1986 VFR750F restoration update 4

Well, with winter here I’ve put the VFR on hold but here are a few of the things that were done in the past few months- Wheels painted in original white with clear coat. The rear wheel is a CBR600F3 wheel, so a big increase in width. New tires, too. Most of the bodywork is stripped and sanded. There were a lot of cracks that needed to be fixed and still some final filler/sanding to be done. It is back on it’s wheels and test run. I may... [Read More...]

1986 Honda VFR750F Restoration- update 3

VFR750… 2 steps forward, one step back. Time to put the front end back together after bead blasting and painting everything- stays, forks, brackets, handlebars, wiring, etc. Most of it can’t be seen when the bike is all assembled and the fairings are on but OCD takes over and makes you do things a normal person wouldn’t- like removing the front engine mount bolt so you can replace it with a new one. Bad call. It was totally corroded... [Read More...]

Barber Vintage Festival

The annual Barber Vintage festival is just around the corner- Oct 6-8th. Honestly, there is just nothing else like this if you are a motorcycle fan. It is probably the best run and organized motorsports event I have ever been to considering the size and scope of all that is going on. I’ve been every year since the beginning and always come back with a ton of interesting stories and pictures for the website. But, go see it yourself!  Read More →

1986 Honda VFR750F Restoration- update 2

With all the engine covers faded and scratched, we decided to repaint them in black wrinkle because the original gold wrinkle is simply not available. The black looks great and really makes the engine look fresh. The exhaust system was also repainted since it had a fair amount of rust and corrosion- and it was a bear to get off after all those years of heat and corrosion. In addition, the swingarm was removed and all the bearing checked and re-greased.... [Read More...]

1986 Honda VFR750F Restoration

New in the shop- a real 86 VFR750F Interceptor with 22K original miles. The bike is cosmetically pretty dinged up but mechanically, in good shape.  After rebuilding the carbs, and doing general maintenance, I took it out for a very short Mad Max ride with just a drip can for fuel to make sure all the gears shifted and nothing was drastically wrong with the bike before tearing into it. After all the mechanical work is finished, all the bodywork will... [Read More...]

Bultaco Metralla Restorations

We’ve been working on a couple Metrallas for the past few months and there is good progress to report! The frames are stripped, epoxy primed and painted the original gloss black. There are many other parts that have been either bead blasted and refinished or polished. We will soon be reassembling both the Sherpa and the Metralla!  Read More →

2016 Barber Vintage Festival

What an awesome weekend for motorcycle fans! with over 73,000 people in attendance, it was the most successful event yet. Perfect weather helped, but the event it always well run and managed. Here are a few shots from the weekend- enjoy! WWII BMW with Sidecar and Machine Gun Yamaha DT250 Yamaha RD350 Suzuki GS 1100E An entire row of vintage Hondas More vintage Hondas Suzuki GT750 “water buffalo” Kawasaki KH500 Kawasaki 750 triple CB750F... [Read More...]

2016 Barber Vintage Festival

Getting all the bikes ready for the Barber Vintage Festival is always hectic. This year we are taking the 77 CB750F and the 73 Kawasaki S1. The 750 needed some carb work like most old bikes and I took the chance to rejet it at the same time. Runs fantastic and pulls hard all the way to redline. The S1 is almost broke in with about 80 miles on it now. It also runs great. Should be a great weekend!  Read More →

2016 Barber Vintage Festival

Mark your calendars folks, the Vintage Festival is fast approaching. Easily the most popular event that Barber holds each year, it continues to grow. Such a fantastic weekend! More bikes than you can possibly look at, swap meet for parts and bikes and vintage racing. I’ll be bringing the Kawasaki S1 and the Honda CB750F Super Sport for display.  Read More →

73 Kawasaki S1 update 8

We are moving along on this project since I’ve had a bit more time to devote to it lately… The seat is done, the electronic ignition is installed, tiny little intake manifolds are back on so, the engine is ready to be put in the frame. Lots of little details are being taken care of like cables, etc. I found a NOS choke cable and the others have been cleaned up, lubed and painted where needed- like the end fittings if they were corroded.... [Read More...]

