Subscribe Now
Facebook Motorcyclist Radio
Newsletter

Picked up some Old School

  
User Name:
Password:
Join FREE Now!
Forgot Password?
Forgot User Name?
Remember Me
Home | Active Posts | Search | Register | Terms | FAQs
Rss
Item Posts    Sort Order

Picked up some Old School

 
jeffkushner1 jeffkushner1
User | Posts: 160 | Joined: 02/10
Posted: 06/07/13
05:10 AM

As most of you guys know, I'm a two stroke guy that happens to ride a 4 stroke on trips. Speaking of which, I just rebuilt the forks and installed a nice set of tapered head bearings in my vstrom 1000 in anticipation of riding out to AMA Vintage days in July again.

Anyway, back to the story.  Mostly my collection is made of 2 strokes but I also have a yammy turbo and a venerable CB350 (same as my first bike).  I found the following C/L ad on May 21st:
**************
Motorcycle is in need of restoration. It is all there, but rusty. Only 6300 original miles, but may only good for scrap. Have title, willing to give up for free.
Chrome is pitted, tires are flat. Engine turns over. Gas tank looks fine, plastic looks fine.
**************
I wrote to the seller and told him that I wouldn't take it unless I honestly believed that I could restore it to it's former glory since I didn't really need another project. I also refused to take it for free if it was worth restoring. That must have convinced him to let me come and look at it. I was shocked to receive a phone-camera picture of a bright yellow bike in darned good condition! It is a CB400F with less then 6400 original miles.  He rode it less then 400 miles after he bought it, then parked it where it's been since.

My daughter and I drove over to his house that night. I was amazed....the bike is complete, needs a set of handlebars, front fender and muffler from what I could tell just looking at it in a large garage lit only by a 40w bulb but the tank is perfect inside and out as are the side covers and seat. I asked him how he kept the tank so nice and he said when he parked it, he knew it was going to be a while before he would be able to get to it so he drained the tank and carbs. He removed the plugs and sprayed the cylinders too! The engine turns over and I might, might even get away with not having to do the tedious task of rebuilding the carbs although all the tubing will be replaced as a matter of routine for me on a old bike. The seller is a prince of a man who told me that he had received well over 50 emails that day!
He bought it and has owned it since 1978 hoping to one day get time to restore it but realized that day would never come so he was more interested in giving/selling it to someone who would put it back on the road....a perfect project for my GF and I! He had no idea what it was worth so I told him that even in this condition it was worth several hundred dollars and I asked if he would accept 200. I just didn't have the heart to offer any less even though he was offering it for free. It's just too nice to have taken advantage of him by trying to get it for nothing.  I paid him the grand sum of $200 and took the signed title. I picked it up the next day and it is nicer then I had thought. I was planning on doing my H1F next but I'm going to slide it to the side and do this one first since it's going to take very little to get it right.

I've since got it home and did some preliminary work to it. The carbs did indeed need to be rebuilt and they are on my work bench after taking a bath in my 7 gallon ultrasonic cleaner. All the electrics and lights work fine, including the starter. I poured a half teaspoon of oil into each cyl then slowly kicked it a few times to lube them. I also injected a half-pint of oil into the head to lube the insert bearings before pouring some gas into each carb boot so I could start it for a moment....just to be sure there wasn't any "clanks or clunks". It ran nice and smooth for a couple seconds so I removed the carbs. I've got the seat and tank off and have ordered a bunch of small parts and a few bigger ones. Once everything arrives, I'll get to work. Sweet!


Yeah, it's not a triple like most of my bikes but it was too good to pass up. Sometimes, we got to get a classic just because....

Here's a link to my photobucket album for this bike for you guys. I took these after getting it home and rinsing it off before running down the ramp into my basement work shop.

http://s808.photobucket.com/user/jeffkushner1/library/1976%20CB400F?sort=3&page=1



jeff  
Present only:

My VStrom 1000 K7

'74 RD350 in great shape & 1975 GT550 restored&built up and a another '75 GT550 taken in pymt for port work on an H1. All original, nearly flawless '75 H2, '74 H2-fire breather finally completed and everything I'd hoped it would be, 82 Yamaha 650 turbo running 18psi,72 & 2-75 H1's for restoration, '76 CB400F & 73 CB350 all done...gave the 350 to my sweetheart!

 
joegresh joegresh
Guru | Posts: 1051 | Joined: 03/09
Posted: 06/07/13
05:56 AM

I don't think that head has inserts.  The cam runs directly on the aluminum.  

