Friday, January 1, 2016

Honda CB77 Digger RC Digger

Four or five years ago I started falling in love with the 60's Honda sloper engines.  Up until and during this time I mainly worked with twin and single Hondas from the late 60's or 70's like CB/CL 350's, CB360's, CB450's, XL250/350's, etc....  

With CB/CL/CA77's, and their baby brother 160's and 175's, unlike the later model vertical Honda twins, parts are a little harder to find.....and a lot more expensive.  Engines are not quite as bullet proof either.  It's almost like Honda figured out everything with the 350 engines, which you can find pretty easily and they usually don't have much wrong with them. Not the case with these 305's....

Like the sloper 160's and 175's, however, people in countries all over the world use them as a base for vintage racing and so as long as you have a little bit of money laying around, and some mechanical ability, you can make an engine even faster and more fun that when they rolled off the line 50+ years ago.  Or at least that is the idea.....

This beauty was picked up, kind of by accident, when a friend and I went to see a bunch of bikes.  I ended up taking this long left for dead CB77 ??chopper?? wth a screwy title for $150.  8 over CB450 front end, Ape hangers, twisted chrome kickstand.....I wish I could have seen the tank that was on it.  Needless to say, it has been in the back of my mind for the last few years during other builds, flips, and restorations.  

Life threw me a few curves in 2014 and 2015 and since I can't really afford to get into a new build or search for other bikes I decided to use the parts I have laying around, sell my projects, and use the money to turn this into something ridable and fun and maybe learn a few things along the way. 

The goal is to have it road ready by the April Fuels ride this year.  If I can afford it, after the ride I would like to tear it down, paint it, and maybe even rebuild an engine with some special parts and even try to take it to a show somewhere.

None of us are promised tomorrow.
It's hard to tell how many more of these I have in me.
So I thought I should document the process just in case......

Shortly after we grabbed it, it spent some time in a storage space.
One with the engine out of it after it sat outside covered for a couple years...engine now stuck.
I don't think bikes necessarily need to have names.
Maybe this one will get a nickname with an RC in it though.  
My dad passed away about a year ago and his nickname at work was RC.  (Roland Charles Fritts)  The last motorcycle my dad built was a 650 Bonneville that he sold to pay for my mom's engagement ring a long long time ago.  Even though the odds were not in my favor, while he was alive I always hoped I would run across it on craigslist or through one of his old friends or brother and we would be able to getting it running again together........
  My dad was a fixer.  
Everything that I know, or at least the belief that I can achieve anything, came from watching my father.  Having the time to figure out everything that goes into building an old British bike that doesn't leak all over the place and fund it, though, are just not my reality right now.  So although my dream was to build one of these up, my dad did once tell me that he took a trip with a friend on 305's so I think he would approve of this...........  

I hope to post a couple updates a week.  In the off chance you are only interested in checking this because of a certain amazing toddler in my life,  don't worry, I am sure Atlas will make a few guest appearances too.

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