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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I purchased this old 125 on offer up for $500. It needs a lot of stuff but it runs, rides great, and best of all it has a title and is currently registered… kind of a rarity for a $500 project on offer up or craigslist. My wife has been wanting to learn to ride on the street for some time .....she knows how to ride dirt bikes and stuff from years of desert trips...... but I figured it would be best to start off on something as small as I could find. As you can see it needs a few things and from just a preliminary inspection I would guess an additional $500 to $700 worth of parts……. So it could potentially be a $1200 motorcycle/project before I even take one rag to wipe the dirt off...but I feel it's worth it.

In my opinion there are 3 pressing issues that need to be addressed before she rides it and one is the front brake. It works but the inner workings are seized and just a big clump of rust. I thought it was a run of the mill front brake but it's some kind of cable squeeze contraption… something I've never seen before. It will stop now but it needs to be addressed. The 2nd thing is the carburetor. The engine sounds tight and not loose but the carburetor is not adjusted correctly or is not the correct one. It'll start…. Sometimes hard… It will idle high and then sometimes normal. It looks like at 1 point they replaced it with a Chinese knock off. I've had hit-or-miss issues with Chinese knock off carburetors so it may be that. It has 6800 miles on the clock and from the tapit covers it looks like the valves were probably never adjusted.

The 3rd thing is electrical. The horn and the headlight works and the tail light is dim. The previous owner told me it had a slow power drain so it may or may not be charging. I haven't taken a multimeter to anything yet so who knows but I'm preparing for the worst.

Good news is parts seem fairly abundant. Some things are dirt cheap and other things are through the roof. I can find a full electrical knock off wiring harness for 40 bucks new and mirrors and gators and little rubber things cheap.

So for now I will address the front brake before anything else so my wife can ride around in circles in a parking lot.. She's small at 5'2" and this bike is extremely small but something tells me she will outgrow it very quick.


It's nice to have a small bike back in the garage…. even if it is a work in progress. I'm sure things will surprise me along the way.

 

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The little ones are hard to find in decent shape and it looks pretty good. A sorted one for $1200 and some time is a pretty good deal. Old hondas are great to learn to ride, right position, passive engines. I still really enjoy riding them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The little ones are hard to find in decent shape and it looks pretty good. A sorted one for $1200 and some time is a pretty good deal. Old hondas are great to learn to ride, right position, passive engines. I still really enjoy riding them.
I couldn't agree more and that was kinda my thinking....... non intimidating and great to learn on

lol knappy you are so addicted to nice little motorcycles :cool: and your wife is awesome.
Haha!!...... I was thinking if another good deal came along that was slightly bigger than this we could ride around together and then she could graduate to the bigger bike....slowly
 

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I have a 1975 CL125. Owned for years now. Got it from the original owner with about 900 miles on it. Think over 4k now. Great bike to have around for runs for Chinese food and beer.

-Yes the front brake is a cable operated unit. Not the best stopping power, but it gets the job done. Should be able to strip everything down, clean it up, replace anything that is needed and be done without much hassle.

-That carb does look new, and would bet is aftermarket. Ive never had luck with them. Best to fine an OEM, and rebuild that for the bike. Kits from honda are super cheap. Actually I try and only use OEM parts on mine. Get almost everything direct from a dealer still.
These bikes HATE changes to the intake. The manifolds are stacked with spacers and gaskets, so tend to leak. Make sure there is some kind of filer in the airbox.

-Mine drains the battery too. Unsure if there is a real issue, or that is just part of living the 6V life. I replace the battery every other year to keep things happy.
Bike will not start with a dead battery, and runs like poop with a low charge one.
 

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It's not much of a Honda generator is it :LOL: you almost need to plug something like that in overnight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have a 1975 CL125. Owned for years now. Got it from the original owner with about 900 miles on it. Think over 4k now. Great bike to have around for runs for Chinese food and beer.

-Yes the front brake is a cable operated unit. Not the best stopping power, but it gets the job done. Should be able to strip everything down, clean it up, replace anything that is needed and be done without much hassle.

-That carb does look new, and would bet is aftermarket. Ive never had luck with them. Best to fine an OEM, and rebuild that for the bike. Kits from honda are super cheap. Actually I try and only use OEM parts on mine. Get almost everything direct from a dealer still.
These bikes HATE changes to the intake. The manifolds are stacked with spacers and gaskets, so tend to leak. Make sure there is some kind of filer in the airbox.

-Mine drains the battery too. Unsure if there is a real issue, or that is just part of living the 6V life. I replace the battery every other year to keep things happy.
Bike will not start with a dead battery, and runs like poop with a low charge one.
Thanks for the info...... Yeah I found out it wouldn't start with a low battery either.

I've been hit&miss with Chinese carburetors… especially for offroad. I mean they look the part nicely..... but sometimes maybe the innards aren't done well I don't know.

The front brake is the project for the weekend. I've got a small bucket of evaporust with its name written all over it......specifically for the clump of internal rust
 

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did you get the side covers? my 71 CL100 is missing the battery sidecover, all of which apparently migrated to neptune. the right side covers are usually easier to source.
 

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In my opinion there are 3 pressing issues that need to be addressed before she rides it and one is the front brake. It works but the inner workings are seized and just a big clump of rust. I thought it was a run of the mill front brake but it's some kind of cable squeeze contraption… something I've never seen before. It will stop now but it needs to be addressed.

