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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sooooooooooooooo.............I'm back. With another one. Which in a way sucks, because this new forum format means nobody sees my epic project failure list in my signature anymore.........

So I've been dying to get riding again, everybodies seen my posts, seen my projects, etc. I still have the Madura, but sold the Tempter, and have had zero motivation to try to get the Madura up and running yet. Like......I for real want to ride that mythical beast, all 1200cc of angry V4 power, but I just...I got too much shit going on I need to finish, and I really dont know if I want to tear into a non-runner again.

So recently, I was finally getting my shit together. Couple hoopties in the driveway, great job, just not much time for things. Finally got to the point I could buy a "new" vehicle, and did so, so that I could have time to finish up the house, clear out the yard, prolly get rid of storage, etc, and then I'd finally have time to finish working on the hoopties.
2011 F150, great condition. Had it just over a month, then it got totaled thanks to some glowing green cdl holder who couldn't figure out how NOT to set a dumpster on a fucking hill, or how to set his fucking parking break. Long story short, child support took my settlement, so I have no cash, I have no truck, and I still owe my mom a LOT of money for a personal loan used to pay off the truck. Fuck me.

So in panic mode while waiting to hear back from insurance on what was happening with the truck, I sold off one of the hoopties, bought a running bike so that I could at least start saving gas and not drive the hoopties any more than necessary until I have time to fix them. It. Whatever.

So...I guess....introducing the next project.

1981 Honda CB900 Custom
1 eyed purple people eater

I gotta say this is one damn nice bike. I got on this thing, started riding, and it's like I never stopped. I've been riding it to work and back since I bought it, and I'm getting more and more comfortable with how it handles, how it rides, etc.

Now....that being said.....this is ME here. Y'all already know where this goes. It needs changes. Now with that being said, if I can't start it after work Friday and finish it before work Monday, it's not happening. And honestly I don't actually have too much I really feel the need to do.

Biggest change? She's too goddamn tall. This isn't too terrible when I'm by myself. I mean, yeah, I gotta haul my leg up, and almost jump over from side to side to get myself on the saddle right, but once I'm on it, my feet are reasonably on the ground. However, took my wife for a ride and fuck me running it was too much top weight. Need to bring it down.
Rear shocks are 13" long, I'm looking for 11" shocks. This will still leave some reasonable clearance between tire and fender.
Also looking to lower the front. For right now I just need to move the fuse panel out of the way, and then I can slide the forks up in the trees. Planning a solid 2 inches front and rear. Should make a MASSIVE difference in everything. Might need to shorten my side stand though.

One thing I'm greatly looking forward to, is building this as a Honda clone of my dad's old XS1100. I've talked about his bike in the past. 83? Yamaha XS1100. Slowly assembled a full Vetter kit on it. Windjammer, with lower leg shields, and radio housing, Vetter hard bags, Vetter trunk. We had a hitch on it, and towed a tiny trailer behind us. Had a 4-1 exhaust with a SuperTrapp muffler. It made great memories for me.

So the CB900 came with a Windjammer fairing already. This past weekend I sourced a matching trunk, and even better, the keys match! Went to put the trunk on my current rack and remove the trunk thats on it, just to realize someone did a pretty decent job of making a Suzuki setup work. So not this coming weekend, but next weekend I have arrangements to go pick up a set of hard bags and trunk with the full Honda bracket set to mount on my bike. It'll be nice to have the full Vetter set mounted up!

I realize not a fighter of any kind this time, but at least its something!

I've got a bunch of small stuff to do this thing ranging from ignition improvements to lighting improvements, different bars, etc. It'll be nice to share this small bit of build as it goes!
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Anyone on here super familiar with CB parts? I'm heavily eyeballing 90-91 CBR1000F front end for this thing.

Rear wheel right now is a 16x2.5, and front is 19x2.15.

Can't get much wider in rear because of the shaft drive, so I'm looking at an '82 CX500 17x2.75 rear wheel, move from 130/90-16 to 130/90-17.

In front, if I can use the CBR1000F front end, that gets me a 17x2.5, and I'd move from a 110/90-19 to a 120/90-17. It would also net me larger brakes, twin pot calipers, and move to cartridge forks instead of air assist pogo sticks.

