Author Topic: ON THE ROAD!!!!! Project two---a CB400F  (Read 8175 times)

Offline Chuck78

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #30 on: Jan 15, 2018, 10:29:44 »
Looking great, Rod! Ive got to get you down this way to go riding some serioys twisties in the Appalachian Hills with us sometime! Or at least to AMA vintage motorcycle days weekend at Mid-Ohio sports car course outside of Lexington Ohio...

These CB350/400/500/550-Four Koni 76F shocks of mine that Kenny modified for Koni 7610 Dial-A-Ride adjustable damping internals (effectively making them the equivalent of Koni 7614 alloy body Dial-A-Ride's) will look really great on that bike!

« Last Edit: Jan 15, 2018, 10:34:41 by Chuck78 »

'77 GS750 920cc, 4-1, GS1100E swinger, 18" Sun rims, Fox Factory Shox, twinpot dual disc, CR31, Yosh cams
'74 Rickman VR250MX
'99 Kawasaki KDX220 rugged terrain ripper
'77 Suzuki PE250B
"Pure Enduro" trail beast, ported, Wiseco, TüBliss, Fox Factory Shox/RaceTech
'76 Rickman CR GS1000-1120cc roadracer, Yosh cams&4-1, RF900R fork, Works piggybacks
'79 GS425 489cc Formula 500 racer, Tempter cams, GS650 forks, twinpot brakes, DID rims, GS1100E swinger, Fox Factory Shox
'77 GS550's 650-740cc susp&brake mods

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #31 on: Jan 15, 2018, 11:42:24 »
hey Chuck----   ya...I'm looking forward to the mailman ringing the doorbell and saying "your Koni's are here"!!!!!!    :D

I'll post up some pics with them installed.

EX119:  I do recall reading something about that metal being a bit porous, but I'm knee deep into changing the gasket now anyway, so....

Running the calipers behind the forks----I would LOVE to do that...understanding that one of them (regardless of them being in front or behind) has to be shimmed up to run "straight" anyway.   It was when I read somewhere that running them behind complicates two "maintenance" items----bleeding the lines (as the bleed valve would no longer be near the highest point on the caliper), and draining fork oil (the drain bolt is no longer at the lowest point on the fork leg), that I started wondering if that (for me anyway) was the way to go.   

Now, that said....I get it....pull the forks to change the oil.....Brake line bleeding will just take a little longer....     It's certainly not too late to swap 'em around!!!   

Thanks too for the thought on the rear fender mod----with the frame's rail's rear mounting points remaining there, the plan is to run the signal light stalks through them, and continue to catch the fender's side mount holes too....to keep the whole structure rigid.  I do like the rolled edge finish too....it "finishes" it...but also imagine a fender that's got a smaller/more narrow profile too.   

Once the bike starts getting reassembled especially with the rear tire and seat/tank, I'll do lots of staring at the rear and hopefully the lines will emerge.


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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #32 on: Jan 24, 2018, 12:44:36 »
Well.... I swapped the forks the other night to run the calipers behind. 

Took my carbs over to a buddies' place last week too, and he helped me check over my efforts.  All the jets and orifices and interiors were cleaned up, new o-rings installed everywhere, and they're "bench sync'd" (I think is the term?). I think we're both pretty satisfied with them.

Been poking away too at the engine, taking my time.   Took some nudging, but the cylinder block did eventually break free from the lower cases.  It was quite dirty in there....collections of what to me is sand at the around the bases of some of the studs.   Have started to remove that old base gasket, and clean that surface.   Have also started cleaning up the crusty studs.

Pulled the pistons off the rods, and went at the tops and the head combustion 'dome' surfaces to get some of the carbon build up off.   Just used some bathroom cleaner and some scotch pads....not perfectly clean, but I can see a difference.

Have bought new piston circlips, head washers and some new head nuts to replace a few that were a little mangled.   Will continue cleaning the exteriors of all the major engine components while they are apart and therefore lighter/easier to move around, and start buttoning it all back up.

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #33 on: Jan 27, 2018, 23:33:20 »
cleaning up the lower faces of the engine.....

And installed the airbox/ battery tray and inner rear fender, both of which got a couple of fresh coats of paint...

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #34 on: Jan 31, 2018, 20:32:48 »
Well, the doorbell rang this morning!!

The kind mailman dropped off a nicely packaged set of rebuilt and upgraded Koni Aluminum 76F's, with Ikon "dial a ride" adjustable damping internals installed.

