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Royal Enfield Café Racer by Rajputana Customs

Posted on July 13, 2013 by Andrew in Café Racer. 60 comments

When Numero Uno Jeans were looking for the numero uno bike builder in India to build them a café racer, they were told to visit Rajputana Customs. Even though Rajputana hadn’t built a café racer before, they had the credentials and were keen to build something a little different from their past projects. Numero Uno were pretty loose with their brief. It had to be a café racer, it also had to use the Numero Uno colors and it had to have a few branding details – so people knew it was a Numero Uno bike. Vijay and the guys from Rajputana started with the classic Indian donor bike – the 500cc Royal Enfield. “This is our first full-blown café racer and we hope to build a few more of these in the years to come” says Vijay. The bike took them three months to build and all for the very palatable cost of 450,000 Rupee, which works out to be around $8000 – not bad for a fully customised, ground up build.

When I asked Vijay where the stunning tank came from I quickly received the answer “we made it ourself… nothing is off the shelf”. That pretty much sums up Rajputana Customs. When they build a bike, they like to build everything they can on the bike. This time, like most of the time, they started with the a Royal Enfield and stripped it down to the frame.

The swing arm was customised and then the stock Royal Enfield shocks were ditched for a mono shock set up, making for a much smoother and visually appealing ride. The front forks were replaced with KTM Front Forks. Also up front, the headlight was custom cast and the rear tail light was cast out of brass.

At the rear of the bike, there’s been a jack shaft offset for the chain to accomodate a thicker rear tyre. The custom made seat has been covered in Número Uno black denim (just don’t wash it with your whites). The electrics have been hidden in a custom made Ellipsoid metal housing. To complete the classic café racer look, a set of clip-ons have replaced the stock bars. If you’re wondering what blue paint they used, then you will be left wondering, because it was custom made (of course) using a variety of blues, to get the perfect Numero Uno blue.

This might be the first café racer Rajputana Customs have built, but we’re guessing it won’t be their last. As for Numero Uno, they are blown away by the finished motorcycle. So much so, they are now planning to take the bike on a world tour. Who knows, it might end up in a mall near you.

  • Best Enfield Cafe Racer I’ve seen! Love the rear end…very original, super clean build.

  • Anonymous

    I only dislike the way the end of the tank sits on the seat. The tank should have been made shorter to sit on the frame and lower to leave no gap between the engine and the tank.

    • MF

      Funny, that was the detail I really appreciated.

    • tha-b

      your jeans will stuck on that tank

  • Mrityunja Singh

    Dyed in the wool custom cafe!

  • pietro

    such a balanced build!! these guys rock

  • aztatman

    I would be nice if the photos showed the technical side of the machine instead of superficial nonsense like gas caps and handlebar end caps. Who makes the mono shock? Is it motorcycle or bicycle? The front forks are inverted. Are they R.E. or custom?

    • Vijay Singh

      The monoshock has been lifted off a Honda Unicorn and the travel has been kept to 2 inches keeping in mind the motion ratio at hand. If you cared to “read” the description then you’d know they are taken from a KTM Duke 200 and lastly the “superficial nonsense” you are referring to are the “details” of this “custom build”. Hope that helps (this is me being nice) we stand by our work here at RCM.

      • Blake Proudfoot

        You beat me to it. Gotta love when people complain about a lack of details that are clearly listed. Great looking bike by the way!

      • Jay

        The bike is awesome Vijay. Superficial it is not… nonsense it is not. Keep doing what you do… some of us appreciate it.

        • coldsunshine

          The guy wasn’t talking about the bike, he was referring to the pics. Sounds to me like he wants some real info.

        • Mister Oddjob

          Did you read the commenter’s post? You surely didn’t understand it. He didn’t say the bike was “superficial” or “nonsense”. He just wanted more info on the technical details.

      • haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

        I read the description. “KTM Front Forks” does not tell us they were taken from a KTM Duke 200. Way to have a shitty attitude.

        Where’s the license plate go?

        • haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

          License plate went home. He built the bike. He know if to keep it or not.

      • coldsunshine

        That’s some nice PR. I can see why the guy is wondering about pics of end caps and the gas cap. And the tech details aren’t clearly stated. I had some good things to say, but your attitude has put me off. And this is me being nice. You might consider letting Andy “defend” you here, because he will.

        • I can see the issue with the gas cap and bar end shots, but it is a huge part of the story. Having said that some nice detailed shots of the mono shock would have been good as well.

          • coldsunshine

            Sure, I say Andy and Scott jumps on here. lol. By the by, this is Tony Stark. Apparently Facebook doesn’t think I am a “real person.”