Does anyone by chance have the measurements for the CBR1000F forks? I know they're 41mm, but I can't find a length from axle to top, or the length of the steering stem between the trees.
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Some updates. Most what I had above for swap parts is out the window. After some discussion about the bike and front ends, with consideration to weight being added to the bike (fairing, bags, my being fatter than most riders, etc), I'm instead going to be using a GL1200 front end. GL1200 is easily a couple hundred pounds heavier than the CB900 in stock form. It'll handle the weight better.

It also comes with a 16" front wheel. Looks like instead of using the CX500 rear wheel, I'll be looking for a GL1100 wheel instead so that I can have matching (or similar) alloys front and rear. New tire sizes will be 130/90-16 rear and 120/90-16 front.

Meanwhile, I picked up a full Vetter rear luggage set from a 70's CB750. Got the bag frames mounted, bags hung in. I need to make a custom rack to mount the trunk with. I think I'm going to cut up and reuse the Suzuki rack that was on the bike, as it has quick release hardware for the trunk, and the trunk was just a generic piece modified to work with the Suzuki rack. By using the mounting hardware I can make my Vetter trunk a quick release as well for when it's just me on the bike.

Building up a HondaGlide with a Vetter Tour Pack over here lol!

New LED headlight is installed and seems pretty decent, though I need to wire up a relay set, because the damn thing dims down notically when I hit the brakes, and it's flashing with the turn signals. But as we all know, 80's bike wiring is dismal at best. I'll be running a Stinger 4channel solid state relay and a dedicated grounding block in the fairing to run the headlight and aux lights off of.

Should be picking up the GL1200 front end this weekend, and a new seat too!
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So the Madura is officially gone. I'm in the middle of cleaning house and either selling or throwing away anything that's not bolted down that I just dont need or want to spend time on anymore.

On the other hand, I picked up a full 1984 GL1200 front end for a steal. Complete from the bars to the original tire. Guy cut it off at the frame for me. Only thing I'm missing is the air line to the forks got cut, but I can replace that with a manual fill nozzle. Already got the Honda part number.

Slowly getting the parts pile ready for winter. Not saying it's gonna be a build off entry, but the things I want to do, I can better take my time this winter to do them.

I've got the front end, just need to order rebuild parts, and Progressive springs.
2 seat options. Original seat (which I found moves me too far forward and down, may be able to make that work if I can convert my mid controls to forward controls. Otherwise PFFFFT nope.) or the SaddleMan king/queen (which honestly, a trim, a gel addition, and recover, and it would actually be pretty damn good.
Got an exhaust coming that I think I'm gonna like. Current exhaust is a 4-2, pairing lefts and rights together. The setup I have coming pairs inners and outers together, and has louder pipes. Should give a beefier sound, and if I find I dont quite like the mufflers/long tips that are on it now, I can easily adapt some Rinehart clones to it. Worst case scenario, if I find that no matter what I still don't like the exhaust, I'll buy a Delkovich 4-1 instead.
Got pretty much all my lighting sitting in my ebay and amazon carts.
Still need to track down a few other misc items.

Should come out of winter with a damn solid daily/touring bike.

May do some other upgrades in the future. Got my eye on a carb conversion, price is the biggest thing I have against it. But who knows!

More updates as we go!
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well this thread has been quiet...... Mostly because I work every day from 8-6 and a lot of saturdays too. But that's ok. At least the bills are paid, we're all alive, etc.

Been slowly accumulating parts for this winters work though. New front end waiting to get serviced and fitted to the bike, got a new tire and one of the bearing sets I need. Still need to order another bearing set and a seal set so I can start getting to work on the front end parts.
Got a new exhaust lined up, got my lighting upgrades picked out, should be hopefully picking up everything that I still need by christmas.

In the mean time, I at least finished assembling the full bodywork/luggage. With the help of MarksAC, everything is mounted (took some modification of one of the brackets, and we had to play around with spacing a little bit on the main mounts), solidly enough that you can lift the bike from the rack.

Interesting fact for those that like 80's touring stuff, Craig Vetter, the creator of the Windjammer fairing and all the matching luggage, spent a lot of time windtunnel testing and tweaking the designs, to the point that he claimed a full luggage set would increase MPG over just a fairing.
Now, idk what the base MPG is on my bike without the fairing, but I do know I was averaging 32-34 with JUST the fairing over the summer. Now that the luggage is all mounted and solid, I took a nice fall ride to my moms and back this past weekend. I saw 38, almost 39MPG. I thought that was pretty cool.