Dealing with Chuck78 here and (sorta indirectly) his suspension guy, Ken was great....answered all my "don't know what I'm talking about" questions, and even generously included an extra set of springs in the deal.  Good people, those two.

Popped into my favourite nuts and bolts store to pick up some bottom shoulder bolts, and voila -- rear suspension, done!

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #35 on: Feb 04, 2018, 16:09:52 »
Ya gotta love the small victories!!

REALLY hoping to re-use the oem headers, and still on the fence a bit about re-using the silencer that came with the bike.  The OEM headers had been painted (the top 8-9 inches or so) to cover up some not so nice stuff (I'm guessing).   Cleaned that paint off in Fall, and the whole system has been leaning up in a corner since....It was NOT coming apart at all.   

Today, I decided, is the day.   Lots of penetrating oil, lots of gentle tapping, and time.....and the system is disassembled!  Thank goodness!

So....next steps.  I had bought two spare header down pipes..and I think they're in better shape than mine, so that's perhaps obvious.

I will take some closer pics of the areas of the headers that I'd like to make look nicer....perhaps someone here has some suggestions on the how?

And, in less exciting news, also installed some new rear shoes...

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #36 on: Feb 10, 2018, 14:23:00 »
......and reinstalled pistons and the cylinder block this morning.   New piston sleeve orings, new piston pin clips, new base gasket, and the engine bits as clean as I can and want to get them.  Not going for the "brand new" polished engine end result.

Really thought that this was going to be a royal PITA to do...was nervous about installing the new piston wrist pin clips.....surprisingly, that wasn't all that horrendous.   And was also a little worried about how difficult it would be to then slide the block down over the pistons/rings etc....wow---that really wasn't all that painful either.   Maybe I got lucky?   

Aligned each pistons rings so that gaps were proper, applied a light smearing of assembly lube on the bottom inner are of the piston sleeves (maybe that was a mistake, but to me it would help the piston/rings slide up into them...), raised up the two inner pistons, slowly slid the block onto the studs and then gently worked/centered those two pistons and rings up into the sleeves while gently tapping down from above, then rotated the crankshaft a little to bring the two out pistons up a little and repeated the above to those two.   A little bit of jiggering with one of the pistons, and voila----the pistons and (perhaps most importantly) their rings all slid up into the sleeves and block gently lowered down to the gasket.

The point - if any kind of "encouragement" from this corner is worth anything - take your time, breathe, count to 10 here and there and these tasks, to anyone whose not done them before, aren't all that scary in the end.

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #37 on: Feb 16, 2018, 13:34:21 »
more pics!!!

With the cylinders back on, installed the head and cam and sprocket and oil tubes.....    New orings and gaskets everywhere.

And then got the valve cover ready to be put back on and breather cover on....

And continued to shop for some other muffler---lots of choices for sure, but ended up stumbling on a pair of these for not much $ from a guy 10 miles away....    I *think* it's gonna work...it's baffled, so hopefully(?) no rejetting will be required---and the length/shape takes my eye.   Was not convinced that I wanted another megaphone shapes pipe, kept going back to "reverse cone" shaped pipes.  If this works, great, if not, I'm sure a plan B will materialize.

new pipe versus aftermarket pipe that came with the bike

And loosely mocked up on the bench...       The inlet/outlet connection will just need a thin layer of some packing, and I've got a nice heavy duty clamp on order from DCC.   There's a mounting bracket on the inside of the pipe that just needs some hardware to mount to a little L bracket that I'll have to come up with to bolt up to the bike's existing exhaust mounting plate.

Offline Jimbonaut

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #38 on: Feb 16, 2018, 13:38:16 »
Yeah man, right on!  Couldn't agree more - some of these jobs look Herculean until you give them a go, and then they seem pretty human after all.

In my case not without a hiccup here and there but hey.  Great work on that cylinder block, job done!
"I'm telling you Donnie, nuthin' but nuthin' but right"

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Re: Project two---a CB400F
« Reply #39 on: Feb 16, 2018, 13:45:15 »
yup....took my first small, tentative baby steps with taking an engine apart (PARTIALLY!!!!) and putting it back together----and the only extra part that I had left over, well I'm pretty sure I can use it on a BBQ that I need to put together!    ;D

but you're right---I definitely feel like I learned some stuff, and it wasn't as 'scary' as I was imagining it was going to be.