ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Bikes > Old's Cool
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 05-16-2011, 10:31 PM   #1
jkbff OP
n00b
 
Joined: May 2011
Oddometer: 4
80 Honda cm400a

Hi all,

Just joined because I finally got my hands on my dad's old red cm400a... Wasn't sure where to put this thread so I figured I'd start where I had been reading about the other cm400s. Just moved this bike from storage where it had been for over 9 years. My dad was a member of the El Zagal Rangers (the shriners) and they used these bikes for their parades. I remember cruising around on this bike in the late 90's and early 2ks so I figured this would be my first starter bike (it was free). Now keep in mind, I am absolutely new to this world (am only 24), don't have my permit yet and my Mother is absolutely pissed that I dug this 'two wheeled death machine' out of her presumed grave...

I don't have pics yet, didn't think to take any, but here is what I do know: It is red and has 3400 miles on it. I know it has a black quicksilver fairing and I absolutely hate it. I want the original chrome light and turn signals. If the bike will be worth fixing, I want a national cycle street shield (I can justify this because the windshield is cracked anyways). I do know the fuel tank is shot, and I either need to have it braised or replaced. I was able to open it once, but then, went to open it again, and the weather protector thingy seems to have gotten lodged and won't allow the key in.. Not sure how to fix that... I did see one tank on ebay, but I am not sure if I should get that yet because the bike had been sitting for 9 years, so I wanna give it a look over. I presume the carbs need to be cleaned, and the fuel line seems dried out. I know the tires need to be replaced... My dad insists that should the first thing I purchase, but I'd rather get it running first before spending that money. I mainly plan on using it around town, but would like to be able to take it out to my grandparents' farm which is at least 35 miles of dirt/county roads (maybe I should revisit the street shield and get the plexifaring?). The brake master cylinder won't hold fluid, the pin is stuck open or whatever so it just dumps out.. The handle is free-moving but I presume that is from not being ran and needs to be bled? I need the left brake handle and would like a new switch assembly because the horn button is broke and we wired an old gigantic pushbutton (I actually remember wiring that as a kid). The right side cover needs to be painted because of the gas leak, and the original saddle bags are faded, so I am going to see if I can find a decal kit when I get a new tank and have the entire bike painted, granted the engine checks out. I did replace the battery already... Dad is worried that this is the bike that had the shot magneto but if I remember correctly, we swapped it out before it went to storage. I know the bike has ran off and on like 4 times since it was put away, but that was it because the leak was so bad, the fuel would just dump out and the fix-a-tank kits wouldn't work. I need new mirrors, and the signals on the fairing are busted, but like I said, I want the factory lights back, I love that look.

Now, I am not a mechanically savy person, I mean I cook and work on computers for a living. I can read directions, and as long as I have pictures and a place to vent my frustrations I am fine... I work at a liquor store, and the owner is a part owner/investor in a local Customs shop, so I do have access to them, but that comes at a cost, and I am not sure if I get a break for being an employee of his or not... I'd like to do whatever I can on my own before sending it off. My cousin resurrected his deceased dad's 68 Triumph Bonneville (less than 2500 miles), and we are hoping to take a cruise soon. I will probably ask questions about that bike down the road as well, but am going to start with mine. I know I need to change the oil, air filter etc, but before the consumables are replaced, what all do I need to start looking for?

I did see another thread about the cam chain etc, so I intend on following that, but do I have to replace the seals if I open the housing? The wiring needs a bit of work, because they had toggles to switch between the toot-toot horn and a siren and to switch from the turn signals operating normally and switching to a 'hazard' mode for the parade.

I feel this will be a great bike for me to learn on and get used to, then will probably graduate up to a larger cruiser. I am a very stocky person and so crotch rockets/dirt bikes are out of my range, but there is a valkyrie rune I have my eye on that I can get for next to nothing a few years down the road, if this project goes well.

Thanks in advanced for any replies, and from what I have read on this forum so far, I think I will feel at home here.

jkbff screwed with this post 05-16-2011 at 10:44 PM Reason: added stuff...
jkbff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2011, 08:22 AM   #2
MODNROD
Perpetual ponderer
 
MODNROD's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Midwest, West Oz
Oddometer: 1,961
#1. Strip and clean the carbs/lines/tank. They will be full of crud. If unsure how, go to wreckers and ask for an old shitty no-good carb for free, so you can learn what's inside, and look at lots of pictures.

#2. New plugs/oil/oil filter/air filter. At least now it has 1/2 a chance of running.

#3. Leave the wiring alone until AFTER you have it running. Check spark until that's there, but leave the upgrades/resto bit until it goes.

#4. Before it runs on the street, it needs to stop 1st. Get the M/C resleeved, calipers/lines, etc, cleaned, really cleaned.

