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Hi all - CB450 project bike inside

47105 Views 275 Replies 54 Participants Last post by  borzwazie
Hey all, just checking in. Today is my birthday, so I conned the wife into spending some cash:

Only $50 bucks! Got a title and everything.

As you can see, the fork seals don't exist anymore, and the bike is very grimy with green and rusty corrosion in lots of places. The motor does turn over though. It's got a CB500 motor in it, apparently the guy that owned it before wedged it in.

That's the original tank sitting there on the floor, but I'm told it leaks, and it's crusty inside, so it may not be worth saving.

The mufflers you see on the floor are off some Harleys and the guy had his own CB with these on it, I've got em so I can pass inspection after I get it running, as the originals are cracked in a bunch of places and kind of rusty.

Heck, I even got the key, bonus!

If you follow this (\11\23\bikepics-472165-full.jpg ) you'll see pretty much what I'd like to do to it.

Happy birthday to me!
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well, it took a long time, but I finally have a short update. No pics today, tho.

I bought a battery at the local parts store. There are two stores - how did I pick the store, you ask?

First store: I call - "How much for a 12v 12ah bike battery for a cb450?"

"$30 bucks."

Second store "How much for a 12v 12ah bike battery for a cb450?"

"$28 bucks and $51 dollars." "What's the difference?" "Once costs $28 and one costs $51."

First store gets the nod!

I have fork seals and intake manifolds on the way from EBay, so I'll soon be able to fire it up. I put the acid in the battery (first time I ever did that) and charged it for a bit. One question for anyone that knows - when a battery charger meter shows no amperage, that means the battery is charged, right? Shouldn't it take quite a while?

Anyway, I dropped the battery in, turned the key, and thumbed the starter - it turns! Big fat sparks, too. Headlight works, horn works - turn signal indicator works, but the horn beeps when I have the turn signal on, LOL <img src=icon_smile_big.gif border=0 align=middle>

I can't wait to give it gas, I wish my manifolds would show up.
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Welp, you could always just spray something combustible into the intake ports if you're desperate to hear it tick over for three or four seconds.

I'm sooo close to running - I got my ebay'd manifolds in yesterday. They're from a '69 CB450, and the angle is a little different, but the size is the same, and they seem to fit ok.

My wife (pregnant) went into false labor last night, only we didn't know it was false until late this morning, so that has curtailed some of my bike work.

I (very jokingly) suggested to my wife while we were waiting the hours away last night: "Honey, I should have brought the bike - I could be working on it while we're waiting!"

She did not get the joke.

Edited by - borzwazie on May 12 2007 7:25:54 PM
I like cleaning carbs completely taking every thing apart puting every thing back together.Im a mystery oil fan I sguirt some in every orfice and in the fuel line tube where the fuel line attaches to lube the float seats a little .be some smoke on start up and initial running but it lubes valves and cylinders .I love the stuff I even put it in my tank .yumm yumm old engines like the stuff.
Glad to see its not abandoned looks like your poor new born will be breathing in some motor cycle history because we all know where the kid will be when your baby sitting .In the Garage with Dad congrats!

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.
some pics!

new manifolds (well, new to me, they were pulls that I shot some silver paint on the metal):

All the chrome is badly pitted, oh well - the front fender looks ok from 4 feet away or so (I used some metal polish to get the green off):

I took a very quick pass at the sidecover, which had all this funky white corrosion on it, it may clean up ok, no real pitting:

I'm not getting too far into cleanup until I hear it running. I ran out of time, so I'm hoping to start it up this week sometime.

Out of curiousity, a question: The oil in this thing is as old as the corrosion. Should I start it up to warm the old oil before changing, or should I change it before I ever start it?
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that bike looks like it was sitting a good while.DRAIN THAT OIL ,clean the filter screen .remove plugs a few oil can pumps of mystery oil to help the rings put in fresh new oil and pump the engine over a good bid have charger ready or attached already.besure choke is off so the engine gets air and have the throttle open so the enegine doesnt work so hard being an air pump.let it sit do it agin when the starter cools dont crank it like a car the starter gets hot easier.
Plan on some fresh oil after a good hot engine,then you let it come down from pinging hot to just a medium hot motor .dump that oil clean the strainer and give it a drink of fresh stuff.Another new set of plugs and you should be back to normal.
Does the clutch throw feel normal may want to check that while you are moving oil out of the motor.
Dont worry about looks you have a classic COOL looking bike even in a rat bike form 450s are just cool .

I think you would be very surprised what the cleaner Fantastic and soft wire brushes will do the small ones with brass wire look like big tooth brushes,will do good work of, getting the gas stains and grime off.Clean the entire bike that way then garden hose it down.Then mask off things not to be painted and spray can the small areas at a time .take the front engine plats off lay them on some sand paper and hang them up on so wire shoot them glass black and touch up the down tube.little by little it will look healthy and "TOUCHED" and not so ratty.
Its a cool bike I like mine .