1973 Kawasaki S1 update 6

Well, the paint is on and looks fantastic in diamond pearl white and blue. The wheels have the white and blue rim stripes on and assembly is progressing. The old steering head bearing were destroyed and one of the races was cracked all the way through so I’m guessing the bike was ridden in the dirt. The rear shocks are Chinese Ohlins knock-offs but are decent quality and more than adequate for this bike. All the new brake shoes are installed... [Read More...]

1973 Kawasaki S1 Update 4

With the tank stripped, it needed to have the inside cleaned out before it was sealed. There are several types of acid that will clean out the inside of a rusty tank but the easiest and safest is white vinegar- acetic acid. It is mild and you need to let it sit for a few days as it dissolves the rust and gunk but it is environmentally safe and easily disposable down the drain. Just fill the tank with a few gallons from the grocery store and let it... [Read More...]

1973 Kawasaki S1 Update 2

With the frame stripped, blasted and epoxy primed, it is time to get busy on some of the other components. Notice how nasty the welds are on this bike- really just typical for a 70 vintage machine. Next, I need to rebuild the front forks, order the electronic ignition, bead blast the gas tank and tail and decide if I want to use the old wheels or find something newer to put on. But, progress is being made, even if slowly!  Read More →

1973 Kawasaki S1 Triple Update 1

Well, I’ve actually been pretty busy on other bikes but a few things have been accomplished on the S1. The motor is reassembled, the carbs are done and look great and a few small items have been bead blasted and painted. The cylinders are bored 1mm over and new pistons, rings, wrist pins and outer crank seals were replaced along with all the normal seals and gaskets. It is a nice tight motor and should run great with the overbore and modern... [Read More...]

2015 Barber Vintage Festival

Another great year at Barber for the Vintage Festival! Total attendance this year was up about 5000 to over 69,000 people. The bikes, displays and swap meet were all great and you always meet some interesting folks. The Vintage races were really fun to watch and it’s not just the bikes that are vintage, a lot of the racers are obviously in their 60’s and up! Here are a few pictures from the weekend. We took several bikes including the... [Read More...]

Bultaco Metralla Mk2 all back together!

The customer I painted these tanks and fenders for has reassembled one of the Metralla’s and it looks fantastic! Such a great looking bike with classic lines. The 250cc 2-stroke engine was supposedly good for 100+mph. That is serious for the late 60’s. With modern tires and oils, it may actually do a bit better.  Read More →

2015 Barber Vintage Festival Oct 9-11

If you are on this site, you probably have already heard of the awesome Barber Vintage Festival and this year’s is fast approaching! Scheduled for Oct 9-11th, it is sure to be bigger and better just like every year so far. With rows and rows of swap meet parts and bikes as well as thousands of bikes to look at, it is like drinking from a fire hose if you are a vintage bike fan. Plus vintage racing! Don’t miss it! Tickets are available... [Read More...]

1973 Kawasaki S1 250cc triple

With the CB750 done, I needed another back-burner job to keep me busy when I had time in between customer projects. So, I bought this old S1 triple and pretty much regret it at this point. But, hey it will be a super cool bike when it is done. The motor was seized up, water in the #1 cylinder, etc. Just a rusty mess but only 8000 miles on it so the bottom end and transmission are in good shape. I started by pulling the motor to see if it was even... [Read More...]

Bultaco Metralla Mk2

With the yellow Bultaco’s done, we turned to the street versions, which are MK2’s. The styling and simplicity of this model is just excellent. The gas tank is a beautiful classic design and we worked long and hard to find original photos so that the stripes and decal placement is correct. These fenders are fiberglass copies and match the original very well. We also have a set of original steel fenders we are doing, as well. Each color... [Read More...]

Bultaco Metralla GTS Paint

Well, the paint is finished on the GTS’s and looks great. As with all old bikes that came in lacquer, picking a shade of the original color is tough since it yellows and fades pretty bad. We had one pretty good side cover that had a bottom section that was never in the sun and I matched the color off of that. The decals are the old water transfer type and they are not easy to use when they are this large because they tear quite easily. But,... [Read More...]

