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ass
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49 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
hi there. ive been riding for a couple of years (1981 honda cm400 custom, and a 99 CBR F4), but am completely new to customizing. I've more or less relinquished the cm400 to the girlfriend so I've turned my attention over to the CBR.

Ive got a pretty good idea of what I wanna do with it (mostly cosmetic at this point) but I don't know where to start.

I've been reading lots of CBR f4 build threads - both here and elsewhere and they are truly inspiring- however, in a technical sense, they're useless to me - since i don't really know any of the jargon or terminology.

On to my question - is there a guide that could help me get up to speed on the basics? terminology, basic methodology, tips on sourcing/fabricating new parts etc?

For instance, the gauge cluster on the CBR is an absolute bloated monstrosity and needs to go. Ive got a couple id like to mount in its place - but how will I know if they're compatible. Is the interface pretty standard across different makes?

Im not looking to replace the exhaust yet (will down the road) but what're some things I should keep in mind? What aspects make an exhaust loud/quiet? What will add HP? Do all slip-ons fit every bike? How am I likely going to fuck up the first time I try replacing it myself?

you get the idea... once you're familiar with the process, these questions are simple... but for a noob, its a little intimidating.
 

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WTF is a motorcycle?
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3,003 Posts
Watch out on the F4 gauges, there is a wire that needs to be grounded.
Ask what terminology is confusing and we can help :D
 

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WTF is a motorcycle?
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3,003 Posts
Wow, I should add more to that.
First off, the CCT (Cam Chain Tensioner) goes bad in the F4s quite commonly, best thing to do is replace it with a manual one. Also the VRR (Voltage Regulator rectifier) goes bad as well, most folks have had the best luck replacing them with a GSXR one. Exhausts will strongly depend on how well the carbs are tuned.
 

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ass
Joined
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49 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
yeah, i already had my reg/rec go out on me. Luckily, that was 5 kinds of easy to replace :p Just used an OEM replacement though :-x when/if this one dies, i'll be sure to score a gsxr one.

I'll try to keep an eye (ear?) on my cam chain, but I honestly am not sure what a sick one sounds like.

with the exhaust/carbs situation - original owner took off those air intake tubes and I seriously doubt he had it rejetted. (some of the repair work on it is using speaker wire!) Is that something I should look into? Is there a rule of thumb for when you should re-calibrate your carburetors when making a change to the exhaust system?

Ive seen some exhausts that are really short and stubby. Are those sold that way or are they chopped? If they're chopped are they still DOT legal? or does it depend?

heh, i could ask questions all day.... this is why i was hoping there was a guide or something so i wouldn't have to bother you folks. :doh:
 

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WTF is a motorcycle?
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3,003 Posts
yeah, i already had my reg/rec go out on me. Luckily, that was 5 kinds of easy to replace :p Just used an OEM replacement though :-x when/if this one dies, i'll be sure to score a gsxr one.

I'll try to keep an eye (ear?) on my cam chain, but I honestly am not sure what a sick one sounds like.

you'll have a nice rattle from the right side of the motor

with the exhaust/carbs situation - original owner took off those air intake tubes and I seriously doubt he had it rejetted. (some of the repair work on it is using speaker wire!) Is that something I should look into? Is there a rule of thumb for when you should re-calibrate your carburetors when making a change to the exhaust system?

The ram air tubes only effect it at a high RPM. I have no idea on carbs, so that is a question for someone else.

Ive seen some exhausts that are really short and stubby. Are those sold that way or are they chopped? If they're chopped are they still DOT legal? or does it depend?

You can find shorty exhausts, most you find here are chopped... DOT legal, probably not, but most aftermarket exhausts aren't.

heh, i could ask questions all day.... this is why i was hoping there was a guide or something so i wouldn't have to bother you folks. :doh:

This is the reason ab420 put this section in, ask questions all day long :D
:party-smiley:
 

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Dr. Evil
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369 Posts
hey buddy, glad to see more f4's around this place.
here are a few web pages you might want to spend some time looking at.
hope it helps. if you have any more questions or concerns keep it coming. that is the whole idea of this place. everybody shares whatever knowledge they have and you can learn a shit ton of stuff.
Also, the search tab can be very helpful. learn how to use it and you can usually find many answers to your questions without even having to ask.

http://hawkworks.net/F4-fiche/
http://www.dansmc.com/glossary/motorcycle glossary.htm
http://www.dansmc.com/mc_repaircourse.htm
http://xfer.gofastvideo.com/gallery/...m/378/1/F4.zip
http://www.customfighters.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1056
there are more, but start with these and see what else you want to know. that should keep you entertained for a while. best of luck:shocker:
 

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HipsterKillerGarage
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6,484 Posts
I'll chime in on your carb issue.

You should plan on retuning your carburetors, and possibly rejetting, anytime you are gonna be ridding in a different altitude, or when you modify anything that increases or decreases the amount and/or velocity of air and exhaust in and out of your engine.

Cut the exhaust down? You're gonna have less restriction. Which means? You're gonna need more air in.

Better flowing exhaust? Same thing.

Pod filters instead of an air box? Now you're letting MORE air in. Gonna run leaner. Please add fuel. :D





I think that kinda gives you an idea of what to expect. Get to know your carburetor circuits inside and out. It'll serve you well not only to keep your bike in good rideable tune, but also to give it more longevity at better performance.







Welcome to the forum. :thumbup:
 

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ass
Joined
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49 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
thank you all for the awesome information! that thread of technical articles and how-tos will keep me busy for ages!

on another note - catatonic, you were right goddamnit. i fired it up without my helmet on so I could listen for engine noise - and the CCT has definitely bad. :D good times.

I don't have any pictures of the bike here at work, and I can't really upload at home (don't ask me, ask comcast) but I DO have pictures of the new shifter i made. (previous owner dropped this bike like it was hot. and apparently it was 'hot' often. during one of the drops, shifter got snapped off).

this is a bolt with a bunch of nuts with a nylon lock nut at the end - just in case.


This is the finished product (sorry, poor lighting in the parking garage). Thats a piece of leather belt i soaked over night, punched holes in it, then laced it up with some nylon cord.
 

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Administrator
Joined
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50,493 Posts
Nice custom mod there mate ...
def'do wot Catetonc said ,replace auto wiv manual cam chain adjuster.My F4 adjuster went bad ,changed it and never had any probs again ...:shocker:
 

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Dr. Evil
Joined
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369 Posts
It depends. Some manual CCT come with the gasket, most do not. If you pull the old CCT off and it looks good you can use it, but I would recommend getting a new one. why ask for problems over something thats like 5 bucks or whatever. that should be all you need to get rolling. you shouldn't need any other parts unless you broke something.
best of luck mate
 
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