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So I have a new to me 73 Cb450. Been taking it apart. Cam chain had a chain with a clipped master link in it. I always heard that was a big no no and it needed to be riveted. Is that true?

Second thing is the rubber/plastic gear wheel on the actual tensioner is shot. As in the one in the back with the big old spring and the adjuster. Think the little plastic nubs on the wheel broken off and in the oil pan. Appears the whole unit has to be replaced as an entire part? I also noticed Cappellini offers a ball bearing replacement with a shaft you have to peen on yourself. It looks a LOT more sturdy being a metal gear instead of a cheap plastic thing. And NOS tensioners are unobtainium. Grr.

I'm going to pull the tensioner off my parts 68 cb450. Hopefully it is in good shape. If not what is the recommended way to replace. The cappellini method or a used tensioner off ebay?
 

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Well, I've never used the Cappellini piece and their stuff tends to be expensive too, but good used ones are hard to find anymore. The original rubber one doesn't actually have "teeth" on it, just little nubs that ride in the center of the chain. The bigger issue is the hardness of the rubber... if it's hard and pieces are chipping off, it's time to find a better one. Good used engines are out there and always handy to have because for the cost of a good spare engine, you often get many parts that are worth at least what you paid for it or more. Hopefully your used one is better, but if not the Cappellini piece should work well, just somewhat pricey too. And yes, you should use a rivet or stake link in the chain - but if you replace the chain, either a press-fit side plate master link works as well as a stake link (some new chains come with a press-fir master, though I prefer the stake link, it's what I've always used). If you need a new chain, here's the best price on the best chain you can get

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Honda-CB-450K-CB450-CL-450-Steuerkette-D-I-D-219T128-mit-Schloss-cam-chain-/361472845175
 

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I'm not personally familiar with your CB 450. I would be cautious about condemning Honda's use of the rubber wheels though. As hoaky as they appear to us today, they have lasted this long under unknown conditions and maintenance. ;)

I've yet to use it myself but while discussing these wheels (in other models) with a pretty knowledgeable "old Honda guy" he mentioned he soaks old hardened wheels and other rubber parts in peppermint oil and it softens them up. If yours is dimensionally not too far out of shape, it might be worth giving a try. The advise came from a guy who has restored, bought, sold, raced and pretty much lived old Hondas for years, and he got it from his father who's been doing the same even longer. :cool:
 
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