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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,

So I am finally putting some pics up, I have been enjoying myself reading others posts, figured it was about time I posted my own efforts. This first pic is what she looked like the first day I got her. Did not run, no battery and pretty dirty. I actually pushed it up the hill to the car wash and sprayed her down good before taking these pics. It was fun coasting in neutral on the ride home after a job well done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Looks fairly clean in the pics but believe me, this thing was still a messy grimy beast with a long way to go before I would consider it to be presentable. here is another pic a little closer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
In the next pic, I tore it down to get it running again. Had some wiring issues to deal with, installed a new battery and fuse, changed the oil and put in new plugs. I also got the Clymer manual and learned how to clean the oil filter, the whole centrifugal thing really threw me at first, I search for 30 minutes online trying to find out where the hell the filter was. In retrospect, I think that was pretty funny. I also cleaned the carbs, made a few new gaskets with some gasket material, and then put her back together.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So the bottom line is she started right up after I got her back together. Had to make some new gas lines, install some inline filters, bought a set of UNI filters for her as the original equipment was super nasty and falling apart. Also, got a chance to demo the electrics. I replaced the flasher with a standard 2 way 12v flasher from a car, they dont sell the OEM ones anymore I guess, and it is just a simple relay. This pic is her back in the garage after some carb tuning and the like. Unfortunately it seems to have low compression after a check when hot and also she has a a little head gasket oil leak. I rechecked the head specs with a torque wrench. That was another 90 bucks spent on tools.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
So the next few pics are when I decided to tear it down to the frame and start there. I forgot to mention two things in the previous posting. If you notice on the one side cover, it looks pretty shiny, right? I just spent 20 minutes with my hand drill experimenting with rouges from a craftsman polishing wheel set. I think it was less than 20 bucks and super easy to use. I just wanted to see how hard it would be to shine things up, very easy actually. Also, I dont want to bore you with the pics, but the wiring on this thing was rediculous. Whoever had worked on it before was a bit of a dum dum. Some of the wiring looked like lamp cord, bad wire ties, electrical tap everywhere...and some speaker wire too. Yikes.
 

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The bike looks good. What were the compression readings?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
MNellis said:
The bike looks good. What were the compression readings?
They were in the low hundreds overall. It was kind of hard to get a reading, i bought this compression tester online and it seals against a rubber oring. I dont know it is kind of hard to tell when it is really tight without worring about stripping or messing up the threads in the head. I would get anywhere from 90 to 120 on a cylinder after multiple tries. Since I ready I need to be reading above 150-170 I figure it would be a good idea just to check all the clearances when I am inside replacing the head gasket. I can replace rings then, and do some light polishing of the head with my dremel.

If it is one thing I have learned, my hand drill and my dremel are invaluable tools!!! They make an easy job of getting rid of 40 years of oxidation and rust. Also, I have learned always where a mask and safety glasses. The first time I went maskless, I hacked up old rust and junk out of my sinus and lungs for the rest of the evening...yuck!!! never again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So this next part should be interesting to you all, I learned some more things here. When I got the bike down to the frame, I started wire brushing it, again with my trusty Ryobi (cheap yet effective) hand drill. This is way too much work. I went to Home Depot and they make this maximum strength paint stripper that comes in a spray can. I decided to give that a whirl...I figured I could take it to the spray car wash and douse it really good and blow the paint off with the pressure washer. It worked extremely well as you can see. Again, I cannot stress....PPE!!! I had shorts on, my mask, and my glasses. The wind changed direction on me and I was blasting my legs with the pressure washer while doing a dance of pain. Only a few seconds of exposure to that stripper and it burns like a mother.

