. hahaha...my sentiments exactly Houghmade!!
  9. Love the knee dents.....I may just have to cafe the next one!! lol Great job though!
  10. drewpy

    drewpy Excess twin Top Contributor

    how do you make knee dents? Hammer?

    they do look a bit like xs750 tanks (which is no detriment, as they look good)

  11. yep...hammer...some 'finesse'...and light filler,etc,..
  12. let me get some thoughts on this....My bike has the wire spoked wheels...drums front and back.
    Should I stick with what I have...and polish them up....or should I bother trying to upgrade to disk stuff?
    I personally prefer hydraulic disc brakes....but does the 'old drum' look give a bit more vintage feel?
    I heard said that the wire spoked drum setups are harder to come by...is that true?
    If so it would seem to add value to the bike....if thats true?
    Obviously its a budget minded build...I want it to be quality workmanship...and maybe on the verge of 'work of art' status...which I think is mostly in the elbow grease used and patience.But I dont want it to look like I skimped on certain things.......

    not sure if thats making any sense....Maybe those who have been around this stuff awhile longer have some input as to what looks cool and somewhat unique...and what looks average.
    I think I'm leary of getting 'upside down' $$ wise in a hurry....you all know how that works...starts out as a easy/cheap project that starts sucking the wallet dry..
  13. foul

    foul XS400 Enthusiast

    I would keep the wheels you have, spoke wheels with drums have a very cool vintage look to them. And it keeps the bar less cluttered because you dont need a brake cylinder.

    The modded tank looks sweet btw.
  14. drewpy

    drewpy Excess twin Top Contributor

    see if you could put in some "speed" holes and scoops on the drums?

    bit like this [​IMG]
  15. I'm tossing paint scheme ideas around...any thoughts on a white framed bike?
    I'd like to do something a little different than the usual black frame....but not sure of the overall look.
  16. I think a white frame could have the potential to look great with the right colors on the tins. The only bad thing that I could think of about having a white frame would be road grime, dirt, etc. White is one of the harder colors to keep clean, and I think a frame is hard to keep clean itself. I'd say go for it and make it different. Just plan on taking a little more time to keep it clean.
  17. Hmmm...good point...Its likely to be a special occasion bike...or limited use...not from the stand point of being a garage queen,but just the fact that I rarely ride the other bike I have,...so two bikes splitting time...not likely many miles...more likely a show piece for awhile...so keeping it clean wont be too much ...I think.(I'll prbably do it and be bitchin at myself by next winter).
    I'm thinking of a scheme similar to this...maybe some accent colors incorporated in the trim pieces etc,..
  18. I say go for it! I've never been a huge fan of the "tribal-like" graphics, but the tank pictured still looks good, and is definitely something different. The bike in the second pic is awesome in my opinion! I really like the look of the frame and tins both being white! Do it, I say!!
  19. yeah...not sure on the tribal...I like the colors mostly...maybe I could do 'yamaha' in japanese or something..

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