CMS-Japanese Motorcycle Supply Parts


Featured Build: Murray's Custom Deluxe Honda CX500 Cafe Racer


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Today's featured build is another one from North Carolina and has been built by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs:

Here's a Honda CX500 cafe racer build by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs, titled the Custom Deluxe. CX650C engine in a CX500 frame!

The bike started off as a 1978 Honda CX500 but has had many modifications made. The front end was swapped out for the much beefier (39mm forks vs the original 33mm) front end from a 1983 Honda CX650C Custom, which comes stock with a decent fork brace to boot. The 650 Custom's front end is a good deal longer than the 500's and had to be cut down 3.5". The exhaust H-box has been removed and replaced with Murray's own midpipes.

Here's a Honda CX500 cafe racer build by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs, titled the Custom Deluxe. CX650C engine in a CX500 frame!

The heart of the build is the CX650C motor which has been mounted to the CX500 frame using a custom engine mount made by Murray. This is by far the quickest way to get a lot more HP out of a CX500... drop in a 674cc motor! Murray has done plenty of these conversions in the past and even has a jig made up for modifying the engine mounts to install the bigger motor.

The donor CX650C didn't just provide a front end and engine, however - the entire rear swingarm, wheel, final drive and rear shocks were used as well! The CX500 frame had to be modified on the right hand side for the new swingarm's pivot point and the swingarm itself was customised on the left side for the swingarm seal. The rear of the frame also had a custom rear seat hoop welded in.

The entire electrical system was lifted from the CX650C, along with all of the controls - though the brake line was replaced by a stainless steel item (eBay US). The handlebars are Daytona Superbars. The brake lights are LED with in-built indicators (eBay US, eBay UK, eBay AU)

Here's a Honda CX500 cafe racer build by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs, titled the Custom Deluxe. CX650C engine in a CX500 frame!

The engine also got a workout with new piston rings, some mild head work, a new clutch and the quadruple bypass done.

Here's a Honda CX500 cafe racer build by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs, titled the Custom Deluxe. CX650C engine in a CX500 frame!

As you might expect the carburetion is provided by a pair of Mikuni VM34s with new aluminium intakes - Murray being the creator and seller of that particular kit. They're not usually powdercoated red, however!

Here's a Honda CX500 cafe racer build by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs, titled the Custom Deluxe. CX650C engine in a CX500 frame!

The seat is a vintage Ducati item from a 750GT.

Here's a Honda CX500 cafe racer build by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs, titled the Custom Deluxe. CX650C engine in a CX500 frame!

The exhaust silencers are Harley Heritage Special slash cut items (eBay US, eBay UK, eBay AU).

Here's a Honda CX500 cafe racer build by Murray Feldman of Murray's Carbs, titled the Custom Deluxe. CX650C engine in a CX500 frame!

Here's a writeup from the photographer (Johnson Phillip) with his thoughts on the bike;

Ever wonder what motorcycle your favorite super hero rode on his time off? Every super hero has a motorcycle for the times when crime fighting is at a low. They wouldn’t ride a CBR or Harley-Davidson. They would ride a creation by Murray at Murray’s Carbs. His latest creation of merging a Honda CX500 with a CX650 is nothing short of super hero worthy. But which super hero?

This CX is a Frankenstein of sorts. A CX500 frame with a CX650 front end and motor give this beauty all the power it needs in a compact and easy to manage package. The extra oomph that accompanies the set of Murray’s carburetors to the CX650 motor is just what the doctor ordered. Thinking you’ll just ride this full throttle like it’s an old slow bike is a huge mistake. Like all CX motors they don’t really get going until about 5,000 RPM and by the time you hit 6,000 RPM on this CX you’re wondering if the power will continue to build. At about 7,000 RPM your mind has busted right through what you thought was possible for a late 70’s to early 80’s V-twin. By the time you’re sure that the sound alone could cause the motor to blow you upshift and the fun starts all over again. Murray’s Carburetors slogan is “More smiles per hour”, and boy did he hit the nail on the head with that. If you don’t treat the throttle with some respect in the first couple of gears you’ll be looking at the sky, not what you expect of this monster when it quietly sits at idle.

The enjoyment of this machine is by no means limited to the motor. I mean for starters look at the thing, clean with some extras but not cluttered and overdone. The suspension on this bike makes it as comfortable as a cruiser on a freshly paved road yet with the firmness to lean over and hammer through a corner. This bike is balanced so well that it loves curvy country roads and will transition from one curve to another seamlessly. This bike inspires confidence as it is so well put together and seems to anticipate your next movement. You don’t wonder if this curve you’ve never been around is too sharp you just lean and know the bike will get you through. The confidence it inspires is intoxicating. As great as this rides on the highway all you want to do is find an exit that says curvy road this way and take it as far as you can.

This rides like a motorcycle should. All too often things are not up to par when we get new motorcycles - the throttle may not respond like we want it to or the brakes aren’t big enough for the bike so you have to really pull them to slow down. Some seats feel like a 2x4 with a piece of leather over it. All these things we have to change to make the bike comfortable and enjoyable. If you’re ever lucky enough to ride a Murray built bike the bar will be raised of what you expect from your motorcycle.

For more Honda CX500 custom build inspiration, check out the master build list.



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