Tag Archives: honda

1972 Honda CB350

Screen Shot 2016-05-11 at 7.39.41 AMI’ve been waiting to do this for a long time. I’m going to get on my soapbox here. There are those that have an old motorcycle and figure it’s worth a bunch of money just because it’s old. Old doesn’t mean it is classic or valuable. It’s just old. I spend time on ebay, craigslist, cycle trader, visiting motorcycle boneyards and all my connections in the vintage motorcycle world looking for bikes that have something that makes them special. Is it a one year only model, did it change motorcycling, is it something that everyone who has motorcycling running through their veins dreams of owning? These are the things that make a motorcycle valuable.

Todays example is a non running, parts missing Honda CB350. The ebay seller is asking  twice what the bike sold for new. And it doesn’t run!!! Now, I love the CB350, I have five of them, are any of them worth $1600..hell no. and they all run! This  guy is asking that for a bike that doesn’t run and missing parts?! Think about this…the CB350 was probably the biggest selling motorcycle of all-time. why…because it does everything very well. So, you can find one in the same condition as this one I found for around $1-200 dollars. Just look, they’re everywhere. Screen Shot 2016-05-11 at 7.40.20 AM

The sad part here is that there are people out there foolish enough to pay that kind of money for a bike that is not running and missing parts. A moderately skilled shade tree mechanic with  a good motorcycle salvage yard close by could probably have this bike in  good running condition for around $2-300. Is a running CB350 worth $2000? you decide. Oh and by the way, 1972’s didn’t come with a front disc brake and it’s not a Scrambler as described. People like this really piss me off!

Rant over. If you have any interest in a $2000 non running Honda CB350 click on the link below.

<a target=”_self” href=”http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?icep_ff3=2&pub=5574881880&toolid=10001&campid=5336495545&customid=1972+Honda+CB350&icep_item=272227302158&ipn=psmain&icep_vectorid=229466&kwid=902099&mtid=824&kw=lg”&gt;Screen Shot 2016-05-11 at 7.57.38 AM

1972 Honda CB350</a><img style=”text-decoration:none;border:0;padding:0;margin:0;” src=”http://rover.ebay.com/roverimp/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?ff3=2&pub=5574881880&toolid=10001&campid=5336495545&customid=1972+Honda+CB350&item=272227302158&mpt=%5BCACHEBUSTER%5D”&gt;

1975 Honda Gold Wing

Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 8.45.19 PMI was living in Las Cruces New Mexico when I first saw the original Gold Wing. A friend owned the local Honda dealership and the Honda sales rep was there to show off the newest latest greatest from Honda. Being that I worked for a newspaper at the time it was my duty to report the occasion. Well, to be honest I was really excited to just see the new bike and I wasn’t disappointed.

At the time I was riding the ‘Evil, Wicked, Mean and Nasty‘ Kawasaki H2. Light, fast and handled about as good as a $5.00 stroller from Kmart…but thats another story for another time. The Honda sales rep pulled the cover off the bike and there was this really big bike, I mean Big. He was telling us that this was the next ‘Superbike’! ? The sales rep went through all the hoopla of power, rideability and so on and so on…then he showed us just how smooth the motor was. Taking a quarter out of his pocket he balanced it on the cylinder while the motor was running and the quarter didn’t move. I’m sure there was some sort of glue on there but who cares..it was a good show.

I did get a chance to ride the bike that day and all I could think was this thing is a BOAT!…But it was super smooth, comfortable and actually handled pretty darn good.

Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 8.52.15 PMWhen the motorcycling world got ahold of this bike motorcycle touring changed forever. The Wing was no longer a competitor to the Mighty Z1 from Kawasaki it was going straight after the Harley Electra Glide. The Gold Wing became a Gold Mine for the touring aftermarket and Craig Vetter being the leader. The Windjammer fairing changed the Gold Wing and touring.

Years and years later I bought my father a used Gold Wing. I picked it up took it home and went about getting it ready to hand it over to him. After the work was done I took it for a good ride. Before I rode it I still considered  it a boat, but it was what my dad wanted.

With a good tune up, some minor suspension work and new tires I was really impressed with the Wing. It’s smoother than a baby’s butt, will get you from here to Nova Scotia with about a worry and will handle a tight twisty road  without breaking a sweat. I loved it.

Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 8.52.50 PMI found a super cleanScreen Shot 2016-04-20 at 8.51.10 PM first generation Gold Wing on ebay this morning. This bike is in ‘fly and buy and ride it home’ condition. Only 17,887 miles on the clock (it’s barely broken in!) all maintenance done. Jeez…it’s perfect. The first generation  Wings are a perfect platform for customizing. Cafe Racer, sidecar rig, full touring mode or…just leave it as it is. It’s a great motorcycle. I just wish I knew how to balance a quarter on the engine while its running.

