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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
One of my three boys will be turning 16 in July. Texas law allows 15 year olds to drive a 250cc and below bike and then at 16 the restriction is dropped. Being a teenager in todays times means a lot of time spent in their room on social media, i.e. texting with girlfriend or on the x-box staring at a screen. A couple of weeks ago I got the bug to find another bike to work on since I have just recently finished my CB450 project.

I found a decent CL350 with most all the original parts still attached and seemingly good compression. My wife and I took the afternoon for the hour and a half drive and bought the bike. It was listed for $600 and ended up getting it for $450 Not sure how good or bad that price is but does not really matter. Driving home I got the idea it would be nice to be able to get my oldest out in the shop to help me with it but I knew there had to be something in it for him.

I devised the plan in my head as we drove home and then laid out the idea to my wife when I had it all figured out. My son has a KLX125 which he rarely ever rides. I suggested to him we sell the 125, use the proceeds to go towards this rebuild and so long as he did not go crazy on the rebuild he would probably have a little change left over. The catch was he had to do the rebuild with me. Everything had to be done by us or him but not just me. He can be a little indecisive at times so I did not expect his enthusiasm when he said yes. Very much looking forward to this project as it will give me time with him and let him make some decisions for himself. Here is the bike in the condition we brought it home in.
 

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That is AWESOME! I'm going to do something similar with my kids and a CT70 that I picked up for cheap (just for around the countryside - not roads).
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
We had very nice weather this weekend and were able to get the tear down work done. My son had the idea he wanted to do a little bit of custom work on the bike changing the substructure to allow a custom seat and removing most of the original parts south of the gas tank. I reluctantly said okay as I had promised him he would get to make the major decisions.

Sunday afternoon we were looking at the frame as I pointed out all the parts of the frame that had to be removed, de-tabbed, ground off and sanded. I explained the process it would have to go through to bend a new hoop for the frame including the welding and then subsequent filling to get it to look good. He then asked about what the difference in value would be as a custom compared to original. I explained to him the bike in original condition would always be worth more. I could see the wheels turning in his head and figured I should steer him just a bit. I explained to him keeping it original did not mean he had to keep the same color schemes on the bike if he did not like that. Although I like the blue and white tank, I could tell he was looking for something a little more of his own idea. I explained that as long as he left all the original parts intact he did have some liberty to impart his creative ideas on the bike. He bit on that idea and decided to restore the bike back to original instead of cutting things up. :D

Yesterday we striped most of the paint off the frame with Aircraft stripper, Love that stuff. After that we took the frame and the engine which we had thoroughly saturated with engine degreaser down to the car wash to spray off as much grease and paint as we could. Here is where the project sits today.

CL 350 6.JPG CL 350 5.JPG CL 350 7.JPG
My wife calls it "bike on a shelf", which is not really accurate....its on 2 shelves! :grin:
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sorry for the sideways pics, tried to rotate but no matter what I do they come out this way. Computers not really my thing, think I'll stick to bikes!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Getting started

Hard at work, nice to have help on the "fun" stuff!

15 year old working on his first build.

Matthew w frame.jpg
 
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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Found a little time yesterday afternoon to sand blast the frame, removing the remnants that the Aircraft stripper did not get. After blasting it started to rain a little so had to move the operation to the back of the shop. Welded all the factory seams fully to stiffen the frame a bit and then cleaned up all the welds. Also found a considerable amount of factory sloppiness which needed to be cleaned as well. On the bottom of the cross tube for the swingarm bolt there was an inch of welding rod from the factory still attached to one of the welds. You would think they might have caught that in the QC. Most of the clean up was just slag spots here and there on the entire frame which needed to be removed. Also cleaned up a few of the factory welds a bit but most were good to go. After that I wiped the entire bike down with acetone, then shot a coat of primer. Today we will check for addition spots in need of attention which I am sure the primer will reveal.

Sorry....In my hast to get the primer on I failed to take pics of the stripped frame. Will take a few today when we go back over the bike again before the final primer coat.

Primer coat is self etching primer, spray can. Final paint will be Gloss Black Appliance Epoxy. Works like a charm.
 

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Great idea for a joint build.
It's scary how many of nephews friends can't even change a wheel (18 years old)
Hats off and looking forward to seeing your sons ideas come to form.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Frame welding and primer

As I was going over the frame after primer I noticed a little pin hole near the steering tube. Decided to poke it a little to see how big it was...oh, good lord!! By the time I chipped all the thin rusted metal off I had a hole about the size of a half dollar. When disassembling the bike there appeared to be a lot water infiltration into the stem. Seems this caused a good amount of damage in the area where the frame connects at the bottom of the tube. Sanded this area down to remove the primer to get good contact for welding. Built up the metal using stick welder then sanded weld back down to flush. I know TIG or MIG might be better for this but I use what I have and know. Reshot primer in this area as well as a few other small spots which needed a little more attention. Will wet sand tonight, then let dry for a night before I shoot the first coat of black on.

