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Old 10-16-2013, 02:41 PM   #1
Farmwalker OP
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Location: Southern WI
Oddometer: 99
1971 Honda CL350 Restoration

Hi All. Since I am new I should take a moment to introduce myself. My name is Luke. I grew up on a row-crop farm (this is where Farmwalker comes from) in SW Iowa where I drove, fixed, designed, and built all sorts of equipment and toys. This led me to pursue and Ag Engineering degree at Iowa State, which led to a job in southern Wisconsin designing ag equipment. My daily rider is a '08 Burgman 400

I stumbled into old's cool... I'm not really sure why. But the Cheep Bike challenge got my attention, and some of the old scramblers (or conversions) had me hooked.

The purpose of this thread is mainly for historical documentation and entertainment for you.

A week ago I picked up this '71 CL350 in Madison for $560.



Its compression wasn't too impressive, only ran on one cylinder, has a crack in the frame, and needs lots of TLC. Once I got it home, I took a little time to adjust the valves and see how lucky I am. Turns out I was! The valve inspection caps didn't show any tool marks and probably hadn't been adjusted in its 8000 miles of life. With that out of the way and the bike running fine, it was time for a very thorough inspection so I could make a "To Fix" list.

Here is my list, I will keep it up to date as I go:


Last night I finally got an hour to start the teardown process. I am taking general pictures as I go for reference and more specific pictures for where certain hardware needs to go. These might cause some extra scrolling, but will all be posted in case someone will find them useful some day.

Under the seat:




Under right side cover:


Seat hinge pin:


Rear fender/turn signal bolt:


Exhaust wedge/seal:


Progress so far!


I have more time tonight to work and should have another update soon!
Throughout the project I will be referencing a Clymer service manual and a Factory Service manual. The bike also came with a box of goodies I need to sort through yet.

Luke

Farmwalker screwed with this post 10-24-2014 at 01:37 PM
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:25 AM   #2
Farmwalker OP
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Teardown Day 2

I had a little more time to work last night and got the tank, headlight, wiring harness and a few other odds and ends off the bike. Get ready for another batch of pictures.

Harness on left side of frame:




Harness routing around battery box:

*Note: the wires route through the loop on the frame like in the next pic.


Main ground/Case vent routing:


Ignition - Right side:


Ignition - Left side:



Back side of forks general area:


Under front sprocket cover:


Overall Progress:


The wiring harness is a little worse for wear and the connections for the rear turn signals were somewhat hacked up, and directly connected to the main harness. I tried to cut them where there would be enough left over to still use. Since these old bikes can have reliability issues from their electrical, I will probably just make a whole new harness for it with connectors that seal well.

Farmwalker screwed with this post 10-21-2013 at 06:43 AM
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Old 10-19-2013, 01:02 PM   #3
aduthie
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Looks like a pretty complete project, there! I hear a lot of guys say they think so-and-so bike needs a new wiring harness, but in 2.5 years of working on old Hondas regularly, I've yet to come across a single bike where that was true. (One guy had replaced the wiring harness with one for the wrong year, and he left the melted fuse panel in place. So we got to fix the new harness.)

Do replace any hard-wired connections from the previous owner. It warms my heart to hear someone recognizing that as a problem, in fact. But once you've got a working circuit, I honestly wouldn't worry beyond that, unless you're going for a 100-point restoration rather than just a fun, vintage bike to ride.
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Old 10-19-2013, 07:39 PM   #4
NJ-Brett
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Great pix.
I love looking at good pictures.

It looks like a large battery in that bike.


You can upgrade the rectifier easy I think, and I wonder if anyone makes an electronic ignition for the old Honda's, they do for the old Triumphs which made my life much easier.

Good water proof connectors are hard to find/make.
I use the silicone (dielectric) grease on things instead of replacing the connectors.

When I did my old Triumph up, I used a trailer harness connector (water proof) for my rectifier/regulator.


I will be interested in what you find inside the motor.
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Old 10-21-2013, 07:01 AM   #5
Farmwalker OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aduthie View Post
Looks like a pretty complete project, there!(...)
(...)
But once you've got a working circuit, I honestly wouldn't worry beyond that, unless you're going for a 100-point restoration rather than just a fun, vintage bike to ride.
I was originally going for a complete restoration, but then I realized I would end up with too nice of a bike to thrash on a dual-sport trail or ride regularly. So now I'm focused on reliability and just making it look nice, but not brand new.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ-Brett View Post
(...)

You can upgrade the rectifier easy I think, and I wonder if anyone makes an electronic ignition for the old Honda's, they do for the old Triumphs which made my life much easier.

Good water proof connectors are hard to find/make.
I use the silicone (dielectric) grease on things instead of replacing the connectors.
(...)
I will be interested in what you find inside the motor.
I have a link to a lawn mower rectifier/regulator up in the "To Fix" spreadsheet to replace the OEM ones. It has WAY more capacity than I need, but it is cheap and small. I am planning on changing to a smaller battery and remounting to clean up the triangle and go without side covers. There are a set of CB side covers that came in the goodie box, but they would melt on the exhaust (CL covers are a different shape to give more clearance).

When I was still planning a new harness, It was going to be all hand made (no eBay junk) with Metri-Pack connectors. Those connectors are relatively cheap and do a great job of shedding water.

