Honda Hawk NT650 GT *650 V-Twin*

Discussion in 'Old's Cool' started by Yokomo, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. Yokomo

    Yokomo Dirt Rider

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    I recently bought an old 1989 Honda Hawk. For some odd reason I've never heard of one of these. I saw the ad and noticed the single-sided swingarm, aluminum frame, aluminum engine cases, naked look and V-TWIN. "Man that looks cool" I thought.

    I met the guy and took it for a spin. At 6'3" it is a tight bike for me. I wouldn't want it for packing on the miles but I've been looking for a unique, simple ride to cruise around town on. Maybe a naked bike, maybe a cafe, just something cheap to play with. I prefer less-is-more type rides. (I mean I have a cheap Geo Tracker I drive more than my main ride because it's so simple, cheap and fun)

    Well I ended up bringing it home. Great shape for an old bike but there's still plenty of little things that need work and I can alter it to my taste.

    The next day I took it for an 8 mile ride and quickly noticed it's a lot more comfy going down the road than it is just sitting still. There's enough wind pressure against me to relieve any pressure on my wrists from leaning forward. The bike is thin so it feels more like what I like (dirt bikes and dual sports). (I had a Nighthawk 750 for a short while and never could jive with that bike. The tank cranked my hips out, the wind would grab them if I would relax, so I had to keep my legs/groin tight. Not comfy)
    The only thing not so comfy is my knees are bent quite abit on the Hawk. But I think that would happen with any of the small, simple bikes I was considering. Not a huge issue for a "zip around the local areas" bike.

    IMHO she's sexy sitting still and sounds good cruising down the road. I might be hanging onto this bike for awhile!





    [​IMG]



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJmbspl_TEM
    #1
  2. Grider Pirate

    Grider Pirate Long timer

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    I think the Hawk was a grossly under appreciated bike. I think you have a keeper there.:D
    #2
  3. OldPete

    OldPete Be aware Supporter

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    Leave it stock.
    Had a blue one and with my 34.5" inseam it was OK.
    Carbs are sensitive to deposits. Cheveron Techron works a treat to get the jetting back to spot-on.

    Do not over-tire those narrow rims!
    Rear damper has no linkage and that is a shame.

    Cult bike for sure. Lee Parks still had his in '05 iirc. Google him.
    #3
  4. One Less Harley

    One Less Harley OH.THAT'S GONNA HURT

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    A friend of mine has one of these for sale ($1500 BTW), 35,000 miles still runs good, but dang it's a little bike. Great bike on the back roads flogging the hell out of it I'm sure.
    #4
  5. bgoodsoil

    bgoodsoil Dare to be Stupid

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    Man that's a good looking bike! :thumb
    #5
  6. atgreg

    atgreg Africatwinarama

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  7. Bar None

    Bar None Long timer Supporter

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    Very nice. Leave it stock or sell it to me.
    #7
  8. 309

    309 Special Purpose

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    I bought my first Hawk new in 1991. I've had three of them. The second onr got the most use. I put about 80,000 miles on it using it as a messeger bike, then roadraced it for three seasos. They are unbeleivably bulletproof. I had the motor built after the first season of racing. The builder said there was no noticeable wear after all those miles and a season of racing. We did some headwork and an overbore, but he said we could have just buttoned it up and kept riding it as is.

    I mostly agree with keeping it stock, though I do think they really benefit from suspesion work. A Penske shock (or old Fox if you can find one) and either and F3 front end or some Race Tech cartridge emulators will completely transform the bike. The stock suspension is way too soft and it sits way to low at the back. Jacking the rear end up with a longer shock will improve the turn in and give you some extra leg room.

    Looks like it's got a pipe, make sure it's jetted right. This is also a bike that really benefits from ditching the stock airbox, but that does add a lot of noise, so it isn't for everybody.

    Here is that second one:

    [​IMG]

    I eventually built it into this:

    [​IMG]

    So much for keeping it stock. :evil

    This is one I saved a while back. It had been left to rot and was on Craigslist cheap. I rescued it, fixed it up, and sold it. It was amazingly easy to get a bike that had been severely neglected back to a completely reliable runner. Speaks to what a great bike it was to start with.

    [​IMG]

    You can get all the parts and advice you'll ever need here:

    http://www.hordpower.com/

    Have fun with it!
    #8
  9. vacantstare

    vacantstare Been here awhile

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    I have always loved the Hawk, but never got serious about one. Sportbike ergos don't really work for me, and having had a GB500 at one time, I worry about getting into an 'orphan' where parts availability and aftermarket support may be lacking.

