Bringing you the world's best cafe racers, trackers, scramblers, bobbers & custom motorcycles.


‘79 Honda CX500 – Kingston Customs

Posted on February 24, 2014 by Andrew in Scrambler. 24 comments


Another month and another killer creation from Gelsenkirchen’s Dirk Oehler King and his merry band of men at Kingston Customs. As before, they’ve turned their nimble fingers to a Honda CX500 but this time they’ve taken it in a decidedly different direction. And that direction is mostly a hard left off the bitumen, onto the soft grass and up the nearest embankment. Introducing Kingston’s latest build – an amazing hybrid motorcycle they are calling the CXL500.


Honda CX500 – Kingston Customs

Posted on February 12, 2014 by Andrew in Brat. 18 comments


After 35 years the CX500 is continuing its second coming and receiving a lot of love from bike builders across the globe. This time, it’s from our German friends at Kingston Customs. Their last build was a stunning stripped down BMW R75/6; to say it was well received would be an understatement. As for the stock Honda CX500, the visually appealing V-twin engine was the saving grace of a bike that was commonly called the “plastic maggot”. Kingston have obviously lost all the plastic fantastic and in true German fashion, have created one of the cleanest and tastefully modified CX500 café racers we have ever seen.


1981 Honda CX500

Posted on December 16, 2013 by Scott in Brat, Racer. 19 comments

The CX500 has had a bit of a resurgence over the last few years. Bike builders have seen their potential as a low cost donor motorcycle that has a great looking, reliable engine. We’ve seen them transformed into café racers, street trackers and even the odd bobber. But they almost always have one thing in common – Comstar wheels. Thanks to their shaft drive, rear drum set up it makes it very difficult to change the wheels, hence the reason they usually have the stock Comstars on them. So when Jerry Swanson was given his brother-in-law’s non running CX500 ‘parts bike’, changing the wheels was one of the many things he wanted to do. But first, he needed to get the weeds off it.


1980 Honda CX500 “Testardo”

Posted on February 2, 2013 by Scott in Tracker. 19 comments

When it comes to creative Italian bike builders, the guys at Emporio Elaborazioni Meccaniche always bring something original to the table. For their latest build, they decided against using a local bike like a Guzzi or a Ducati and chose the humble Honda CX500. “We suggested this cheap bike to work with the customers request to have a cool but inexpensive custom” says AndreaBack in 1978 when Honda first released the Honda CX500, they used the advertising tag line “First into the Future!” to launch this motorcycle – referring to it being the first water-cooled, shaft-driven V-twin. Now 30 years into the future, these clever guys from Rome have reshaped this Honda into a street tracker the Japanese would be proud of.


Garret Dietz’s ’79 CX 500

Posted on November 24, 2012 by Andrew in Brat. 69 comments

In my limited and very humble opinion, there are two kinds of Dads in this world; Dads who like motorbikes and Dads that don’t. And although I love my father very much and deeply appreciate his inherited love of all things mechanical, upon telling him that I’d decided to get a bike he told me he thought it was “a bloody stupid idea.” Ouch. Fast forward to now and the vitriol has settled to a feigned disinterest for the most part. And I say“feigned” because every now and then I see a dim twinkle in his eye as he asks me a question about shaft drive versus chain drive, or air cooled versus water cooled. It’s as if he’s holding himself back from getting enthusiastic about the machine because he doesn’t want to encourage me. Which, as a very long way around the block to visit your neighbour, brings us to Garret Dietz and his Dad. See, G’s lucky enough to have a Dad that falls firmly in the “likes bikes” pile. Hmmm. I wonder if he’d swap for a month or two? The time would fly by once he really got into my new build…


’80 Honda CX 500 Cafe Racer – “All Business”

Posted on July 29, 2012 by Andrew in Café Racer. 52 comments

If Pipeburn was a wild animal, and you were a custom bike builder looking to trap it, you’d have to lure us with something we’d find tempting. Really tempting. Now blind Freddy could see we like cafe racers, so that’s a baiting given. Then there’s CXs which Scott and I both seem to have a “thing” for. I’m currently building a bike with R1 front forks on it, so that’s also a pretty tempting inclusion for me – not to mention that my build is also a v-twin and a shaft drive. Add that to the fact that the number 7 just happens to be the combined IQ of Scott and I, and you’re probably starting to see that we don’t so much like this bike as want it like a hipster wants a beard. Quite frankly, this bike is a perfect storm of Pipeburn temptation. And who, I hear you ask, is the genius poacher behind this irresistibility of a bike?


Honda CX500 – RGK Street Trail

Posted on July 25, 2012 by Scott in Brat, Tracker. 51 comments

Without sounding like Captain Obvious, we see loads of bikes here at Pipeburn and there seems to be a couple of trends. The first being street trackers are becoming a vastly popular style of bike. We’re guessing many builders are moving away from the more common cafe racers and bobbers that have been so dominant in the scene for the past couple of years. The other trend is the humble and usually ugly CX500 or ‘Japanese Guzzi’ as we like to call it, has become a new favourite donor bike. And why not. They are more reliable than a Guzzi or BMW, not as common as the CB750, and they look great when done right. The guys at French shop Rive Gauche Kustoms (which translate to Left Bank Kustoms in English) love the CX and is why they’ve chosen it again for their latest project. Their stunning last bike spread around the internet faster than an Old Spice commercial. Working from their workshop in Paris it looks like they’ve been busy creating this bike they call the ‘Street Trail’…


Honda CX500 Street Tracker – “Superfly”

Posted on September 5, 2011 by Scott in Brat. 28 comments

When it comes to the ugliest production bikes ever made, we all have a few that come to mind. Now we’re not talking about your usual “not my kind of thing” ugly – but honest to goodness, feel the vomit rising in the back of your throat, transparent plastic bag full of monkey genatalia ugly. Top of our ‘designed with an ugly stick’ list is the Honda Rune, then probably the nauseous Victory Vision and of course the repelling Bimota Mantra – we’d probably prefer to burn our retinas with a welder than see one again. Then there’s the Honda CX500, which isn’t on our personal ‘ugly list’ but it is on some peoples lists, like Graham Braids. “So I set myself a challenge, what is one of the ugliest bikes out there? The CX500!” says Graham. He tells us that in England, the nickname for the CX500 is the “plastic maggot”, which is why he has named his modded version of the bike “Superfly”. Here’s how Graham transformed this bike from drab to rad.


Honda CX500 Cafe Racer

Posted on July 23, 2009 by Scott in Café Racer. 3 comments

Ah, the humble Honda CX500. Born in the late 1970s, with production ending by the mid 1980s. It was Honda‘s plan that the CX series would take on the smaller Moto Guzzi and BMW motocycles. They spent a lot of cash to achieve the best design they could. 30 years later it is still a popular cafe racer project bike. We found this beautiful CX500 on the Chopper Charles Forum (great site for those who love their CX500 & GL500’s). Built by a guy in Virginia, USA who goes by the name Pampadori. He loves Honda‘s and you can view his collection on this flickr page. Well worth a look.