Heavey duty cup type wire(use eye protection the wires fly out like needles) wire attached to a hand grinder (not the wheel type) will get the exhaust rust off and give good tooth for a flat black paint barbaque paint works just dont let your hand oil on the chrome after the wire wheel hits ithang them and spray them I even cook them gently with a propane torch .(gently)It scraps off easy if your not carful remounting them and again id use rags or gloves so hand oils dont get on the paint.

CUT those fork gaiters off they have done their job clean the forks up with chrome polish and then spray them with some WD You can always replace them latter and will do wonders in the looks department.

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.

Edited by - LiLBull on May 13 2007 07:32:47 AM

Edited by - LiLBull on May 13 2007 07:37:17 AM

Edited by - LiLBull on May 13 2007 09:54:32 AM
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wheels your best bet is to scour ebay till you find a wheel in better shape then yours it will be cheaper in the long run .wheels in better shape then yours are out there.cb450 and other cb models will work.

dont paint the chain gaurd its plastic take it off and clean it good with fine rubbing compound and clean areas you now see accessible with it off touch up paint in those areas and refit guard .the whole bike will look FRESH and its really all you need to feel better about your bike that everything has been touched,and you know your bike completely.anti sieze or oil or thread lock "red" medium grip so things dont vibrate loose,go together easy and are oiled to make things work smoothly .spray rustblaster down cables and work it in and do it a few times so it works down cable then spray up the other end of the cable so things get wet with lube .

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.

Edited by - LiLBull on May 13 2007 08:12:00 AM

Edited by - LiLBull on May 13 2007 08:24:12 AM

Edited by - LiLBull on May 13 2007 08:35:50 AM
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I got the 9-year-old gas out of the tank today, put on new fuel line,
cleaned the air filters, dropped the battery in, hit the starter
button, and....


It started on the first try! Honda made a hell of a motor there, it
hasn't run in 8 years, and it just fired right up. It smoked a bit at
first (the choke and the Marvel Mystery oil, probably), backfired a couple of times, then ran like a champ.

I'm so pumped - I've wanted a motorcycle for so long, and to hear it
running really felt great.

Now the real work begins!

Edited by - borzwazie on May 14 2007 12:45:35 AM
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Hey LilBull - I really like the look of the CX tank, did you say that my stock petcock will work?

EDIT: Nevermind, I see where you said it does.

Edited by - borzwazie on May 14 2007 10:32:04 PM
on the 450 I built "War Horse" and on the 360 Im currently building I cut a small oval out of the rubber tank pad that sits under the tank pad/heat sheild. And I had to weld (you can also rivet) a strip of metal on both sides of the FRONT "C" mounts to reach the rubber mounts as the 450 and 360 frames were narrower then the cx's frame .For the rear mount I used stock rubber mount but the center mount of the cx tank, I drilling a hole placed a bolt with fender washer,threads facing up,then fit another fenderwasher and locknut then some hardware store,tapered rubber grommets from plumbing supply Its very very easy solution to make this kick ass looking inexpensive fit..A 750 maybe wide enough I havent checked.

To make it clear on the rear mount I drilled thru the frame plate that fills in at that point of the frame ,Pushed the bolt up towards thetop of the bike from the bottom .fender washers both sides to spread loads and strengthen the spot.faced the tapered gromment up(think handle bar stay mount vibration tappered rubber bushings)
slide the large end of taper down over lock nut put tank center hole over that and capped it of with a large flat rubber washer At the hardware store I was able to find a threaded plastic knob that screwd the whole system of bolt and bushings and washers down and looked perpusfull my seat pad covers the area completely .I just made that area cupshaped to cover it but also go around it.

The 750 ill build id aim for a more expensive SS tank or maybe a 1100 tank just something long.When I build a 750 it will be aimed at a CR750 look.

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.
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or a tank from a cbx like this one,

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.
well, I got a ebay'd tank - there's some flash rust in it that I'll need to clean. Didn't I see people here say that muriatic acid would clean this out?
muric acid is B A D ..bad to eyes nose to get this stuff you can get at napa or a professional autobody supply called metal etch and another called metal prep.It smells like rotten eggs but its as effective still.
Alot of tanks have a plastic tube, which is a screen , inside the tank when you unscrew the pet cock assembly off,look close you will see a plastic tubular piece.try and get that out before you clean your tank .If you get the tank ,dry and feel the rest is to surfacy block petcock with something leak proof and pour the quart bottle into tank swish and leave it set swish and let it set do this a good while an hour or two.then dump contents back into bottle wear rubber gloves and dont breath the stuff.
Rinse out with garden hose in a safe area.
do the same with the metal prep just dont rinse with water drain and let it dry out side or use compressed air AGAIN eyes hands and dont breath, so just letting it air dry is ussually best .put it in different positions as it drys to be sure no fluid or drops sit in one spot preventing a thorough drying, as it leaves the metal surface dull gray and as good as it gets after this is for sure dry as a bone slosh some gas in and drain it till every think looks clean and healthy.
sounds like a lot of work but it isnt specially if your working on something else inbetween drying and sloshing and letting the chemicals work. muriadic will eat and eat the metal and seams of the tank uncontrolably .

