By Anthony van Someren - 13 Aug 13
This is Pete Thompson's third build so he's clearly got the hang of it by now, as this lovely CB650 shows. The black and gold pinstripe paint is a classic look but it's been done beautifully. The bike has also been put together with a very close attention to detail and with everything done properly, but it's Pete's back story that really brings all this oil and metal to life...
"I started riding in my mid 20's but with the advent of my daughters birth and the need to buy a dryer for her diapers, I sold the bike. It was some 30 years later before I got back to riding but when I did it was love all over again. Garage builders have been my inspiration and I marvel at their creativity and design aptitude. I taught Industrial Arts (metal shop, graphics, and woodworking) for 10 years at a public high school so I appreciate good design and technical work.
This is now my 3rd build. It’s taken over 2 years but it has been a true labor of love. I don’t claim to have done all the work myself since my buddies have been invaluable in helping me complete my vision of Magneto. I’ll be 71 in a couple of months and this is what keeps me young.
Magneto started as a red 1980 Honda CB650. It was rusting out on a back street waiting for the junk yard. I know it’s not the popular 750 or 550 but that made the challenge even more fun.
The cruiser frame has been altered and reinforced to accommodate the café seat and racing function. Weight has been significantly reduced and CR 29 racing carbs with velocity stacks installed, as well as performance mufflers and ceramic coated headers. Aluminum rims with SS spokes replaced the original steel rims and spokes. Progressive front fork springs and piggy back rear shocks complete the handling package. Many other pieces were fabricated and a number of parts brass plated to add to the aesthetics.
I anticipated it would take 4 to 6 months to complete my vision of what a 1980 CB650 should have looked like in 80's. Of course nothing is quite that simple and 2 plus years later I’m still tweaking it. Magneto is a blast to ride and the building process has provided a great way to meet new and interesting people. Thanks for taking the time to meet Magneto.
Thanks for what you do Dutch. I have met so many great people because of my love to ride and build so I hope others will find this journey as rewarding. Know that your work helps bring like minded people together to express themselves."Not sure we deserve any praise as it's Pete who's done all the hard work - he even wrote the story, so all we had to do was share. Thanks for sending this lovely bike in, and we hope you build many more and keep inspiring the rest of us. I hope we have half the talent and energy that you have as you enter your 8th decade of life!