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Well, here is what I have saved from going to the dump. An unloved unwanted 1972 CL450 last titled in 1977 with only about four thousand miles, stripped down dumped and left for dead. I got this from a coworker that was cleaning his yard and was going to dump it, but fortunately knew I was into old Honda's and offered it up, free!



My friend helped me pick it up with his truck and he thought I was crazy, I saw an opportunity. The sad little 450 was just laying on it side with no motor mounts just hanging onto the frame by the carbs and exhaust.



Now she is home, time to asses the damage.

In the disparaging state she was found, total motor rebuild was already assumed. But just how bad off will she be?

With no kick shift lever I had to snag the one from my 350G and see what would happen. And nothing. Seized up tight. Time to remove the head and see what I am working with. And..



Yuck.

Over night PB Blaster bath.



The next morning a few hefty whacks with a hammer every hour on the hour and by mid afternoon the pistons are freed up.



A little rusty.





Scotch bright reveals what is under the rust.




The right piston has too much side to side play. So when I get home in three weeks I will break into the case and see what is hiding inside.

 

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Wow, this should be a great build to watch. Seems like you're going to have to touch every aspect of the bike, should be fun.

Great pics, love the first pic looks like a game animal that you just shot and are getting ready to quarter. Man those pistons/cylinders were nasty. Nice job freeing them up.

Look forward to the rest.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I am looking forward to this rebuild as this will be my first total motor teardown and will get me ready for my Black Bomber.

The pistons were not really that bad, they were only seized from sitting for maybe thirty plus years with no spark plugs. So I think it is presumably safe to assume the seizure was due to the natural elements rather than overheating from lack of oil, as there was no visible scoring on the pistons. One thing I have learned from the old school mechanic I work with is finesse. Rather than beating the snot out of the pistons to attempt to free them I let them sit with the PB overnight to see if any would leak down into the cylinders and it didn’t. So I took the non business end of one hammer (wood handle) and whacked the top with another hammer just a few times every hour to jar the pistons, even when my daughter started to see some slight movement I did not get over ambitious and let them soak a little longer. Once I had them through a couple of revolutions the jugs came right off.

Now, I kind of started off in second gear here so I am going to ease back into first because I don’t want to disappoint any of the purists or just mislead anyone into thinking this will be headed back to its original form. I am going to make a bad little hard tail chopper out of this. There, I said it.

And as for the engine, there are some Team Hanson upgrades I am looking at to pep it up a little. I know that is going cost a few $$$, but the bike was free and any money spent improving the heart is money well spent and still cheaper than buying a new motorcycle.

This forum and its knowledge base is really invaluable place when it comes to these old Hondas. I am glad to be here and learn something.

Thanks.

And, please be patient this will take me some time to do this build. I work out of town over half of the year and when I am at home I am a single parent to two cool kids…and I live in Alaska so if I am in need of parts or specialized tools I have to order them. But I see a long winter ahead and I have two young apprentices ready to help.:mrgreen:
 

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Good start on the engine. As far as the small chopper goes, to each his own. Back in the day there were a lot of 450 choppers. You could buy fork extensions that would add inches to you stock fork tubes. Just as a data point, last year the wife and I were on a drive to the Olympic Pensula in Washington State. A guy came up next to us making a huge racket on a fully chopped Honda 90. It was complete with tomb stone tail light. Go fo it and keep us informed!
 

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I gotta say it,,,, that is one lucky motorcycle. Not many people would attempt to ressurect that one. I am sure it will be a great bike. Have fun.
Don
 

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I await your progress reports, and the very best of luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I hear ya on the chopper, might not be everyone’s can of beer. There are allot of poorly done chops and even more botched cafe racers. I am a sucker for a bone stock bike. But I don’t feel bad about what I am planning to do to this 450 because it is far from being a cherry. I know how I and others are when it comes to the nostalgic aspect of seeing a beautiful stock bike and then seeing a mouth breathing plate licker take a mallet and bash the tank in for knee dents so they can have a bad @** custom bike. I am in the camp for not seeing theses originals molested BUT it is at a fork in the road as far as how easy it could be restored back to stock or highly customized. Doing a resto wouldn’t be all that bad but the economics of making it a bare bones chop really fits my financial situation right now as I have a ton of useful parts for this type of modification.

I can promise this will be one bad 450 :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Also as an FYI when I get home and start to strip all the goodies from the bike I will put them up for grabs in the for sale section. Fenders, pipes, blinkers, ect. Shipping will suck on the bigger stuff though because I am in Alaska.
 

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Looking forward to seeing it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Stubborn case screws :x



Be damned :)
 

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oohhhhhhhh Alaska... dreeeam triiiiiiiiiip. Fairbanks, Stampede Trail and The Bus. I'm waiting to get older and forget about this or to get enough spare money for such a journey, whatever comes first.

Anyway,welcome mate!

If it make you feel better , yours is not the worst one in the forum.


I didnt rebuild the bike in the picture, I got it for spares.




One problem you'll find is internal rust on the crank bearings. I had to buy another crank to replace the one inside this engine due to the bearings being too noisy. Bring out the piggy bank, this is where it all starts...
 

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Dude. :cool: You are a better man than I. :lol: But I guess you have a longer winter ahead of you. :D I am looking forward to reading this. Oh, and what beer are you drinking there? :geek: Is that Hop Dog?

On those case screws, apply a good penetrating oil like Kroil or maybe PB Blaster, let soak, then use an electric heat gun to heat up the case. Then, a couple hits with an impact driver should free them up. If they are rounded out, cut a slot and use a flat screwdriver.

Really, heating is the key when fastener and case are different metals.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
@ scarfacehugo

I dont know, I think yours looks better than mine as is has all the little stuff still on it (nuts and bolts)
Do you have a build thread? I would like to see the progress!

@ Bobblehead

Good eye on the Hop Dog, I had to go back and look as I normaly drink Stone arogant bastard. One of the smaller specialty beer stores here had a bunch on Stones Barly wine which is out of season so snagged up a arm load of that, I love my hops!

Thanks for the tip! I couldent get the last two screws on the case with my impact driver and messed them up in the prosses. When I got the case off I gave them a sqwert of PB and a couple of taps with a hammer and they came right out. I do have a heat gun, so I will give that a try on the other side an see how that works for me.

Thanks
 

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I dont have a thread on my build yet, but I'll be starting one soon. The bike is now running but still in "tune up" season.
 

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Bobblehead said:
Dude. :cool: You are a better man than I. :lol: But I guess you have a longer winter ahead of you. :D I am looking forward to reading this. Oh, and what beer are you drinking there? :geek: Is that Hop Dog?

On those case screws, apply a good penetrating oil like Kroil or maybe PB Blaster, let soak, then use an electric heat gun to heat up the case. Then, a couple hits with an impact driver should free them up. If they are rounded out, cut a slot and use a flat screwdriver.

Really, heating is the key when fastener and case are different metals.
+1

Two stripped screws in as many weeks (both case screws) and this worked well. I had never done it before the first one, and by the second, it was a no brainer.
 

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Godspeed with the rebuild my friend. When you do split the cases, thoroughly inspect all of the transmission gears, shift drum, forks, large detent wheel..basically everything. The 450's have a 2nd gear shift problem. This is the 2nd time ive had to take my motor apart.

I love first pic of the cylinders

-Dan from NJ
 
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