        • barney fife

          Take a chill pill.

      • Mister Oddjob

        I read the description and had the same questions as aztatman. The questions aren’t a criticism of your workmanship, but more about the lack of technical info of how you did it. This is one of the best custom Enfields I’ve seen because it is an unusual mix of modern components on an archaic design. The “what” and “how” of those modern components is the most compelling part of this build; much more than the “detail” shots of the brass caps that are just branding for Numero Uno Jeans. I’d hate to see what your response would be to someone who actually criticized your design and/or craftsmanship.

        • Vijay Singh

          I understood that the questions just fine. It is the manner that they are asked in which still holds a lot more importance to me. Unfortunately words like ‘superficial nonsense’ do not sit well with me as an individual and custom bike enthusiast. This is not about the PR or a defence of what has been said. If the questions had been asked withing the framework of a general respect for another human being and more so his work I would have been glad to answer them diligently. Nonetheless, wordplay on either side doesn’t help. If you have more specific questions regarding the build I would be happy to answer them. Cheers.

          • Mister Oddjob

            I appreciate your reply to my comment and agree that a better term should have been used than “superficial nonsense”. aztatman’s comment resonated with me because there are many interesting details about your bike that are mentioned but leave me wanting more. For example, I’d love to see detail photos of the offset jackshaft, monoshock suspension, taillight, etc. The detail photos of the custom branded brass caps are obviously important for you and your client, but not so much to the people who visit this site. I guess my point is, you have to know your audience.

          • coldsunshine

            Dude’s just too touchy. Missing out on some good comments because of his sensitivities.

          • barney fife

            Go home ya tool.

          • Anonymous

            +1 to that. For some its aesthetic and others its simply the ingenuity that goes into a build. As an custom bike enthusiast I would like to see more of both to be able to appreciate the builder for their work.
            Am eager to see more details on the brass work, the beefy exhaust cover and especially the fabrication of the brake lever. Kudos Vijay you are doing a great job in the Indian custom bike scene, there are more followers of your work than critics.

          • coldsunshine

            You seem like a sensitive little fella. Maybe you shouldn’t be posting your work if you can’t handle people commenting the way they want rather than the way you want.

          • Vijay Singh

            The bikes we build are an extension of us & require a whole lot of time & hard work (heart & soul as they’d say). As for being over-sensitive & dealing with criticism…..Being opinionated is fine as long as its Informed, credible, & constructively critical. As a bike builder ‘simple words’ to you are ‘brash comments’ to me and that’s what makes the world go round.

          • coldsunshine

            As I said, touchy little fella. And get used to it, criticism is only rarely constructive. The fact that it even matters to you speaks volumes.

          • Rev

            Maybe we could ask you about your intense focus on this man’s reaction to another’s words concerning his work and your inability to let it go. The fact that it even matters to you speaks volumes.

          • coldsunshine

            An observation on the mindset of a “businessman” who creates a product that is open to comments and then can’t handle the comments. Another, and I think more interesting point, is that you not only felt the need to follow my comments, but to post your own opinion on them. Thank you for that. And unlike some people, I won’t get my undies in a bunch if you are contrary.

          • Rev

            I think Diogenes might have enjoyed a beer with you sir. If one is to put one’s work/art on display, it should be always with the knowledge there are those who will question, if not the object then the underlying paradigm. Contrary need not be a synonym for rancor.

          • barney fife

            Do you have a life?

          • barney fife

            Right on Vijay. I agree. Unfortunately ‘snarkiness’ is often the only language response some have….sub-standard educations I believe.

      • Mukilan Velan

        I tried interviewing you for my blog . I thought i could air about a cool custom builder among foreign audience and brag about my country’s contribution to the custom world. Wish RCM’s PR work good! By the way , its a cool build. But how this build costed 450,000 ? All that money went into brass stuffs and detailing ? And wow that’s a great gas tank.

      • Arvind K. Yadav

        Great build Indeed, Sir!

    • arnold

      Be sure to tip your waitress, it’s because of her , this night is possible.

      ( Don’t disrespect the sponsors, unless you’ve got a real beef.)

  • arnold

    I am always interested in ‘old’ motors in new frames. I will take some time to study the rear suspension set up.
    The seat, a U, bringing the slightly thicker upholstery 4 to 6 inches farther forward to surround the tank gap and a paint change at the tank seam to black, to minimize the tank seam would do the trick , in my opinion.
    Good looking motorcycle.ald

  • Davidabl2

    Judging from the various bikes I’ve seen pics of the Rajaputana aesthetic is always gonna be different from what we’re used to. Even at it’s most understated, as here.

  • Davooo

    KTM front forks are off-the-shelf.

