Setting out to build a neo-retro cafe racer from a Honda CB500 is certainly an arduous task for just one man. Luckily, Lionel Duke of Duke Motorcycles – situated just outside of Nice, France – has over 20 years of experience building bikes which resulted in a laborious 700 hours to complete what he calls “Mrs. Duke.” And boy was it worth the effort.
Here, Lionel opted to implement a handful of Ducati components into the build, meaning he had to strip things down to the bare frame before getting started. From here, he mounted a single-sided swingarm from a Ducati Panigale to the bike. He then cut the subframe off, mounted a new Ohlins shock to the ride, a hand-built new aluminum monohull was also fabricated to the CB500. As was a Motogadget meter incorporated into the tank and an Alcantara saddle compliments of NMB Design. Paying closer attention to the exhaust, Lionel worked to incorporate a 4-in-4 exhaust in true Moto GP aesthetic and set the ride up with a pair of Michelin racing tires before giving the entire bike a pure white paint job. Who knew track racing could look so innocent?