I really need to remember to keep the camera in the shop when I am working. Out of sight out of mind.:roll:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Getting close to reassembly

So I haven't posted in awhile on my progress. Its been a little slow with all the kids end of year school stuff going on but we have made a little headway. I did not photo document any of the small things I have done as most if not all have been done so by plenty of others who are vastly more qualified and detail oriented than myself . Really have not had any noteworthy issues thus far.

Work done to date:
Bike stripped to the frame
Frame sand blasted, one rust hole near the steering stem had to be welded over.
Frame primed and painted with Gloss black epoxy
New steering bearings installed
Bronze bushings installed (sourced from our friend here on the forum)
Both front and rear wheels have been cleaned, new SS spokes from Buchanan's, hubs polished, new bearings in both
Will finish cleaning the motor this weekend and start the paint on it.

CL350 6.JPG
 

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As I was going over the frame after primer I noticed a little pin hole near the steering tube. Decided to poke it a little to see how big it was...oh, good lord!! By the time I chipped all the thin rusted metal off I had a hole about the size of a half dollar. When disassembling the bike there appeared to be a lot water infiltration into the stem. Seems this caused a good amount of damage in the area where the frame connects at the bottom of the tube. Sanded this area down to remove the primer to get good contact for welding. Built up the metal using stick welder then sanded weld back down to flush. I know TIG or MIG might be better for this but I use what I have and know. Reshot primer in this area as well as a few other small spots which needed a little more attention. Will wet sand tonight, then let dry for a night before I shoot the first coat of black on.

I really need to remember to keep the camera in the shop when I am working. Out of sight out of mind.:roll:

with the damage you discovered you should also carefully check the bottoms of the frame rails under the sides of the motor just ahead of the spine...especially the kickstand side. it's very common to find rust on the bottom frame rails on bikes with the steering head rust you described.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Outobie, Thanks for the heads up. On the CL350 frame the down tube does not continue to the lower frame rails. The down tube is essentially pinched off and then the side rails are tied in on each side above that. Still, that was a concern of mine for the bottom of the down tube. I tapped around the bottom of the down tube with a welding hammer to see if I could find any soft spots in the metal. I did not, thankfully. I poured OSPHO down in the frame making sure it went both in the down tube and the upper frame rails. This will stop the rust that is there from getting any worse than it is. Of course I rinsed well when done and allowed to dry outside in the sun when done.

Again, thanks for the heads up.
 

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Yes I am familiar with the 350 frame construction.

I didn't mean to imply the moisture would travel from the head to the frame rails...just that rot in both places frequently occurs together (but not always; as seems to be the case with your bike),

From reading your posts, it sounds like you know your way around the shop. I was just hopping to be helpful :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Outobie, I took it as such and appreciate you taking the time to mention it.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Engine Status update

While waiting for a few other things to get done it was time to give the engine the once over. When I bought the bike the motor turned over but in my opinion that in itself is fairly meaningless other than at least knowing the engine is not seized and the transmissions shifts gears. While the mileage was low at around 3,500k, if its already out of the bike a ring job at minimum is at least in order. Here is what I found when I got into it.
CL 350 piston 2.JPG CL 350 pistons.JPG
Not really sure what all that gunk is but I expect it is a mixture of dirt dobbers nest, WD-40 which I sprayed into the cylinders when I first brought the bike home and then who knows what else. Happy I did not try to fire the engine!

The machine shop was able to hone the jugs and and did the valve job for me. Vineyard's Machine shop in Ennis TX does good fast work.

Ordering new rings, seals and other parts today.
CL 350 dissasembled engine.JPG

I do need to source a new set of Cam Chain Tensioner Rollers. I have read where people have made them from Teflon plastic. Does anyone have any experience with them or know a source to purchase them from? I have seen the replacement set up used in racing bikes but those are pricey for a street use only bike.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I have have tried to look him up on your suggestion but from other post I have read he is kinda out of the loop in making these parts.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Stuck ring

So I went to work cleaning those pistons in the previous post. Soaked for three days in carburetor cleaning acid pot. Washed all the remaining residue off the pistons and then went to cleaning them with a scotch bright pad and steel wool, then to the buffing wheel to do the final clean. Only one problem.....

On the second piston, the compression ring has decided it does not want to be removed. It is stuck and I mean stuck good. Have re-soaked in the acid vat for days, have saturated it with a solvent use for rusty bolts and such, cussed a little, did a little prying with a pic, CUSSED A LOT. Have not brought out the oxy/act rig just yet but I am getting there quickly!! ANY SUGGESTIONS????
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Also, I am hitting a dead end with trying to find teflon rollers for the cam chain. The guy from Poland who I was pointed towards does not make them anymore. I do not have the machine nor the capability of making them myself. Short of buying the $114 steel roller, any suggestions on this as well?
 

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Also, I am hitting a dead end with trying to find teflon rollers for the cam chain. The guy from Poland who I was pointed towards does not make them anymore. I do not have the machine nor the capability of making them myself. Short of buying the $114 steel roller, any suggestions on this as well?
4into1 sells one of the rollers for about 23 bucks I think? Can't help with the second roller, haven't seen it around other than on eBay as a CNC machined piece for 100$


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