I know I’ve been slow here the past few weeks. Mostly waiting on parts. I got the new 17″ rim, sent off for the custom spokes and they just arrived yesterday. I immediately assembled the front end. First I loosely lace the wheel, then put it on the truing stand to square it up.
Big difference from the 12″ rim!
With the front end all assembled we have this!
Super excited to be running inverted forks on this bike. Also to have the disk front brake and soon-to-be clipons. Next step is to get really creative to make the steering stem on the new triple fit the original neck and bearings…I will post what I do, it may get a little hairy!
So for the gas tank, I wanted to do something creative and fun. So I went for the admittedly not original Japanese rising sun design. I’ve never had a bike with it before so it’s new to me! Took some work, sanded to bare metal, bondo on some inperfections, primer/ sand then white base coat, wait a week, sand and one more white coat, wait a week, sand and tape off and red sun coat, wait a week, sand and clear coat. Tada!
To anyone wanting to do good paint jobs. There is no shame in using rattle can if you get quality gas/ oil resistant engine enamel. MOST important is respect the dry times and prep prep prep! The finished product will be smooth and clear and very durable!
She is complete! I’ve been riding her daily for about a month now problem free. Finally got it timed and tuned to perfection, adjusted the valves, fresh oil and she is ready to roll. To recap this build: XS650 front end conversion with rebuilt forks and heavy weight oil, piggy back rear shocks, new tires, brake pads/ shoes, frame and swingarm painted red, flawless polished aluminium gas tank, low rise flat tracker handlebars, over sized TT500 round slide carb, SuperTrapp exhaust, new chain and sprockets, rewired with no battery so the lights run off the magneto (like 4 wires on the whole bike!), 100% custom seat pan/ upholstery, plus a lot I can’t recall right now…
She starts first kick every time and runs like nothing I’ve every had before…Truly an inspiring bike to ride! I’ve always ran ethanol free in her too.
Sheesh these forks were deceivingly difficult to disassemble! Mostly because every bolt and spring was seized and every seal blown…
First I took stock of what I needed, fork oil, seals, new spring boots (gators), and a marked cylinder were the basics.
Then once i knew I was prepared, disassembly began!
While I have the tire off, mind as well balance it and clean it up!
This looks funny…
little…a LOT of elbow grease, ultrasonic cleaning, and effort, all the parts are ready for reassembly.
OH NO! The fork seals I ordered aren’t the right size! But the eBay listing said it was for my bike…shoot. I called them and they’re sending me the correct ones. I hope they arrive soon because I don’t like leaving little pip propped up in the middle of the shop forever…Until next time…
The CB400f is OFFICIALLY FINISHED! I finally got the new tires on and finished tuning this puppy. She screams! I don’t even want to sell it…but that’s part of the job. So here is the finished product:
Wait how’d you get in there Jazz?!?
This is pretty much what started it for me with modifying old bikes. The 1974 CB450 that I turned into my first attempt at a “café racer”. I had so much to learn…I don’t think I could even fix the charging system…This would have been around 2008 or maybe ’09.
Day I got it: (CLICK ON ANY PICTURES TO SEE THE FULL SIZE BEAUTIFULNESS)
Later that Day:
A few weeks later:
My girlfriend-at-the-time and I did the “sharpie art” to it. This was the first, but far from last sharpie endeavor. Rode the bike for a month or so and then sold it and moved on…I still miss it sometimes…