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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now I won't get into the Rebel, I think the 450 Rebel was one of the nicest looking bikes Honda ever made and I have serious 450 Rebel envy. My sister has a Rebel 250, but to my mind, that's a scooter, not a serious bike. I mean she takes it on the highway, but me, well I'd want at least a Rebel 450 under me. Too bad they only made them for two years.



But anyway, like I said, I'm kinda setting the Rebel apart here.

Was just curious what everyone thought was the better looking model of the standard ones. I've always liked them in this order, the CM400/450, then the Nighthawk, then the Hawk (I think the Hawk is downright fugly). Curious what others think? I really like the CM look a lot better than the Nighthawk.

I do think the 85 Nighthawk wheels are way nicer than Honda Comstars though, although I don't think comstars are ugly, just not particularly attractive either, so common I tend to not notice thhem a lot.


Yuck!

9360d1391450876-1985-honda-cb450sc-nighthawk-sold-img_0060.jpg
(A member's bike sold on this board actually, and what my bike would look like if it hadn' been painted)

 

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IMG_0965.JPG For reference, this was the white bike before I started( still have factory tank and side covers, couldn't bear to strip and repaint those)
 

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2018-03-30_06-03-33_788.jpg 2018-03-30_06-03-53_123.jpg 2018-03-30_06-05-48_391.jpg 2018-03-30_06-06-14_741.jpg
Last winters build-up 82 cb450t frame, 81 cb400t tank and side covers, 82 cm450e motor, and 93 cb750 nighthawk forks and wheels. Cb450sc nighthawk swing arm for tire clearance. My favorite so far, other two are gone, but this one I'm keeping for a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I was also thinking about the CB400/450N, but I think it's pretty much the same as the Hawk styling wise, correct? Ugliest of the bunch IMO, reminds me too much of that early 80s squarish tank styling of Yamahas which I also diliked, though not quite that fugly. I think the thing I like least about the nighthawk is the strange shaped side covers and plastig part that goes around the seat. I did like the CMs best though, but honestly I liked the older look of the 350s, 360s 550s and 750s through the 70s.

I guess my ultimate three favorite looking Hondas of all time though, prolly the SL350, CB750 (original early 70s in orange), and the Valkyrie. That is prolly IMO the ultimate cruiser bike, I've yet to ride one, but they look sweet and sound better!

My ultimate all time favorite Japanese bike though, has to be the Yamaha XS650 Custom or Midnight special. Damn those are sweet!
 

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I guess I don't really have a preference except that I prefer the mag wheels over the comstars. The nighthawk looks "faster" though.
 

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I've always like the '82 CB450T. I think the SOHC twin with the counterbalance was the pinnacle of the Honda mfg and design. It just looks like a proper motorcycle. Unfortunately they came out too late for me, I was passed middle weight bikes and into the 750+ size by the time they came out. Motorcycles are like music, you decide what is good when you are young and spend the rest of your like being nostalgic.
 

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I'll just leave this here.
1987-Honda-CB450-23946.jpg
 

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Myself, I really don't know that much about most of the Hondas, after around the 1980 models. Nothing against them, at all, mind you. I am from back when Hondas first started coming over to the states. Here, in Arkansas, I saw my first Hondas, in the early 1960's and the Honda 50, 125, 250 & 305cc models were what I was exposed to With the CL72 Scrambler (250) & the CB77 Super Hawk (305) were my favorites. Then, the CB450 DOHC models came out & I was in love. And it went on from there, but for me, my own personal interest hasn't gone very much past 1980. Those that you posted, are pretty cool and all, not denying that at all. I just have never had any dealing with any of them and the latest Honda's that I really have had any connection with, was my 1980 CB750K (I really liked the "F" model better, but could never manage to get one) and MY own personal favorite, was my 1980 CBX, but I had to let it go, just a few years back. As far as wheels go, I have mostly had the original wire wheels and have no problem with them, at all, though I do like the look of the Comstars (but I have heard of problems with them, off and on. Never had any mag wheel, but they are pretty cool looking. I guess you can see, that I have a time nailing down a preference, on the wheels. That being said, I can appreciate anyone's personal preference on things and have no intention of trying to sway anyone's interest in anything.
 

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Myself, I really don't know that much about most of the Hondas, after around the 1980 models. Nothing against them, at all, mind you. I am from back when Hondas first started coming over to the states. Here, in Arkansas, I saw my first Hondas, in the early 1960's and the Honda 50, 125, 250 & 305cc models were what I was exposed to With the CL72 Scrambler (250) & the CB77 Super Hawk (305) were my favorites. Then, the CB450 DOHC models came out & I was in love. And it went on from there, but for me, my own personal interest hasn't gone very much past 1980. Those that you posted, are pretty cool and all, not denying that at all. I just have never had any dealing with any of them and the latest Honda's that I really have had any connection with, was my 1980 CB750K (I really liked the "F" model better, but could never manage to get one) and MY own personal favorite, was my 1980 CBX, but I had to let it go, just a few years back. As far as wheels go, I have mostly had the original wire wheels and have no problem with them, at all, though I do like the look of the Comstars (but I have heard of problems with them, off and on. Never had any mag wheel, but they are pretty cool looking. I guess you can see, that I have a time nailing down a preference, on the wheels. That being said, I can appreciate anyone's personal preference on things and have no intention of trying to sway anyone's interest in anything.
I'm pretty much in the same boat. About 1985 is the cutoff for me. It seemed like after that all that was available was sport or full touring bikes. My riding slowed down about then and I parked my '81 Goldwing Standard after my son was born in 91. When I started riding again three years ago, I just went back to what I knew.
 

