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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started this build thread on another site, but that site seems to be stagnant. I've decided to move it here.

I really did not need another motorcycle in the garage. However, I found this on Craigslist a few months ago, and I really like the K1. I have a few K0s in the works, and have a few K1 parts that have come along in the last few years. My K0 actually has a K1 exhaust on it, and I was about to replace it with a good K0 setup. What to do with the K1 exhaust? Find a K1 to put it on. The bike has been ridden hard, with 66,000 miles on the clock. However, the tank, seat, fenders and side covers are in pretty good shape. The frame is uncut with no cracks, and the electrical system works. Someone welded extensions onto the front fork ears to fit a later and larger headlight bucket, so those will be replaced. I plan to do a light restoration, leaving the faded red paint for now. The motor cranks over with compression (not sure how much yet).
So I contacted the guy, arranged to check it out while my 13 year old son and I were on our annual road trip to Maine from Kentucky, and bought it. It did almost 4000 miles on the carrier on my truck, but is finally back home. I hope to get started on it soon, but a garage cleanout and reorganization is underway. Of course, all of the pictures are sideways. I later figured out how to make them upright, but these are older. View attachment 277102 View attachment 277110 View attachment 277112 View attachment 277114 22070399-E477-4357-9255-DF10677A7274.JPG 797AE6AE-16CC-4478-AABB-D30C3E32CB4B.JPG 8CB198D3-ECF9-4118-8459-F71F5C2A148A.JPG 7296AC45-F196-4696-A4BD-195635D7350D.JPG 22070399-E477-4357-9255-DF10677A7274.JPG 797AE6AE-16CC-4478-AABB-D30C3E32CB4B.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I found a proper headlight shell, repaired some cracks in it, and got it and the NOS fork ears painted. The old fork ears were pretty jacked up by some unorthodox modifications. I had to prime a Triumph rear mudguard, as well. IMG_1414.JPG IMG_1413.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have had little chance to work on the bike this last month. A trip with my wife to Barbados took one of my weeks and a bit of my cash, but it was great. I've managed to get all of the bikes indoors. The front end came off, and things were a bit worse than expected. Given the condition of the forks, I am inclined to believe that the 66,000 miles on the odometer are accurate. I'm pretty sure that it was running on the original fork seals. The tubes looked all right until I got the chrome seal covers off. Then the horror was apparent. Each tube has a large area where the chrome is completely gone, with significant scoring and loss of steel underneath. There was no oil in either fork, but quite a bit of nasty looking water was in there. Plus a good bit of sand. I'm working on sourcing some new or good used fork tubes, and looking to replace the fork internals as well. Some of the parts are pretty pitted and/or worn from all of the water and grit. Please pardon the coffee cup and upper triple pictures. They were test shots that I couldn't remove. The first two pics are of my bikes that got caught in a November ice storm. IMG_1420.JPG IMG_1419.JPG IMG_1433.JPG IMG_1434.JPG IMG_1435.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I managed to get the front end back together after finding a few sets of decent fork tubes. The lowers were stripped and lightly polished, the front rim and hub were cleaned up, and a new Avon Roadrider was fitted. I also managed to score a good set of used K1 mufflers that are in better shape than the ones that I had, as well as some better tank panels.
Now it is 5 degrees outside, so garage work is on hold. It is supposed to be in the 60s this weekend. IMG_1472.JPG IMG_1473.JPG IMG_1474.JPG IMG_1475.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
From now on everything is newly posted, not salvaged horribly from another site. I look forward to getting this bike done. I have to pull the engine for what I suspect is a total rebuild, given the amount of oily soot in the left header and 66,000 miles on the odometer. It does kick over, but the starter is toast.
 

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Nice, I love 450 projects but really like to see a K1 coming together! I think this is my favorite of all the Honda twins with a Bomber being a very close second. The work so far on the front end is bringing it back to where it needs to be. That fork wear certainly was significant. I’ll be watching with interest as you get into the engine and what discoveries are to be found on a potentially high mileage DOHC.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The engine should be interesting. I lucked into a NOS bare head on ebay for $49, which is a lot cheaper than a valve job. I have NOS valves and seals ready to go in, and some good used cams just in case. I'm curious if it is still running on the standard pistons. The PO never bothered to change the fork seals, so it wouldn't surprise me.

The two into one exhaust that was originally on it looked neat at first, but when I got into it, I realized that it probably started its life as half of a 4 into 2 system. It definitely wasn't for a 450, and completely prevented use of the rear brake. There wasn't even a bracket holding it up. It was completely supported by the header clamps.
 

