Your Café Racer Fairing Dictionary

Your Café Racer Fairing Dictionary

If you’re a fan of customized café racers, then you know that the one thing that gives you the most stand out bike is fairing. You have to make sure you choose this right. However, most people never really understand what fairings are or what they are for. Other than being a great addition in terms of the look of your bike, there are other reasons why fairing is quite important for any bike. In this little comprehensive guide, I will take you through the different kinds of fairings and why you should have them on your bike.

The history of fairing in bikes

Fairing was initially used in aircraft aerodynamics, it is a process that helps to stream line the flow of air over the aircraft and its components. Because of the drag that is usually experienced in motorcycles, and especially café racers, this also became a huge part of biking. If you know your café racer history, then you know why the café racer fairing was a big part of these glorious bikes.

Types of café racer fairings

Full fairing

There are a couple of different types of fairings. The one that shows at the top of that arrangement are the full fairings. These are the largest of the fairings. They cover the lower and upper portion of your café racer and have a great drag-reducing design. They cover most of the engine components but leave the wheels open. Not to mention, they also provide a great canvas to show off your creativity.

cafe racer fairings

Half fairing

As the name describes, these will usually be smaller than their full counterparts but just as essential. The half café racer fairings include the windscreen that goes below the handlebars. In most instances, they will only cover the upper section of the bike. Half fairings will usually leave some of the parts of the engine open making it easier to have repairs but increasing the effects of drag on the bike.
cafe racer motorcycle fairings

Quarter fairing

You can also call these bikini fairings. They are pretty small and cover the headlight and prop up into a windscreen. As you would expect, they are pretty small but also quite handy. Don’t let their small nature fool you.
custom cafe racer motorcycle fairings

Belly P an fairing

Unlike most of the other types of café racer fairing that are added for functionality and aesthetic appeal, these ones are primarily functional. They are placed under the engine to divert airflow to reduce aerodynamic lift. Without these, the faster you go, the light your bike would get make it harder to control. They are also used to catch any leaking fluids and can be installed together with the half and quarter fairings for a more comprehensive look.
You should also note that there are other types of fairing that are named depending on the part of the bike that they are placed facing. These include the front fairing that foes on the front frame of the bike where headlights are housed, the tail fairing which goes to the back of the bike around the seat and the tail light and the right and left body fairings.


Even though most people would rather not have fairings on their café racer, they are essential. Not only do they make your bike look more aggressive but its performance is better and fuel consumption is lower.

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