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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have seen some really cool Cafe, Bobber, Brat style 450's. I just bought one but haven't taken delivery yet. I believe it is a fairly stock 1972 CB. My initial thought was to strip it down a bit and maybe electronic ignition, upgrade the shocks, maybe custom exhaust, put some fresh rubber on it and ride it... past that I'm not sure. I'm guessing there are plenty of both owners, ones that want to keep them stock as possible and those that wouldn't hesitate to customize. The one thing I won't do is try to turn it into a hardtailed chopper. I'm new to the forum and haven't searched around much but there probably is a thread where members show off there bikes.
 

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Most of us show off what we've done in a build thread, even if the bike you buy is stock and only in need of a little repair and TLC. My 450 is fairly modified but I don't plan to sell it, and there are plenty of 450s here that go from restorations to everything in between that and what I've done with mine. I think the prevailing feeling here is that a nice survivor deserves to be kept stock, but no one will give you too much grief no matter what you choose to do
 

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It's your bike, do what you want with it, screw everyone else. There are plenty of restored disk-brake 450's around.
My only advice is to get it running well FIRST, then start changing stuff ONE THING AT A TIME till you're happy.
 

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It's your bike, do what you want with it, screw everyone else. There are plenty of restored disk-brake 450's around.
My only advice is to get it running well FIRST, then start changing stuff ONE THING AT A TIME till you're happy.
+1, good advice.
 

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Welcome aboard! I have a 400 that I turned into a cafe and LOVE IT. Get it running first (which I didn't), watch LOTS of videos and then decide what you like and how to do it.
 

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I put my 450 back to stock after it being full cafe. Truth is, 99% of the time, it's much easier and safer to ride fast in traffic and on everyday public roads if you're sitting up and comfortable. It's all about the look.
 

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Like stated before, it's your bike so do with it as you will.

That said if you had a fairly decent classic like the K0 or K1 model and decided to chop it up to cafe it or whatever, you might get quite a few frowns around here including myself LOL
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I put my 450 back to stock after it being full cafe. Truth is, 99% of the time, it's much easier and safer to ride fast in traffic and on everyday public roads if you're sitting up and comfortable. It's all about the look.
I'll have to be sitting up and comfortable, I'm 63 and getting too old and back weary to be leaning over with my knees up at my chest. Part of the reason I bought this bike.
 

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When I first bought mine, it had extended forks. Whoever did that apparently didn't realize that raising the front of the engine would cause probable oil starvation problems; the valve train showed plenty of damage from just that kind of problem. If you choose to customize, be sure to consider how it may affect other parts of the bike.
 

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All good advice... I think i read a similar thread a while back. As stated before, get it running, safe, and comfortable. RIDE IT, then decide what direction you may want to go, no sense in building a bad ass "cafe racer" if you don't enjoy riding it. Also, look at "down time"...cool set of wheels with custom paint and a hand crafted seat doesn't do you a whole lot of good if your motor isn't working proper..
I would keep it "stock" and running well for now, you will be amazed how many people LOVE to see these vintage bikes on the road. Even people that aren't riders appreciate vintage iron. If later you decide to take it to another direction, look for one for sale that has already been started, chances are you can pick it up for a song and dance.
 

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I'll have to be sitting up and comfortable, I'm 63 and getting too old and back weary to be leaning over with my knees up at my chest. Part of the reason I bought this bike.
Welcome to the site. There are a lot of us in your age group. We want to see some pictures of your bike. Do what you want with it, it is yours. As some of our friends have pointed out, there are limits to what you can do to customize a 450 before crossing the line into bad taste or just plain impossible engineering. Almost all of who ride the DOHC bikes have made some concessions to the fact of their age. Modern ignitions, electrical components and tires make for a better bike. I like to think of mine as a resto-mod. It is reliable and attracts attention wherever it goes. This was early last summer:

Mike and Jim Cougar Mt 6-17-18.jpg
 

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Donkstang.jpg
Somebody thought that this would be a great thing to do to an older, classic vehicle, in order to make it more trendy or custom or whatever.
Bear this in mind when "improving" an older vehicle that can't be replaced.
 

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My wife loves her 71, but the 72 in the garage has indicators that stick oUt and the tail light is HUGE.. unfortunitly the 71 needs work (steering, swingarm bearings / bushings- burning oil on the left side)... so I'm swapping all the 71 "parts" to the 72 so she can ride and enjoy "her" bike including the rims/tires. I plan on "building" the 71.. saw a pic online and loved it, so does she so eventually I'll give her back her 71 finished / referbished.. and I'll find a home for the 72 either as is or swap the 71 parts back..
This is what I'm shooting for IMG_5171.JPG
I like the blacked out motor, lower forks, and hubs...color not so much.. but it is a long way off.
 
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