View Full Version : Looking for Project Bike... Losing hope

06-15-2013, 09:51 PM
I know it's a long story but please read I'm desperate. :tears:

I have been searching everywhere for a cheap project bike to work on but keep finding dead ends. Here is my plan and all the problems I've run into.

1) Find someone who has a motorcycle they haven't ridden in years and is willing to sell at a low price.
- Don't know anyone who has an old bike for sale.
- Been searching on CL and Ebay for weeks. Almost everything is either already working, newer year model, and/or outside my budget.

2) Search around the junkyards to find two bikes of the same year and type and between the two piece one together.
- I couldn't find an old motorcycle to save my life, and I searched at least 10 junkyards. Called L&L cycle (only motorcycle junkyard I could find) and they don't have any bikes with a title that meets my needs.

3) Look for basket case bikes at junkyards and motorcycle repair shops.
- Talked to a couple of used motorcycle dealers but they didn't have any basket case bikes.

The only luck I have had is a very ugly Suzuki 1100 cc (have pics) for $500. The guy said that it runs but the fairing/front end is messed up. I really don't think this guy is telling me the whole truth.

What I'm looking for...
Under $1000, if it's in really bad condition $500 then I could spend anther $500 in parts. I would like either an enduro or a cafe racer style bike, but that's secondary to the price.

I just want something I can fix up and eventually ride. Am I being unreasonable? Any advice would be great! :mrgreen:

06-15-2013, 11:00 PM
Ok so after doing a little research that ugly bike might not be so bad after all. I found it at a junkyard and the guy said he is selling it on behalf of his friend for $500. All he told me was that it was a Suzuki, 1100cc, and made in '92. He also told me that it ran and that his friend did a wheelie on it when he dropped it off. :roll: The front fairing is gone and the wiring is a little messed up.

I'm pretty sure it is a GSX 1100 F Katana. From the reviews I've read it's not a bad bike.

I really don't know whether to trust this guy. It's pretty ugly but after looking at some of y'alls conversions I might buy it. Here are some pics I took of it.



Is this a good bike? Can I convert it into a cafe racer? If he doesn't have a title should I keep looking or is a bonded title not as bad as it seems.

focus frenzy
06-15-2013, 11:56 PM
not a real good picture but it looks like it may have been a katana once upon a time.
buddy just picked one up for $150 and it still had its plastic.

06-16-2013, 12:27 AM
Here's one for a grand... (not mine)


06-16-2013, 12:53 AM
Thanks for showing me those offers but I'm not really interested in a Katana. I'd rather have a enduro or a bike I can easily and cheaply convert into a cafe racer. However, my budget is my biggest limiting factor and I don't know where to look for what I want. If a Katana is all I can find then I'll buy it, but I hoped I had other options.

06-16-2013, 05:52 AM
What about a Honda XR200 that is plated for street use? I happen to have one of those that needs motor work and is about to go up for sale.

06-16-2013, 06:51 AM
There is a 70's Goldwing in Hurst for sale would make a great Cafe'
PM me I can go by and get the contact Info.

06-16-2013, 09:53 AM
An XR 200 would be great! As for the Gold Wing I'm having a hard time finding a good looking cafe conversion. Here is what I had in mind to build.


or something like

06-16-2013, 12:08 PM
I have a 650 nighthawk, '83 i think. 60k on clock. brand new front tire. ran when parked 5 yrs ago. won't upshift beyond 2nd[prolly broken shift dog inside tranny[was ok when parked for winter and following spring it was broken. sad part is/was I don't treat my bikes bad]. Clear title. 4 banger inline hydraulick valves. Will need battery. Low maint, add gas and go. no chain, shaft drive!!!. PM me if interrested. I am more wanting it to go to a good home than looking for $.

06-16-2013, 01:26 PM
Do a google image search for "goldwing cafe", there are some really good looking old school goldwing cafe bikes out there.

06-17-2013, 07:59 AM
How about a numbers-matching 1966 Triumph Bonneville 650, a true classic that can be anything you want it to be?

Rolling project with complete engine and all the expensive parts on it, $1,250. An additional $350 gets you a clean Texas title.

06-18-2013, 10:54 AM
Try keeping an eye on the OK, AR, MO, KS, etc CraigsList.
It seems like the further North you look, the more bikes there are available.

KZ ....

GS CB....

