Posts by Category: Honda

Honda July 6, 2017 posted by

Endurance Racer: 1982 Honda CB1100R for Sale

Update 7.24.2017: Interested parties can email the seller directly: mrcbx@att.net

Built in small quantities between 1981 and 1983 and very rare sight here in the US, the Honda CB1100R was created to homologate the big, four-cylinder machine for endurance racing. Based on the CB900F and powered by a 1062cc air-cooled inline engine, it featured the usual raft of upgrades to engine internals, frame, and suspension to make those parts eligible for competition. Unlike the CB900F, the engine was mounted rigidly in the frame to act as a stressed-member, improving handling at the expense of additional vibration.

Power was rated at 115hp and the bike weighted in at 520lbs dry, which may sound heavy in a modern context but meant the CB1100R was on par with period rivals. The bike was fast and very stable, and Honda's first use of dual-piston brakes up front with vented discs meant stopping power was considered excellent at the time. There were TRAC anti-dive forks up front with adjustable units at the rear. Gold ComStar wheels are stiff and light, but a pain to rebuild if yours are damaged and a composite fairing means replacements for broken parts could be very expensive...

These don't come up for sale very often, especially here in the USA where they were never officially available. So how small were the "small quantities" produced? 1,050 were built for 1981, with 1,500 for 1982 and another 1,500 for 1983. That may not be Bimota levels of exclusivity, but this is still one rare motorcycle, especially for a Honda. Values will only be going up on bikes of the era and I expect that all those affordable 1980s bikes you can generally find on eBay will soon be a thing of the past.

From the original eBay listing: 1982 Honda CB1100R for Sale

This is a nicely preserved CB1100RC.  If you are looking at this ad, then you should know what this is.  One of only about 1500 bikes produced by Honda to be able to compete in the pro-am series races in Europe and Australia.  Unique and incredibly rare in the USA. There is not even a 1982 RC at Barber Motorcycle museum, there is only a 1983 RD...

I have gone through this bike to make sure all is functional, it is still an exciting bike to ride even 35 years after it was made!  It is on recent Michelin tires, and everything works as it should. This bike has some personalized period-correct modifications, the original exhaust has been replaced by a Cowley 4 into 1 system, some of the parts on the bike have been polished and chromed, but it shows very well and is mostly original.  It was imported into the US by Larry Conlin, who sadly passed away a couple of years ago; at that time it had not been running for some time, and it did not have a US title.  Since then it has been properly imported, and recommissioned for use.  I have copies of the original UK paperwork, the VIN is correct for a 1982 CB1100RC, so this is the real thing!

The bike can be heard running in this clip provided by the seller. So what is something like this worth? In other markets, they sell in the neighborhood of $20,000 but I'm not sure if it can command the same price here in the US. Currently, bidding is up to just a shade north of $12,000 with a couple days left on the auction.

-tad

Endurance Racer: 1982 Honda CB1100R for Sale
Honda June 29, 2017 posted by

Featured Listing – 1992 Honda VFR400R NC30

Like real estate, they're just not making any more V-four 399cc sportbikes, and every one that appears has some kind of history - used or abused, neglected or cared for.  This Ohio-registered NC30 looks nicely preserved and has survived 25 years with only a couple of plastic cracks and scuffs.

If you had your headphones in, you might mistake a passing VFR400R for its big brother 750.  The 9/10 scale fairings look every bit of the Honda flagship, but the smaller engine revs to 13,000 rpm, delivering 59 hp.  Upside-down forks were still for racier machines, so the VFR makes do with a conventional front end, with single-sided swingarm.  The dual front discs are 269mm in diameter, and period wheel sizes of 16" front with 18" rear put a nice edge on the handling.  The NC30 is toward the end of the VFR400R development, and has the best looking fairing of the line.

 

Offered by Ohio dealer and RSBFS sponsor Deftone Cycles, this NC30 has covered under 4,000 miles and has great factory graphics.  Clean and complete with a few rubs from its garage-mates, and the owner pictures the crack under the mirror mount.  Notes from the eBay auction:

3,979 Miles (6,405 Kilometers) What we have here is a Type 7 model with Type 1 Fairings. The fairings are factory Honda OEM. So you are getting the upgraded suspension that was offered on the type 7 with the look of the original type 1. Other than that it’s completely original and unrestored. More of a rider than for a collection. Bike needs nothing.  All fluids are fresh.  Shifts and revs to redline perfectly.  Starts effortlessly every time. Some of the mounting tabs are broken on the lower fairings, nothing that is visible from the outside. The upper fairing by the mirror has some cracks, the mirror hides most of the defect. Windscreen is aftermarket MRA. Awesome windscreen. The white on the top of the fuel tank has been re-sprayed with the Honda wings being replaced. Not perfectly done but very presentable. If I was keeping the bike I would be very happy with the paint. Included close up pictures featuring defects. Bike has Vin Matching State of Ohio Title.  NC30-1100*** “Buyer is responsible for their own State Requirements.”  Imported into the States through all legal channels. EPA and Declaration papers provided.

