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Thread: The Roadster

  1. #1
    Flirting With The Redline 10,000 Posts! Shadow Shack's Avatar
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    The Roadster

    Thanks to FarceBook and PhotoSuckit my prior thread ( http://www.beginnerbikers.org/showth...-Strikes-Again ) has zero pics so I'm just starting a new one. First up, a recap of that thread with restored pics.



    Acquisition Day/Homecoming (I added the bandana to the forks, something all my Rebels have as a signature):


    Off the truck:


    The "Department of Stuff it Came With"...

    Clubman bars & Rox risers


    Twin carbs, baby! (Rebels & Nighthawks come with a single, although the CB carb is slightly larger)


    CB250 front end


    Box of spare parts



    The story: I had wanted to explore a CB250 Nighthawk front end for a Rebel for quite some time. The base bike is dripping with old school styling and while I realize a drum brake is a downgrade from what it comes with, I thought it would really compliment the overall look for an old school build. So when I stumbled across a CraigsList ad boasting a Rebel with said front end already on it for less than the cost of what the front end would be separately --- and the rest of the Rebel included --- I didn't look any gift horses in their mouths.

    It turned out the seller bought it from the PO as a "Rebel bobber project" with a wrecked frame. The seller didn't know what he had so he went with the PO's intel and bought a titled Rebel frame for a Rebel, when (unbeknownst to both him and the PO) he needed a Nighthawk frame. He also acquired numerous other parts along the way but never got it running. It was only after I got it home and started tearing into it that I realized what the actual story was: it was originally a 250 Nighthawk. Both bikes share the same motor, but outside of that everything else is different between the two...including the wiring harness, coils, CDI module, rectifier/regulator, you name it, it's a different part. Even the carburetors are different. Knowing the seller never got it started/running I went with what I did know: Rebel. I swapped out the wiring harness and other bits for Rebel hardware that I knew was in working order rather than spending countless hours with test lights on the unknown system and trying to fix it. Sad to say it's a lot less work tearing a bike down to the frame and starting from scratch than taking a chance of starting at the wrong end of the electrical system. Besides, the Rebel is pretty much a simple bike to work on...just like the way it inspires confidence with a new rider it instills that same confidence when you're bending wrenches on it. In the hands of someone with experience it's just a joy on both ends.

    Why Honda makes two completely different electrical systems for the same motor is beyond a paradox. When it was all said and done I had spark, the sign of life it was missing upon acquisition. That CB250 harness & hardware is now taking up residence in the Great Heap (an affectionate name I have given to the organized chaos that is my section of the grage where all spare parts are stowed, and any Star Wars fans should catch the name as well).
    Sent from your mom's phone
    "If I wanted a windshield and tunes, I'd drive my car."
    Ride Safe, Chop Safer
    "Unofficial Beginner Bike Chop Shop"
    "Motorcycles are not unsafe. However, they are extremely unforgiving of inattention, incompetence, ignorance, and stupidity."
    Support your FLIBS (Friendly Local Independent Bike Shop)
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    3500cc worth of Honda: http://shadow-shack.20m.com


  2. #2
    Flirting With The Redline 10,000 Posts! Shadow Shack's Avatar
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    Back to the pics, first changes:

    Gen-1 Rebel air cleaner & battery box - these chrome goods were on the 80's models and feed teh old school look that the 2nd generation (96+) bikes missed out on.




    For comparison, the plastic side covers that come with the Gen-2 models (same on both sides):




    Fender mod - sectioned & shortened:




    Sent from your mom's phone
    "If I wanted a windshield and tunes, I'd drive my car."
    Ride Safe, Chop Safer
    "Unofficial Beginner Bike Chop Shop"
    "Motorcycles are not unsafe. However, they are extremely unforgiving of inattention, incompetence, ignorance, and stupidity."
    Support your FLIBS (Friendly Local Independent Bike Shop)
    http://www.beginnerbikers.org/forum/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=11&dateline=117347893  4
    3500cc worth of Honda: http://shadow-shack.20m.com


  3. #3
    Flirting With The Redline 10,000 Posts! Shadow Shack's Avatar
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    Recent mods not posted in the prior thread, bringing us up to date:

    Drag bar, I didn't like the Clubman bar...