06-18-2013, 11:15 AM
I see projects all the time in Killeen and Austin craigslist between $250-1500. Don't ask how I know.:rofl: Drew

06-18-2013, 02:19 PM
Projects are there. I have about 3 in my garage right now.

Finding them is easy, just don't be too picky. And don't try to get them for free. That happens but usually only when you know them.

06-18-2013, 02:50 PM
I have a couple projects for ya. lol
79 KZ650 all there, just not pretty. needs new gas tank(you can get one of those cafe looking ones anyways) title and all $300< really don't want this in my garage anymore..

73 CB450 all kinds of parts laying around for this one. $500 also has a title.
All you have to do is drive down to Houston unless you wanna wait a couple weeks and I am headed up for a bit.

06-18-2013, 04:39 PM
seriously resisting the urge to ask about the kz650
I don't have room for another project right now, but I've been wanting to do a cafe for some time now.

06-18-2013, 06:01 PM
Wow thanks everyone for the replies. I will start looking at different CL and see if anything else turns up. I'll PM everyone who has given me an offer. Hope has been restored! :thumb:

Andrew T
06-18-2013, 10:33 PM
seriously resisting the urge to ask about the kz650
I don't have room for another project right now, but I've been wanting to do a cafe for some time now.

If it's the one I'm thinking of, it came with Clubmans!

06-19-2013, 07:44 AM
how long have you been searching?
the reward for patience is worthwhile.
example: i sold a bike in march for $300 profit. bought a parts bike in may for $300.
people are constantly getting rid of a project.
if you're flexible, opportunity will pay off.

06-19-2013, 09:18 AM
seriously resisting the urge to ask about the kz650
I don't have room for another project right now, but I've been wanting to do a cafe for some time now.

lol, IF diablo doesn't want it I might.... accidently post some pics on here

06-19-2013, 02:37 PM

could be a fun project & fun bike

06-19-2013, 04:15 PM
I'm not selfish. Go ahead and post the pics. If someone else buys the bike I want, I'll do what plugeye said and be patient. Y'all have already given me some great offers, so I'm sure I'll get one of these bikes really soon.

06-21-2013, 06:02 PM
If it's the one I'm thinking of, it came with Clubmans!

lol I got that one running and out the door in a couple months.
Still have those clubmans though.... I think

06-21-2013, 06:03 PM

Pics of both

I think

06-24-2013, 08:55 PM
Looks like I'm going to buy that '79 KZ650 from WhiteyTrashed and I couldn't be happier! I've got a long row to hoe but if everything works out this is what I'm going to start with.


And I hope to end up with something that looks like this.

I can't wait to get started! :mrgreen:

Thanks everyone for the advice and connections. I really appreciate it.:rider:

06-27-2013, 10:27 AM
Looks like it'll be fun.

Start a new thread, and document EVERYTHING with lots of pix.

06-28-2013, 02:24 AM
On a side note.
While I drop off this bike in Dallas , I a picking up a SL175 frame for a buddy to do a CB175 engine swap.
I am trying to get this guy on here(if only to show his current projects but he is really busy. I saw just part of his collection and it was amazing. he just rebuilds his own bikes(no time for others) Almost everything he has is pre 76'. Every time I call him for a random part, he has it.

Monkey Wrench Cycles
07-01-2013, 10:08 PM
I have a 78 KL 250 that is all there and i had it running awhile back. Needs work but i have all the parts to fix it. Just replaced fork seals and oil, battery, and some other stuff. PM if interested.

EDIT: I see you just posted a few posts ago that you bought a bike. Oops, guess i should read the whole thread before posting...

07-02-2013, 11:11 AM
Tempting but I'm good. I think I'd better stick with one project at a time. :sun: Thanks though.

Monkey Wrench Cycles
07-02-2013, 02:09 PM
Tempting but I'm good. I think I'd better stick with one project at a time. :sun: Thanks though.

No problem. I didnt read that you had a bike already until after i posted that.

07-21-2013, 06:31 PM
Tempting but I'm good. I think I'd better stick with one project at a time. :sun: Thanks though.

i hope you plan to start a rebuild thread!! i would like to see the progress. :rider:

09-02-2013, 06:23 AM
I've have a1979 Yamaha TT 500

09-02-2013, 09:31 AM
I've got a nice 50s/60s Triumph big twin (650) rolling project on e-bay right now. Also rolling project 60s/70s Triumph trike. Should have my '64 Triumph Street Tracker rolling project up in the next day or two.