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How to: Save Weight on a Cafe Racer

15 May 2019
by Max G

In today post, we'll show you some tips on How to Save Weight on a Cafe Racer!

Note: Reducing weight is an excellent way to Ton Up! However, be smart and keep it safe. Use the advice of experts when you think you need it!

Let's start!

The Frame

The frame is, after the engine, the most massive part of your future Cafe Racer and it is the reason why you can save some weight on that part.

NOTE: Take care that you do not weaken the base structure by doing so. Little mounts can be removed, but when you grind your way into the (sub)frame, keep in mind that some points are there for a structural reason. If you know how to weld, build and bend the entire frame. You can do this by yourself. If you are not up to it, please seek advice. Being safe is what matters the most!

Cut off all the weight you dont use

There are also DIY tubes meant to help you out. Here is an example:



Fenders aren't the biggest or heaviest parts of your Cafe Racer, but you can still save weight here as well.

Here are some options:

1. Remove the fenders as sometimes they simply do not fit your design
2. Replace them with a polyester or carbon fibre fenders. Carbon is exceptionally light, and this will reduce the weight quite a lot
3. Make them shorter by cutting off a part of the fender (see below)


The Fuel Tank

Just like with fenders, you can save some weight by replacing your stock fuel tank by a polyester or carbon fibre variant. A beautiful aftermarket Cafe Racer tank could do the trick both for the looks and the weight of your Cafe Racer. Aluminium tanks are also recommended. These options allow you to lighten your motorcycle by replacing the fuel tank.

polyesther fuel tanks

NOTE: There is a great variety of quality when it comes to polyester fuel tanks. There are low-quality tanks that will leak after a certain amount of time. Be careful before buying one!

The Seat

An OEM seat can be quite heavy, as there is way too much foam and metal in it. You can replace all of that by an aftermarket polyester or aluminium Cafe Racer seat within a few hours.
Moreover, a hollow seat could also store your battery, so that is a Win-Win!

polyesther cafe racer seat

The Battery

Since we are talking about batteries, let’s say that these things can weigh a lot. You can search for a smaller one or a Lithium Ion Phosphate battery. They are expensive, but they only weigh about 8 lbs!

Lithium Iron Phosphate battery


Weight can be saved there as well, but not necessarily. If you switch from some good old cast iron rims to spoke rims, you will save off a bit of weight, but not much. Perhaps you can switch from steel to aluminium rims (when you have spokes), but that is up to you.
There is always the option of going for carbon fibre rims, but it can easily double your Cafe Racer budget.

carbon viber rims

The Engine

The engine is the heaviest "part" of your motorcycles. You can fiddle a bit with some covers, but there is not so much to do here. Just clean it, make it look sharp and enjoy its power! Your power to weight ratio is already improving as we speak…

The Exhaust

We all want to save weight and loud pipes can help us doing so. OEM pipes are heavy, really, really heavy. Some open slash-cut, Dunstall or other home improvement pipes will shave off many pounds. In return, you get a beautiful sound and a faster Cafe Racer. You could also choose a titanium exhaust system, but this option is quite expensive.
Another option is to shorten the exhaust system, like they did with this BMW Cafe Racer.

bmw cafe racer exhaust

Other parts

There are a lot of parts on a Cafe Racer that can use some weight-saving!
Drilling holes work great, but a titanium set of nuts and bolds can achieve the same even if it can a bit expensive.









More can be seen in this project, or in this entire project corner!

We hope this gave you some ideas and if it did not, you should think about increasing horsepower!

Have some great tips yourself? Share them in the comments.

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