Not much else to add at the moment until I can start on the work, so here's a couple pics of everything mounted, and panel swapped to be color matching. And a pic from my 30* (Fahrenheit) ride to work Monday.
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Made room in storage to get her off the street. I gotta go back this weekend with the trailer and haul out more shit and then bring my toolboxes back over. The fun starts soon!


I may also be bringing back the ratbike build!
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Not a lot to update here. Plans are mostly still the same. Some changes.

Found some lights I like to make the overall lighting theme simpler. Some taillights meant for a harley bagger that I think have the right shape and design for this project, and the '20 CB650R headlight to throw in place of the regular 7" round.

Going to rewire the bike from scratch using a relay and fuse panel (not a MotoGadget), found some switchpods I think will be suitable enough.

Finally got the header I had lined up. Needs some cleanup.
Got the GL1200 front end torn down to basics so I can start cleaning and get the service done.
Bought a GL1100 rear alloy.
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Tread Motor vehicle


Found a company called Rae-San that primarily markets to the CX crowd, but has a full ignition replacement for my CB900C. Going to end up upgrading the full ignition setup, plus a set of Murray's 4-2 carbs, and a mosfet R/R when I install a new stator. Looking at throwing in a set of CBR stick coils and a large AntiGravity battery to round it all out.
Also going to pickup a spare starter clutch assembly to send out to be upgraded with a modern oneway. This one is toast. It doesn't like cold weather at all.

Got the front end measured for brake lines, just need to make a mount for the GL1000 splitter and get a final figure for what angle fittings I need.

Still need to order most of the bearings and seals as well.

Still working what I'm gonna do for a final instrument panel, but right now it's looking like I'm going to make a custom housing using V40/V45 instrument cluster guts since the Sabre had a speedo sender of the same type as the GL1200. I figure between a combination of the guts and gears from the 2 senders (GL and VF) I should be able to dial in the speedo to match GPS.

Also decided that once I have more throw around cash, I'm looking for a CX to build into a local thrasher
Tire Wheel Land vehicle Sky Vehicle
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
New update for today!

So Sunday afternoon I rolled the bike back out. Had to do some cleaning at the unit to move in a new to me toolbox I brought home. So I was there for a while cleaning up the box, putting tools away, throwing out some more junk, etc etc etc.
Boxes in place. I'll let you guys guess which one just came home
Motor vehicle Automotive tire Engineering Gas Machine


Bike was feeling a bit squirrely, go to lean over and make a turn and you felt the back end shift. Checked tires.....back was definitely low. Aired it up, went for a ride with the woman. All good, fun ride.

Run to work Monday morning, back to feeling a bit off. Got home, definitely low again. Ok, so it's not gonna hold. Ordered a new tire and wheel bearings for the GL1100 wheel. 140/90-16 Shinko 777 on it's way. Down the road I'll be ordering some Pirelli or something else. For now, cheap until it's all together.

Tonight, run back to the bay. Let's make sure the GL1100 alloy will work. For reference, the CB900C back end is supposed to be identical to the GL1100 since they reportedly used the GL1100 parts to make this C model.

Good news! GL1100 rear alloy fits. CB spacers have the wheel properly located, rotor lines up dead center with the caliper, everything. Here's initial installation
Tire Wheel Vehicle Fuel tank Motor vehicle


Left side clearance
Automotive tire Tire Wood Grey Tread


Right side clearance
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Synthetic rubber Tread


<sucks air> Ooooooh that's tight.

However, the tire on that rim right now is an old Dunlop 140/90-16, and it has zero air pressure. I think it just mushroomed back into a resting shape. Fully inflated and back into expanded shape, I'm betting it has more clearance. Right now it is WAY wider than the semi inflated 130/90 currently on the Comstar. 130 vs 140 really isn't that much wider.

Here's a vid of checking running clearance and alignment.

If that doesn't work, let me know and I'll run it to YouTube instead.

I'm very happy with being able to use the GL1100 wheel. Also, the video does NOT in any way shape or form really convey how loud 4 open pipes are lol.

Interesting note, I had pulled the retaining bolt for each baffle out of the pipes in late summer. Couldn't get them to pull out, they were pretty wedged, so I never put the bolts back in, and promptly put them somewhere I'll never ever see them again. Fast forward to yesterday, I started hearing a hint of an exhaust leak somewhere. Heard it again today bringing the bike back to the shop to do all this. When I pulled the pipes off, I realized the left side baffle has spent the subsequent months shimmying back to /almost/ being out. So naturally I took a punch through the mount hole, and knocked that sumbitch out. Did the same thing to the other side, threw the pipes back on, and fired it up.

