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Discussion Starter #1
I'm going to buy a CB750 and turn it into a cafe racer this summer (Carpy style). Right now I am looking at two different bike for this project. The first is a 1974 with 32k miles on it. It runs alright but will need a lot of work.
Here are some pictures of the 74







The second bike is a 1978 with 27k miles. It runs better than the 74 and seems to be in beter overall condition. I don't really like the tank on this one and think it looks a little 80s.
Here are the pictures of the 78





Both bikes are the same price. Which one would you go with an why?


“I just don't want to die without a few scars.”
 

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Personally, I'd buy the one that's more mechanically sound... But I don't like messing with my motor.
The gas tank can be changed easily enough.

The first (orange) one has pod air filters, you should find out if the PO had the carbs done after installing them, could be why it doesn't run as well.

That said... I wouldn't buy a bike that needed "alot of work" over a bike that is "in beter overall condition" just because I liked the gas tank.

Hey By'
 

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yeah id go with the second one.... besides the tank is different... nuthin wrong with different..... but yeah you could get a new steel tank from speedmoto for like 250$ right now..... or hell whatver, get the better runnin one....for sure....
 

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if you care abotu weight, the 78 is 40lbs heavier than the 74 and that is mostly in the frame re-design that you can't chop off.

I am partial to the earlier models. If you are really doing it carpy style then you are going to touch anything anyway. Personally I don't know your level of bike expirence so I can't say which would be better off.
 

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I think that the 78 looks over all in better condition.
The other one seems to have more surface rust. The pod filters
would worry me as well seeing as you have no idea what has
been done to the carbs.

I would go with the bike that runs well, that way you
can spend your money and your time making it look the way
you want instead of spending money and time just trying to get
it to work.
Esp. since they're the same price, it just doesn't seem like
a contest. If you were going to just restore the bike
completely i would say go with the earlier model, but since you
are going to chop it all up i don't see why it would matter.

Unless you just love working on bikes, it really sucks to get your
first one home and find out there is a lot to do just to make it
run the way you want, plus there could be underlying conditions
that make the first one run 'okay' that you don't want to mess with.

Plus, tank wise, if your going carpy style you are going to replace
the tank regardless.

get the one that works best and is in the best condition.
-brent
 

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correct me if I am wrong but didn't the 78 need a ring job? I think I remember from another board where you posted this question that it did.
 

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i'm going with the flow here and say that you should go with the mechanically sound one. the FT was my first and she'd been used and abused. if i actually count the hours i've spent, it'd be probably be over 200 and half of that spent on electricals. i got me CB650 BECAUSE it was stock. got the carbs dipped and new fork seals and there she goes. so, go with the one that works. the sportster tank is easier to get some knew inserts into, and i think they look better (check out carpy's site).

CB650, FauxCatiFT500
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the imput guys. I ended up buying the blue 78. I think it is going to require a lot less work than the 75. Now that I got the bike home I have noticed a few little things. Like the fork is on backwards lol. The guy told me the speedo didn't work, he thought the cable was broken. Turns out the speedo just doesn't read in reverse. The odometer is also a lower number than the title states. I've also found a small dent in the rear wheel. Oh well, I would likely be finding the same little things on the 75 as well. I hope to have the thing apart in the next week so I can start getting some stuff powdercoated. Thanks again for the imput!

“I just don't want to die without a few scars.”
 

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swapping the forks backwards was an old drag racer trick to make the brake more efficient. It was probably done on purpose since the tire appears to be mounted correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Is there a way to make the speedometer and odometer work properly with the fork this way?

“I just don't want to die without a few scars.”
 

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quote:
Is there a way to make the speedometer and odometer work properly with the fork this way?

“I just don't want to die without a few scars.”
I think so. You can leave the forks turned backwards and then turn the wheel around and move the brake mount to the other side. The caliper comes off in two pieces from the mount so you can turn that around on the mount so it lines up if you need to (it should anyway but it helps to have the lines on the outside).

The other way is to move the speedo to the side of with your front brake rotor, but if you are going to do that then you can also convert to dual disc since the speedo is usually the hardest part about the conversion (easy if you have the cb500 speedo drive parts). Do a search on the SOHC4.us board about dual disc conversions and you'll get a lot of info there.
 

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quote:
Is the blue bike a hondamatic or does it just have the hondamatic tank?
it has the stock 1978 cb750K tank. Not sure if the hondamatic tank is just similar or identical. the 1969-1976K all have the same small tank with exposed filler. The 1975-78 F have the same shape breadbox tank with gas door (petcocks may be different) which is longer. 1977-78 Ks have the big tank with the gas door.
 
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