Working in the music industry, tattooing folk or building motorcycles must be some of the most enviable jobs going. Well Jez seems to have done something right in a previous life as he incorporates all three. His new shed-venture La Busca Motorcycles has produced its first build, The Dispatch, using a donor that is a break from the norm. Whilst on a climbing trip in Asia (seriously Jez, anything else cool that you want to chuck in?) he noticed one of Honda’s VRX400s parked up, which set the creative juices going. Not only that, a BMW engine won’t fit down the path to the shed so a donor with cylinders the correct way up would be needed.
Honda didn’t export the VRX to the UK as most punters on our shores would quaff at such a weedy engined Harley-Davidson look-a-like, but I think Jez is onto something here. 400cc, smooth V-twin, with a low straight frame and sensible fuel tank, let me just see if eBay stocks such a thing. No, it doesn’t. During a bike trip to Norway (Come on Jez, give it a rest) a VRX came up for grabs so a call went into Steve Bentley of Dust Motorcylcles to sort the logistics. By the time Jez was back at home in Yorkshire, the Honda had been delivered. (Yorkshireman, I knew there had to be something wrong with him, he was starting to sound a bit too cool).
After many years modding adventure bikes Jez wanted a machine that could go more or less anywhere so rather than strip the donor to the bone, storage spaces and cubby holes were retained. A rack, tool roll holder and 12v socket were added in case the wilds of Yorkshire become overbearing.
Working in the confines of a shed meant Jez had no room to step back and check on aesthetic progress, which is a good thing because his lines and balance seem about right, and you can’t go wrong with black with a silver V-twin in the middle. The “night grey colour” was applied in the newly kitted out spray booth, also known as the greenhouse, handy.
For a WW2 dispatch rider look, a pair of Harley XR bars were fitted and the rest of the cockpit put to one side. A Suzuki speedo sits where the ignition used to be and a keyless system wired in to do away with unsightly lock barrels.
A bullet style lamp mounts to Triumph headlight ears, again in black with fairly generic tinted indicators blending in without fuss. The mudguards have been shortened slightly and the radiator will just have to fend for itself.
Rebuilt forks with heavier oil beef up the damping to cope with Jez’s off road intentions. Progressive shocks jack the rear up a tad to give a more balanced stance and provide improved ground clearance for when the chunky Mitas tyres are given their moment to shine. Slash cut pipes improve the little twin’s rumble and shed unnecessary weight.
For something a bit different and for a first build Jez can hold his head high, this VRX looks great and as I set out onto London’s mean streets in the pouring rain, I think I’d rather be on The Dispatch.
Since completing this bike another VRX has cropped up, so expect to see another one here soon.