‘It’s sat­is­fy­ing to know I built it with just ba­sic tools’

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week -

En­gi­neer Adam Bee­son built his Cal­i­for­nian bike also us­ing rose-tinted specs

Main­te­nance en­gi­neer Adam Bee­son wanted to pay homage to a Yamaha XT250 that his fa­ther bought him as a 12-year-old boy. So he did what most peo­ple would and bought a 1976 TT500 im­port from Cal­i­for­nia to re­mind him­self of the good old days.

Hav­ing owned over 70 ma­chines in his time, he’s no stranger to fet­tling ei­ther: “I reg­u­larly wrapped the old XT around trees tear­ing about the fields in Nor­folk, so that was be­hind the urge to build a retro mo­tard. It’s been called some hor­ri­ble names in the past, like when it thrashed you in the calf if you didn’t kick it right.”

It runs 50mm forks and there’s also a Wiseco high com­pres­sion pis­ton kit, so it goes as well as it looks. Keep­ing this theme, a cam kit has been fit­ted that is fur­ther helped by a mas­sive 40mm Mikuni flat­slide carb.

“The spac­ers, bushes and bits that make it all line up were made by me with ba­sic lathe skills. The ex­haust was made by my mate Damo, an artist with a TIG set. He rolled the cones by hand and cre­ated the main fo­cal point ex­actly how I wanted.”

It took Adam ten months to com­plete the build: “The bike cost £4500 to buy and build, with end­less scratchy head mo­ments and hours in the man­cave. It’s sat­is­fy­ing to stand back and know I built it in a garage in Nor­folk with just ba­sic tools though.”

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