The Cafe TU Project: Part 1


Bone stock TU250x


The Bradford pear trees are budding, and the daffodils are blooming;

The robins and wrens are singing, and the beagles are baying;

It’s Springtime in South Carolina!


The beaST is back!

Yes, our beloved ST is back from our Honda dealer where she was lovingly and meticulously prepped for this years LD riding season. With 93,485 miles on the odo, this is the year we break the 100,000 mile milestone!

But this post is not about the ST. It is about what I did while she was in service, and the weather finally warming up enough for me to work in my unheated garage. Yes, the Cafe TU Project is underway!

So, just what is this Cafe TU Project? Our Suzuki TU250x is going through an identity crisis, so we thought we’d give her one. A cafe racer, and I use the word racer loosely. The style is all the rage now a days, and the TU makes a great platform, so what the hell. However, the change is strictly cosmetic. No engine mods, no exhaust mods, no big bucks being dropped here. Two items were added for functionality as well as the “cool” factor, the rest, well, “poser” items. Here’s what has been done so far.

Dart Flyscreen

Originally, I was going to install a headlight cowl. But, no one made one specifically for the TU. That meant cutting, drilling, fabricating to fit. All things I am not adept at. I came across a UK company, Dart Flyscreen, in my research and found them to make a flyscreen specifically for the TU (as well as other bikes). Minimalist, clean lines, and I think, cool looking. Also very functional as it does keep the wind off my chest while riding above 50 MPH. Very easy to install as well. Fit and finish is perfect.




Bar End Mirrors

Another functional item, as well as adding to the “cool” factor, these mirrors are far superior to the long stem rectangular stock mirrors. Smaller than stock, but convex for a broader view of what’s behind. Plus, they sit wide on the ends of the handlebars, so I can atually see vehicles behind me instead of my shoulder filling up the mirror. They are minimalist, in keeping with the cafe theme of less is more.


The Silliness is in the Details

Nobody will notice these, especially if they are hidden behind a fork or swingarm. But, they’re fun, and they sure beat the stock item in aesthetics, and they can be changed out to suit a mood. Other silliness bits will probably be added somewhere later on, but for now, this is it.


Striping and decals are what is left to complete the project, giving the TU somewhat of a 1960’s British cafe look. Photos will appear in another post, The Cafe TU Project: Part 2. Then we will have the unveiling! After that, I just have to find a Rockers & Mods gathering and ride her in. Wouldn’t that be cool?


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