After the valve clearance adjustment, compression is at 180psi on both cylinders. I think factory spec is 185psi(?). I'm going to try to avoid opening the engine if at all possible. The starter clutch makes some funny noises, but otherwise the powerplant is in good shape.
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Old 10-21-2013, 07:15 AM   #6
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I finished teardown on Saturday and moved all of the pieces into the basement work area for the winter.

Blinker Relay Location. I saw it on the floor with the other parts and had to think a while to remember where it went, now it has a picture.


Also, here is a electrical schematic for the wiring on these bikes. I found it on a forum somewhere, not sure who to thank for making this but, Thank You!


Engine out, Getting closer!


All apart, time to move things to the basement.


Her home for the winter. I need to get more cardboard so I can lay the parts all around the frame instead of in a pile.


Hmmm. Should probably do something about this...


tap tap tap....getting there...


Much Better!


Now I am going to spend time getting all of the parts degreased and cleaned up. Then I will start fixing things at the front and work my way back.
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Old 10-21-2013, 07:59 AM   #7
NJ-Brett
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Very smart to not make the bike look like new.
When I got my old Daytona, it was fair looking, and the first year I just abused it in the dirt as I had an old 750 for the street.
I decided the Daytona was more fun to ride and sold the 750, and started fixing up the Daytona, mostly mechanical improvements, but after a few years it started looking ratty, so I took it all apart, had the frame powder coated, repainted the gas tank and fenders with Sherwin Williams automotive paint and it came out fantastic looking.
It was SO nice, I could not bring myself to dirt ride it, which was what it was best at, as a local dual sport bike.
I ended up selling it after a while as it was a poor street only bike for long frequent rides.

If I had left it a rat bike, I would still have it.
And there is nothing better then passing some modern dual sport bike in the dirt on an old Daytona!

Get rid of the rust, make it mechanicly and electricaly reliable and have fun with the bike.

I sure wish I had that ratty old Daytona, even with all the problems.
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Old 10-21-2013, 08:21 AM   #8
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The frame is definitely getting all new paint, and many of the chrome bits are pitted. I don't want to spend the money on re-chroming so the fenders, handlebars, fuel cap, exhaust, carb tops and valve adjustment covers are all going to black. The gas tank has a random speckle of little rust spots (2-3 inches between each speck). I am planning on sanding off all of these little areas but leaving the rest of the paint intact. If it gives the bike a nice weathered look I will clear coat it to prevent more rust. Sorta like this...

It has a sun-fade gradient that can only be acquired with age and is part of the character of the bike, just like the dent in the right side of the tank. If sanding all of these spots just makes it look like a leopard, I will just sand the whole tank down to steel and clear coat that. Something like this, but not polished...
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Old 10-21-2013, 04:14 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Farmwalker View Post

character of the bike, just like the dent in the right side of the tank. If sanding all of these spots just makes it look like a leopard, I will just sand the whole tank down to steel and clear coat that.
I didn't see the dent in the right side, but I've had good luck with paintless dent removal on steel motorcycle gas tanks.
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Old 10-22-2013, 06:33 PM   #10
Farmwalker OP
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I didn't see the dent in the right side, but I've had good luck with paintless dent removal on steel motorcycle gas tanks.
I will have to look into doing that. I don't have a pic of the dent up here yet.

I just made a couple of big parts orders to keep me busy for a while. Total came to the same as what I bought the bike for
I guess I was expecting that though, and I'm not done yet.
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Old 10-22-2013, 08:36 PM   #11
MacNoob
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That's a really nice looking complete bike! (Do you have side covers?)

I like the "restore for riding" approach that you're taking.

I have your little brother (175cc) and am taking the same path:

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Old 10-23-2013, 06:54 AM   #12
Farmwalker OP
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I never looked at the 175s close enough to realize how similar they are. The bike did come with side covers, but they are for a CB350. The left side has a different shape to give room for the exhaust pipe so it won't melt.



Since I don't have this, I am moving to a tiny battery and cleaning up that area so it doesn't look bad without the covers.

How is the engine in that bike? Made me nervous just seeing those open spark plug holes, and that front fender is interesting too... But the exhaust looks good, and that is rare on these!
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Old 10-23-2013, 07:13 AM   #13
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When I got the bike it was in a shed with carbs and plugs removed. Engine wasn't seized though. Engine seems OK - I've had it running well enough to ride around the block, it's not blowing smoke, there's oil in the top end and there is no metal in the oil. I need the adapter for my compression tester before I can check compression though.

Painted front fender is correct for the 175. Exhaust is in pretty good shape too. I have the chrome heat shield although I see it's not installed in the pic I posted.

hondatwins.net is a good resource for these bikes.
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Old 10-24-2013, 07:21 PM   #14
travlr_45
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great thread. about 2 years ago i picked up a 1970 CL 450. took a few months but finaley got it rideable. tore it down to the frame, had that powder coated, had the paint restored back to factory scheme. New tires, chain, etc etc, 1 thing that took an untold # of hours, I used a 22 cal. pistol cleaning rod with several brash brushes to clean all the cooling fins on the block. if i could find a way ( adv board wont let me post attch) I;d post up some pics. still have some chrome work to do. I'll be watching for updates. good luck. it turned out to be a very rewarding experience.
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Old 10-24-2013, 07:29 PM   #15
DADODIRT
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Good luck with the project. My first bike was a '73 CL350 - Red and White.
Wish I still had that.
Looks like an easier project than my '86 K75c that I am working on now.
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