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.
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Ok, muriatic acid is out. Thanks for the info - all the suggestions I get here are great stuff, just what a newb needs <img src=icon_smile_big.gif border=0 align=middle>

I bet a lot of what I post here it pretty routine to a lot of you guys, but I figure if I put this all down, some other newb doing this might run into the same stuff and find it useful.

Today I dumped the old oil. I started the bike up for 30 seconds or so; then killed the motor, and pulled the drain plug.

I think it's a good thing I didn't run the bike long - the oil seemed awful thin to me, and it smelled odd, like fuel or something. I don't think it was the MM oil I dumped in the cylinders, since I really didn't use that much, but maybe it was. In any case, it was filthy disgusting crap, and the motor is better that it's gone.

After I dumped it, I filled it with 3 quarts of Castrol GTX 10W-40, and fired it back up. It still starts easy, which is good, but I notice after I let it warm up a bit that whenever I give it gas, it starts to smoke more than I'd like - both cylinders smoke, but the right (from the rear view) smokes more - this seems to jive with the plugs I found when I first pulled them.

I am assuming this is rings, right? It was sort of grey-white smoke, not real thick. It doesn't smoke at idle much, just when I give it gas. I'm a little disappointed, but not at all surprised (hey, it was a $50 bike, what do I want here <img src=icon_smile_big.gif border=0 align=middle>). I have a cylinder hone for my dirtbike, so this shouldn't be too hard. I had sort of planned on a teardown anyway, to check the rocker arms and cam chain and rollers. Everything I read says the chain and rollers are the first things to go.

Otherwise, it runs just great. I gotta get more oil, but I figure that can wait till after the teardown. I want to zap the heads and cylinders with the sandblaster (using walnut shell or something light like that) to clean them up, then hit them with hi-temp paint.

The tach doesn't work - it takes a long time to climb at all, then longer to sink back, even if the motor isn't running, so there's some new work - I was actually considering making a digital tach anyway - I mess around with AVR programming and found schematics and source to do just that sort of thing.

Edited by - borzwazie on May 15 2007 10:15:30 PM
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seems like your rings may be stuck or sticky maybe to early to tell .
sitting causes a lot of problems how many miles are on it .Still these motors are ussually good even after sitting .but since its, not new, Id let it run a bit.get a compression guage they are cheap and a few sets of plugs .see what the compression is ,run it ,check compression, after that squirt some mystery oil in the cylinders let it sit over night. Id do that a few times over a week.take a compression test each day after the oil clears out and see if it goes up.

thin oil is gas ussually from leaving the petcock open when parked or a leaking petcock that doesnt shut off.

questions are always welcome ,its better to do it RIGHT .Then to ask us after the fact.There are a lot of questions frequently asked that pop up continuously like rear sets and clubmans over clip ons and seat and tank questions but hey as long as your building a vintage cafe .There are plenty people here to carry the torch, to answer the same questions again.

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.
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I used a cb360 petcock if i remember as I think the 450 nut was to big ....I cant remember now but the nuts and body of some of these pet cocks can be interchanged or just get one on ebay I know the cb360 petcock early to mid 70s works for sure.on the cx tank.

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.

Edited by - LiLBull on May 16 2007 07:16:37 AM
One thing about my bike - I have a 500T motor in it. Doing lots of reading about it, looking for parts, etc - boy, do people hate that bike!

I don't understand why - it's almost exactly the same as the 450!

There was a good running 450 motor (local to me) on ebay two weeks ago, I thought about buying it just to have a spare - it went for 150.00 - but I just didn't have the cash at the time. Man, I wish I could have bought that motor.
Most criticism of the 500T is aesthetic - which is just fine by me because the market value is considerably lower than the 450. Slap on an old tank and you've got a stroked 450. Sweet.

The 450's got slightly more aggressive camshaft angles, and if I recall correctly, a higher compression ratio (don't quote me). They're pretty small numbers we're talking about.

Smoke's pretty standard for a twin that's sat too long. Run it out. Might also do you some good to dump the synthetic. My experience has been that synthetic oil is way more prone to sneak past old rings. It's also highly inadvisable to use it on a fresh engine - shit's so slippery it'll keep your rings from digging themselves a cozy home in your cylinder walls.

What kind of oil do the do you guys like? Recommendations?

I picked synthetic since that was always the stuff to use in my old '69 bug motor. I always used Pennzoil in my truck.

I figured that synthetic would be the way to go in an air-cooled motor...
modern oil is oil any known brand is good......unless you have a sponcer use what you want. I always feel synthetec in old engines leak out of every where .So i like just regular oil.

Im so far behind ,that I think Im in first.
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