Bikes in the house

Honda CB 400f… x2

So yeah, I’m a motorcycle rider now, for realzies. Here are my twins:

(Yeah, they sometimes get to spend time in the house.)

My game-plan

Why did I go for the two bike thing? Well here’s the deal:

The Honda CB 400f was only made for 3 years, 1975-1977. There’s a decent enough blurb on Wikipedia about it, plus an even better one here. Which means these bikes are older than I am. I’m no dummy, I know there’s going to be parts that break down, not even counting what’s wrong with them to begin with. But I knew I wanted a challenge (plus I really like the idea of 70s bikes).

True, the ’77 doesn’t get as much love as the first two years because of some of the “Mainstream Americanizing” for the more common rider, I still like ‘em. Heck here’s a good enough reason on it’s own:

“The reason Honda discontinued it is they did a cost analysis and found out they were selling it for a loss. It actually cost them almost as much to produce the CB400 as it did the CB750.”

Getting two bikes of  a smaller run means I’ll get to get to do a bit of part swapping, while experimenting with them slightly differently.

Yellow Mongoose

(Yes I’ a dork and named it that)

Yellow Mongoose

Mongoose is first up since she’s the runner, and I have to start somewhere. I know I’ll be buying the occasional remade/universal parts, I get that, but for some reason I really want to keep one of the bikes as original as possible (while learning what the heck I’m doing). Mongoose get’s to be that guinea pig. I mean heck, that tank has 36 year old decals on it, how can I not take that and run with it!

A previous owner partially modified it, so there are little things like a cafe seat, wrapped exhaust, pod air filters and such. My immediate work is to get it running smoothly and get that stuff back to stock. Unfortunately that means a bit of cannibalizing for ol’ Gray.

Gray

Gray
(I’m already pulling things apart)

Gray (name will probably evolve) will be phase two. One of the big hurdles, gray didn’t have a title. Yeah, it apparently got lost along the way so I got it as the cheap part of the deal since it’s legally just a parts bike unless (or until) I go through the hoops to apply for a new title. Not looking forward to that part, but I do have a plan for Gray in the future. Once Mongoose is running great I want to start modifying the crap out of Gray. It’s going cafe racer style. I really like the idea of having twin bikes, but configuring them differently so one is a standard cruiser and the other is when I’m feeling like heading out in a more race style.

Cafe seat

I’ve already got a head start with a bunch of parts with the bikes, like this cafe seat that’s made to fit the 400f!

Work ahead

I have a lot of it. Getting Mongoose running smoothly is priority number one. So my up-coming posts will probably be mostly about cleaning, installing, and learning what the heck I’m doing!

Thanks for reading!

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