 
jeffkushner1 jeffkushner1
User | Posts: 160 | Joined: 02/10
Posted: 06/07/13
07:22 AM

I was thinking at the time that it ran in inserts but now that you mention it, I think you're absolutely right about that! Since I was squeezing the oil in at 2 of the valve adjuster covers using one of the big syringes that you get Jello shooters in, I couldn't see the ends of the cam. I think that maybe the crank on that engine rides in inserts but the cam rides directly in the head. Thankfully, I remembered that Honda employed that "high pressure oiling system" and to fill that sucker full of oil because after 30 some years, it would have been dry as a bone on startup! That might not have caused a problem today, but it sure would have cut the life expectancy.

jeff  
Present only:

My VStrom 1000 K7

'74 RD350 in great shape & 1975 GT550 restored&built up and a another '75 GT550 taken in pymt for port work on an H1. All original, nearly flawless '75 H2, '74 H2-fire breather finally completed and everything I'd hoped it would be, 82 Yamaha 650 turbo running 18psi,72 & 2-75 H1's for restoration, '76 CB400F & 73 CB350 all done...gave the 350 to my sweetheart!

 
jeffkushner1 jeffkushner1
User | Posts: 160 | Joined: 02/10
Posted: 07/10/13
04:57 AM

Completed!! Ta Da!!
I started it last night and that's always a very sweet moment! I still have to refinish the left side cover, reset the rear brake arm and I also have to change the oil and filter so I don't want to run it too much till that's done. I got it ready to start last night with GAS IN THE TANK and then remembered that I needed a fuel filter. After all those carb parts(all 96 pieces), I wasn't about to mess it up with a few bits of junk so up to the local rape shop, formally called ACE hardware where I paid $9.47 for the 2 dollar filter that you see. The video posted on my photobucket really is the very first push of the starter button...flooded the dang thing<LOL>...but it runs great and you guys are right, smooth like silk. I still have to do those things mentioned as well as a complete polishing but it's a cool little bike and I think all in, I've got somewhere around 600 into it which includes the new fender less what I was able to sell the old one for. I've got to admit, I'm really looking forward to riding it.....since its a small bike, it's not too bad for a 4 stroke!

http://s808.photobucket.com/user/jeffkushner1/library/1976%20CB400F?sort=6&page=1


Another old vintage bike put back on the road.....!!  
Present only:

My VStrom 1000 K7

'74 RD350 in great shape & 1975 GT550 restored&built up and a another '75 GT550 taken in pymt for port work on an H1. All original, nearly flawless '75 H2, '74 H2-fire breather finally completed and everything I'd hoped it would be, 82 Yamaha 650 turbo running 18psi,72 & 2-75 H1's for restoration, '76 CB400F & 73 CB350 all done...gave the 350 to my sweetheart!

 
Bikeguy Joe Bikeguy Joe
User | Posts: 173 | Joined: 01/09
Posted: 07/11/13
08:51 AM

Lucky (foolish) bastard!

I say foolish because you gave him 200 bucks for a free bike.

Wink  

 
jeffkushner1 jeffkushner1
User | Posts: 160 | Joined: 02/10
Posted: 07/11/13
09:49 AM

Naw, not foolish at all. I just did the right thing. The guy I got the 400 from told me that he had over 50 emails that morning of guys who would take his bike for free....and i was the only one who told him that I couldn't take it for nothing if it was really restorable....I contacted him yesterday as I had promised him I would when I bought it. He got a chance to see his old bike running again for the first time in 35 years and was very happy, even if he wouldn't be the one riding it.....karma is a good thing Joe....you take care of others, and strangers will take care of you. Who knows, maybe it was the extra 50 bucks I gave to a guy a few years ago for his GT550 that he was selling just to feed his family that got me the opportunity to get this CB400F for next to nothing?

jeff  
Present only:

My VStrom 1000 K7

'74 RD350 in great shape & 1975 GT550 restored&built up and a another '75 GT550 taken in pymt for port work on an H1. All original, nearly flawless '75 H2, '74 H2-fire breather finally completed and everything I'd hoped it would be, 82 Yamaha 650 turbo running 18psi,72 & 2-75 H1's for restoration, '76 CB400F & 73 CB350 all done...gave the 350 to my sweetheart!

 
Bikeguy Joe Bikeguy Joe
User | Posts: 173 | Joined: 01/09
Posted: 07/12/13
05:32 PM

Easy killer, I was just joshin' ya'.
I know all about the Karma...