In France, BCKustoms (Breizh Coast Kustoms) continues to turn out of some of our favorite custom flat trackers and street trackers. Founder Yann Le Douche has quite the racing pedigree. He’s worked as a race mechanic for Ducati France, a team coordinator in World Superbike, and a MotoGP journalist before he caught the flat track bug on a trip to the USA.
Previously, we featured his H-D Sportster Hooligan tracker, which he built for Dirt Quake. Afterwards, he went home to France planning to take part in the first two races being held in collaboration between Vintage Racing Spirit and the FFM (French Motorcycling Federation).
Unfortunately, the rulebook didn’t allow, at that time, for engines over 750cc, so the Hooligan class wouldn’t be racing. Yann had an XS500 street tracker that he could strip down and modify to race in the Vintage class, but racing so far from home, he wanted more time practicing. So he decided to build, in just few weeks, an extra racer for one of the remaining classes.
The result would become flat tracker you see here, the BCK-027 “Bone Destroyer.” The build started in a dark corner of Yann’s workshop, where he was storing a 1987 Honda XL600RM that he’d planned to transform into an RS600D replica street tracker.
The frame was already fitted with twin Bitubo shocks taken from a CB500 PC32, but more changes were need for racing. He swapped out the ’87 engine with electric starter to an earlier XL600R engine with just a kick starter, which allowed him to remove nearly all the electric wiring and battery, which he would have kept for the initial street tracker project.
The bike already had some earlier fork tubes from a ’99 Yamaha R6 — nice units, which were much shorter and lighter than the original ones and fit the original 41mm Honda triple clamps. He added spacers above the front springs for extra preload, as the clearance between the new 19″ front wheel with Mitas tire and the oil-in-frame front tube was tight.
Meanwhile, Yann swapped the original headers for homemade stainless parts and added a short dB killer to cut the 124dB of the initial tech inspection… Ouch!
Yann’s MAG wheels, which he couldn’t use on the Hooligan at King’s Lynn, were allowed in the French rulebook, so he already had an extra set of wheels ready-to-use on the XLR. What’s more, he realized the swing arm and fork tube inner widths were exactly the same as those of the Sportster, making the swap quick work! This saved a ton of time on the build.
Steve at Red Max Speedshop supplied the fiberglass gas tank, a Champion model, and Yann completed the bodywork with a Knight-style tail fairing from Composite Sellerie and square number plates. To give some kind of modern design to the overall bike, he cut and reshaped the tail section to make the all bike look lighter.
The local Honda dealer, Moto Sélection, decided to help the BCKustom racing efforts even more, so Yann decided the paint scheme should match the OEM red-white-black official Honda colors for that year — his way to thank them for supporting a rookie rider.
In seven weeks, Yann had transformed the XL600 into short wheelbase tracker (1.37m — nearly 54 inches) with a reduced 23.38° fork angle, 0.82m (32 inch) seat height, a reliable single cylinder engine, a (too?) short transmission ratio (16×52), and a new weight of about 115kg/266lb (compared to the original 150kg). On the paper, it looked like the right weapon for a rookie like Yann to learn flat track riding technique.
Of course, as Yann’s business is mostly building custom street bikes, his race bike still had to be a kind of rolling show bike for track use. But he knows he’s going to crash it some time. Sad, no?
“Bone Destroyer” Build Sheet
1987 Honda XL 600 RM
Design & Build: Yann Le-Douche, BCKustoms
Engine: 1986 XLR engine, K&N Filter filters, NGK spark plugs and racing wires, reinforced clutch springs with upgrade quality discs, BCK stainless exhaust system, Laser cut BCK designed rear sprockets, BCK alloy homemade front sprocket cover, racing wiring.
Frame: All OEM 1987 XL-RM elements except modifications for twin shocks assembly. Frame has been shaved of all his useless brackets, linkage and supports to save weight.
Wheels: Kawasaki 1977 and 1983 MAG front wheels
Tires: Mitas H-18
Brakes: BCK designed wave rotor with Suzuki GSXR master cylinder and rear caliper with Brembo red pads
Forks: 1999 Standard Yamaha R6 front end with front caliper brackets removal
Fork Guards: Composite Sellerie fiberglass units
Shocks: Bitubo units
Handlebars: LSL flat track bar 7/8″ with 7/8″ fully adjustable and foldable clutch lever
Grips: Renthal medium
Bodywork: Red Max SpeedShop Champion fiberglass tank and Composite Sellerie Knight style seat, reshaped, Cap Enseignes race numbers.
Seat: BCK shaped and cover done by pro.
Paintwork: KCP Designs
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Special thanks to…
- Moto Sélection Honda – Quimper (Fr)
- KCP Designs – Custom motorcycles and paint – Rédéné (Fr)
- Dezert Point – Skate & Surf shop – Quimper (Fr)
- Fifties and More – Surface treatment – Pont-Croix (Fr)
- Atelier du Graveur – Industrial and jewelry engraving – Ergué-Gabéric (Fr)
- Cap Enseignes – Stickers and advertising supports – Chateaulin (Fr)
- Le page Peinture – Sanding and powder coating – Briec (Fr)
- Special thanks to T2xC workshop in Quimper, which took care of the exhaust welding and machining spacers.