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Project Start – 1975 CB400F

We are getting a late start on this project. It arrived at the shop close to a year ago, but beyond the theoretical we have not been able to start work in earnest on it until now (sorry Nick).

The customer has requested a light cafe approach to the Honda’s resurrection. Lower bars, different seat, alloy rims, etc. is in the planning. On the back shelf I have some fairings I am interested in possibly using if he is game.

Yesterday, Mike and I starting the initial tear down to see what we have to deal with and despite what appeared to be a decent condition barn find there are two things that gave me pause. First, the tank exterior is fine, but it is filled with rusty sludge and the top is very thin and flexible. Second, the electric seems super toasted as there was no juice going through the system with a battery hooked up and some basic voltage tests – not catastrophic, but just frustrating.

Today we popped out the carbs and put them in the ultrasonic cleaner. They will need several rounds as the bottoms are filled with sludge.

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Looking back

scooters at the garage

A little over 21 years ago I bought my first bike, well bikes. For under 350$ I ended up with two Honda CL350s a leather jacket and a helmet. A few months later a 1979 Triumph Bonneville replaced those two.

A few years go by…

A quick change up to a BSA Royal Star (500 twin). I also pick up a BSA Hornet rotting away in someone’s shed and sell it for parts.

Year or two later, BSA = tuition for a semester.

Somewhere a Honda MB5 (50cc) showed up. Then one day I decided to buy a Vespa, and ended up with a GS160. Soon after comes the Ariel KH and the BSA Sunbeam.

Don’t forget the CB77, the V90 and the Primavera.

Oh, did I mention the B44 Victor Special?

Well, I still have the Ariel and the leather jacket. The B44 is going to be in the hands of a friend in a week or two.

Looking back, you start to realize what you want to be doing versus what you are doing.