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Wire wheels are OK on smaller bikes. I broke a spoke on my CB750 K4 back in the day. By the time I made the 19 miles to get home another five or six let go. Not something I care to repeat. Now I follow the maintenance instruction for the spokes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wire wheels are OK on smaller bikes. I broke a spoke on my CB750 K4 back in the day. By the time I made the 19 miles to get home another five or six let go. Not something I care to repeat. Now I follow the maintenance instruction for the spokes.
Good point, something I'd not considered. I guess it's one more reason to apreciate my mags. The comstars on my old CB900F were fine too in that regard. I may later eat my words, but for that reason, in the future I may avoid spoke wheels and probably unless I get something for a steal or free, avoid shimmed valve bikes. Was one thing when you could run down to the local Honda shop as needed and swap out shims same day for $5 and tax each, but having to buy whole model specific shim kits? No thanks! Sad that the local Honda shop closed. I have a few bikes on my wish list someday if fortune ever smiles, and thanks to Honda engineering all of them avoid the shimming issue.

The two bikes I *might* go with and break down for are both Yamahas and both bikes I've owned before (Aside from the triple I have now, maybe) the XJ750 and or XJ/XS1100. Both Yamaha fours I fell in love with, very nice rides (except for the 1100's insatiable thirst for gas 30mpg or less often).

It's a pipe dream, but I also could luck into an original 750F, which would be worth spokes again, or maybe could be fitted with mags later (keeping my wire rims mind you).
 

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Now I won't get into the Rebel, I think the 450 Rebel was one of the nicest looking bikes Honda ever made and I have serious 450 Rebel envy.
Or maybe Harley envy. Didn't Harley-Davidson sue Honda over the way the 450 Rebel was (but for the physical size and engine layout) essentially a clone?


Was just curious what everyone thought was the better looking model of the standard ones. I've always liked them in this order, the CM400/450, then the Nighthawk, then the Hawk (I think the Hawk is downright fugly). Curious what others think? I really like the CM look a lot better than the Nighthawk.

I do think the 85 Nighthawk wheels are way nicer than Honda Comstars though, although I don't think comstars are ugly, just not particularly attractive either, so common I tend to not notice thhem a lot.


Yuck!

View attachment 269252
(A member's bike sold on this board actually, and what my bike would look like if it hadn' been painted)
I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And maybe the engineering.
I always thought those Nighthawk wheels were a giant step backward; they weigh a frigging TON compared to the Comstars. The Comstars were actually pretty brilliant- far lighter than cast wheels of the time, but stiffer than spoked wheels with none of the maintenance requirements. From a purely performance standpoint, they're the best of all.
My preferences are directly contradictory to yours- I LOVED the look of the Hawk- essentially a factory café racer, with gorgeous lines and honest-to-God performance to back it up (they kicked butt in the 400-450 box stock racing class, formerly dominated by Yamaha's RD 350-400 two strokes). And their styling was identical to Honda's flagship CB900F; what's not to love?

[/QUOTE]
I thought that the Comstars looked out of place on the CM-based models. I still do. The chopperesque style pretty much demands spoked wheels.
Not that I hate that sort of style entirely; I did hack up a CM450E into this:

20180408_121443.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Or maybe Harley envy. Didn't Harley-Davidson sue Honda over the way the 450 Rebel was (but for the physical size and engine layout) essentially a clone?



I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And maybe the engineering.
I always thought those Nighthawk wheels were a giant step backward; they weigh a frigging TON compared to the Comstars. The Comstars were actually pretty brilliant- far lighter than cast wheels of the time, but stiffer than spoked wheels with none of the maintenance requirements. From a purely performance standpoint, they're the best of all.
My preferences are directly contradictory to yours- I LOVED the look of the Hawk- essentially a factory café racer, with gorgeous lines and honest-to-God performance to back it up (they kicked butt in the 400-450 box stock racing class, formerly dominated by Yamaha's RD 350-400 two strokes). And their styling was identical to Honda's flagship CB900F; what's not to love?

I thought that the Comstars looked out of place on the CM-based models. I still do. The chopperesque style pretty much demands spoked wheels.
Not that I hate that sort of style entirely; I did hack up a CM450E into this:

View attachment 269358 [/QUOTE]

I think Harley's suit had more to do iwith use of single pin crankshafts in V-Twin applications, but I'm not certain. Harley lost that suit BTW, all they really got was a tariff for a few years that didn't help them. UNtil the EVO, Honda and the other three simply built better bikes. I think it's arguable they still do, but it's really taste I think, and maybe wanting an American product which is as valid a reason as any. Matter of fact I think I'l go look it up and report back what I find
 

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I'm surprised that Indian didn't sue Harley for copying their 1905 V-Twin engine idea (Harley didn't go to a V-Twin until 1909). And Daimler didn't sue Indian, and so on and so on, ...
Nobody owns the style....lol
 

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What about the CBR450SR?
cbr450sr.jpg
 
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