Drake’s Speed builds a Trailsport for Syd’s Moped Run…
In the early 1970s, Honda’s mini-bikes were selling like hotcakes, and they decided to offer a more off-road focused version of their popular CT model. The result was the 1973 ST90:
“The ‘ST’ in ST90 stands for ‘Sport Trail,’ this was a mid-way motorcycle between minibikes and full size enduro mounts targeted at both adults and kids. Many adults ended up loving them due to their low weight and easy to use automatic clutches and gearboxes.” —Silodrome
Available from 1973-1975, the ST90 featured a T-bone-style stamped steel frame, 89cc four-stroke SOHC single-cylinder engine, three-speed semi-automatic transmission, elevated fenders, luggage rack, and twin engine crash bars.
Recently, we heard from our friend Marcus Drake of New Zealand’s Drake Speed, builder of the 1973 Yamaha CT3 restomod we featured last year, who received an ST frame as a partial payment for some work on a client’s bike.
“Being so bare and missing a lot of original parts, I knew it was going to be a restomod. Nothing in my collection stays original anyway, haha.”
What’s more, Marcus had the perfect event coming up for his Sport Trail, the annual Syd’s Moped Run in Christchurch. Started by the late Syd Falconer on his 70th birthday in 1995, the event continues to be held each November 24 in his honor, drawing more than 400 “small bikes, mopeds, scooters, step-thrus, clips-ons, and power-cycles” on an 80-km group ride and show and shine.
Marcus is a big fan of the 70s metallic colors, so he imported powder from the US for the purple powdercoat of the frame, overlaying the paint with custom Doozi decals.
Other highlights include a custom exhaust, custom fenders with hand-bent brackets, aftermarket CRF rims laced to the stock hubs, custom engine mounts, and a simplified wiring harness.
He’s finished the build just in time for Syd’s Moped Run on the 24th. The only thing left? A nickname:
“It needs one. It’s the only four-stroke Honda in the shed surrounded by two-stroke Yamahas.”
Any nickname ideas for this purple steed? Bring them on!
Honda ST Restomod: Builder Interview
• What’s the make, model, and year of the bike?
1975 Honda ST.
• Why was this bike built?
Bike was built for an annual moped run here in New Zealand called “Syds Moped Run,”
where 400+ small bikes get together over a weekend with a planned 80km loop ride around Christchurch, all show and shine with a huge range of bikes from multiple custom builds to incredible restorations of all makes and models.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
I got the frame as part payment for some work I did on a client’s bike. Being so bare and missing a lot of original parts, I knew it was going to be a restomod. Nothing in my collection stays original anyway, haha.
• What custom work was done to the bike?
- Imported powder from the USA for the purple powdercoat
- Custom exhaust
- Custom fenders and hand-bent brackets
- Honda CRF aftermarket alloy rims mounted to stock ST hubs
- Custom decals by Doozi
- Custom engine mounts for “Big block” engine — cc’s unknown, haha
- Simplified wiring
• Does the bike have a nickname?
Not yet but it needs one. It’s the only four-stroke Honda in the shed surrounded by two-stroke Yamahas.
• Can you tell us what it’s like to ride?
Being a semi auto, it’s super easy to jump on and go for a lap around the block. 14-inch wheels roll really nice compared to its smaller 8 and 10″ relatives. People fizz over the colour.
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
My hand-bent polished fender brackets. Also pretty happy with the how the purple looks on the small bike — I love those 70s metallic colours.