Nice little scoot. (y) Unless you want to keep the bike in original condition, I'm guessing that you could probably get a hydraulic front caliper/mastercylinder set up. It would be Chinese of course, but might be an option.
 

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The same disc and caliper were used on the Honda 78-78 MT-125R production road race bikes. Some guys replaced the calipers with hydraulic ones. Not sure with what. Probably Honda single piston from a CB 350, 400, 550, or 750
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
did you get the side covers? my 71 CL100 is missing the battery sidecover, all of which apparently migrated to neptune. the right side covers are usually easier to source.
You know it didn't come with any side covers......but I've been looking on ebay and there seems to be a seller from Thailand that has some.... That's the only source I know.


The same disc and caliper were used on the Honda 78-78 MT-125R production road race bikes. Some guys replaced the calipers with hydraulic ones. Not sure with what. Probably Honda single piston from a CB 350, 400, 550, or 750
I may be looking into something like that and even a Chinese knock off as Classic250 suggested.

I've been looking on bikebandit.com and all those little internal things are expensive and more importantly..."unavailable to ship"....which tells me unavailable period. I was expecting trench warfare to get it all this assembly apart but ironically it came apart without much fight.

I've worked miracles in the past with a can of Berrymans, Evaporust,...some phosphoric acid and WD40..... Maybe I'll have the same luck this time.

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I may be looking into something like that and even a Chinese knock off as Classic250 suggested.
I read through a few threads here about this brake system replacement.

A few years ago a member listed a heap of motorcycles that have the same 27mm front forks and suggested a swap.

Sounds easy, but then there is the whole axle length and spacers and speedo drive stuff to consider, unless you did the complete front end swap with something that fits your triple-trees.

For sure it's possible and might be something to consider if the mechanical brake assembly can't be fixed.

If interested I will post the link to the thread.
 

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I have the exact same bike. Same year. Same color. Bought it to get around Mid Ohio Vintage Days this past summer.
As jaguar said, the cable front disc brake isn’t bad. You and your wife might find it to be ok. Especially since she is a new rider and may be more confident learning to use a front brake that would require more effort to lock the wheel than a retro-fitted hydraulic one may.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well the front brake has been gone through and it's all put together now. It's all pitted and rusty and just gross but it's not seized anymore… the lever action is working again… and it's stops. It's not ideal but it stops 300% better and that's all that's important right now. The previous owner installed a new cable thinking the seized disk was the problem of a bad cable…. but it wasn't. He told me that it was his daughter's project and she liked to work on older things. She just didn't know.... and just threw parts at it. I don't fault her for that because I would have done the exact same thing if I was repairing something I knew little about. I figured since this wasn't a hydraulic disk brake system that the pitting in the barrel and all the corrosion was no big deal.

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The pads had some good life left in them so I just sanded down the rusted corrosion parts and everything slides better now. Again since there's no fluids involved the pitting and the corrosion to me is no big deal for now.

Yes Classic250....... Post any and all links that you may have. It might help me in the future but more importantly may help somebody else who just stumbles across this thread using Google. Thanks a cool link woodsman..... Probably better than just sending people to allballsracing.com for the conversion chart.

Now the next step is to figure out this carburetion. I'm getting tired of trying to get it to start with 20 kicks
 

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When I got my bike, it had not run in years. It had under 900 miles on it. Inexplicably, the prior owner removed (and probably lost or damaged) the jet needle. He replaced it with a piece of solid copper wire. That wire didn’t stay put and ended up getting Inhaled into the combustion chamber—where it didn’t digest. Bent both valves, beat up the cylinder head and smashed the piston hard enough to collapse the top ring groove.

The carb was crusty and needed gaskets and a jet needle. I saw a complete carb on Amazon for $12.00 and change, shipped to my door. When it arrived, it looked great. However, when I installed it, the bike simply would not run. I robbed the bowl gasket and jet needle from it, threw the OEM carb in the HF ultrasonic cleaner and I was good to go. When and if I get a chance, I will see if I can blow compressed air through the idle circuit.

I would encourage you to see if the PO still has the original carb laying around, so that you can do the same.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I would encourage you to see if the PO still has the original carb laying around, so that you can do the same.

Thanks for the advice but I asked when I was there.....

In fact I asked for 3 things while I was there….. 1 was to see if they had any side covers…. 2 was that if they had the original carburetor or any other parts like the mirrors or whatever and 3..... any type of an owner's manual or shop manual.

They had this owner's manual and it may have been some help for some things but it wasn't the correct manual. Which reminds me..... if anybody could put this to use let me know and it's yours free… I'll ship it to you media mail.

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Maybe somebody on this forum will have a carb laying around and will send it to you. I looked through my stuff, but don’t. 20 years and a few moves ago, had several. I will ask around and let you know if I come up with something.
Do you live near a M/C salvage yard? I am pretty sure that the carb from a CB/CL/SL/XL 100 is the same.
Be careful when buying side covers. The ones used on 1976(?) or 1977(?) and later 100s and 125s are different than those used in 1975 and earlier.
You can find the shop manual online. Check out DTT.
 

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Do you live in or near a city that has an old(er) Honda dealership? An old timer there may have something laying under his bench or at home.
Talk to the service manager. He will know which of his mechanics hoard parts. He will also know customers that do so and will know what is laying around in the parts department.
If you can get an OEM carb body, you can probably use many of the parts from the one that you have to make a functional carburetor. As mentioned above, I will ask around.
 
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