Sunday, January 4, 2015

Update and a few new pics

The CX has been great. not riding much (only 1700 miles on it since the build was done). I did decide to wrap the header pipes and switch out the muffler. I used a 1" wrap in black and also coated it with a black silicone spray to protect the wrappings. It took all afternoon to do. The muffler is a 2" "quiet core" cone muffler from DCC. Looks and sounds much better. 

1980 CX500 Cafe

1980 CX500 Cafe

1980 CX500 Cafe
1980 CX500 Cafe

1980 CX500 Cafe

Friday, August 9, 2013


My 1980 CX500 Cafe

Honda CX 500 Cafe
Honda CX500 Cafe

Honda CX 500 Cafe
Honda CX500 Cafe

Honda CX 500 Cafe
Honda CX500 Cafe

Honda CX 500 Cafe
Honda CX500 Cafe

Honda CX 500 Cafe
Honda CX500 Cafe

These are the first iPhone shots I took after riding it around town for the very first time. Feels good to say the least. I'll have better photos taken and videos later, but there it is! 

Many thanks to...

George --  The very cool gentlman I bought the bike from. His old wrecked bike lives on. He also supplied me with many other used parts to replace broken, bent or missing items. Thanks man.

Truong and his crew at -- Awesome seat. Thank you for your efforts and patience. Well done.

Dime City Cycles -- For all the goodies that make it cool. Badass black gauges, tail light, turn sigs, mirrors, progressive suspension, sweet little bolt license plate lights. It's the little things. Thanks.

SpeedMotoCo -- Headlight and brackets are a perfect fit. Thanks.

S & S Powder Coating -- Thanks Tony and Steve for the awesome work on the frame, wheels, fork tubes, and fenders. 

City Body Repairs -- Thank you Lano for the beautiful paint and body work on the tank and side covers. -- For the sweet custom made Gripster tank pads. And thanks to guys on the CX500 forum for making the templates. 

David (Moto) Mucci -- For the inspiration to create an alternate version of your original masterpiece.

Andrew Denton -- It's all your fault! Thanks for being the one to show me a picture of a CX500 cafe'd out and for the challenge to do it. This guy got me into motorcycles in the first place. We'll ride soon!

Rob Hyodo -- For being there to bounce ideas off of and the help getting that damn rear bearing retainer out!  lol  Thanks and good luck with your CX. I'm here for ya too.

Melanie -- For putting up with my obsession and my many evenings away at the garage. ;)

My parents -- Because it's not really Graham's Garage after all. D'oh! Thanks for letting me occupy half your garage for 10 months. Love you guys. I'll clean up the mess.

We've come a long way...

Friday, July 5, 2013

Picking up the pieces...

Shiny Black Pieces

I got my parts back from S&S Powdercoating. Looks awesome! Time to get this thing back together...

Rebuilt the front forks. new seals, and upgraded to Progressive springs and 20wt fork oil.

Assembled the frame and finally got to mount my clubman's. 

Rear end is looking sexy.

Got my wheels back from powdercoating. Had a delay. I needed to remove the bearings. Was kind of a bear to remove the bearing retainer. Ruined the first one getting it out. It's just made of soft aluminum. Going back together was easy once I made a special tool for the retainer...

It's a roller now

Motor in! 

Next update... the unveiling.  Ordered my gauges, exhaust, and different headlight brackets. Have to paint the tank and side covers as well. Check back by the end of the month... hopefully.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Garage is empty!

 Went to S&S Powdercoating last Wednesday and worked out a deal on getting the wheels, fenders, and fork tubes coated. Very reasonable prices. Decided to get my frame, swingarm, and stands done as well. Dropped those off the next day. Should have things back by this coming weekend! For now the garage is empty where the bike was standing. Time to order more parts then.  :P

So I noticed that my brake master cylinder was missing the cap seal and diaphragm. I've been putting off finding them because thought they were unobtainable for the early '78 style master cylinder. Thought I'd have to find another used master cylinder on Ebay or something. Once again Honda parts house came through. I wish I looked more carefully the first time when I was looking for kits because, damn, their shipping charges are outrageous. 

Decided to bite the bullet and get the Mac 2 into 1 exhaust kit. Ordered from Ebay. 