    I also swapped out the oversized 3.5 gallon tank for a smaller stock tank:



    Proof of Life (skip to 1:22 for dead battery/starting attempts after it dies from the initial start):

    Last edited by Shadow Shack; 02-20-2018 at 01:02 AM.
    Sent from your mom's phone
    "If I wanted a windshield and tunes, I'd drive my car."
    Ride Safe, Chop Safer
    "Unofficial Beginner Bike Chop Shop"
    "Motorcycles are not unsafe. However, they are extremely unforgiving of inattention, incompetence, ignorance, and stupidity."
    Support your FLIBS (Friendly Local Independent Bike Shop)
    http://www.beginnerbikers.org/forum/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=11&dateline=117347893  4
    3500cc worth of Honda: http://shadow-shack.20m.com


  4. #4
    Flirting With The Redline 10,000 Posts! Shadow Shack's Avatar
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    Yesterday's work ---

    Start of day:


    Shorter rear shocks - 8" vs the 10" stockers plus second attempt at the chrome rails:




    Euro-chop speedo relocation (awaiting a front fender so I can properly loop the cable, and I need to clean up the welded area and wiring as well):


    Still on the to do list:

    > finish the rear fender and prep for paint

    > rear lighting

    > acquire a Nighthawk front fender

    > get the carbs right (or the Nighthawk single carb, both need work)

    > exhaust, unsuspended sawzalled head pipes just won't do.

    > other miscellaneous fun stuff that may come to mind, such as adding a fly screen...
    Last edited by Shadow Shack; 02-20-2018 at 01:11 AM.
    Sent from your mom's phone
    "If I wanted a windshield and tunes, I'd drive my car."
    Ride Safe, Chop Safer
    "Unofficial Beginner Bike Chop Shop"
    "Motorcycles are not unsafe. However, they are extremely unforgiving of inattention, incompetence, ignorance, and stupidity."
    Support your FLIBS (Friendly Local Independent Bike Shop)
    http://www.beginnerbikers.org/forum/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=11&dateline=117347893  4
    3500cc worth of Honda: http://shadow-shack.20m.com


  5. #5
    Just...so...cool...!
    Thank you for sharing this.

  6. #6
    Flirting With The Redline 10,000 Posts! Shadow Shack's Avatar
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    Thanks!

    Bad news, but not unexpected either --- the fender made contact with the tire. I tried raising the fender higher on the rail but it still makes contact when the rear is fully compressed. So...now that I have four extra holes that will need to be Bondoed when I prep it for paint, I have one more option at my disposal.

    I have this (albeit in brown) arriving at my doorstep sometime next week:



    So that means I can mount the fender to the swingarm and toss the chrome rails. As an extra added bonus the sprung seat will restore some of the boinginess that I'm losing with the shorter shocks...yeah, it's softer and bottoms out sooner (more so with the fender in the way via the current mounts) but it's still a far cry better than a hardtail.

    And now...another project that was addressed today: my friend's mini-chopper. We mounted a shortened 250 Rebel rear fender and extended the handlebars, along with welding a new tailpipe onto the existing headpipe. Not pictured is the carb & intake manifold along with a 80cc ATV seat that were added after the pic was taken. There might be enough room in that frame for a Rebel motor...

    Last edited by Shadow Shack; 03-07-2018 at 10:40 PM.
    Sent from your mom's phone
    "If I wanted a windshield and tunes, I'd drive my car."
    Ride Safe, Chop Safer
    "Unofficial Beginner Bike Chop Shop"
    "Motorcycles are not unsafe. However, they are extremely unforgiving of inattention, incompetence, ignorance, and stupidity."
    Support your FLIBS (Friendly Local Independent Bike Shop)
    http://www.beginnerbikers.org/forum/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=11&dateline=117347893  4
    3500cc worth of Honda: http://shadow-shack.20m.com


  7. #7
    RiderCoach 5000 Posts! NORTY's Avatar
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    Instead of "bondo-ing" those holes, how about welding them up? You have to refinish and repaint anyway. Might well do it right.
    Knowledge speaks, wisdom listens.

