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Saturday, May 5, 2012

My 1971 Honda 750 (811cc)!

spookytoms.com
After becoming a franchised gasoline dealer in the early 1970’s, I started to make a little money.  I had sold the Honda 160 cc I bought from my dad and wanted another motorcycle, a big one.  My dad was by then riding a 450 cc Honda.  The biggest Honda they made at that time was the 4 cylinder, 4 carburetor 750 cc and I started looking for a good used one.  I found a 1971 that an older guy had for sale with low miles that was in excellent condition.  Same color as the picture above. The owner had put saddlebags on it with a windshield.  He wanted to get a Harley for him and his wife, so he made me a pretty good deal on it for $1400.  Of course, the first thing I did was to take the bags and windshield off, as I wanted a performance bike!

And it sure was fast, compared to anything else that I had ridden.  My buddy, Ross bought a brand new Harley Sportster and all he could do was eat my dust at every traffic light!  I rode that thing for a year or so and had a lot of fun with it.  One day, I got on the throttle hard and the chain broke, bunching up and punching a hole in the aluminum crankcase.  Jeez, I knew this was going to be an expensive repair and boy, was I right.  A new crankcase alone was over $200 and the quote from the dealer to take the engine out and replace it was ridiculous.  So, after buying a shop manual, I decided to remove the motor myself and let the dealer do the engine work.  It was a big job to pull that motor but wasn't too difficult with the step by step instruction in the book. During the time spent doing that, I figured, if I’m going to spend all this money on it, I want a better bike after it is done.  So, after getting some performance ideas from the dealer, I had them bore the block out to 811 cc and put a hot cam in it.  After getting the engine back in the bike, I re-jetted the carburetors and put a low restriction exhaust on it.  And what a world of difference in the performance!  I don’t remember what the total cost ended up being (it wasn't cheap), but I was sure happy with it.

I took it out to the drag strip and was running mid-twelve second quarter miles with it at over 103 MPH.  That was a pretty fast motorcycle back in the 1970’s!  That was a fun bike to ride and I sold it just before I got married about 1975.  Having sold it to the brother of a friend, I kept track of it and actually tried to by the bike back in the mid-80's after the guy had stopped riding it, due to a serious work injury. The bike had been sitting outdoors for a couple years and it would have been way too much work to get it back in running condition. So, I passed on it and bought a really nice 1983 Honda V65 Magna. But, that's another story! Click here to read it!



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