 

The owner's knowledge of the type variations outpaces my own, but the NC30 was offered for three years before being superseded by the Fireblade-styled RVF400R.  Competition in the home market and other progressive licensing countries was heated, and the NC30 reviewed as the best all around, with strong if not leading edge chassis, and standout Honda build quality.  The starting bid is set at $6,800, and you can ask questions of Greg through the eBay auction - here -...

-donn

Featured Listing – 1992 Honda VFR400R NC30
Honda June 27, 2017 posted by

Oddity: 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo

Honda is well known as an engineering company. It's where engineers thrive on unique challenges, novel solutions, and experimentation. It is what brought us such varied hardware as single cylinder 2-strokes and 4-strokes, twins in every conceivable combination and vee angle, V-3 2-strokes, V-4s, inline fours, horizontally opposed fours, and of course a wonderful mix of six cylinder machinery. Somewhere in all of that lies the very rare CX650 Turbo - a one year only model showcasing the pinnacle of Honda talent. Within a year - and with a whoosh - it was over.

1983 Honda CX650 Turbo for sale on eBay

With a longitudinal vee formation, the CX650T utilized liquid cooling, fuel injection and four valves per cylinder. You can think of it as a Moto Guzzi dragged kicking and screaming into the modern age. Honda was really up on their game with this bike, shown by the counter-rotating transmission to counteract the torque from lurching the bike to one side when the engine is rev'd (you BMW riders know exactly what I'm talking about). The cylinder heads are twisted in relation to the motors position by several degrees. This places the intake ports closer to the centerline of the bike and - most importantly - out of the way of the riders knees. Of course the big deal with the T model was the Turbo - a single IHI unit that produced a maximum of 16.5 PSI. This is lower than the predecessor's (CX500T) 19 pounds of boost, but together with increased compression and different valve timing the lower max boost made for better on/off transitions and rideability. Honda created the Turbo line with programmable fuel injection and a multitude of redundant systems to maintain the life of the motor. Largely they succeeded; these things are pretty close to bulletproof.

From the seller:
1983 CX650 TURBO - YOU CAN EAT OFF THIS BIKE - SUPER MINT CONDITION.
HAS BEEN MAINTAINED IN A CLIMATE CONTROLLED ENVIRONMENT GARAGE FULLY COVERED. THE BIKE HAS A NEW BATTERY, FORK SEALS, TIRES, AND ALL FLUIDS HAVE BEEN CHANGED. I HAVE OWNED THIS BIKE FOR MANY YEARS, HOWEVER, HEALTH ISSUES FORCE SALE.

With less than 1,800 worldwide, and only about 1,000 making their way into the US, the CX650 Turbo is a pretty rare bird. The problem is that of those 1,000 US bikes, half (or more, if stories are to be believed) wound up in the hands of schools who used the bikes for tech training. The reason for this is not because they made such great training platforms, but rather because they flat out did not sell. Honda dumped them, wrote them off the books and moved on. The Turbos were a big win for Honda "the engineering company" but a bad bet from a revenue standpoint.

Fast forward nearly 35 years and the supply of these magnificent beasts (all 600 lbs) has dwindled. While most were cared for, these Turbos fall into neglect easily. With no real market to speak of, bikes were dumped for a song and treated as disposable. Today, these are still cult machines that speak to certain individuals. Unloved 35 years ago, largely unloved today. That is a shame, as these are truly unique motorcycles. They pull surprisingly well for their size and weight, and have all the hallmarks of Honda quality. Bidding on this 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo is only up to $4k. There is a reserve in place, and a BIN of - ahem - $16,999 (!). While values for good examples are slowly creeping up to the $10k mark, this appears to be a bit optimistic - even for a super clean and low mileage bike like this. Hats off if the seller gets his price, but I think this unloved-beloved model will need to age a bit further before the market takes that type of notice.

MI

Oddity:  1983 Honda CX650 Turbo
Honda June 25, 2017 posted by

Ride or Restore: 1993 Honda NSR250R SP MC21 for Sale

Some motorcycle enthusiasts are looking for a perfect, time-capsule example of their favorite bikes. Me? I'm glad perfect examples are out there for collectors, but I want something I can ride and enjoy without being worried that a tip-over or low-side or just a few extra miles on the odometer will destroy the value of some pristine collectible. Today's Honda NSR250R SP is a little rough around the edges, with some scratches and scuffs, but it seems like an honest bike, and very solid mechanically.