    Still, they are beautiful, and I rethink my stance on them every time I see one. A v-twin makes for a very compact bike.

    Congratulations on your excellent find.
    #9
  10. scottpoley

    scottpoley Been here awhile

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    I'm having serious "seller remorse" issues over letting my 1989, 11k mile, Hawk go. Your bike will only appreciate in value (unless you start racing it). The collectors want them as stock as possible, but the "go fast" crowd loves to modify them and there's a ton of potential there. They also plan to keep theirs forever.

    For me, it was the perfect "minimalist" motorcycle.
    #10
  11. Yokomo

    Yokomo Dirt Rider

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    309 - I see you had an SV650 and a Hawk. I'm curious how they compare? How is the power? Does it have more legroom?
    #11
  12. Chuckracer

    Chuckracer Jerkus Maximus

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    Dexter, NY
    Me an my Hawk, 1995:

    [​IMG]


    Loved that bike, had two of them, this one and a stocker my then Wife absconded with.

    I WILL have another someday.
    #12
  13. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    Great if underpowered bikes.

    The SV did what the hawk should have done.

    Another thing, that fancy eccentric rear axle/ chain tensioner messes up the geometry when ever you adjust your chain.

    Early CBR600 forks, wheel and dual disc front ends bolt up.


    But they are a cool bike despite the above, I really enjoyed mine. Even more so after the suspension work.
    #13
  14. Yokomo

    Yokomo Dirt Rider

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    I won't be doing any major mods or syspension or anything like that. I didn't pay a whole lot for the bike, it's compact so it won't take up much room when it's stored, it looks pretty badazz to me, it's an old Honda so I'm sure I could let it sit for a couple months then hit the button and it'd fire right up. I've been kind of looking for an older CB350-550ish for a cool little bike to putt around on either in stock form or cafe'd somewhat. This bike will fill that niche.
    To me it's a cool lookin old bike that will be fun to zip around town on every once in awhile. It'll never replace my main ride.


    [​IMG]
    #14
  15. bk brkr baker

    bk brkr baker Long timer

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    Cool bikes.
    Before the SV came out the Hawk or a Duck were your best choises for a modernish mid-sized twin.
    A buddy bought one from a WERA racer after the GNF one year. The bike had multiple class wins. So he started racing it.
    I asked him a time or two if he was going to pull it apart to see if everything was alright. No says he this isn't a vintage Ducati like you flog this is a Honda it'll be alright.
    O.K. bub it's your bike.


    And it worked for a while until he came in at Mid-Ohio and said I'm parking it.

    On teardown we could see that the crankshaft had broken in the middle. The rods are offset for better balance and the part between them is a weak spot.

    Won't be a problem on the street , I'd guess.
    #15
  16. thevulture

    thevulture Been here awhile

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    Super neat bikes and yours is super clean looking.
    #16
  17. 309

    309 Special Purpose

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    The SV made way more power stock than even a pretty built Hawk. However, the Hawk made similar torque and the power came in earlier. The SV ios a much revvier bike and to me that made it less fun to ride.

    I bought the SV because they were dominating the lightweight twins classes. The Hawks were still fun to race, but you'd have to heavily modify one and then ride the wheels off of it to compete with the SV's. I built up that SV for supersport racing with standard suspension, intake, exhaust, and chassis mods. It was way faster than my Hawk but I never gelled with it. It felt longer, was harder to turn, and just didn't have the same fun factor. Also nowhere near as nice to look at.
    #17
  18. 309

    309 Special Purpose

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    Looks very clean. I sure love the red ones. That rear cowl is like gold. The tabs on those are really fiddly and delicate. It's hard to find one in good shape and people want a ton of cash for them if you do. Take care of it.
    #18
  19. linkandcuff

    linkandcuff Been here awhile

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    enjoy it they are great bikes.....try to visit hawkgtforum often....great bunch of guys on there...parts are not a problem either. Honda made the hawk for many years over seas

    here is my 91
    [​IMG]
    #19
  20. Carter Pewterschmidt

    Carter Pewterschmidt Long timer

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    Like you said, you have to dig that O.G. style alloy frame with the single sided swinger, that was top notch hardware back then. It even had the big 41mm forks that all the honda sportbikes were running at the time. It's kinda like if an SV650 came with a GSXR swinger and forks. :eek1

    My friend has one all modded out and rides it everyday.
    #20