HOLY SHIT!!!!!!!

Thing sounds like a goddamn drag bike. I am SOOOOOOOO taking this thing for a rip without baffles once I get the tire mounted next week. I'll put the baffles in my bag with a zip tie and a rubber mallet so I can knock them back into the cans, and I 100% expect to get my ass pulled over before I'm a mile down the road. But I just HAVE to know. I fully NEED to take that ride just to say I did lol

So that's todays update.

Wait...actually there's one more thing.


WHERE THE HELL ARE MY REAR BRAKES????????
Tire Automotive tire Hood Motor vehicle Automotive lighting
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
They have their place, but definitely not in a build that I want to have a modern look. Even the opposed design of the 1100 vs 1200 wheel looks better than the comstars that actually match lol
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
No pics, but tonights update, the upgrade from a 130/90-16 to 140/90-16 is successful.

No, it may not sound like much, but apparently the 130 was already damn near hugging the drive tube, more than I thought.

The old 140 that was on the GL1100 rim was deflated, and appeared to have mushroomed into a wider profile, I figured that was where my clearance issue came from. Got the new Shinko777 mounted today, slapped the rim on the bike, aaaaand <SQUEEEEEEEEK> FUCK!!

Ok......order a new tire? Slap my out of date but good tread spare on? Sit in the corner, crying into my toolbox?

Nope. Hammer time. Took me forever, and multiple trips of the wheel and differential on and off the bike, but finally persuaded a mm or two of clearance, enough for a test ride.

SUCCESS!!!

I'm going to go back at a later date with better tools to do a better, more even job, but, the upgrade is definitely successful.

Some minor bits of good news, all the bearings in both wheels are good, so both of the AllBalls kits will go into the emergency kit for a later date.

Debating riding to work tomorrow. Supposed to be raining though, with a high of 37, so.......idk yet.
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Swingarm. The driveshaft tube was already pressed a little bit flat on the side for clearance from factory. I took a hammer and put a little more emphasis on it.

And after a solid 5 mile test ride.........it wasn't enough. I have a decorative strip on my tire. Time to take it all apart, pull the arm, and get it where I can apply a little more persuasion to flatten the side more. Plenty of room in the tube for it, just have to make use of it.

Really trying to NOT go back to a 130 series tire if I dont have to.

Those open baffles though...... OMG I think I pissed off every car I went past, but goddamn it was music to me....
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
So we're on a slight hiatus. Pulled the back end apart again, brought everything over to my buddy MarksAC, he's gonna bring the parts with him next time he's up at RatFighters and see what he can do clearance the affected area.

Meanwhile, I'll be taking some time this weekend to pull the fairing, install and wire up the new switchpods, add a relay and better ground path for the headlight, replace the rubber isolaters for the mounts, etc. Given that I've already got the mufflers pulled off, prolly wouldn't be a bad time to install the other exhaust either......
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ok. Small update. Clearance wont be a problem. I was comparing GL1100 and CB900C swingarms using all the pics I could find. Biggest difference is that Honda pressed more of the tube flat on the GL arm to run a 140 tire by default.
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I /REALLY/ need to get better at taking pictures while I do things.

Spent a good chunk of the weekend on setting up the new switches.

I had ordered the switchpods off ebay, found some that had a clean OEM look, had flash to pass, hazards, and even better, backlit switches.

When they arrived I ended up taking them apart so I could map out what wires went to which switches since their "map" didn't make sense.
The wires were thin, nothing matched the wiring layout they gave me, etc.
So I mapped it all out, and was sitting there at the bike with the front end tore off thinking about how I wanted to wire this all in, and as I'm sitting there I'm thinking I'm not so comfortable with just HOW thin these wires are when it comes to headlight and ignition.

So fuck it. I shut the shed back up, ran home with new pods, the old pods, fired up the solder iron, and starting transferring the wiring from the old switches to the new. Had to make a couple slight changes, mostly for things like the starter button not having a headlight interrupt, but instead having an OFF/PARK/HEADLIGHT switch, or the internal backlight being setup to run a dedicated 12v feed in, tied to something else, blah blah.

Jumped the internal backlight (a few small leds) to feed off the main power in, the headlight interrupt now runs the OFF/PARK/HEADLIGHT switch (though the park light wire is currently unused, since the current setup would then run ALL lights off the same fuse, not ready for that until I get the CB650R headlight installed which has it's own 12v fused feed), the flash to pass is T'd off the headlight in and high beam out (since brief flashes aren't enough to overload anything), likewise the hazards are teed off the main feed/outputs for the signals.

