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Author Topic: ‘68 Honda CL450 - First Build  (Read 1250 times)

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
‘68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« on: Jul 24, 2018, 01:38:01 »
First off, the members of DTT are awesome!  Thanks for the advice and encouragement that I have received already.

Back story:  My dad purchased this CL450 new in vermont in ‘69. He rode it from Vermont to Colorado, blew the engine once in Canada, had it rebuilt and rode it for many more years. The bike ended up sitting in various sheds and barns for some decades, the motor seized and a second motor from a K7 CB was acquired. Second motor is missing some parts but what is there seems sound.

The bike was given to me with the requirement that it stayed in the family. Now it will be a father/son project for my 10 year old son and I.

 The goal is to put this beauty back together into a sleek, fast, safe, cafe racer style machine that I can teach my boys how to ride on and cruise the mountain passes of Colorado!

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #1 on: Jul 24, 2018, 08:47:08 »
Here is how it sat when I started.




« Last Edit: Jul 25, 2018, 10:10:34 by Ethan »

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #2 on: Jul 24, 2018, 11:04:13 »
Exhaust is a little scratched and some rust spots, but overall pretty decent.


Brakes are gonna need a little work!

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #3 on: Jul 24, 2018, 11:26:57 »
I know a lot of people will tell you not to do this but...



The frame needs some cleaning up and new paint.  Still trying to decide if I want to remove some or all of the rear fender and cut the frame to add a hoop for a cafe racer style seat.

I completely disassembled the motor because I had no idea what condition it was in.  For all I knew, it was an empty case!  Mostly looks pretty good.  I got a new gasket set and fresh bolts.  Now to clean it up and put it back together!

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
Re: ‘68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #4 on: Jul 24, 2018, 12:26:37 »
Here is a link to the manual that I am using, just in case any needs a Honda CB450 Factory Service Manual.  Seems to be pretty great so far!


Offline The Jimbonaut

  • DTT BOTM WINNER
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  • Posts: 1135
    • Lost Apostle
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #5 on: Jul 24, 2018, 12:42:31 »
Kudos man, moving right along!  Is that the first engine you've disassembled?  Love the look of that bike man, have a feeling this is gonna be a good read...

Have fun!
"I'm telling you Donnie, nuthin' but nuthin' but right"

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #6 on: Jul 24, 2018, 13:07:15 »
Kudos man, moving right along!  Is that the first engine you've disassembled?  Love the look of that bike man, have a feeling this is gonna be a good read...

Have fun!

It is the first engine I've disassembled.  Everything came apart pretty easy, thanks to an impact screwdriver I inherited from my grandpa!

Offline The Jimbonaut

  • DTT BOTM WINNER
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  • Posts: 1135
    • Lost Apostle
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #7 on: Jul 24, 2018, 13:11:06 »
Bloody hell mate, that's impressive.  I'm inspired - have a CB750 that may or may not require an engine teardown - to date I've done a top end rebuild on a single cylinder thumper but never gone too deep into anything more than that.  Definitely following along...
"I'm telling you Donnie, nuthin' but nuthin' but right"

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #8 on: Jul 24, 2018, 13:21:10 »
Don't be impressed until I can get it back together and running!  Tearing it down is the easy part!  It just takes a good manual, some good tools, and lots of little baggies...
« Last Edit: Jul 25, 2018, 10:14:06 by Ethan »

Offline Ethan

  • Posts: 43
Re: 68 Honda CL450 - First Build
« Reply #9 on: Jul 25, 2018, 10:26:13 »
Trying to decide what to do on the frame before I paint it, specifically whether or not to remove the tabs for the side covers.  I don't have the stock air filter so I'll have to either replace it, or get some kind of air pods.  I like the look of the pods, but from everything I have read they don't perform as well as the stock box (or are just a pain to tune).  Has anyone found a happy compromise?  I saw these from Steel Dragon Performance.  Anyone had any experience with them?
« Last Edit: Jul 25, 2018, 10:29:14 by Ethan »