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Author Topic: Where do I start? (74' Engine Rebuild)  (Read 260 times)

Offline jgmunz

  • Posts: 2
Where do I start? (74' Engine Rebuild)
« on: Oct 08, 2017, 22:25:57 »
Hello all,
          Im looking for some help here on my first build. I picked up a 1974 CB550 to build into a cafe/brat bike. Although i don't feel in over my head, I'm not too sure where to start here. The previous owner claimed he bought the bike running and he disassembled the bike last winter. It now sits in my garage in pieces... carbs, frame, 2 separate engines, exhaust, tank, etc. Ive decided I want to rebuild the engine as the top end has already been torn down, and clean/polish it while its torn apart. Where do I start with a rebuild? Im afraid I wont know what Im missing or what needs replacing once its apart, or that ill do some damage while tearing down. Any advice is helpful as i havent found any videos or anything that help my case. Ive got the motivation and the bike, all i needs some knowledge to help me get started. thanks!

Offline cxman

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  • Posts: 2317
Re: Where do I start? (74' Engine Rebuild)
« Reply #1 on: Oct 09, 2017, 07:59:16 »
most important question where do you live you could have a expert member right around the corner
1978 CX650 Super Deluxe
1979 XS1100 Special
1980 XS650
1980 cx500  The Beast
1983 GL650 i
1983 cx650 Custom
1973 CB450
1973 cb750
1980 cb750
1981 cb650
1982 cb900 c
1977  gl1000
1976 gl1000 LTD
 1983 GL1100 Nekid
and a bunch of others

Offline jgmunz

  • Posts: 2
Re: Where do I start? (74' Engine Rebuild)
« Reply #2 on: Oct 09, 2017, 12:01:58 »
Im located in Arlington VA, just outside of Washington DC. I know that Cognito Moto is down in Richmond, but aside from their suspension kits and other CNC'd parts, I havent looked at them as a resource. Not to mention they're far out from me.

Offline cxman

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  • Posts: 2317
Re: Where do I start? (74' Engine Rebuild)
« Reply #3 on: Oct 09, 2017, 12:23:15 »
devin does some motor work and sends some to me
1978 CX650 Super Deluxe
1979 XS1100 Special
1980 XS650
1980 cx500  The Beast
1983 GL650 i
1983 cx650 Custom
1973 CB450
1973 cb750
1980 cb750
1981 cb650
1982 cb900 c
1977  gl1000
1976 gl1000 LTD
 1983 GL1100 Nekid
and a bunch of others

Offline jpmobius

  • DTT BOTM WINNER
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  • Posts: 1077
  • where does this go?
Re: Where do I start? (74' Engine Rebuild)
« Reply #4 on: Oct 09, 2017, 13:02:22 »
Motivation is absolutely the key in my experience.  A little patience and planning should carry you as far as you want.  First, get an authentic FACTORY service manual.  While you're waiting on that, go through all the parts you have and start cleaning.  Catalog all your parts as best as you can and organize everything.  This will get you familiar with everything.  If there are mystery parts, don't worry, you'll discover their function as you go along.  Read the manual!!!  Most factory manuals are very thorough and well thought out, and reading through the engine section a couple of times will get you pretty comfortable with everything before you begin.  You'll also learn what you will need in the way of tools.  Set yourself up a spot as large as you can manage and clean it to at LEAST your highest kitchen standard.  A clean comfortable place to work promotes quality.  By far the most difficult skill to master is taking things apart without damage.  Old machinery can get very stubbornly glued together, so keep in mind that your first shot at taking anything apart is your best shot, and things can start spiraling the drain very quickly unless you religiously use the best quality correct tool for the job.  So get a set of high quality screwdrivers and wrenches and learn to use them - it's your best insurance against fastener damage. 

Don't make any modifications to anything and reassemble your entire bike and get it running and driving properly.  It is by far the quickest and easiest way to end up with what you want regardless of the level of customization or restoration you have in mind.  Once complete and up and running, most bikes can be disassembled down to the spokes in a day, so you lose very little work taking anything back apart to paint or modify it.  It may seem like a lot of work now, but you'll find that your bike is quite simple once you are familiar with it.  The second hardest skill to master is assembling it without scratching anything.  Practicing when there is no new paint to scratch makes it a whole lot easier to do a good job when the time comes.

So read the manual!  Take your time, clean everything and focus on one section at a time. 
Good luck!
Mobius


On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.

1973 RD350 Yamaha build  http://www.dotheton.com/forum/index.php?topic=66498.0