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...]

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 →

Kawasaki S1 First ride video

After several 15min break-in cycles, it was time to run her around the block… Click through to watch the video.  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 5

Well, lots going on with the S1… The wheels were corroded but solid and I decided that for the price point of this bike, the only real option was to bead blast and paint them. So, it was also a good chance to clean and blast the drums as well as repack the bearings. After blasting, the wheels are primed with PPG epoxy primer and then the final coats of matte black are applied. They will get a rim stripe in one of the body colors. The brake hub... [Read More...]

1973 Kawasaki S1 update 3

Moving along with the S1, we are getting all the little stuff blasted and repainted. There are just a ton of small parts that have to be refinished on a project like this and it is pretty time consuming since it is detail work. Like the handlebar switches, bar risers, air cleaner, fuel petcock, side stand, etc. The speedometer is in nice shape but the tach is beyond repair and I’ll have to find a decent replacement. The tank is also bead blasted... [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...]

1976 Honda CB550 custom paint

One of my customers is doing a resto-mod on a 1976 CB550F and we painted the tank and side covers in the original Honda candy sapphire blue. On the candies, you paint a silver base coat and then spray layers of translucent color until you have the desired color depth. Beautiful color that really pops in the sun. Hopefully some more pictures when he gets it all put together!  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...]

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 CB750 restoration- paint!

With most of the mechanical stuff done, We turn to the cosmetic side and the paint scheme. The basic scheme has been set for months since the frame was painted orange a long time ago. But the contrast colors were up in the air… The dark silver I mixed was always first choice but I also considered white and green like the Aston Martin Vulcan. In the end we stuck with the silver. A lot of the prep was done last year- the tank bead blasted and... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750 update 16

Well, the wiring is in and almost complete and all of the updated brakes are on and bled. The wiring included a new solid state regulator/rectifier, Dynatek electronic ignition to replace the old points, new coils and leads, and lots of minor fixes to the harness and switches. Probably 20 hours of time that I just described in 2 sentences! The brakes are the same- lots of time to fit, fabricate brackets and bleed. I was going to use the stock rear... [Read More...]

My 2011 Street Triple for sale

Just in time for spring- This is a 1 owner Street Triple with 5300 miles. Never dropped, dinged or scratched. All stock except for the bar end mirrors. Both keys, books, manuals, etc. The Street Triple is probably the best all around bike I’ve ever ridden- great power, handling, styling and all day riding comfort.  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 13

So, today we installed the new Dunlop 404 tires and we are working on the final fitting of the tail section. As soon as the new rear shocks get here, we will have a rolling frame and be ready to install the engine! The taillight is out of some 70’s vintage bike which I pulled out of the box-O-taillights. It has a great fit and looks very period correct. After the engine is installed, it will be time to put some colors on the bodywork. The silver... [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...]

Honda CB750F update 9

Well, the motor is reassembled, painted (looks great in satin black) and almost back together. Several boxes arrived with Christmas presents for the project- a new tail section and lots of stainless steel cap screws! The frame needs some mods to accept the new tail and then we need to move on to the suspension. But for today, here are some pictures showing the engine, the frame mods where I cut off the tubes aft of the seat mount and the new Street... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750F update 8

While the frame sits forlorn in the middle of the floor, I’ve been working on some of the smaller parts- bead blasting and painting. Also, I’m working on the gauges. I like the worn, faded look of the faces but the cases will get repainted and I’ll put all new bulbs in.  Read More →

1977 Honda CB750F update 7

Today we are installing the valves, springs and keepers back in the head. Step one is to make sure you lay out all the parts so you don’t have to do stuff over like I did! I installed 2 of the valves and springs before I realized I hadn’t put the stem seals on. Start over… The pictures are a pretty good time lapse of how it all goes together. 1) Install the stem seal, 2) insert the valve, 3) put the springs over the stem, 4) compress... [Read More...]

1977 Honda CB750F update 6

Well, lots going on in today’s post- We are lapping in the valves and reassembling the head. As it turned out, 2 of the exhaust valve seats were oval from the valve guides being so worn. I found this out after getting the valves refaced to eliminate the pitting and then trying to lap them in with valve grinding compound. When you lap the valves, the grinding compound will leave a dull ring where the valve and seat are touching. In the picture... [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...]

1977 Honda CB750F update 2

I’ve been working a bit on the CB750 and here is where it stands- the gas tank had a fair amount of rust inside and some small rust-through pinholes so I used the old distilled vinegar trick to clean it out before using POR15 sealer on it. Vinegar is a relatively mild acid that works well for cleaning and and stripping corroded metal. For a tank like this, just fill it up to the top (after duct taping over any holes) and let it sit for about... [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 Honda CB750F carbs- rebuilt

Well, I haven’t been totally unproductive for the past month but I haven’t exactly been setting the shop on fire with activity either. However, now that it is warming up, I’ll be spending more time working on the bike so it should progress more quickly… As “old bike people” know, the carbs on a 37 year old bike are usually in pretty bad shape. These were bad but not terrible. I bead blasted the float bowls and slide... [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 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 →

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