Italian Day 2016 – Cassington

On Saturday, I decided to go along to the Italian Day at the Red Lion pub at Cassington, just west of Oxford, and a venue famed for its involvement in the huge Cassington bike nights that take place annually. The Italian Day has been running for a few years now, and is organised (ironically) by the British Motorcycle Riders Club (Oxford), as many of their members also own Italian motorcycles. Like most outdoor events in Britain, this is a day whose success is dependent on the weather. Two years ago it was a great day, the sun was shining, and there were plenty of interesting bikes that turned up – see our pics from that day here.
Anyway, this year, the forecast for later in the day was bad, though as I set off on my old Guzzi Lodola 235 for the 40 minute tripm, the sun was shining, but the rain came soon enough. But – it was in short showers, and in the end, it was mostly dry for the time I spent at the event. The numbers were down, but there was still a reasonable turnout, and I was particularly impressed with the guys on seriously expensive new Ducatis (and the MV 750 four cylinder) that all turned up despite the inclement weather. Shame, as it’s a decent little event. I enjoyed myself all the same, chatted to some friends, and had a great ride back.

Leather Clad Custom – Yamaha SR400 Cafe Racer

The Japanese custom motorcycle scene is arguably one of the most influential and progressive in the world. Japanese workshops like Cherry’s Company, Brat Style, Custom Works Zon and Ritmo Sereno have inspired builders around the world and have even been commissioned by motorcycle manufacturers to modify their newest models. Unfortunately in the past it has been difficult to get in touch with Japan’s home builders and enthusiasts, but all that’s slowly changing thanks to social media.

I recently stumbled across the Instagram profile of Cyu-G and his Yamaha SR400 cafe racer. Despite a language barrier we managed to communicate enough to put together the following interview to share the story of how his cafe racer came to be…

1956 Maserati Tipo 125 T2

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This 1956 Maserati Tipo 125 Turismo Lusso was imported to the US from Italy in 2008. The bike is represented as an original survivor that has never been restored, retaining its factory paint and fittings. This is a numbers-matching bike according to the frame-mounted data tag and stamped engine number. Its original condition is also recognized by Giovanni Salmi of Moto Maserati. The engine turns but has not been run since 2008. It has been used as a display piece in recent years and is offered by the selling dealer on a California bill of sale.


Maserati built motorcycles from 1953 to 1960, and they established a reputation for style and performance with notable success in competition. This is chassis #A5676, which looks complete with original details in place. The seller notes that the wheel rims have been replaced, though the spokes are still believed to be original. The exhaust system has also been restored with a clean chrome finish.


Interesting details include the above ACI registration medallion from 1963 and original Maserati grips and trim pieces.

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According to the chassis plate, this Tipo 125 TL left the factory with engine #A5533, which matches the stamping on the engine case pictured below.

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Although this Maserati has been on display-only for the past eight years, the engine is noted to turn freely. The bike will need some deferred maintenance addressed to be made roadworthy.


When new, the 123cc engine produced 4.8 horsepower at 5000rpm, which was enough to propel this 176-pound dry-weight bike to a top speed of 40MPH. The carburetor is a Dellorto and the transmission is a 3-speed.


This is an unrestored example of an interesting Maserati sport bike rarely seen today.

Living Room Art Piece: 1954 Moto Parilla 150 Sport

This is from the site Bring a Trailer ( ...

This 1954 Moto Parilla 150 Sport is an interesting little two-stroke single that was purchased by the seller as a display piece for their home. It hasn’t been run during their three year ownership term, but is said to have good compression, a working kick starter, brakes, and clutch–the gearbox shifts as well. It’s been at least partially restored, and apart from a few very small flaws, condition looks excellent. Find it here on Craigslist in Los Angeles, California for $5k. Special thanks to BaT reader Grant P. for this submission.


Says the seller: “I bought this at a motorcycle auction in Vegas in January of 2013 as an art piece for my apartment. It’s just the most beautiful thing and I had to have it. Condition is remarkable. I’ve never started it because its purpose was always to be a display piece and it does that perfectly. I also didn’t want to turn this into a project.”


It’s definitely a pretty little bike, and construction quality looks to have been pretty nice as well–closeups show nicely finished casings and fittings throughout. Parilla built a few different versions of the bike, including a base Turismo Speciale, luxury touring Bracco, and Sport models like this example. The seller says they’ve of Sports being capable of “the ton” at a stratospheric (for the day) 10,000 RPM, though the above link quotes 100 km/h or about 62 MPH–it’s easy to see how figures could have been mixed up.


Check out how narrow this thing is–put up against a living room wall it’d barely intrude.

1954 Moto Parilla 150 Sport - Vintage Classic Moto Giro Eligable

Of course it’d be ideal to see it returned to running condition, which the seller speculates will take very little work, adding that a recently broken wrist is the only thing that’s stopped them from doing so themselves. A small oil leak is noted due to an incorrect drain plug, but otherwise mechanicals sound to be very promising.

Long Live The King – Yamaha RX Cafe Racer

I love the Indonesian custom motorcycle scene. It’s full of passionate young builders who aren’t afraid to give anything a go. It’s common to see young guys building their own bodywork from scratch or jumping head first into a complete engine rebuild that they’ve never attempted before. There’s a real can do attitude that’s evolved because of the environment in which they find themselves and it’s producing some great young talent. Today’s feature is the story of an engineering student who built his own cafe racer from scratch with little knowledge or funds at his disposal. This is his two stroke Yamaha RX K135 cafe racer and the following is his inspiring story…

‘Lac Rose’ RnineT – BMW Motorrad

‘Lac Rose’ RnineT – BMW Motorrad

The Paris-Dakar Rally is one of the truly great motorsport events, known around the world the winning vehicles often go on to achieve legendary status and large sales success. The epitome of that notion is the BMW GS series which launched in 1980 and would go on to win the Rally four times in five years. By 2009 that winning formula had resulted in the sale of more than half a million road going versions and the legend of the GS lives on today. But with the Wheels & Waves Festival kicking off today in Biarritz on the French Atlantic coast,

Now You See Me – Hidden Ducati 600SS

One of the great things about running this website is coming across a builder who does things a little differently. A few months ago I had the pleasure of meeting Maurizio Carraro the owner/operator of Imbarcadero14 Venice (IMB14). Maurizio had teamed up with legendary Japanese custom builder AnBu to build an awesome Moto Guzzi SP3 that had my jaw dragging on my keyboard. In just 3 short years the IMB14 portfolio contains over 20 impressive builds and with each one Maurizio’s own style is becoming more pronounced. For his latest build he and his team sank 300 hours into reimagining a Ducati 600SS and the result is as impressive as it is unique.