Click on the link below for more info and pictures

<a target=”_self” href=”http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?icep_ff3=2&pub=5574881880&toolid=10001&campid=5336495545&customid=1975+Honda+Gold+Wing&icep_item=301930012498&ipn=psmain&icep_vectorid=229466&kwid=902099&mtid=824&kw=lg”&gt;Screen Shot 2016-04-22 at 8.07.56 AM

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Screen Shot 2016-04-22 at 8.08.40 AM1975 Honda Gold Wing</a><img style=”text-decoration:none;border:0;padding:0;margin:0;” src=”http://rover.ebay.com/roverimp/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?ff3=2&pub=5574881880&toolid=10001&campid=5336495545&customid=1975+Honda+Gold+Wing&item=301930012498&mpt=%5BCACHEBUSTER%5D”&gt;

1981 Honda CB750 F

Screen Shot 2015-11-19 at 7.15.29 AMI spent a lot of miles on a CB750F…a lot. Quite a bit north of 100K. From Mexico to Canada and all around the Western US. It never failed me. I failed it a couple of times but it was a good soldier. When I bought mine (my daughter was just 3 weeks or was it 3 days old?) I also ordered the ‘European Sport Kit’ Lower handlebars,reset pegs and I think something else?. I loved the bike. Over time I upgraded the suspension, put a Kerker exhaust on (the standard of the time) but honestly, it didn’t need anything else. Honda did a great job with the CB-F series, 750,900,1100. It didn’t do anything great, it just did everything very,very well. The series was a bike that you could think about your riding and not the bike. Tank bag, saddlebags and around the world you go. Well, maybe.Screen Shot 2015-11-19 at 8.13.40 AM
I found a very interesting CB750F model on ebay today. The seller has done some very interesting changes to the bike. Kawasaki suspension. A bit more modern and probably adds a lot to the stability/handling. This bike does need a little love but not enough to make it undesirable. Price seems fair…so far. Click on the pics below for more info and more pictures.
My experience with this series of Honda’s was absolutely wonderful. It really is one of the bikes I regret not having today.

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Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 5.34.49 PM1981 Honda CB750F

1978 Honda Gold Wing Cafe Racer

Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 9.09.28 AMSometimes I just can’t help myself. I love Cafe Racers. Simple. A purpose built/modified machine that can get from here to there quite fast in high style. A cafe racer is a function before fashion machine but…the fashion is definitely there too.

A good friend of mine has recently discovered Cafe Racers. He started his life on a Harley Davidson Sportster, all blacked out, then moved on to a Street Bob (a big twin Harley), again all blacked out and loves it. He is a part time member of the “Harley Culture” but he is expanding his views. My subtle hints and sending pictures of cool bikes seem to be working!Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 8.53.58 AM

I was living in Las Cruces New Mexico when the original Gold Wing was introduced. The GL1000 was at first thought of as a big bore Sportbike, but as we all know, it became the Supreme Leader in touring bikes. Why the change in thought? The original was a touring bike to go up against the Harley Davidson Electra Glide, but the molds for all the touring accessories were accidentally destroyed so the bike was brought out naked and American Honda tried to market it as a Sportbike. Well, the aftermarket (in particular Craig Vetter) had a field day with accessories. In no time at all you could make a Gold Wing as comfortable as a Winnebago. It is the motorcycle that changed touring motorcycles forever.Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 8.56.31 AM

I rode it back in 1975 and thought it was rather Ho-Hum (I was riding a Kawasaki H2 750 at the time). Fast forward a few decades when I bought my father his Gold Wing, I came to realize just how good this motorcycle is. I started looking at Gold Wings as more than just an ‘old man motorcycle’ but as a platform for some serious fun. Granted, you can’t convert a modern Gold Wing to anything other than what it is but get an old GL1000 or 1100 and the fun begins.Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 9.03.34 AM

I found a very nicely done Cafe Racer ‘Wing’ on ebay this morning and it looks very appealing. A little too blingy for my taste but very well done. Pretty low miles for a bike it’s age…my wife says the same thing about me. NOT. Some really nice upgrades and like I said, a little on the ‘Blingy” side for me but nicely done.
Click on the pics below for more pictures and info. This is a very cool bike.

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Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 7.58.11 AM1978 Honda Gold Wing Cafe Racer

1975 Honda Gold Wing with Watsonian Sidecar

Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 6.11.31 PMI really dig Gold Wings with Sidecars. My favorite by far is a ’75 GL1000 with a Vetter Terraplane that I saw at the Griffith Park rally a few years back. Picture a Cafe Racer sidecar rig…it was perfect!

