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Hello from Jersey!

4964 Views 17 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  hillsy
Hi everyone I am new to this site and the cafe racer world. I have been racing motocross forever, but never owned a street legal bike. So, I purchased my first bike a few days ago for $900 (I am 19 and still live at home, my mom is pissed). It is a 1973 Honda CB750 bored and stroked to an 836. It has been sitting for a year so I cleaned out the carbs and just need to finish all the wiring and it should start right up. I thought this would be a great platform to start building my bike. It is something I have always wanted to do! I am open to any advice right now and I am really trying to find a badass seat, so what seat should I get?
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you don't have the original seat (unless you have another seat than the one in your pics) , you have a corbin gentry low king and queen. why is this important? because the pans are different and the foam and cover kits you can buy for a stock pan may not work.

Let's start at the basics: do you have a manual? do you have real tools? Please get a camera that is not a potato and take pictures of your bike in the sunlight.

If you have a 1973 cb750 in green then you have candy bacchus olive. If it is in remotely reasonable shape please don't do something stupid like paint it flat black. It's a unique paint color made by shooting blue candy over a gold base, and when shined up it looks stunning. here is what it should look like if it is all shined up:
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unless you got a 1974 model (would have a 1973 build date) in which case the color is liberty green:

Ok, so let's talk about what you really need to do. Give that bike a proper once over and servicing:

Before you can even talk about seats let's talk about:

- tires: how old are they? are they weather checked/cracked? do they need replacement?
- suspension: is it leaking? rust? do you need to rebuild the forks (you def need to replace those old as hell rear shocks)? Are the rubber bushings in the rear shocks any good?
- engine: valve adjustment? what's the oil look like (drain and run a magnet through it)? cam chain tensioner condition?
- carbs: for the love of god throw out those pod filters and get a stock airbox. Also how clean are they?
- drivetrain: primary chain slop? clutch any good? chain and sprockets need replacement?
- electronics? everything work?
- swingarm bushings any good? wheel bearings?
- brakes? do they work? pad condition?

Since you are 19 and talking stupid about seats on a non-running project bike I am going to assume you want to "tear it down to the frame". Stop. You don't need to do that until it is time to paint the frame. Make the bike run, make your mods to a running, riding bike that you can use to evaluate your mods, and then when it is all done you take it apart to paint. saavy? good.

Also I don't ever want to hear the words "cut the frame" come out of your mouth. You have a cb750, there is no need to cut anything unless you want to prove to the world that you are a dipshit. Dick Mann won Daytona on a cb750 with all it's frame brackets in place - are you Dick Mann? no? are you Bob Hansen? The rickman brothers? Massimo Tamburini? no? then you don't need to cut your frame.
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Oh - and this:

I hope you aren't going to cut into the piece that actually clamps onto the handlebar. That will fail.
Its a common mod. The cb750 wires run internal to the handlebar from 1969 to 1976. It is common for guys to convert them to external by drilling our a little channel for the wires to poke out of so it can be run down the outside of the bar.
Hey thanks for all the advice! Here are my answers

-I do have the original seat, it is just not pictured here.
-Yes, I have the manual and real tools (I've been working on motocross bikes all my life)
-It is a 1973 and yes that is the exact color. Don't worry I won't paint it some stupid color, I probably won't paint it at all and just leave it original.
-Tires are brand new, they still have all of the hairs on them.
-Looked over the suspension, I can't see any leaks, I will hopefully be replacing the rear suspension with something nicer feeling.
-I haven't opened up the engine yet. Good idea with the magnet!
-Carbs I cleaned out yesterday. Jets were all clogged and okay I will take off the pods and put the stock air box back on.
-Clutch seems to be okay. Sprocket is still in fairly decent condition. Chain is not stretched (was very dirty so i have it cleaning in mineral spirits right now)
-electronics, I am not too sure yet what is working and what isn't.
-rear brakes are fine, fronts are shot. (bike came with a whole new front brake, lines and master cylinder)

-No, I will not be tearing it down to the frame, that is totally unnecessary. No I won't be cutting anything don't worry! My ultimate goal is just to have a kickass cafe racer when I am done! I am keeping it clean and simple.
Glad to hear!!! Sounds like you have your head screwed on straight.

So, ask about some mods. Jag, Bmartin, and I have some pretty vast experience with these bikes, as well as many others here. The nice part about cb750's are they were really popular for a long time so there are upgrades for every budget. Take the front wheel for example: the ideal route is to get an Akront or Sun 18" front hoop and lace it to your hub with custom spokes from a place like buchanans or hunt down a set of lester, morris, henry abe, or shelby mags. However that can get get pricey, but there is an alternative: a 1975-1977 GL1000 or a 1976-77 CB750A front wheel. It's a 19" so it's not ideal but it's a bolt on assembled wheel with a did aluminum hoop that is cheap to find in the aftermarket. I bought a complete cb750A front wheel this year for $35 locally, ready to bolt on and I can even reuse my stock front tire. The 1976-77 cb750A Hondamatic rears are bolt on as well but have a 17" rear DID alloy hoop, which is also not "ideal" for a performance bike but again they are cheap. this is just to get your mind thinking.
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