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‘Just’ Honda CX500 – MichuMoto

Posted on December 20, 2016 by Andrew in Bobber, Café Racer. 18 comments

In nature, coloured codes are pretty common. It’s how the planet’s livings thing communicate. Whether you’re trying to attract a mate, protect yourself or spread your DNA, it’s the colours you utilise that will mean the difference between success and failure. And there’s no prizes for guessing that when it comes to things that are red and black all over, it can only mean one thing. Danger. So be it bravery or just complete stupidity, we’ve ventured forth to bring you the story of today’s build, the ‘Just’ Honda Cx500 from Poland’s MichuMoto.

“My name is Michal, and MichuMoto is the name I’ve given my own private garage,” says the shop’s owner. “But when I say ‘garage’, it’s more like a small box in the garden. Still, it’s home. I’m a 39-year-old guy with many year’s experience as a motor biker. A few years ago I started to build a custom bike, but it was never finished because of some family matters. Then one year ago, a Honda CX500 came in to my little garage and finally work started.”

The original concept was to build motorbike without any unnecessary parts and to hide all the wiring to keep it as clean and simple as possible. The colours were chosen at the beginning of the project by Michael, so him and his girlfriend just stuck to them. Also, the bike should be for her, but since pondering its fate it seems Michael has developed a sudden case of the ‘mines’. “What we also planned was to have a single seat, the same tyres front and back, and a bike that was made by hand not by a CNC machine. What we did do was to produce as may of the parts as we can using our grinder, lathe and welder.”

As Mike’s working full-time outside the bike industry, all the work had to be been done on the evenings and weekends. Put simply, the guy’s very dedicated. “I didn’t realise how much work would need to be put into the project. It was started year ago and the plan was to finish it within the year. In the end, the bike was completed in a total of 13 months, so it wasn’t such a big delay after all.”

“I bought the tank from a Yamaha SR500 which was cut in half to make it wider. Also, the tap has been moved to the centre and a speedo was placed at the front. It was easily the most difficult part to made. It took almost 3 months from start to finish.”

“A big challenge was to hide the throttle line inside the handle bar. Because of that, we fabricated a mechanism which is hidden under leather grip. Then, all the bike’s bolts were anodised in black. Our goal wasn’t to buy as many expensive parts as we could and fit them to the project. Instead, our goal was to produce as much as we could ourselves.”

The parts that were fabricated by MichuMoto include the bicycle-style ‘bars, a tank based on a SR500 style, top and bottom clamps, foot pegs, rear sets, the brake pedal, the gear lever, a battery box and an ingenious internal gas throttle mechanism.

Other parts include some HEL brake lines in two colours, a headlight, tyres, a few smaller parts from Wwag in Germany,  some front indicators from FrenchMonkeys, some bespoke Hagon Shocks from the UK, and a seat and some grips from Lucky.

“The bike was mostly inspired by the amazing CX500 by Kingston Customs; it has a very nice shape and it’s really not your typical cafe racer. The bike’s handlebars were inspired by old Russian bicycle called the ‘Ukrain”. Overall, I was trying to find parts for the project which were minimalistic, but that had a bit retro look. I was trying to keep the motorbike as symmetrical as possible.”

So in the end, Mike probably wouldn’t say that it was a single master stroke of inspiration that created look of the bike; it was more about sticking to the points which defined his final look. Less of everything. Pleasing symmetry. And lots of black.

“What I like most about the finished bike is its simplicity. It’s got a really clean look. A phrase I hear quite a lot since finishing it is, ‘I don’t know much about motorbikes, but I’d really like to have one like this”. We think we get their drift. “It is very difficult to say which part of the bike I like the most, but I’d probably say it’s the handlebar that includes a handmade internal throttle mechanism and stitched leather grips.”

“I didn’t have many chances to ride this bike, as it is winter in Poland. But riding ‘Just’ for me is a completely different experience, probably because this is my first 100% solo project. No, it’s not a high speed beast. You’ll enjoy every single minute of riding it and you feel totally happy. A big smile is on my face all the time. It has everything that’s needed and nothing more. Riding is a pleasure not a stressful experience at all. And the custom bar’s width gives you the impression that you’re riding some motorbike from 1940.” Sounds like an entirely good thing to us, then.

[MichuMoto: Web – Facebook – Pinterest | Photos by Jarek Lasota]

  • John in Pollock

    Looks like the quality of work is pretty good, but overall, appears weird and unfinished… Also, I hope to never see exhaust tips pointed forward ever again. Don’t do that.

    But hey- at least its got dice caps.

    • The Ogre

      Yeah, I’ve got to agree. The level of detailed work and apparent quality of the work is impressive, but I dislike the overall shape a lot.

    • AB

      Forced induction exhaust pipes means the air being forced in as you move forward meets the air being forced out of the pipe and results in a disturbed noise pulse negating the need for any form of muffling of the pipe. Result is a meaty idle (no forced induction) and a mellow, touring tone when rolling at speed.

      • Imwastefull

        if you think that the speed of sound is negated by a 40 mph Honda, you’ve got an intense amount of ignorance.

        • AB

          bawahahhaah if you think anything I wrote was serious then you’ve got an intense amount of ignorance! And everyone knows that pipe wrap overcomes physics.

  • Jeff Wilkening

    Wet roads and puddles are going to be messy.

  • Imwastefull

    Dice on the valve stems, K&N air pods, Ebay gauge and blinkers, missing fenders and pipe wrap. Practically hand-made. Bespoke.

  • Robert Henry

    It’s nifty the way the bike is set up to eject you off of it when you hit a pot hole and the rear tire moves a full stroke upward contacting the seat and either throwing you into a low orbit, or tearing your lower reagions out and spining them around the rear axle…good thng it’s got red highlights so the nice ambulance guys aren’t totaly put off. Yay sewing.

    • Larry Kahn

      At best. He slides off the back of that seat he’s gonna be REAL hurtin’. Bigly. (sorry).

  • axcoping

    the stance just reminds me of a dog trying to it’s business.

  • guvnor67

    From the rear of the tank forward I really like it, rearward of the tank not so much. The seat is a nice job but the angle looks, well, see other comments! Maybe a little tail-piece behind the seat would help the look as well as the safety aspect?!

  • Michael Smith

    I like it. Its so bare bones. People who don’t own one of these will never know the struggle of making this bike look cool. Great job. Only thing I would personally change would be the addition of fenders.

  • Dave Coetzee

    It’s really tough putting so much hard work into a build, having classy photos taken and then actually getting one’s build published on like the best custom bike site in the business – only to be, er, not so well received.
    Perhaps this link to this video I knocked up from cell phone photos in the early hours of this morning, after being invited to see a friend in our local cafe racer’s group, who had only just recently completed it – will help to explain the difference in tastes people have:

  • We knew that this one would get the comments flowing. And hey presto…

    If I owned the bike, I would have possibly done something a little more substantial with the seat/tail to give it a little more ‘arse’, but I’m thinking it’s one of those bikes that needs a rider in place to complete the look. Thoughts?

    • JayJay

      It looks a bit weird in the picture, part of it is the seat I think. I’ve been through the pictures of the build on facebook and the work that has been put into it is exceptional. Can you perhaps get hold of a picture with rider?

    • dannyb278

      Remember in the early 2000’s during the chopper craze when the “no fender” trend hit? It didn’t last nearly as long as the current one. Just seems lazy to me. Obviously the guy has the fab skills to mount some kind of fender, but to not do so for some stupid trend is pretty sad from my perspective as a admittedly novice builder.

  • Jerry Valentine

    Where is the battery relocated?