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1979 CM185T
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29 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey, I'm Sam. I've wanted to buy and fix up an older motorcycle (especially lusting after a 60s CA77) since high school but never had the space or time. Well, now that I'm in med school I still don't really have the time but at least I have the space. 1/2 is good enough for me!

Saw a non-running 1979 CM185T pop up on FB marketplace listed for $500 and thought it was worth driving over to check it out (seller was only 5 minutes from me). And, well, I bought it (for $450). It's no CA77 but it was cheap and it'll help me learn both how to work on bikes and how to ride one. I do all my own work on my car so I'm no stranger to being a shadetree mechanic so I'm really excited for the new project!

The seller said he bought the bike about a year ago and it was running just a few months ago (although I'm kind of suspicious about that). There's a laundry list of things that need to be done.

Things I KNOW I have to do:
New coil
New front brake cable
New flasher relay
New headlight, taillight, speedo bulbs
Left-hand switch assembly (a PO had ROYALLY hecked up the wiring in there)
New tires/tubes
Air filter
Horn
Oil change

Things I'm not sure need to be done but I'm doing anyways:
Clutch plates (the clutch won't disengage so I figured if I have to crack everything open, might as well replace the plates)
Carb rebuild kit
New spark plugs/caps
Fuel filter
Chain
F/R brake shoes

Things I'm doing to make the bike "mine":
I don't like the handlebars. Too tall in my opinion. So I bought reproduction '75 CB550F handlebars.
New grips and levers too along with mirrors because mine didn't come with them.
Obviously need paint once everything mechanically is sorted out. I'm thinking I'm going to go with a similar blue/yellow color scheme to the CB750.
Seat has some tears. Not sure how best to proceed with that. Entirely new covering?
Also the lid on the gas tank is missing the lock mechanism. I don't really care about it locking but it doesn't look that good. I'll need to figure that out later but that's well down the line.

Definitely have my work cut out but should be pretty fun. At some point in this bike's life an owner did an interesting job with the wiring so I'm cleaning all that up while I wait for my parts to arrive. Having a good time!

Some pics:
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312817
 

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Sensei
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27,070 Posts
You DO know that the ignition is battery powered, NOT magneto, so add a 6 Volt battery to your list and then check your coil...It may be fine....
 

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Registered
1979 CM185T
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29 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
You DO know that the ignition is battery powered, NOT magneto, so add a 6 Volt battery to your list and then check your coil...It may be fine....
Yep, battery is new, seller installed it before selling it. Seller told me the coil was bad and when I got it home I tested it as described in the Clymer and it tested bad. Ordered a new one just to make sure.
 

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6 Posts
I am currently working on my 78 cm 185t,only 3000 miles but developed huge oil leak in left side case I read this is common but may have to pull flywheel to fix it.
 

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Registered
1979 CM185T
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29 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I am currently working on my 78 cm 185t,only 3000 miles but developed huge oil leak in left side case I read this is common but may have to pull flywheel to fix it.
You can think of it that you GET to pull the left side cover to make sure everything is clean in there :D

Hopefully you just need a new seal or gasket
 
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