250cc Bultaco Metralla’s in for paint!

A client has several ultra rare Bultaco Metralla’s that he is restoring and we are doing the paint and bodywork for him. 2 of them are the fiberglass GTS models and 1 is the steel tank street version which we will do later. Very cool bikes. The fiberglass tanks were in pretty rough shape and one of them was leaking. The ethanol in pump gas is deadly to fiberglass and plastic tanks, so we coated the insides with the epoxy sealer from Caswell... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750F Finished!

Well, the CB750 is basically finished and running quite good. The seat was made from a 40mm sheet of race seat foam like you typically see on race bikes. It really looks perfect for the style of the bike. After about 40 miles of test rides, it continues to run better and better. The exhaust is loud but not obnoxious and also really fits the style of the bike. The rear turn signals are integrated into the rear frame tubes and look trick- they also... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750 bodywork, exhaust, lights

Work continues on the 750… the headlight is installed, most of the bodywork, and we fabricated a nice muffler from a spare Yosh round baffle and a piece of 2.75″ OD 304 Stainless tubing-  but the important dimension was the header end that was a perfect 2″ and slid right into the collector. The 77 and 78 Super Sports had a strange 2.17″ OD on the collector and there are no slip on mufflers made for these bikes anymore so we... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750- assembly, tuning and first ride!

With the paint done, it was time to get the carbs tuned and the bodywork installed. Old carbs like this are a project! We used a standard set of mercury vacuum sticks and got them all drawing the same at idle. Then we adjusted the idle mixture screws and then rechecked the synchronization. Next, we put the petcock in the tank and on the bike so we could run it around the loop. The first run is always fun- especially when it runs good and there are... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750F restoration- update 15

Well, the motor is in! With a freshly painted frame, I was stressing about getting the motor back in without scratching everything up. It is a very tight fit that requires some twisting and turning, so I lined all the frame tubes with pipe insulation and duct taped the lugs and fittings. Having 4 motorcycle mechanically literate friends made all the difference. We snaked it in with no real damage to the paint. The updated Stainless hardware looks... [Read More...]

Honda CB750F restoration- update 14

Well, the shocks arrived and are installed… these RFY shocks are Chinese look-a-likes of classic Ohlins or Penske shocks. Obviously not the same quality as Ohlins but not bad. This guy has taken them apart and looked them over and they really are pretty good for the money- about 100.00/set on ebay. Note that you will need to do some shimming and/or drilling to get the top and lower mounts to fit properly even though the vendor claims... [Read More...]

Honda CB750F restoration- Update 12

Before we can put the engine back in the bike, we need to have a rolling frame and before we can do that, we need the wheels in their final configuration… These Comstar wheels are a bit difficult to work with since they are an aluminum/steel hybrid- the rim and hub is aluminum and the spokes are chromed steel. They only way to get them properly prepped is to bead-blast them and use an epoxy primer. I thought long and hard about colors and in... [Read More...]

Honda CB750F Update 11- footpegs and forks

The stock peg brackets are huge and heavy but I am committed to using as much of the original bike as I can, so we are trimming and drilling to lighten them and remove the rear mounts. While I had the die grinder out, I trimmed the front fender to a more manageable size and weight as well! It will look quite nice after it is bead blasted and painted. Also, we need to reassemble the front forks so we can have a rolling frame to install the engine in.... [Read More...]

Honda CB750F Update 10- Frame

With the engine ready to install, I got to work on the frame and misc parts we need to get ready. The frame was media blasted, epoxy primed and painted in orange basecoat/clearcoat for durability and show quality looks. Frames are a lot of work since they have lots of tubes that have to look perfect from any angle. I was originally going to go with red/white/blue Honda racing colors but decided on orange and dark silver with matte black trim and accents.... [Read More...]