The NSR250 featured Honda's familiar 90° liquid-cooled 249cc v-twin with a six-speed "cassette" gearbox that allowed owners [or pit crews] to rapidly swap out gearsets to suit different race tracks. Obviously not all that useful on a road bike, but still pretty slick. The NSR may have sucked fuel through a set of carburetors, but it used a very sophisticated PGM-III system that controlled the bike's ignition based on throttle-position, revs, and gear selection.

This particular NSR250R is the desirable MC21 version of Honda's agile two-stroke, as indicated by the asymmetrical "gull-arm" aluminum swing arm that curves on the left-hand side to clear the exhaust's expansion chambers to maximize cornering clearance. The swingarm looks very trick, but helps make the MC21 a little bit heavier than the MC18 that preceded it. Dry weight is still under 300lbs, so even the bike's artificially-limited 45hp will move the bike out smartly, although I'd definitely check with the seller to see if the bike has been de-restricted, as anyone outside Japan will want the bike's full-power available.

From the original eBay listing: 1993 Honda NSR250R SP MC21 for Sale

20,441 Miles (32,898 Kilometers) This is a Very Rare only 900 made Last Model MC21 SP. Mostly original and unrestored.  Perfect opportunity for a budget minded MC21 SP for restoration. All fluids are fresh.  Shifts and revs to redline perfectly.  Starts effortlessly every time. OEM Fairings have hairline scratches and cracks. upper fairing has a broken section near the mirrors and the lower fairing has a section cut out near the expansion chambers along with a couple dents on the fuel tank near the stay, included close up pictures featuring defects. The Red on the tail fairing doesn’t match each other exactly also. No respray or rattle can. Red Magtek wheels are in excellent condition. Otherwise straight from the factory.  Bike has Vin Matching State of Ohio Title as a 1992 model MC21-1070*** “Buyer is responsible for their own State Requirements.”  Imported into the States through all legal channels. EPA and Declaration papers provided.

Bidding is up to $6,500 with about 24 hours left on the auction. If it stays in that neighborhood, it's on the low side for an MC21, but that's in keeping with the less-than-perfect condition. This example is obviously not perfect as described by the seller, but is claimed to be mechanically in good working order. If you're buying one of these and worried about sourcing parts, that may be a weight lifted. Even if you end up on a quest for a perfect set of original bodywork, you can at least ride your machine in the meantime, and this looks like it'd be pretty nice from ten feet, certainly a good place to begin for a restoration. Personally, I'm okay with replacement bodywork, as long as the frame and everything else are clean and straight. Get a decent set of Rothmans replica bodywork from the internet, spend the weekend fitting it, and then ride your little smoker with no fear of destroying a priceless, pristine collectible.

-tad

Ride or Restore: 1993 Honda NSR250R SP MC21 for Sale
Honda June 16, 2017 posted by

Tariff Buster: 1984 Honda Nighthawk S

The 1980s were a crazy-good time for motorcycling. Every major manufacturer was exploring the boundaries of what was possible. Everyone was in search of the silver bullet for performance; be it at the racetrack or the showroom. This was a heady era for Honda, as they pumped out new motorcycle variants seemingly every year. From two strokes to turbos, singles to six-bangers, Honda tried nearly everything. One of the surprising successes during this time was the Nighthawk S. Intended as a sporty commuter (comfortable, reliable, low maintenance), the Nighthawk S impressed with it's power and handling prowess. Today, the Nighthawk S remains a beloved, bygone model.

1984 Honda Nighthawk S with 2,500 miles!

Between 1984 and 1986, the American motorcycle scene was a mess. Harley-Davidson, the only remaining American manufacturer at the time, was flirting with bankruptcy like it was a super model. Using patriotism as their platform, H-D convinced Congress (and then President, Ronald Reagan) to increase the tariff on imported motorcycles greater than 700cc. This 10x tariff increase ensured H-D - who only produced bikes above the 700cc threshold - could be price competitive. Enter the Nighthawk S: Originally designed as a 750, the Nighthawk's 700cc air-cooled, inline four cylinder featured 4-valves per pot and hydraulic valve lifters - a nod to reducing the maintenance interval. With a willing motor, a solid chassis, 16" GP-inspired front wheel, comfortable seating position with bikini fairing and shaft drive, the CB700SC (as it was formally known) became the do-it-all hot rod - equally home in the canyons as it was for commuting.