Once the paint was all gone, I went over it with the brush and some coarse sand paper to get rid of the rust. Now the next lesson learned is, dont attempt a project like this in the summer in Dallas TX. It is way too hot and humid. I did manage to get the primer and gloss black on, but all I did was sweat to death while working and I honestly think the paint would have looked better if it had been drier. The humidity made the paint tacky and took forever to dry besides the heat. I guess there is a reason to have winter projects, not summer ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
and so here she is to date with new tires, new wheel bearings front and back, new steering bearings, and assorted hardware from ACE and McMaster Carr. I will continue to post as she comes together. I have a new seat cover and some new bars are on their way. Enjoy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
So this weekend I am thinking I will start cleaning off the fenders and cleaning the engine up a bit before I dig into it. The underside of the fenders have 40 years of crud build up under the bottom, I am curious what I can use to get that stuff off. I have considered using that same canned stripper that I used on the paint since I think the chrome parts would be able to stand up to the acid, but I am a little nervous. I guess worse case is that they wind up getting a new coat of paint. They have a few dings in them anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Actually at a second look it seems to be mostly surface rust and a little crud. I could wire brush that then primer and paint to protect the metal. Then use a degreaser and brass brush on the engine and hit it with the pressure washer.
 

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tomgndallas said:
So this weekend I am thinking I will start cleaning off the fenders and cleaning the engine up a bit before I dig into it. The underside of the fenders have 40 years of crud build up under the bottom, I am curious what I can use to get that stuff off. I have considered using that same canned stripper that I used on the paint since I think the chrome parts would be able to stand up to the acid, but I am a little nervous. I guess worse case is that they wind up getting a new coat of paint. They have a few dings in them anyway.
Most canned strippers are not acidic - usually they're methylene chloride or some other horrible solvent.
They won't affect your chrome.......maybe your liver, but not the chrome.

I used that type of solvent to get rid of most of the road tar and crap, then wire brushed to get rid of dirt and other crap the solvent couldn't get.
Then a good soak in MSR took care of all the rust, top side and bottom side.
Roughed the chrome up with sandpaper, then a coat of etching primer, a coat of filling primer, then painted it underside and all.
Did the same with the front fender - couldn't afford to even think about re-chroming the fenders.
The paint looks great, no peeling off the old chrome or anything - even though everyone told me you can't paint over chrome, it worked great.
 

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Great work. I've got so much to learn....
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Next question... Anyone use ex500 coils to replace the stock ones? Got the tip from Rob at Cycle Recycle (good folks). Gonna have to mod the bracket to make them work... Did a little grinding but my first idea has failed. Just curious if someone has a quick wrier that would save me some work!!

Thanks for the MSR tip, basically going the phosphoric acid route, right? I read up on electrolysis recently too, though sounds like a hastle for big items.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Looks like someone else also had some success on the forum when I searched it. Not much detail on the mounting so at least I will explain what I was worried about. To make the EX coils fit, I had to grind down one side and use the spacers from the EX coil bracket to bring the height of the coils up. Otherwise one side will be hitting metal on one of the connectors. Also becuase of the way they are mounted the profile is about a half inch wider than stock. I went ahead and assembled it post grinding, and mocked it up on the bike. It actually looks fine and there does not see to be any clearance issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
So more this weekend...

I finally broke into the motor, not bad overall. I think I might want to go ahead and have a valve job done on it, I know a guy who can do it for me. I want to inspect the cams and followers first before I send it out. I have a little money saved up for that. The pistons look carbony but I will see what they look like after i clean them, then check all the ring and cylinder tolerences. I want to paint the cylinder black and will respray the head silver after a good cleaning. There does not seem to be any slop in the pistons or in the camshaft so I think the pins and bearings for the shaft are fine. I do think I will need to replace the lower follower b for the cam chain. Thing looks pretty chewed up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
reading through some old posts....figured I would comment. On Znabb's build there was mention of an acetone test. I guess I should first attempt to clean the inside of the head, combustion chamber and valves. What is the best solvent and/or method for this? Also, nail polish remove is essentially acetone, should i use that or buy acetone from the hardware store instead.

I posted this other question already, but figured I might as well here to make it continuous. Who is the guy in Australia who has the lower Roller B for the CB450? I need one of those bad boys.

One more thought, I had considered stepping up to the 500 cylinder block from a 500T and putting new pistons and rings. Can the 450 head handle this or does it need to be ported or polished? If anyone has done this before let me know. If it is too much for a newbie 450 guy, then i would just pass and get the thing back together and on the road before it gets too cold. (only about two months for that then burrrrrrrrr!)
 
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