#5. Your dad's right man. DO NOT ride the thing down the street until you have new rubber. Try to imagine how much grip your car will have if your running round blocks of wood on it, then have to stop.......


Or you could just try to ride it, crash thru your neighbours hedge, end up in the next neighbours carport, and send us photo's of your head jammed up his exhaust. That would be funny!
__________________
This Signature line is intentionally left blank.
MODNROD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2011, 08:33 AM   #3
Sniper X
De Oppresso Liber
 
Sniper X's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2006
Location: Central New Mexico, 7420ft above sea level
Oddometer: 33,300
How about we write up and make a sticky with all the "I just picked up a bike that has been sitting for X number of years, what do I do now thread".
__________________
" The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything."
Straight Out Da Trailah!
Sniper X is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2011, 08:40 AM   #4
MODNROD
Perpetual ponderer
 
MODNROD's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Midwest, West Oz
Oddometer: 1,961
As long as everyone sends in cool pics of things in bits for me to peruse during the long night-watches, I'm cool with that!
__________________
This Signature line is intentionally left blank.
MODNROD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2011, 05:56 AM   #5
jkbff OP
n00b
 
Joined: May 2011
Oddometer: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by MODNROD View Post
#1. Strip and clean the carbs/lines/tank. They will be full of crud. If unsure how, go to wreckers and ask for an old shitty no-good carb for free, so you can learn what's inside, and look at lots of pictures.

#2. New plugs/oil/oil filter/air filter. At least now it has 1/2 a chance of running.

#3. Leave the wiring alone until AFTER you have it running. Check spark until that's there, but leave the upgrades/resto bit until it goes.

#4. Before it runs on the street, it needs to stop 1st. Get the M/C resleeved, calipers/lines, etc, cleaned, really cleaned.

#5. Your dad's right man. DO NOT ride the thing down the street until you have new rubber. Try to imagine how much grip your car will have if your running round blocks of wood on it, then have to stop.......


Or you could just try to ride it, crash thru your neighbours hedge, end up in the next neighbours carport, and send us photo's of your head jammed up his exhaust. That would be funny!
By junk carb, you mean a car carb?

Also, when we unloaded the bike and were pushing it up to where it is sitting now, it seemed like the front brake was hung up and dragging... I am hoping that is just from sitting and someone squeezed the handle or something?

As far as plugs, oil and filters, are there any recommendations? I see wix makes an oil filter for it (24939) so I will probably go that route unless someone says otherwise? But as far as the rest goes, I have no idea what kind of weight of oil to use or what kind of plugs to get. Should I replace the wires for the plugs, or are those ok?

The brake lines and master cylinder stuff seems logical, but then again, that doesn't mean anything.

As far as the tires go, I do plan on replacing them, once I hear that the engine runs without a hitch, but what kind of tires would be recommended for pavement use and a bit of dirt road use? I am hoping the cheaper the better. I don't have a huge budget for this project right now.
jkbff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2011, 03:13 PM   #6
jkbff OP
n00b
 
Joined: May 2011
Oddometer: 4
Quick question/bump -- What kind of oil should I use and how much? Where can I find that info out?
jkbff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2011, 03:27 PM   #7
ivantheterrible
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Hillsborough, NC
Oddometer: 507
I use rotella t 15-40, i think a lot of others do as well. There are a lot of opinions on the subject, but you'll be fine with the rotella t.
ivantheterrible is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2011, 03:28 PM   #8
SilkMoneyLove
Beastly Adventurer
 
SilkMoneyLove's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2007
Location: Minneapolis
Oddometer: 1,807
My advice

Since you are good at computers. is to do a search and download a free 1980 CM400A manual in PDF. I just did this for my CX500. This will give you most of the info you need. Back in 1980 a lot of bikes were spec'd for 10w40 oil.
SilkMoneyLove is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2011, 08:39 PM   #9
jkbff OP
n00b
 
Joined: May 2011
Oddometer: 4
K, so didn't change the oil cause I couldn't get a filter today... But I did decide to use a syringe to inject some gas in the line since the tank ... dumps out as soon as you fill it... I wanted to see if the bike would start. It didn't. A buddy was helpin me, we took the plugs out to ground them to see if there was spark and there wasn't. I called Dad since he was the mech on these bikes and has an uncanny way of remembering anything he has ever taken a part. He said that we should check to see if there was corrosion on the stator.. we took the cover off, fumbled around with it, couldn't decide if we should take it off or not in case something with timing was messed up... We did, however, disconnect the battery and try to kickstart the bike to see if any energy was generated... I managed to get the lights to glow a bit... Is it safe to assume the stator is OK? Would that even be where he was talking about, because he said whatever was under what cover that had an armature for the magneto, we assumed this is what he meant, because we figured if we took the right cover off, oil would dump out.. What would cause me to not have spark?

Any replies are appreciated, and I am reading the clymer book now as well.
jkbff is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 09:38 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014