    Jus’ sayin’

    • coldsunshine

      So, that isn’t the same as “off the hook?”

  • Alex

    Man that is gorgeous. I love all the free space throughout the bike. The rear reminds me of classified moto, and the front end is perfect.

  • iamdonqey

    I own a classic 500. If I want to get work done, does Rajputana start with an existing bike or buy a new one on my behalf? And which tires are these? The front looks stock but the rear does not. Will be nice to know.

    • Vijay SIngh

      All our clients have to provide us with a donor bike before we start a project…RE 500’s & 350’s are more common. In the front we are running a 120×18 MRF and a 150×18 Avon rear. The swing-arm along with the rest of the frame (excluding the downtube) has been re-built. Its best if you get in touch with us at Cheers

      • Thakkar Label

        sir can pls u tell me from whr did u get the rear rim and the front KTM fork ?

      • Javed Shaikh

        handle bars? custom made or readymade?

  • mahaan ghose

    It is beautiful Vijay, congratulations! Frame and tank are absolutely stunning, and so is the head-stock composition. The suspension bits are obviously smart choices, in Indian. However, I think, the seat (especially the rear bit) is not gelling with the frame, and also the bike is missing a small blue front mud-guard.

    Small questions Vijay:
    1. How did you manage the fat exhaust pipe? Is it an extra shield?
    2. How did you source the KTM Duke inverted forks?
    3. Any performance mods?

  • Guest


  • Rev

    Stunning. I would have enjoyed more detailed pics of those features mentioned in the article such as the monoshock placement, the jackshaft etc. Be that as it may, the bike pictured is gorgeous and the pics reflect the customer’s interest. Thank you RCM, the GS400T parked out front of my house might look good in that blue… er, variety of blues.

  • emeglasson

    Nice work Vijay. That bike is an absolute classic cafe machine. You nailed the lines and the stance. It takes quite a bit of restraint to build a bike this clean. I’m a fan.

  • tha-b

    bikes custom builder are an artists. as an artists as i am. we have sensitive heart. little tweak word can hurts our feelings. some people don’t understand.
    this is best build. nuff said.

    • Mukilan Velan

      Lol am an aspiring motorcycle builder too. Am in my learning phase and i sketch a lot. There are people who badly criticized on my sketches and my ideas. But i dont ask them to fuck off . Because simple or complex criticism , it will have its own root towards my betterment. Be a man and try to convince them that you are right and let them know your prespective and play the game till end. Accept your faults ! Dont tell you never made mistakes.

  • barney fife

    Absolutely gorgeous looking Royal Enfield. Very nice, well done.

  • silverbackster

    GREAT WORK VIJAY….. i know it was paid in full by NU JEANS … so you were showing the detail on where all the brass looks like jeans button etc… wonderful work !!!! ONE ADVISE … don’t bother yourself listening or ANSWERING BACK here to “Mr. Nobody” .. .they TRY TO pry attention in any sense any ways… just do what you have been doing.!

  • Dev Kumar

    Royal Enfield Cafe Racer looks promising with its chunky tyres and tubular steel constructed frame and swingarm with cropped front mudguard.It will be a trendsetter of the market with unique looks and phenomenal power.

  • phalgun rao

    How did they manage to get KTM forks do they sell it loosely ? I also want those, forks I shall install them on royal enfield continentalGT…please reply thank u

  • Steve Nyhuis

    Love everything but how the tank fits. It looks like it was made too long or just laying there because its basically sitting on top of the seat. Just seems like more thought should have been put into how the tank met the seat. Just as an example:

  • Matty K

    Touchy little fellow? way to be condescending, if not worse. I’d be a little touchy as well if some troll came along and posted (perhaps just) poorly constructed comments, on something that a lot of time, effort and skill went into. Besides, why should a custom bike builder need to act with PR finesse? The fact that you had to make derogatory comments speaks volumes of yourself, good sir.

    Vijay – awesome mate, love the classic/modern mix on this bad boy, though am wondering why you have the seat aligned with the tank like that?

  • Adele Dazeem

    You aren’t obligated to reveal anything about the built. Let the grumpy ungrateful lot figure it out on their own. Cheers!

  • Michael Windmill

    Hi, can I ask where you got the top yoke from? I can only find the ugly GT, standard and trials yokes and really like the sleek look yours gives.

  • charles-dragon

    It makes me laugh at the people who left negative comments bcus , WHERE ARE THEIR PICS HAHAHA,, This is an AWESOME machine & fantastic craftsmanship , Im a fabricator myself & would like to say you have a great eye for detail vijay … keep it up ,, Im going to buy a royal enfield myself now ,,, keep it up.