2014 Barber Vintage Festival!

Its coming up quickly- October 10-12 and I suspect it will be even bigger and better than last year. Every year it gets bigger and I don’t really see how they can get more people in there on Saturday or Sunday but it will be awesome. From the earliest Harleys, Indians and Triumphs to the 80’s and 90’s bikes, you will see it all in some form or fashion. Lots of restored classics as well as cafe resto-mods and tons of original survivors.... [Read More...]

Some Nice 2-Strokes

I stopped over at one of my customer’s garage to pick something up and had to take a couple shots of the bikes I had painted for him. It is a very nice and rare collection- Yamaha RZ500 with the Japanese aluminum frame, A 75 Can-Am 250 that was converted into a road racer right out of the crate back, an ultra rare Hejira/Rotax Formula bike and the super cool Suzuki T500 that is painted to match the factory bikes from the 70’s. 2 Stroke... [Read More...]

1985 Kawasaki Ninja 900 update

Well, the Ninja is back together and looking awesome! The owner still has some small things to finish before it is ready to ride but as you can see, it is almost ready. The bike had a Kerker pipe on it but the stock pipes are in just about perfect condition so he rebuilt the carbs back to factory specs and installed the stock exhaust. With only 7000 miles on it, there are very few sportbikes that survive in this condition. It is really a trip down... [Read More...]

1985 Kawasaki 900 Ninja Project

Well, I’ve been busy and not posting updates but here are some progress pictures. After getting all the repairs and bodywork done, everything was primed with epoxy primer and then the Firecracker Red base coat was sprayed. After drying for a day, I used the new decals to layout the lines where the red would need to be masked for the black. Since this bike had been repainted (poorly) laying out the paint lines was a big chore because the original... [Read More...]

1985 Kawasaki 900 Ninja

One of my customers recently bought an 85 900 Ninja with only 7000 miles on it. Mechanically, it is in good shape but cosmetically, it is rough. It was repainted at some point in the past and done very poorly so we are starting from scratch and painting it in the original firecracker red and black. The stripe and decal kits are available for this bike in 3M vinyl so it should come out very nice. The plastics had a lot of cracks and the front fender... [Read More...]

New Rim Stripe Tool – Very Cool

My friend Rob at Tapeworks has been working on this project for several months now and it is in the final stages before production. Make sure you head over to the Kickstarter page and get in on the action. He needs to raise funds to have all the molds made (which are VERY expensive) and when you donate, you get some level of gift it it actually all happens. I’ve used the prototype tool, and honestly- if you are ever going to install rim stripes... [Read More...]

1985 BMW K100 paint

Well, I’ve been seriously lazy about updating the website but here is the latest project- a 1985 BMW K100 with some later bodywork pieces. The owner wanted metallic orange similar to what Lamborghini uses and it really looks great. Digital cameras struggle with colors this rich but the front shot give you the best idea of the true color. The belly pan is sprayed with bed-liner coating and really looks like it is supposed to be that way. There... [Read More...]

1977 CB750F update

Well, I think I’ve decided to go in the direction of the Street Tracker that Airtech has on their site. The tail plastic on this bike is cracked and pretty beat up and the Street Tracker tail looks great so we will probably use it. But, I’m going to stick with the original gas tank and oil tank. Colors are still up in the air… I like the red/white/blue scheme (especially the red frame) but I may do something a little darker- perhaps... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750F Project- Brakes!

One of the first things that needs to be done on this bike is a brake upgrade. Actually, I need brakes of some sort just to move it around since it is so heavy. The problem is that the original brakes are in pretty bad condition- rusted calipers, frozen master cylinders, etc. I think I will be able to make one good caliper out of the 3 for use on the rear but I am going to use a set of Tokico calipers and master cyl off a late model Suzuki on the... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750 project

Well, there is a new bike in the shop and I’m still undecided about what direction to go with it. It is a complete stock 750 right down to the turn signals- although the muffler has been changed. The stock seat is in excellent condition and the bike only has 12,000 miles on it. I’m not fond of the black and brown color scheme but I could simply do a color change and leave it basically stock or I could do a slight Cafe job… or I could... [Read More...]

