Friday, 5 November 2010

Quo vado?*

Now that the Husky tracker is finished [I've unofficially christened it the "Sidetracker" since it proved such a distraction from my other obligations like work and my other projects], I find myself in the most enviable position there is: with a blank slate in front of me. This means I can go in any direction I want, and I find that feeling quite exhilarating.

I have a mental short list of bike projects I want to try and one of them is building a really nice café racer. A month or so ago I found a Buell engine on the web that was for sale at reasonable money and I did what I usually do in these circumstances: I fired up Photoshop and tried a couple of ideas. Now, there is nothing at all wrong with a CB750 special or a nice Bonneville, and in fact I may come back to those bikes later on, but I felt I needed a bigger challenge. The Husqvarna tracker was challenging since most street trackers are either Harley/Buell, Triumph or Rotax engined. There isn't very many Husky street trackers around. With that in mind I sketched a new frame and borrowed bits and pieces from other bikes to see how it could look. You find the sketches above [with and without bullet type fairing].

The scale and measurements aren't a hundred percent correct, but I still think it could have turned out pretty nice. But... the Buell engine turned out to be less good than advertised and I lost interest in the project. Now I'm thinking of doing 4 cylinder tracker along the lines of the R1 street tracker that Gregg's Customs made last year. Mine would be less "blingy" and perhaps use a smaller engine (like from an R6). What do you think?

*First person version of "Quo vadis" - meaning "where are you going".


  1. well whichever engine platform you choose, i'll be tuned in following the build!

    i bet you couldn't swing a dead cat around by the tail without hitting at least seven 600cc supersport engines from totaled bikes! so, that might be a pretty easy "hunt".

    my only worry about going with one of these 600 I-4 motors is how much usable power they'd deliver in the lower rpm range...not that i've ever ridden one, but only from what I've read...

    how about one of those modern 675 cc 3 cylinder triumphs?

  2. A 675 Trumpet is not a bad idea at all.

    I had a look at an R6 yesterday and there are a LOT of tubes and plastic crap all over the engine which will make it difficult to achieve a clean look.

    I'm now looking at air-cooled or air/oil-cooled engines now as an alternativ. Will have a closer look at a Triumph 675 as soon as I see one. They are not that common here in Sweden.


  3. How about a suzuki bandit 600 lump? any of those in your neck of the woods? oil/air cooled. much simpler...

  4. Your designs have completely captured the essences of my favorite motorcycle lines. I even nipped a pic of yours for my own blog to show your Husky and show what a believe to be, "bikes done right." Keep going, you're gaining many fans in Texas. (Hope you don't mind me ripping the pic of your Sidetracker)