This week’s bikes come in all shapes and sizes. We’ve got a Ducati Scrambler Cafe Racer from Poland, a Suzuki Thunder 125 chopper from Indonesia, and a custom mini-bike from a small Hungarian village. Plus we take a look at BMW Motorrad’s fourth Pure&Crafted show.
Ducati Scrambler 800 by Dixer Parts The oddly named Ducati Scrambler Cafe Racer was an attempt by Ducati to inject cafe racer styling into their Scrambler 800 platform—but it wasn’t nearly as cool as it could have been. Now the Polish workshop Dixer Parts have put their own spin on it, giving it a razor-sharp look, and upgrading its running gear in the process.
Dixer’s Scrambler actually uses Ducati’s OEM fuel tank, seat, removable tail cover and side covers, because those are the parts that actually look good. But they’ve transformed the bike visually with a new front fairing, mounted on special 3D printed brackets.
The Ducati’s killer new livery is noteworthy too. Laid down by Lukasz at LC Grafix, the black and gold paint actually has a holographic effect that pops when the light hits it just right.
But the biggest mod here is one of the subtlest. Dixer swapped the front end for the Showa forks and twin Tokico disc brakes from a Kawasaki ZX6-R. Dixer manufacturers brake discs that are most commonly used for stunt riding, so a pair of those went on too. This Scrambler now has much better stopping power than before, and a full range of adjustment on the forks.
The bike also has a custom mount for the ABS sensor (because there was nowhere to put it on the Kawasaki forks), and a custom-made rear sprocket.
It’s also sporting an LED headlight out front, and a Dixer Parts license plate bracket out front. Lower down is a meaty SC Project silencer, with a sprinkling of Rizoma and Motogadget parts.
It’s a subtle but well judged set of mods, which also shows just how close Ducati were to getting it right. [Dixer Parts]
Suzuki Thunder 125 by Batakastem Workshop One thing that always strikes us about the Indonesian custom scene is the love for, and level of creativity applied to, customizing smaller motorcycles. After all, how many other places in the world will you find a chopper built from a humble commuter bike?
This stunner comes from Indonesia’s Batakastem Workshop, and uses a modest Suzuki Thunder 125 as its donor. “Since we love to create original concepts,” says shop owner Abraham Simatupang, “we combined two classic motorcycle styles—the bobber and the chopper.”
Dubbed ‘Sondang’ (which translates as ‘song’), this petite chop only really uses the Thunder’s motor and forks. The engine’s not stock though: it’s been upgraded with the four-valve head from a Hyosung RX 125. The carb’s from TK Racing, and the exhaust is a free-flowing stainless steel arrangement.
Batakastem fabricated a rigid frame to house it, topped off with a gloss silver finish. The wheels were pieced together using custom-made hubs, stainless steel spokes and 19F/17R aluminum rims.
Up top is a custom peanut tank, with a handmade aluminum gas cap and petcock. The sprung seat’s a one-off too, and sports a traditional pleated upholstery style. Out back is a stubby rear fender, with a unique short, double-railed sissy bar.
Hardly an inch on this chopper isn’t handmade. Batakastem constructed the narrowed yokes, A-frame handlebars, and foot controls and linkages. There’s a classic 4 ½ inch headlight out front, and a side-mounted LED taillight out back.
As cheeky as it is gorgeous, Sondang is another reminder to never take your eyes off the Indonesian custom scene. [Batakastem Workshop]
Pick’n’mix mini-bike by Gábor László Many parents these days struggle to get their kids’ noses out of electronic devices and into nature—but not Gábor László, whose son and daughter would rather ride motorcycles. “I find this more useful than video games, so I decided to build a motorcycle for them,” says Gabi.
The family lives in a small Hungarian village where off-road trails abound, so Gabi decided to piece together a mini-bike that the kids could go wild on. He was working on an extremely tight budget, but the result is a unique rough-and-tumble motorcycle.
The frame, motor, tank and wheels all came from European-made mopeds. The front half of the frame came from a Polish-made Romet Pony, the 50 cc motor from a German-made Simson Star, and the wheels from a German-made Solo. Gabi fabricated the rear half of the frame himself.
A modified Riga-12 (built in Riga, as implied) fuel tank sits up top, with a cap made from an old gas bottle valve wheel. Gabi illustrated the character on the tank himself, then covered it in a coat of lacquer. The wolf is the antagonist from a popular animated Soviet TV show, who is constantly up to no good in his pursuit of a hare.
Gabi also trimmed and fitted the rear fender from an MZ ETZ 250. In between are a host of laser-cut and drilled parts, like the headlight brackets and exhaust heat shield. The seat’s the only part that he didn’t make himself—but he’s planning to replace it with something nicer later on.
We’re struggling to imagine a better childhood than being able to hoon around a forest all day on this little ripper.
Pure&Crafted by BMW Motorrad After an absence of more than 18 months, BMW Motorrad’s Pure&Crafted festival returned to the motorcycle show circuit last weekend. Now in its fourth running, the show combines custom motorcycle culture with live music, sprinkling good food and drink, and lifestyle goods, in between.
We attended the last Pure&Crafted in Amsterdam back in 2019, and had a ball.
This year, the show returned to the city where it was first held: Berlin. It was held the Messe Berlin exhibition center in the Western part of the city, and incorporated the venue’s outdoor Sommergarten [summer garden]. It’s estimated that around 6,000 pairs of feet passed through over the weekend, including visitors, artists and exhibitors.
Pure&Crafted’s various attractions were spread out through the sprawling venue, and included a goods market, with brands like Bowtex and Throttlesnake in attendance. There were various food and drink vendors too, and a special kids area, complete with kid-focused entertainment and a push-scooter track.
Just next door was the ‘Wheels’ arena and the ‘Hall of Fame,’ stacked with custom bikes. Bike EXIF regulars Ironwood, Hookie Co., WalzWerk, JVB-Moto and Renard Speed Shop were all represented, alongside breakout workshops like Zillers Garage.
A pop-up cinema ran motorcycle films from the Lisbon Motorcycle Film Fest throughout the event, while the exhilarating Motodrom kept attendees on the edges of their seats.
As the sun set, various musical acts took to the event’s two stages, headlined by Swedish rockers, The Hives. Jake Bugg, Kadaver and Alice Phoebe Lou also shared the main stage, with artists like Sofia Portanet, Jupiter Jones, and The Picturebookes keeping the secondary stage hot.
Pure&Crafted might be a BMW-run festival, but it’s still a great celebration of the culture where motorcycles and music intersect. Not being there in person this time was certainly a bummer—but there’s always next year. [Pure&Crafted | Images by Frederick Hafner and Rainer Keuenhof]