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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys,

I'm new to this forum and I'm totally at a loss as to which is the better bike/buy. There's a guy selling a 1970 CB350 for $2600 and another guy selling a 1972 CB450 for $2100 both all stock. They are both in pretty great condition, but I'm not sure if the CB350 is enough bike for me. Thoughts??

cb350.jpg cb450.jpg
 

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CB350
Pros- Great aftermarket support.
Somewhat smoother than the 450.

Cons- It's physically smaller, if that matters.
Drum front brake.
Less power.


CB450-
Pros-Larger if you need the room
More power, good acceleration.

Cons-VIBRATION at higher rpms.
Sketchy aftermarket support (things like pistons,etc. not tune up parts).

In this case I would probably go with the one that is in the best condition Vs. price.

These are old bikes, can you repair them yourself? Lot's to consider.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for reply! I haven't seen either of them yet in person.. However the CB350 looks to be in better shape. It is aesthetically more appealing to me than the CB450, but I know it's not as much "bike" for the money. The CB350 just looks more rad. I just want a bike that can go on the highway no problem and not struggle to keep up. I'll be doing mostly city driving however. And no, I don't know how to repair these bikes at all.
 

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Cb350 is a toy. Not good at all for the highway.
450 is an amazing bike. Perfect size/power. Very much miss mine.
 

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Did the vibrations of the 450 drive you crazy?
No, they are not.
Not even a little bit.

IF you are comparing it to the turbine smoothness of a SOHC four Honda, then maybe.
BUT if you are looking at most other twins (brits) then they are fine.
Defiantly not something to scare you away.
Many have not had the rubber bushings in the handlebar mounts replaced in many years. This helps a lot.

For me personally I see the 450 as WAY more useable on the road then a 350.
There is more then just 100cc in difference. It is the size of the bike and how it is set up.

Really at the end of the day every bike is a tool.
What job are you doing?

For the 350
-Are you supper silly crazy tiny? Then I can see it.
-Only "riding around town", okay maybe the smallness is nice.
-Going to do some racing? Few classes that the CB350 fits very well in.
-Been spending to much time jerking off to hipster bullshit on pipeburn and really just want to go play dress up at a parking lot or take killer instagram pics? Plenty of uses then.....;

For the 450
-Are you interested in exploring different areas of the hobby? Want a bike that can feel at home around town or doing some road trips?
-Want something mildly interesting in the Honda world? The bike gets a bad wrap with the torsion bars and vibrations, but MOST are over exaggerated.


Service items are a wash for either.
Honda makes 99% of anything you would ever need to keep either on the road.
People did race the 450s, and still do.
These arent 3rd gen F bodies, so "aftermarket" is really limited to "universal" fit junk anyway.

We should touch base that ANY modifications to ANY bike you get are a shitty idea.
Learn to ride and learn to keep the bike running. Develop a baseline of how things should be. Dont blindly tear into it to "make it your own" or some other crap.
Focus on the mechanical and over time start to improve the function and performance.

Go see both.
The more vintage bikes you can get near the better.
You didnt complete your bio so we dont know if any members are close to you to lend a hand.......

Clearly you want to see them start from cold.
Look for smoke and all the basics.

On the 350 check throttle response. Many have carb issues due to modern fuel. A diaphragm fails and is a royal pain in the ass to deal with.
You want to make sure the 450 doesnt have any ticks that could sound like oil starvation.

Personally I question the price A LOT for the 350. I tend to not be interested in "stock" bikes that are missing the correct exhaust.
450 looks a lot like a deal. Seems very clean.

This was my 450.


- - - Updated - - -

Did the vibrations of the 450 drive you crazy?
No, they are not.
Not even a little bit.

IF you are comparing it to the turbine smoothness of a SOHC four Honda, then maybe.
BUT if you are looking at most other twins (brits) then they are fine.
Defiantly not something to scare you away.
Many have not had the rubber bushings in the handlebar mounts replaced in many years. This helps a lot.

For me personally I see the 450 as WAY more useable on the road then a 350.
There is more then just 100cc in difference. It is the size of the bike and how it is set up.

Really at the end of the day every bike is a tool.
What job are you doing?

For the 350
-Are you supper silly crazy tiny? Then I can see it.
-Only "riding around town", okay maybe the smallness is nice.
-Going to do some racing? Few classes that the CB350 fits very well in.
-Been spending to much time jerking off to hipster bullshit on pipeburn and really just want to go play dress up at a parking lot or take killer instagram pics? Plenty of uses then.....;

For the 450
-Are you interested in exploring different areas of the hobby? Want a bike that can feel at home around town or doing some road trips?
-Want something mildly interesting in the Honda world? The bike gets a bad wrap with the torsion bars and vibrations, but MOST are over exaggerated.


Service items are a wash for either.
Honda makes 99% of anything you would ever need to keep either on the road.
People did race the 450s, and still do.
These arent 3rd gen F bodies, so "aftermarket" is really limited to "universal" fit junk anyway.

We should touch base that ANY modifications to ANY bike you get are a shitty idea.
Learn to ride and learn to keep the bike running. Develop a baseline of how things should be. Dont blindly tear into it to "make it your own" or some other crap.
Focus on the mechanical and over time start to improve the function and performance.

Go see both.
The more vintage bikes you can get near the better.
You didnt complete your bio so we dont know if any members are close to you to lend a hand.......

Clearly you want to see them start from cold.
Look for smoke and all the basics.

On the 350 check throttle response. Many have carb issues due to modern fuel. A diaphragm fails and is a royal pain in the ass to deal with.
You want to make sure the 450 doesnt have any ticks that could sound like oil starvation.

