The Honda 450 p.2

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So where was I?

Oh yeah! I was getting started on my motorbike. I realized that I was going to need to remove the engine in order to get into the damaged head and so one Saturday that’s what I set out to do. I removed the exhaust pipe (one had already been removed by the PO), and disconnected the electronics and the clutch cable. Then I popped the carburetors off and had a look.

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They didn’t look to bad considering the time the thing sat. I think I’ll just get a rebuild kit and replace all the seals and the jets and call them good. One of the bowls had some old gas in it, but it’ll be easy enough to clean it up.

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So Next I got to unbolting the engine from the mounts and pulled it out of the frame. That thing is HEAVY! It was kind of a chore just getting it clear of the frame, but I managed.

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With the motor out I turned and looked at my workbench. That thing was a mess and I didn’t want to start this project off on the wrong foot, so I decided to give it a clean up.

When we moved into this house I inherited a peg board wall full of the most random junk you could ever want. Unopened packages of finishing nails, small hand saws, a couple of paint openers… I hate peg board. The promise of peg board never seems to work out. It’s supposed to be an ultimate modular storage solution, but instead it invariably turns into a vertical junk drawer where, instead of giving you the option to hide it out of site, (like a regular junk drawer) you are forced to stare at the random assortment of crap that somehow got affixed to your wall. No thanks. I’m going to pull this sheet down as soon as I have a place to toss it. Our bulk junk pickup is in a week (!).

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Man! That was a chore getting that thing up on the bench. I almost lost it the last inch or so, I’m sure my face was bright red and I was a small step away from getting a hernia. But there it sits! I started pulling the top end apart and got the cam chain undone without dropping it into the bottom end (small victories). It looks like the bracket that was holding the cam tensioner snapped and the metal pulley slowly did the damage.

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The last thing I was able to do is to bring the damaged cylinder head to my friend Ian who makes bikes here in Austin as Icarus Cycles . I had heard that he had done some aluminum brazing and I thought I’d get his take on whether or not this part was repairable. When I dropped it off at his shop he said he thought it was worth a try to repair it. I let him know that if it were too much of a pain, I could probably source a replacement online for not too much cash. So we left it at that and he’s currently going to fit it in when he’s got time. Until then I might get the top end apart so I can lap the valves and maybe start cleaning the ports out. Time to order a valve tool!

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