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I agree - I'd love to have a K1 as much as a Bomber, the style of the overall bike for the time is classic. And yes, that other site does seem to be stagnating badly... glad you moved the build here
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Since the rear end of the bike looked as bad as the front, I went ahead and tackled that a few weeks ago. I found a nice DID used rim from a '70, cleaned up the hub, and laced them up with a new set of spokes from 4 into 1. I blasted and painted the taillight mounts, found a better used rear fender and taillight assembly, and went on from there. Brake shoes and bearings were replaced.

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I also found a NOS front brake cable with the stop switch and a NOS throttle cable.
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A NOS bare head for $49??? I REALLY need to pay more attention I guess... nice find, I'm envious
Yeah, that one must have slipped by my radar because I have been so busy since the start of the year. At least now I know who some of my competition on EBay is for these parts :p. I’m glad you scooped that bargain up Pemdoc and it’s going to a worthy project.
I like your approach to clean things up, make it safe and rideable but it’s not overdone and attempting to pose as a showroom restoration. Just my style. You are lucky to have the rare K1 seat in good condition with the original cover, that’s a hard one to find. Do you have both side covers in original paint? Do you plan to leave the tank original?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I don't have the side covers in original paint, although I'd like to find some. The covers that came on it were CL450 covers, although the paint matched. I didn't even notice that they were CL covers until I got it home. So if anyone needs a set of early CL450 covers in faded candy red, I've got some. There was a guy on here a few months ago that said that he was going to part out a K1 that had the right faded red side covers, but he hasn't responded since.
I'd like to keep the original paint on the tank, but that will depend on if I can find the right covers. If I have to paint a set of side covers, the tank might look weird. I'm happy to have the original seat, even though it has a few rips.
I appreciate the support on this project. In the end, I'd like to have a good rideable bike that shows some of its age.
 
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I know the ad on here you speak of. I responded to that as well since the bike is only several hours from where I live. I exchanged a couple of PM’s with the seller about buying the whole bike but it went nowhere. Maybe he will show back up on here eventually. For what it is worth, I have a left side cover for a K1 in original red. It’s not perfect but presentable. I bought it a year ago and was waiting to find a reasonably priced right side to make a pair but I don’t necessarily need the red since I don’t have a red tank. If you can find a right side to match I’m sure we can arrange some sort of deal to get you this one. I’ll try and post a pic of it if you are interested. Otherwise I’m in no rush to let it go and will be hanging on to it for a future project.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
I appreciate that offer. I'll keep an eye out for the other side. Of course, there were two for sale on ebay when I bought the bike, but I hadn't noticed the CL covers on it yet. When I finally noticed it, the two were gone. No red ones have come up since. I have a pair in rattle can black for the time being.

I got very lucky finding the NOS head on ebay. I work nights, so I was cruising ebay at 0300 on my night off. The head had been listed for about 10 minutes. The shipping cost as much as the head, but it will be worth it.
 

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Here is the cover I have so you get an idea of the condition. There is a shallow crease visible but I think it could be mostly removed with some skilled hands. Like I say, it’s here if you happen to come across a right side to match.
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Nice job, I always like another DOHC project. At 66K it will be interesting to see the internal condition of the engine. Is it original to the frame? At 24K the small ends of the rods were oversize. I sourced a serviceable crank, bored .5mm oversize and, the valves ground and found serviceable rocker arms and cams.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
The frame and engine numbers are 60 digits apart, so I'm running on the assumption that the engine is original. I should hopefully be getting the engine out in the next few week. Who knows what it will look like inside. I haven't had it running, so I don't have an idea of what unusual noises it will make. I have a set of NOS sleeves and standard pistons/rings to go in at some point.

In addition to the NOS bare head, I found another good complete head with nice cams, followers, cam chain rollers and torsion bars. The donor bike only had 15000 miles. Between the heads that I have, I should be able to generate a nice one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Today I got the carbs cleaned, new gaskets and o-rings installed. The carbs were surprisingly clean compared to the tank. I also managed to finish sorting the 150+ pounds of miscellaneous motorcycle hardware that I purchased from a bike breaker a while back. I don't think that I'm going to run out of hardware anytime soon.

The tank was removed and filled with vinegar to steep for a few days. The last shot is of the bottom of the NOS head as I get ready to reassemble it.

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My work schedule is pretty packed for the next several days, so I figured that it is a good time to let the tank soak and derust.
 

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You can never undervalue having a large collection of nuts and bolts to choose from, a collection like yours is gold to me. It will be interesting to see how well the vinegar treatment works on that tank. Please post the results from that. And what a luxury it must be to have that NOS head to work with, looks great! Oh yeah, nice beer choice as well ;)
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I peeked in the tank to see what it was doing, and the rust is already disappearing. So did that beer. I've used the same batch of vinegar to clean three tanks, and it still seems to be working well.
 
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