From the seller:
HONDA'S all-new "HOT-ROD", the title given in 1984 by the trade magazines and publications. The Honda CB700SC was produced specifically for the US market. It was during this period steep tariffs were levied by the US International Trade Commission on motorcycles with engines larger than 700cc, With this tariff Honda provided an America-style, shaft-drive sport-custom that honored another American custom, a hot-rodding machine. Take a look at the specifications provided by a Cycle Guide Magazine of February 1984, you will see then why it was Honda's Hot-Rod.

If you are a serious buyer looking for an exceptional-almost new condition, original no aftermarket modifications, with possibly the lowest mileage NIGHTHAWK S of less than 2500 miles, for sale by original owner, well then this is your bike.

Performs and runs like new, seeing is believing! Note: Original magazines as show in photos will be provided to buyer.

Although produced for only a handful of years, the Nighthawk S is not rare from a "limited edition" marketing perspective. In fact, it sold rather well during its years of availability; American riders loved the combo of sport and reliability (the opposite of what Harley was offering) and they voted with their wallets. However like many UJM machines, finding a loved and cared-for one some 33 years later is nearly impossible. These Hondas are as reliable as your average chunk of cement - and are about as prone to leaking (again, the opposite of H-D hardware from the time). They are also pretty economical as far as older bikes go, making them excellent "buy and hold" motorcycles.

The verdict is still out in terms of whether or not the NightHawk S will ever be a collector bike - but like all UJMs, anything 30+ years old with low mileage and this clean will always have a market. This auction starts at $4,999 with a reserve in place. The Buy It Now option is available for one buck shy of $7,500. That is a good bit more than the sub-$4k that this model went for new, but good luck finding another 2,500 mile example in this sort of condition. Check it out here, and then share your thoughts and experiences with the NightHawk S in our Comments section. Good luck!!

MI

Tariff Buster: 1984 Honda Nighthawk S
Honda June 13, 2017 posted by

Big Bike Spec in a Small Package: 1990 Honda CB-1 for Sale

Performance motorcycles have gotten so powerful and fast that they're only even rideable by normal humans because of sophisticated electronics. If 99% of riders need traction-control just to keep their 190hp superbike on the road, couldn't it be argued that they're too powerful? ABS and all the other safety systems are amazing, but should be there just in case the rider gets it wrong, not to keep the rampant power under control. Are riders of these bikes actually having more fun? Maybe, but doesn't something like today's Honda CB-1 make much more sense for most riders?

Plus, if you do get dusted on a canyon road, you can always blame the machinery: "Hey look, this is a 400cc motorcycle! What do you expect?" If you're on a new BMW S1000RR, you really have no excuse for being slow, other than self-control and sanity. The 1990 Honda CB1 doesn't have that same problem, however, with good handling and modest power. The displacement screams "learner bike" but the specifications argue otherwise:

399cc liquid-cooled inline four, sixteen valves actuated by gear-driven overhead cams. Six speed gearbox. The combo was slightly detuned from the CBR400 for street duty, but it put out a respectable 55hp and could push the machine to 118mph, certainly plenty for the street and even a bit of freeway cruising. It lacked the CBR400's twin-disc brakes up front and uses a steel unit instead of the CBR's aluminum beam frame, but the engine is still used as a stressed member, increasing rigidity and keeping weight reasonably low.

From the original eBay listing: 1990 Honda CB-1 for Sale

Overseas they have a tiered licensing system.  50cc, 125cc, 250cc, 400cc, 750cc, and above.  Most young men cannot afford above 400cc, so the 400cc market is full of hot rod bikes.  This is one such bike.  Water cooled DOHC 4 valves per cylinder, direct gear actuation of the cams, no cam chain, six speed transmission, red line at 13,500 rpm, power kicks in at 9000.  Top speed is over 100 mph.  The effect of the photography makes the paint look like it is robin's egg blue, but it doe not look like that in person.  The blue paint is a nice metallic finish.  Accessory windshield is quickly removable.  Heated grips have been added.  Accessory adjustable handlebars also.  All stock otherwise.  Very clean, except for some pollen on the gauges in the photo.  Was my wife's bike but she does not ride it enough to justify keeping it.

There are no takers yet at the $1,900 starting bid and there are just over 24 hours left on the auction. It looks like it's in good shape, although that windscreen needs to go. Like the Hawk 650GT, the CB-1 has developed quite a cult following and with very good reason: unlike the CBR400, the CB-1 was officially imported, but few were sold and they're hard to find now, although they still don't sell for all that much.  It's the Goldilocks of motorcycles: not too big, not too small. And the price is just right.

-tad

Big Bike Spec in a Small Package: 1990 Honda CB-1 for Sale