So with all said and done, it's installed, everything works as it should, other than the backlight, simply because I need to find back my connector kit (100 piece kit of 2-9 pin connectors to match all the old motorcycle stuff) so I can plug in to the last connector and run a ground to a bullet connector. Also need to find the connector kit so that I can make a harness for the AUX switch to operate a set of driving lights, but that's not mandatory right now.

While putting everything back together I had to go through the fairing harness because I forgot which wires went to what, and I think I might have fixed my headlight flicker/signal issue. I didn't see a dedicated ground out to the bike. There was a common ground inside the fairing that tied everything together, but nothing seeming to go anywhere else. I made use of an unused wire that had a bullet on the bike end, and tied the grounds to that and plugged into the extra ground connector on the bike. Everything works, and once the bike is back on the road, I'll know how much better it all is.

So to wrap it up for now, here is a pic of the pods after all the wiring was transfered, and a video of testing
Gas Electrical wiring Automotive tire Wire Auto part


 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Love the soundof the cb engine. Nothing else quiet like it.
This one so far has had 3 different sounds to it. Smooth but quiet baffled exhaust (and this is already not a stock exhaust). 4 open pipes (obviously I had to hear it when I had the mufflers off). And smooth but loud and angry baffles removed exhaust.

Third one sounds very, VERY race bike. Not sure the neighborhood agreed.
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Alright alright alright! So MarksAC got back from Ratfighters with my modified swingarm. He clearanced the driveshaft tube, and then had to make a small modification to the stay arm for the brakes due to the arm rubbing the larger tire.

Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Road surface Fender

Shoe Automotive tire Synthetic rubber Wood Tread

Wheel Tire Automotive tire Motor vehicle Tread


The following picture doesn't do the tire clearance justice. It clears pretty well, no rubbing from flexing, etc. Took it out for a hard rip, not a thing.
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Tread Automotive lighting


So I got the back end all back together, new pads installed on the rear, still need to flush the brakes though.
After all that, I moved forward, got the holes marked and drilled to install the new switches (original holes for the nubs that keep the pods from spinning in place were in different places than these aftermarket units), remounted the clutch and brakes, got everything settled.

Of course, I managed to absolutely fuck up where the holes went, so now the pods don't align with each other, and honestly i'm not entirely sure which one I want to move. I don't know if I want the left one to turn up or the right one to turn down. I need to play around with the location of the bars some, make sure I have them at the angle I want too. Should be able to better figure out the switches after that.

Tire Wheel Land vehicle Vehicle Car


But it is damn nice to have these newer switches compared to the ancient ones it used to have.
You can also see that I /REALLY/ need to do some trimming on the Vetter lower fairing pieces. These came off a Suzuki, so they need trimming to properly sit around the engine casings on the Honda.

But all in all here is the end of everything today.

Tire Wheel Fuel tank Vehicle Plant


So onward and forward!

The list is dwindling down piece by piece.
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #23 ·
I /REALLY/ need to start recording material of my build. Had a perfect chance to get some footage today of doing maintenance at work after hours, not a damn thing.

Anyway. Did a cold drain and fill of the diffrential and hi/low box. What came out wasn't pretty. Can't wait to see what the oil looks like O_O

I think I figured out what brand the current exhaust is though. Found a baffle on ebay that matches the baffles I have now, it was listed as a MAC baffle. Did a search for MAC CB900C and sure enough, found the exhaust I have.

Filled the tank Sunday. Rode to work the last 2 days. Filled up this morning on the way to work. Between shitty winter gas and running without baffles, I'm down to 30mpg. That's from a high point of 38 before winter.

Can also feel the difference in how it runs without the baffles. They're definitely going back in.

Might swap them for some perf core style baffles though. Would love to still have a more aggressive sound, but don't need it this aggressive lol
 

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Rollin hard in Wiscompton
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3,714 Posts
Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Ok, pile of parts are incoming!

New brake master and fork seals are already here, shift shaft seal, Progressive fork springs, shorter rear shocks, new throttle, and anything else I needed are on their way. Should be able to get everything prepped this weekend, and then do my swaps by next weekend when I'm off work again. I can't wait.

With the weather getting warmer too, I'm hoping to get all the parts installed by next Saturday, because I have a nice scenic route I like to ride, and would love to go ride it next Sunday!
 
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