  8. #8
    Flirting With The Redline 10,000 Posts! Shadow Shack's Avatar
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    I hadn't thought of that, but welding makes sense from a structural point. One more for this novice welder's checklist.

    Yesterday I got the fender issue addressed. The fender is mock-mounted to the swingarm at the moment, I need to grind the frame horns down so they don't rub against the fender. I have it mounted at three points, one bracket to be welded to the forward flat portion of the swingarm that bolts to the fender and two struts coming off the rear of the swingarm. Bushings are on all three points. I also need to grind the struts to a rounded shape at the top and am debating about plating them or plasti-dipping in metallic. I made the chain guard mount "disappear" with some rattlecan too.



    A sprung solo seat is going to fill the gap between the tank & fender.



    I have a CB250 front fender on the way as well to shield the 100/90 tire along with helping the speedo & brake cable routing.

    Sent from your mom's phone
    "If I wanted a windshield and tunes, I'd drive my car."
    Ride Safe, Chop Safer
    "Unofficial Beginner Bike Chop Shop"
    "Motorcycles are not unsafe. However, they are extremely unforgiving of inattention, incompetence, ignorance, and stupidity."
    Support your FLIBS (Friendly Local Independent Bike Shop)
    http://www.beginnerbikers.org/forum/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=11&dateline=117347893  4
    3500cc worth of Honda: http://shadow-shack.20m.com


  9. #9
    RiderCoach 5000 Posts! NORTY's Avatar
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    I just remembered from years ago, that some motorcycles can/do vibrate with just the correct harmonics, that may cause a fatigue crack and/or split starting at the edge of the rear fender. I had a bike that did this (1974 CZ 250 black frame.) They were known for splitting their rear fenders as they were steel and they vibrated big time. The split would start on the very edge and migrate towards the top mounting hole. The "fix" for this can from "Preston Petty Products" in the form of a plastic fender. Oddly, the front fender was already plastic (and trouble-free.)
    Knowledge speaks, wisdom listens.

  10. #10
    Flirting With The Redline 10,000 Posts! Shadow Shack's Avatar
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    More work on the Roadster today --- accomplishments to date:

    > Mated a CB250 Nighthawk front end to the bike
    > Swapped vintage 80's Rebel chrome battery box & air cleaner cover onto it (96+ models come with bulky plastic covers)
    > Drag bar on Rox risers
    > Swapped shorter rear shocks onto the bike
    > Sectioned rear fender in lieu of bobbing it
    > Relocated the speedo to the left side of frame like the Euro-Chops overseas
    > Swapped larger CB250 carb onto the engine

    Today's work:

    > Mounted the rear fender onto the swingarm at three points with bushings
    > Bobbed the CB250 front fender
    > Solo seat added


    Still to do:

    > Fabricate a mounting bracket for the seat springs
    > Clean the carb or swap in a set of dual carbs I have, I'm really up in the air here...
    > Acquire a new air box as this one is gutted/invalid...it just holds the air cleaner cover on
    > Acquire and mount a set of mufflers onto the hacked head pipes, currently debating two different routes I can go...
    > Fill the holes on the rear fender/smooth out the rest, prep and paint both fenders & tank
    > Rear lighting, plate mount, and (temporary) directionals so it can pass DMV inspection and acquire a plate






    Sent from your mom's phone
    "If I wanted a windshield and tunes, I'd drive my car."
    Ride Safe, Chop Safer
    "Unofficial Beginner Bike Chop Shop"
    "Motorcycles are not unsafe. However, they are extremely unforgiving of inattention, incompetence, ignorance, and stupidity."
    Support your FLIBS (Friendly Local Independent Bike Shop)
    http://www.beginnerbikers.org/forum/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=11&dateline=117347893  4
    3500cc worth of Honda: http://shadow-shack.20m.com


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