Barber Vintage Festival- 2013 pictures!

Well, this years vintage festival was another great success and the weather was perfect. As usual, lots and lots of restored and original vintage bikes and some great racing too! Here are a few pictures from the weekend.    Read More →

Barber Vintage Festival is coming up soon!

Don’t forget to plan on attending the 9th annual Vintage Festival October 11th-13th. You can get all the details and buy tickets over on the Barber website. I’ve been going every year since it started and it is always an awesome weekend with thousands of vintage bikes, racing and the amazing swap meet if you need parts for your bike. Take your camera because you see stuff there that you won’t likely see anywhere else! Barber Vintage... [Read More...]

Yamaha RZ350 restoration gallery pages are up

I’ve added some pages under the “Galleries” tab that chronicle the RZ350 restoration process from start to finish. Feel free to link to the pages, but please don’t just link the photos since it totally misses the whole project and the point of posting them. Enjoy… 1985 Yamaha RZ350  Read More →

RZ350 restoration finished…

Well, the big day came and I moved her from the shop to the garage- and then rode all afternoon! It runs great and it really a blast to ride. Here are a few pictures of the finished product but I am working on a page under the “Galleries” tab that will have the whole process. There are lots of little things that took a lot of time that were never posted which I will detail a bit more on the RZ350 page. RZ350 finished…  Read More →

Yamaha RZ350 restoration- first start!

Well, after fixing a small leak around the petcock, she started on the 3rd kick. Pretty sweet. Runs great and sounds awesome… I’ll finish the buffing tomorrow and get it all assembled for it’s first road test.  Read More →

Yamaha RZ350 restoration- part 15

We are moving along with the paint and after the pearl white, I painted the red. After the base red, I mixed a pearl top coat to give it the sparkle of the original color. On the factory bike, the red was painted on some panels like the tank and tail cap, and decals on other panels. It didn’t match all that well and the decals were not cleared over. So, all the red is painted and the blue are stripes that are cut to match exactly the original... [Read More...]

Yamaha RZ350 restoration- part 14

The bodywork is moving along and the epoxy primer, polar white base and diamond pearl is on the parts. The tank was in decent shape but had some dents, dings and lots of scratches that needed to be filled and of course, all the old decals had to come off. 28 yr old decals come off in tiny little pieces and take forever to remove… Stripping decals removing the glue… filling and sanding… white base and pearl…  Read More →

Yamaha RZ350 restoration- part 13

The mechanical stuff is about as far along as it can go without getting the bodywork done since I will need the gas tank (with gas!) pretty soon. The brakes are on and bled. All of the bodywork is done to the point of paint. The white epoxy primer is on and colors are next. Here are a couple of pictures of the bike as it is now- pipes are on and the aluminum canisters have been bead blasted and polished. Considering how old they are and the fact that... [Read More...]

Yamaha RZ350 restoration- part 12

Well, progress continues and after fighting the old DG pipes which really didn’t fit well, I’ve got them installed and not contacting the frame anywhere. The radiator is back on- had to get the pipes on before the radiator… The brakes are ready to be hooked up and bled and the body work has the polar white base and pearl sprayed on. I still need to mount the taillight and decide how I want to finish/polish the exhaust canisters. ... [Read More...]

Yamaha RZ350 restoration- part 11

Today I’m hooking all the electrical back up and also doing a bit of bodywork. I’ll post that later, but here are a couple of pictures of the frame  with the motor installed. Such a cool old bike… Trying to get the pipes to fit properly… view from the top- Renthal bars and switch gear installed    Read More →

Yamaha RZ350 restoration- part 10- the motor

The motor is back in the frame… it ran fantastic and was well set up when I got the bike. It only had a couple of thousand miles since it had been rebuilt although that was a few years ago. But after looking in the exhaust ports and seeing how clean they were with a nice medium tan color, I decided to leave well enough alone and just clean and paint. At some future date, when the motor does need to be rebuilt, I will media blast everything with... [Read More...]

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