So today I found a more sedate (classic) rig on ebay. A nice ’75 Wing with a Watsonian Sidecar. Now, it is really pretty cool. It’s got a couple of different covers, to handle different weather conditions ands a very comfy seat. The bike has been given some good love but needs a bit more, not much but a little.Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 6.13.47 PM

If you have never driven a sidecar rig (and the proper term is driving, not riding), what a blast! Your whole view of the motorcycling world changes instantly. Flying the car first time, makes you pull over and check your underwear. The first time you fly the car with some one in the car…well, you’re both checking your undies and your passenger is calling a cab. By the way, ‘flying the car’ means the sidecar is off the ground as you go around a right hand turn. Great fun seeing the look on your passengers face when all of a sudden they feel like they are on a carnival ride!
It’s funny, but when you are driving a Sidecar rig, everybody looks at you differently. You’re not a biker anymore and your cool factor just went up 100%Screen Shot 2015-03-28 at 10.34.17 AM

This is a nice rig, a little pricey but cool factor doesn’t always come cheap. Click on the pics below for more pictures and info

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Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 7.49.45 AM1975 Honda Gold Wing with Side Car

1983 Suzuki GS 750E

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 8.38.54 AMIn 1983 I was working in a Suzuki / Kawasaki dealership in Southern California and business was great. This was due largely in part to two particular bikes, the Kawasaki Ninja 900 and the Suzuki GS750. We had at least three models of the GS750, the T (a standard model), the ‘E’ with a Bikini fairing and and the ‘ES’ with with a frame mounted half fairing. The ‘E’ model was the best seller of the three. Why? Because it was the best of both worlds. Sporty styling and very comfortable.

The 1983 GS750 was a one year only model and had some very significant changes from the previous years. For one, the bike was around 28 pounds lighter!! The front wheel went from 19″to 16″ which was the current trend to quicken steering response (shortly thereafter everybody went up to 17″ which is still the standard today). The front fork got a size increase and anti-dive. Anti-dive was popular for a very short period of time and we actually did a lot of disconnecting it, but the increase in fork size was very good indeed…though it seems tiny by what is being built today. Granted, that was when a 750 had a whopping 75 HP and a Flexi-Flyer chassis.

I was lucky enough to have a GS750E to ride for three months and I have to tell you that it was one of the most fun motorcycles I have ever ridden. The motor was not as peaky as the Ninja, didn’t vibrate much as the GS1100 (which I also really loved) and the chassis was far more stabile and responsive than my CB750F. The GS would handle daily commuting duties, spirited canyon riding and was quite comfortable on a five day tour criss-crossing the Sierra passes. The GS750E was, in my book, a just about perfect motorcycle. It was a super easy to ride motorcycle and it was great looking too!

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 8.24.06 AMThe GS750 was the base platform for an incredible racer. More than one National and World Champion got there with a GS750. When Superbikes were 750’s it was between Honda’s Interceptor and The GS750 and when Superbikes went to 1000cc it was all Suzuki.
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I found a really nice one on ebay this morning that has less than 10K miles, is all stock and super clean. This is truly a, pack your riding gear, a set of saddlebags, a stack of maps…fly to wherever the bike is and ride it home. Well, unless the bike is snowbound like in Minnesota?!
Click on the pics below for more pictures and more info. This is a really cool bike.

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Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 8.16.18 AM1983 Suzuki GS750E

Honda Monkey bike

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 7.43.15 AMWay too much fun. Here’s the deal with the ‘Monkey Bike’. It’s just a blast to ride. You can load it into the back of a station wagon and take it on a family camping trip, you can hang it off the bumper of your camper or motorhome and head to wherever, you can teach your kid or your wife to ride on this bike and it won’t scare the crap out of them. When you’re at the RV park you can ride to the little store they have there and get some ice or firewood, and you’ll go through a tank of gas about once a year (remember to put Stabil in the tank). There are all kinds of hop up parts for this little bike…you can make it loud, you can actually make go around a go-kart track pretty fast, you can make a little pack mule out of it, but mostly, you’re going just have fun on it. This is truly a ‘high giggle factor’ little motorbike.Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 7.42.16 AM

I found this one on ebay this morning and it is exactly what it should be…ridden, shows it’s age and has been taken care of. Like I said at the beginning, way too much fun. This is two wheel fun at it’s peak.
Click on the pictures below for more info.

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 7.18.28 AMScreen Shot 2014-10-22 at 7.18.42 AMHonda Monkey Bike