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 Post subject: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:10 pm 
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I've always been a fan of cheap Japanese motorcycles. Riding is just in my blood as is recycling junk into something useful when I can on the cheap. I also recently split with my wife of over 20 years, and now live farther from anywhere than ever and can afford to drive less because my work has really dried up too, and my '92 Pontiac Sunbird Convertible blew it's sparkplug and insurt out along swith the threads and the heater never worked and it had suspenmsion issues, so I now have a '93 Taurus wagon (3.0 V6) and it gets 3-5 MPG less than the Sunbird. In short I REALLY need cheaper transpo in the WORST way!

I've always had a penchant for "yard finds", bikes that are against a fence with grass all grown up all around them and through the spokes. I've revived many, including a bevy of Honda CB360Ts, and even a CL360T. The biggest and baddest being my last bike 3 years ago, a 1981 Yamaha XS Eleven, with full fairing and bags. Trouble is, the best mileage I ever got out of it was 28MPG, sometimes as low as 25MPG, and I couldn't afford to fix it up (they got at best around 32MPG anyway). One of the attached pics is of this bike. I'm so glad I re-upped my endorsement when I renewed my license even though I didn't have a bike because now I have FRANKENBIKE!

Frankenbike was a derelict 1983 Yamaha XS400K "Maxim 400", that sat in the Port Townsend area weather without even the decency of a tarp over her for 13 plus years. I bought her for $100 as is. The tank had rust holes and rusted through at the seems, both brakes were seized, both tires rotted flat and cracked, back brake shoes rusted into the steel drum mag insert. I threw a $40 set of brake shoes on her, and used miscellaneous epoxy, couple cans of PB Blaster, electrical and duct tape, brake and carb cleaner (plus boiling the carb bodies in vinegar water for an hour), and other than much head scratching and electrical trouble shooting, and gathering of other salvaged parts, all of which I got free, and my time and labor, with the help of my NA sponsor and his tools, air compressor, tire irons, and miscellaneous things I don't have on hand at homes, I have gotten her back on the Highway!

This is a video I took just after I first got it to fire up.



Man is she FUGLY!!! But she is, by far my favorite of the yard finds and just a blast to zip down US 101 on! I plan to slowly little by little improve her, but right now, she has parts from more than 2 different Hondas, a Harley Davidson front tire on the back, a brand new FREE $150 tire off a dead GL500, a battery filched from a Suzuki, VW rotted out mufflers welded to the pipes (and now half tore off with rotted out baffles), and the GL500's tank has a Radiator hose from a Ford between it and the backbone of the bike. I tell you what, this is an ugly $140 bike I am DAMN PROUD OF!!!


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FrankenbikeSM.jpg
FrankenbikeSM.jpg [ 196 KiB | Viewed 1315 times ]
71495_1646117642522_8095128_n.jpg
71495_1646117642522_8095128_n.jpg [ 104.64 KiB | Viewed 1315 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 6:55 am 
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I would have offered them $50.

Well that isn't true. I wouldn't have bought it at all, but if I were you, I would have offered them $50. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:25 am 
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She's worth at least $200 even if the engine was blown. The bare frame itself is worth that just because so many of these bikes have no clean title. Doesn't matter anyway, I just needed better gas mileage and that I got in spades!

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:34 am 
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Nice job, man! I admire your ingenuity and persistence.

:th2thumbs:

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:12 am 
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sutz wrote:
Nice job, man! I admire your ingenuity and persistence.

:th2thumbs:


I kinda meant this too. I didn't mean to come off as a jerk, but if they'd neglected it that long, you might've got it for $50. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 3:14 pm 
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JesterHawk wrote:
sutz wrote:
Nice job, man! I admire your ingenuity and persistence.

:th2thumbs:


I kinda meant this too. I didn't mean to come off as a jerk, but if they'd neglected it that long, you might've got it for $50. :)


No, I got it that you weren't trying to be a jerk. He asked $200, then I countered $150, then when I got out there with my sponsor and his truck he thought it was a piece of junk so Ray just went down to $100 without even haggling, so $100 it was.

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 3:17 pm 
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Actually just got her licensed and calculated my mileage. I get a combined highway/city 51MPG! SWEET!

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 3:22 pm 
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Here's a pic of my Frankenbike. It's a 1982 (I think?) Honda CB900 Custom. It has the oddest feature of any bike I've seen -- a dual range subtransmission which works to provide a hi-lo range selection for the main transmission. It needs a full top end rebuild (smokes like a son of a gun) and I just lack the time and desire to go about it.

I wasn't the one who did the stretch/rake job on it. It's not the easiest thing to ride, either. I bought it for $400, not running. After a carb rebuild it runs, but not terribly well. Perhaps some day I'll go about rebuilding the top end, though parts to do so are very hard to come by. Not many CB900 Customs were made.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 3:38 pm 
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Both of those are friggin hella cool.

That rake on your ride Smokin is pretty radical for that bike. The ape bars can't help in controlling it.

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:31 pm 
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SmokinHawk wrote:
Here's a pic of my Frankenbike. It's a 1982 (I think?) Honda CB900 Custom. It has the oddest feature of any bike I've seen -- a dual range subtransmission which works to provide a hi-lo range selection for the main transmission. It needs a full top end rebuild (smokes like a son of a gun) and I just lack the time and desire to go about it.

I wasn't the one who did the stretch/rake job on it. It's not the easiest thing to ride, either. I bought it for $400, not running. After a carb rebuild it runs, but not terribly well. Perhaps some day I'll go about rebuilding the top end, though parts to do so are very hard to come by. Not many CB900 Customs were made.

Image


I know a guy who would probably give you his firstborn or cut off a testicle for that bike. He's been looking for that model high and low! Gonna email him a pic and make him obsess!

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:11 am 
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Largent80 wrote:
Both of those are friggin hella cool.

That rake on your ride Smokin is pretty radical for that bike. The ape bars can't help in controlling it.


It's definitely a handful at low speeds, especially in residential areas where the speed limit is low. Once you get it above 35-40mph she just glides along, but at low speeds it's a death trap. Someday I'll fix it up properly but for now it remains an oil seeping oddity.

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:38 pm 
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I have to say now that I've ridden a street bike with a monoshock, I never want to go back to old school suspension!

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 3:36 am 
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Well of all things, because of XS400.com I got another identical bike in better shape (but in boxes). After just the tank, seat and fender she's looking more like a Maxim.


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uploadfromtaptalk1366829869989sm.jpg
uploadfromtaptalk1366829869989sm.jpg [ 107.58 KiB | Viewed 1053 times ]
CAM00008sm.jpg
CAM00008sm.jpg [ 127.75 KiB | Viewed 1053 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2013 10:25 am 
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Still only $210 invested (and there is another bike puzzle to be assembled yet), I give you today's update. I still can hardly believe my good fortune with this machine, though it has not been all pleasant figuring some of it out. It's all more than worth it though!


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4-26-13c.jpg
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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:19 am 
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:mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Wed May 01, 2013 9:00 pm 
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Time to drop my car insurance and be full time scooter trash! Lovin' it!


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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Thu May 02, 2013 11:03 am 
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Chicken Coop Road, Blyn, Washington today...

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 Post subject: Re: Behold FRANKENBIKE!
 Post Posted: Tue May 14, 2013 10:00 pm 
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Did the forks!


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