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Honda CB750-Four K1

Our Bikes - 1971 Honda CB750-Four K1

Honda CB750-Four K1

Foiled Again

by Guy 'Guido' Allen; pics by Ben Galli Photography

July 2020

A quick oil change and off we go? Maybe not

You’ve got to love bureaucracy. As much as we enjoy ranting about its evils, it does actually serve lots of useful functions. For example, it supports and enables the incredibly useful club permit or club plate scheme in Vic – ditto other states. And it saves a bundle.

I now have 15 bikes on the system, with more joining as they age. The Au$70 cost versus over $600 for full reg, albeit for 45 days, means I can afford to keep a collection and it removes any temptation to ride with fake or shared plates. At such a modest cost, it’s not worth the risk.

However the local system does sometimes go awry. There must be some weird wrinkle, where every now and then they take your money for a renewal, your log book gets stamped, but it’s not actually recorded. So no renewal notice turns up and a year or more down the track you discover it all went belly-up.

So that’s where we were when photographer/shed counselor Ben Galli turned up on a Saturday morning. All dressed up and no reg. Bugger. It’s easy enough to sort out, but here’s a tip based on past experience: keep your receipt with your logbook, so when there is a question over whether it was really renewed, you have the evidence.

Right, so that’s Monday’s problem. Meanwhile we charged up the battery and tried to get the engine fired so we could at least warm it up for an oil change. In the end I had to call in one of my modest fleet of lithium jump starter batteries, which are very handy things. I’ll often pop them on even when the bike battery is okay – if the machine hasn’t been run for a while - just to give it a little extra boost.

Another tip: before you buy a jump-start battery, have a look at the alligator clamps. A lot of them are huge and simply won’t work in the confined space of a motorcycle. The smaller capacity batteries often have smaller clips. My preferred car unit is 1000A Noco, while the one I use for the bikes is a 400A Mastercraft. The latter is actually sold for small cars and is fine for a motorcycle.

Though the Honda is a dry sump design, a fair bit of oil finds its way into the crankcase, particularly when it’s been sitting, which is no drama. It’s a hassle on the seventies Norton Commando and has to be drained before you fire it up, but not on the Honda. The catch with all this is you can’t believe what the oil level dipstick is telling you until the engine has been run – otherwise you’re likely to end up overfilling.

Anyway, the oil in the beast has been there too long – a couple of years – though it’s done bugger all miles in that time. I decided to leave the oil filter this time around, so the change was simply a matter of emptying the tank under the sidecover, plus the crankcase, and refilling with a good mineral oil – Penrite HPR30 in this case. Start the engine again, run it for a minute, then recheck the level. Easy.

Next on the list was fitting a front brake adjuster bought from Pud’s Four Parts, which has been missing from day one. The bike manages perfectly well without it, but it was one of things that was irritating the hidden pedant in me.

honda cb750-four brake parts

It was a cheap fix and, as is often the case, I was scratching around Google looking for pictures to give a hint on how it was fitted. European parts site CMNSL had an exploded parts diagram that showed the pieces in their correct order, while an owner forum had a good pic of how one should look once fitted. All of which helped to confirm my love of the iPad as a workshop tool.

Hopefully by next weekend I’ll have the paperwork sorted and can take the thing for a ride!

Honda CB750-Four

Honda CB750-Four

Honda CB750-Four

Honda CB750-Four

Honda CB750-Four

Honda CB750-Four


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