bike howell cb450

Got an opportunity to do some major rehabilitation on one of my favorite, if not the favorite, vintage Hondas, a CB450K5. Nice! A survivor, little miles but in the little miles it had on it, no maintenance and plenty of hammer-headed work. As usual. What an historic bike! Looks like a head gasket oil leak.
More. Blue silicone all over the alternator side of the engine. More.
Checking condition of the cam followers. Highly at risk. New cam followers are going in. Old on the right, new on the left. This is the number one thing that wears on this engine. The starter clutch is the second most common issue. Again, old on right upper, new on lower left.
More silicone sealer. And the typical starter clutch wear and issues these bikes get. And there it is. The starter clutch looks pretty fair. But... The archaic three-roller system.
That waviness on the inner rotor is a problem. No new parts to be had, and all get like this one. One of the cams very badly scored on its bearing journal. Another common thing on this engine. Inspecting cam chain guide parts. Fiddly parts, over-engineered, high-wear. These are good.
Still checking condition of the cam chain guides and rollers. And here is why they are so important. A complex system. Cam timing is important, and it is not a simple thing on the CB450.
And here is what makes it not so easy, among other issues. See the timing mark? VERY faint, and done unlike any other Honda. And it looks like someone has been in here already messing with the cam timing, judging by the screwdriver marks. And at the same time the cams are timed, the chain has to be separated and reattached to remove and replace the cylinder head.
Honda really did one over on the British on this bike. Had some issues with the cam chain tensioner. The shaft was stuck, took some freeing up. Typical mess from incorrectly lubing drive chain. Possibly a little from the three oil seals on this side also.
Checking out oil centrifuge. The lower crankcase half, with the windage tray removed. Look how much sludge is in here! No oil changes. Bottom end going back together after being cleaned out.
Putting in new center shift fork. New shift stopper going in on the shift linkage side. Dent in left muffler. Quite a few dents and scrapes in fact.
Discolored exhaust downpipe, probably from some bad tuning or improper warmup. Another dent. Scrapes.
Cylinder head ultrasonically cleaned and getting a valve job. Decarboned. Valve job commencing.
Front fork was like this when the bike arrived. The tubes are pushed down in their clamps and the boots can't stretch enough to fit. Front fender dinged up.
More. This is part of misassembly, the ding is from the brake union bolt. Small dent in tank. Three (one not shown) master links!
Fork stop shows a slight ding, and some of the engine mounts were a little distorted. Very old tires. Handlebar clamps installed incorrectly. Lot of signs this fork has been apart and badly reassembled.
Had to rethread a stripped thread in the handlebar mount. Hardware store screws in headlight shell. When fork was disassembled, found this inside. "Milkshake" spells water mixed with oil.
Closer. This is what was drained out. 90 percent water. Handlebar clamp mounted keyswitch. A common mod in the day.
But look what it takes to do it, unless the cable is properly modified also. Here is the keyswitch cord being stretched to its limit. Wrong battery and also propped up with a block of wood. Here is the wood.
Battery was almost dry. Chinese Diachi brand points. Original selenium type rectifier.
Carburetors had some rough handling also. Assembly. On the engine stand.
Engine rebuilt and back in the frame. Brakes all done. More.
Fitted CB500T carbs for the benefit of the vacuum sync ability. What a pleasure it has been to fettle this great bike!