So many places to see in this world and such little time to do so. Here in the UK, deep in the throes of winter it’s natural to forlornly ponder the possible locations for next years travels. But we can only fit so much in, shackled by our commitments and limited by the one truly finite commodity. Deciding is hard: weather, topography, economics, beach or city, there are many, many options to be considered before packing bags. Or alternatively, stab a finger a on map and hope it lands on Budapest.
Straddling the Danube, the bipolar Capital of Hungary has quickly climbed the social ladder. Beneath its stunning architecture and World Heritage Sites the city is being driven by the people on the street, giving it a tangible energy and vibrancy. Eager to show there’s more than Goulash and Rubik we’re seeing numerous creative builds come from the Carpathian Basin city. Mokka cycles is one of those workshops and like so many, started as a man, in a shed, with a bike and a plan. That man in this case, is Árpád Bozi.
I hadn’t realised but with his CL250 and little Puch Cafe Racer, Arpi had inadvertently built two of my favourite small capacity bikes of 2014. Each having a very clean, distinctive style, the young Budapest builder is quickly creating a reputation for quality and detail. The latest bike to roll out the workshop is based on a venerable Gn250; an often fettled with machine. So the challenge was to make the little Suzuki stand out, utilising his patented ‘Mokka-Method’: blending old and new using nothing but the best parts and finishes.
In the workshop and soon in bits, the GN was to be a little less cruiser and a little more tracker. While the original tank was retained, it now sits lower at the front and higher at the back, leveling out in line with the redesigned sub frame. As with all Mokka bikes, simple, stylish paint is a given: the black and orange pin-striping envelopes the Mokka arrow logo. To further raise the back of the bike, the original 16″ rear wheel was swapped out, along with the front, for quality 18″ x 2.15 Takasago rims. Clad in a set of chunky Heidenau rubber, the polished alloy mudguards make you want to find the nearest park and get sideways.
In keeping with his mission statement of quality, Arpi used only genuine Suzuki parts when rebuilding the bike. The engine received new valves, rings, gaskets and bearings along with a smooth satin finish. Now breathing in through a refurbished carb and pod filter tucked between the frame rails, the engine burps out via a sweeping stainless exhaust system. Nice and long to ensure the 250 is as torquey as possible, it ends in a classy, capped SuperTrapp can. An R1 master cylinder and lever, supply fluid from an anodized Rizoma reservoir, giving the brakes a bit more bite via braided lines. There are little hints of orange all over the bike, breaking up the black; thankfully without looking as though it fell out of a ’90s ProBolt catalogue.
One of the details Arpi is most pleased with, and rightly so, are those handlebar switch housings. Found on either side of the low rise bars, CNC milled in shiny aluminium they’ve been developed as part of the Mokka accessories range. Unlike other similar aftermarket setups, the toggle switches are contained fully in the housing. This saves the pain of having to drill big old holes in the handlebar, with the associated issues of misalignment. They require just a single M4 threaded hole: bish bash, bosh.
Other alloy in-house CNC parts can be found across the bike: a sure fire way to ensure quality across solo and small batch builds. Electrics are bundled into a wedge shaped tray beneath the seat, perforated with details. A shrunken front and oversized rear lamp balance the bike, whilst usefully sized indicators hang from the lower shock mounts by way of some Mokka CNC P-Clips. Along with the sizeable, contoured seat there’s plenty of functionality to the bike and it makes you question why Suzuki don’t have a quick retooling at the factory and start churning out something similar.
With the CNC machine up and running, Arpi is continuing to develop a range of Mokka accessory items, with the high quality you would expect. Billet indicator brackets and handlebar switch housings are just beginning, the Mokka shop will be growing considerably in 2015. With the next build fully under way, Mokka’s first big capacity bike will be a Husky tanked, stainless steel sub-framed R75 for a client in Prague. I cannot wait to see that! Be sure to keep an eye on the Mokka Facebook page for updates.
Photos by Peter Mosoni