I will probably put a different muffler on it later. Either a glass pack cherry bomb or something baffled. Not sure yet. This megaphone one sounds harsh from what I've heard in videos.  I just found something interesting that I'm not sure if anybody has tried before though... A turbo tube muffler.  Looks like a glass pack but it's basically two tube chambers in one just like a regular turbo style muffler but more compact. Should be quieter with a deeper tone. Not sure how well it would work on a motorcycle application. Cheap enough to experiment with if I could just clamp one on. If it works it'll get painted black and find a tip for it. I think I might have to put the original jets back in the carbs, I'm sure this muffler will have more restriction and back pressure. Curious...

Monday, June 3, 2013

WOW, It's been a while... Back at it now. 

It's been a tough few months. Money has been tight and I had very little motivation to keep going but I did manage to escape to the garage a few times to make things happen. 

First off, the seat I ordered didn't turn out right. It ended up being too big in all aspects. Here's how it looked...

The section of the frame in masking tape at the back is where I was going to cut the frame off. With this seat there would be no room for a rear fender of tail light. It can work on another bike with a different look, maybe with no protruding fender and a tail light mounted underneath or something, but it's not what I'm going for. If anybody wants this seat, contact me.  I contacted the manufacturer and worked out a deal for a replacement. They were most helpfull and I sent them a bunch of pictures and measurements and drawings. A few weeks later I got this...

Muuuuch better. :)

So I proceeded to cut the rear frame sections off and started to fit the seat. I cut the rear sections so that a tab was left to fold over the box ends. Ground down the welds on the outer edges where the original seat mount was and smoothed it out. 

I found a rear fender from and old Honda Goldwing ('79) on eBay and started to chop it.

I hammered down the top of the fender flat to fit the seat on top of it. Bolted it to the inner sides of the frame. Starting to take shape here...

Then I cut the origianl inner fender liner to match up to it.

 Then I set the seat on top. The lower edge profile of the seat in the dipped section of the frame didn't quite match up. Needed to remove the seat cover and cut the edges to fit. Also mounted and aluminum seat support in the center section on the frame to support the seat and help keep it from moving side to side in the forward section.

I'm going to add some more padding to the seat to fill it out a bit... still working on that.
I began to fit the tail light. I didn't like the origianl mount it was on. It stood too tall so I made a rough mount out of a piece of aluminum. I'll smooth it out and paint it black later. I also decided not to mount the license plate on the fender. It would hide the shape of the rear fender edge. Problem was there was a huge hole in the fender from the goldwing tail lamp assembly or something and it needed to be covered up. I searched all over the net trying to find a cool HONDA emblem or something to put on it and then realized I had the perfect thing laying around all along... this is off my spare motor casing!

The "license plate" light will llight up the Honda emblem at night.

Then I purchased a set of mini oval turn signals with smoked lenses from DIme City Cycles and mounted them to the fender. This is basically how the rear will look. The light bracket will be trimmed and finished in black with black screws later. I decided I would mount the license plate vertiacally on the left side by the rear wheel. I'll get to that later.

Next was the front fender. I cut the front and rear sections and made it a shorty.

Then I trimmed the rolled edges off the sides to match the rear fender. Lots of carefull cutting with a die grinder. Steady hands :)

I disassembled everything on the rear of the bike after I was satisfied with the fit. The fenders, wheels, and front fork lowers are all going to be powdercoated gloss black. Going to call up S&S Powdercoating In Santa Cruz this week and see what happens. Money is tight and I may have to wait a couple weeks...

That's my '89 Honda GB500 on the left.  Managed to get some riding in this week. Weather has been fantastic here!

Sunday, February 3, 2013


Cleaned, rebuilt, jetted, shimmed, and resealed.

Took a few hours. Ordered 90/120 jets from This seems to be the best combo from what I've read on the CX500 forums for running a Mac 2 into 1 exhaust. Shimmed the needle with one shim and filed down the back of the needle to get that wiggle back. Replaced the fuel transfer tube seals and float bowl seals. It was leaking pretty bad before from the left carb. Found a good used intake manifold for the right side (finally) to replace the cracked one. Looks great all together.

Ready to rock.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Seat is done! Coming soon...

So, I just got word today that the seat is done and will ship out tomorrow. I was sent a couple pictures of it...

Looks great to me. I hope I can get it to fit well without too much modification.

I've been busy cleaning, painting and polishing other items. I've got stuff hanging on strings drying all around my garage. Valve covers polished up nice, but took forever...

My engine gasket set finally showed up. The engine is looking great. I still need to pull the rear cover and check the chains and guides and then I'll button it up.

Repainted my switch housings...

 Carbs are next. I was hoping to have this project done by the beginning of March for my birthday but work has been real slow and money is tight. I won't have funds for powder coating and paint job for a while. We shall see...