Personally I question the price A LOT for the 350. I tend to not be interested in "stock" bikes that are missing the correct exhaust.
450 looks a lot like a deal. Seems very clean.

This was my 450.
 

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I've owned 2 cb450s and 2 CL350s, one a racer. For myself, I prefer the 450. They do vibrate but jag is right
Its not that big a deal and it is mostly at the top of the rev range.
 

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Jags pretty much got this covered.

I personally have an attachment to the 350 solely cause it was my daddy's bike but all things being equal like condition mechanically, etc....to me....the 450 seems a better purchase.

The only thing I feel is important is what's your riding experience? Proficient? First street bike? Learning? A club racer? Off road experience? Answering these questions......for your sake....... might lead you to one bike or another.

If your bringing up the front end on your R1 down the freeway or hauling a trailer on your Goldwing both of these would be toys. If your learning and not proficient........smaller is better.

If your intention is to make one of them your "cafe dream"........then both of these are too good of an example to chop up.


Good luck
 

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well OP, good on you for not looking at the $750 bikes. these make much more sense.

Still I catch from your posts 2 things
1) you talk so much about looks that it makes me think your riding experience is rather limited. Looks is nice but (really) its secondary.
2) you say that you do not know how to fix either.

This combo forces me to encourage a reality check. A survivor 70s bike is NOT the best bike to learn on and it WILL require wrenching. You might be far better off by buying a more modern well working bike with parts on shelf and service (being minimal compared to the 70s bikes) being easily available.

here is my old writings on the topic. Its out of context here but I am sure you can fill the gaps and pick the essential:

my canned response - its for slightly other question but valid in many ways. Only want to add that cheap bikes are pricey. Not always but often. Meaning you save 500 in purchase price compared to another bike but need 800 investment to get it to the level of the "pricey" one. More modern bikes handle better, are more reliable, safer etc. Kawasaki EX500 migth not look like the coolest thing though 80s are coming back and Top Gun re-runs are about to hit the tube now that Tony Scott killed himself. Ex500 is poor mans GPZ900r (the top gun bike).
Oh yeah want to add: 90% the bikes will add tremendously to your cool factor. Knowledge that you are becoming a better rider and not jus a poser with skinny jeans will add to your macho confidence too. Get a working bike. Leave more specific genre choices for later when you have few thousand miles under your belt and you have a better idea what it all is about. If you want more macho confidence start deadlifting. Be the new cool don't ever drink PBR.

and here the promised canned response.

do you have any experience? how big are you? how much money are you willing to spend (lose).

If you have very little or no experience I would man up and and accept that you will need smaller and maybe not so cool short term bike. Reasons are listed here:

1. You will learn faster on small bike. Really. Were you to spend 1st 1000-2000 miles on small bike you will be better rider at 5000 miles than if you went straight for a big bike. I use miles instead of months as there are a lot of "riders" who have ridden twice a year for 5 years. Small bike is easier to handle in parking lots, easier to pick up when you drop it, less intimidating generally. Its much better to learn on a bike where you quickly feel like the master. Real learning starts only after that actually.

2. Cheap common bikes (ninja 250, rebel 250 or other smaller starter bikes) hold their value great. You can buy a 2500$ ninja 250, put 2000 miles on it and sell it after 10 months and only lose 0-300$ on depreciation. Parts are cheap too should something break.

3. You are likely to drop your bike. If its used older beater its no drama and less $$ to learn the hard way.

4. As a new rider (especially if younger) insurance costs a lot. When you buy a 2000-3000$ bike you don't need full coverage and adding scratch is not going to ruin its value.


Even if cruiser is what you want to ride I would consider a more neutral bike (so called standard) as they are good to learn on. Once you have put some miles you are much better educated on what kind of riding you actually enjoy. Maybe more of a tourer is your thing, or you fall in love with having more speed and control, or maybe back roads are calling for dual sporting (gravel road oriented bikes).

Don't let other peoples ideas dictate you into (or away for that matter) any particular style of biking. Get a bike, ride and decide for yourself.

But again read my list esp. #1 is true - we have seen the fools with giant Harleys struggling with the weight and being visibly uncomfortable - or the sports bike guy who slams on gas on straight but can't take a corner at all in fear of all the power.

You will learn faster on a small bike. Trust me. Then if you ride quite a bit you might be ready to switch to your dream bike in half a year or maybe even sooner - but do the start right.

and buy a full face helmet + proper gear. Yeah it doesn't look s cool on a HD but nose and lower jaw are nice things to have.


Note: this was for a person looking for a cruiser. It shows here and there but mostly relevant.
 

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Looks like a lot of something leaking out around the heads of that 350.


...
Still I catch from your posts 2 things
1) you talk so much about looks that it makes me think your riding experience is rather limited. Looks is nice but (really) its secondary.
2) you say that you do not know how to fix either.
...
I picked up on the name southernbelle to imply the rider is probably a she :| but yes, regardless of gender, good question on the previous riding experience.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
This isn't my first bike. I've been riding 4 years now and I've owned about 5 newer bikes from ninjas to Harley 883's, but I've always loved the older bikes. I had a 1975 cb550 I got rid of some odd months ago and had no troubles driving that. Wanting to get another now. The bike will just be to go to work and riding around on weekends so no racing. And yes I am a woman who's about 5'5" so I'm not tall by any means and my weight is about 175. Definitely gonna go with the cb450, thanks guys for helping out and sending your knowledge my way! Also, someone was asking where I lived and its Beaumont, Texas. I'm not far from Austin and Houston and those bikes seem to get good money around here.
 

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I was born in Nederland. Welcome.
 
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