'82 - Cabernet

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NotSoLilCrippseys
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#31

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

For most who see it, the Cabbie appears to be a basket case right now. The back end is off, tank is out, no carbs, and more. It's a look of abandonment, really. I'm struggling to find the right metaphor, but I see myself as setting the table for the build.
  • Tires arrived on Friday
  • Seeing new tires had me in the shed pulling wheels from the '83 donor, which now sits on the center stand and an ammo box
  • While on the front wheel case, I pulled the '83 forks and gave them a good look: decent compression/rebound, not leaking oil (but with oil in them), no cracks in dust seals, pretty good on the shine, and little pitting. I'll flush the oil, refill, get 'em bouncing down the road, and address issues that might arise after that.
  • Coolant tube gaskets are on order and somewhere in the US Mail system, my hope for a continuation of a "no leak" scenario and an offering to the Gods of good heads and head gaskets
  • Carbs are cleaned and ready to be bolted up
  • Rear master cylinder rebuild kit is here, and the cleaned master is painted
  • Battery tray is primed for paint
  • I washed and waxed up the trim bits, including the bags. Things cleaned up quite nicely, though it's an old repaint with numerous scratches and little chips here/there - especially on the bags.
  • Bits to go naked are also slowly appearing in a box: decent headlight bucket and ears (cut blinker tabs, dammit!); Honda front blinker candidates (will see how they go); and a couple ideas for rear blinkers
  • Ordered up some brake pads
  • Pulled valve covers from the '83 donor and cleaned them up, as they don't have the oxidation issues of the '82 covers
  • Started in on a solo seat and fiberglass foundation concept that's mostly a mess in my head right now
Not a lot in terms of pics, but here goes.
PXL_20210623_224227079.jpg
PXL_20210702_173256519.jpg
PXL_20210702_182958179.MP.jpg
PXL_20210702_205347770.jpg
I'm going run with the '83 forks and the '82 calipers. I think the '82 rear caliper may be the right call, though perhaps the same caliper was used in both years. If the '83 is different, perhaps moving all the parts over means I should also move that caliper.

From what I think I've read about the '83 wheel bolt-up on older 1100s, I'll do well to move over the axle, spacers, and maybe(?) the caliper bracket to ensure alignment. Unless someone here waves me off, I'm also going to move the final drive from the '83.

The big unknown right now involves the exhaust, as recent posts have shown.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#32

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

No photos this round. (Maybe I spent a couple hours doing nothing?)

Just back from a week out west, I set four seemingly achievable goals for the day - before my planned mid-afternoon ride.
  • Test fit the '83 rear wheel and final drive to make sure I don't mount a tire on a wheel I can't make work
  • Rebuild the rear master cylinder and get the rear brake working, to test braking with the '83 wheel on the '82 frame
  • Swap in the '83 forks
  • Bolt up the '82 front brakes, and test fit the '83 front wheel
The rear wheel seemed to bolt up just fine, and everything seems to fit nice and tight. First goal met!
It was smooth sailing on the rebuild. I filled the reservoir, primed the rear master, bolted up the rear brake line, and... nothing but pressure. Wha? Strange.

I went around to the caliper, opened the bleeder, affixed the Mityvac, and sucked and sucked... nothing but vacuum. Hmm.

I unbolted the brake line from the rear master, and fluid flowed freely out of the master. (What a mess!) OK. The master IS working.

I'm still in "diagnostics" mode, but it seems clear the brake line has a blockage not easily cleared by the hydraulics of the master. Also, I tried air and seem unable to get it through either.

Not wanting to miss out on a good day for a ride - and having already missed the sunniest part of the day - I removed the brake line from the swingarm for a deeper dive and called a timeout.

Next round, I'll bolt up a known unobstructed line to make sure I'm not missing something obvious in either the master or the caliper. Then I'll sort out the blockage - if that's the issue - hopefully, satisfy myself that the '83 wheels will work nicely on the Cab, and move on to the next set of challenges.

I should begin budgeting for new lines. Right now, though, the budget has taken a big hit over the last month: new tires, Harley Sportster pipes I'll somehow bolt up to the remnants of the exhaust, timing belts, and so many more small-ticket necessities like coolant pipe gaskets - in addition to the necessities up front, as I'm not planning to reattach the fairing.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#33

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

I'm now at a crossroads on this bike. It's not a big deal, but I need to decide how far I'm ready to go to swap in the '83 forks and wheels.

I had a mostly successful evening. I got the the rear caliper and master sorted (though that rear brake line is still clogged with something). OK.
PXL_20210712_221007762.jpg
Then, on the front end, I was merrily pulling bits - remove calipers, wheel, and forks. All was well!
PXL_20210712_223557577.jpg
PXL_20210712_225410493.jpg
And the install of the '83 forks went well, and the wheel went on easily. OK. Looks good.

The thing I didn't notice anywhere in what I had read about putting the '83 forks on the '82 Wing is brake line length. I'm about 3" short for a comfortable fit. Not good.
PXL_20210712_231518451.NIGHT.jpg
I had to unbolt the splitter to feel remotely comfortable bolting on the calipers to check the '82 caliper fit on the '83 forks and wheel. (This was just a "proof of concept" to make sure I don't mount new tires twice by discovering after the fact that I can't get the '83 fork and wheel to work on the '82.)
PXL_20210712_232654370.jpg
In the process of swapping over all those parts, I got up close and personal with the '82 forks. I noticed a few not-so-bad things about them: They're holding air. There's oil in them. And there's no evidence of blown seals. Sure, the aluminum is heavily oxidized, and there's a bit of pitting on the uppers. (But there's some pitting on my '83 forks, so that's a wash.)

And here's the crossroads:

Do I run with the original plan and ante up for a set of brake lines - made custom to be a bit longer than the '82 lines up front?

Do I say, "I'm not going to be pushing this bike to any kind of design limit, Comstars aren't bad wheels, and maybe the '83 bits are best used on a different build"?

I'm not feeling this bike as a kind of "dream project." Maybe it's a build I ride a bit and move along. Sticking with the basic build is maybe the way to go. If I fall in love with it in a year, I can always "update" the forks a bit.

At 6:30, I was all in on the '83/'82 hybrid move. By 7:30, I started mulling over a backtrack.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#34

Post by hatchward »

You can run the 83 wheels on 82 forks
1982 GL1100 Std - Daily Driver
1982 GS750SZ Katana - Mostly Unmolested
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#35

Post by DUGG »

I would think that the 83 calipers unlinked would work just fine. If that helps with the brake line situation.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#36

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

hatchward wrote: Tue Jul 13, 2021 11:52 am You can run the 83 wheels on 82 forks
Thanks.

I thought I had read something about shims needed to make the '83 wheel fit on the front. Perhaps I'm confusing models.

As I've been moving forks and wheels all around, I can throw on the '82 forks again, try to bolt up the '83 wheel, and check braking easily enough.

Scheduled for tire mounting this evening, so it's time to make a decision.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#37

Post by Track T 2411 »

I understand being budget minded, but investing in a nice set of custom stainless steel brakes lines ($125) to replace 40 year old rubber lines makes sense to me... Just sayin'
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Current Rides:
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'Layla' - '81 Standard w/dealer installed fairing and Hondaline bags.
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'Quikie' '81 gl1100I back on the lift, project with the step-son!

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'81 gl1100I barn find aka "Josie, the farmer's daughter." (almost comatose build)
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#38

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

I hear you, Track T. They're on the list.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#39

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

I've been at it quite a bit this past week.
  • Got tires mounted on '83 wheels
  • Polished fork tubes & reinstalled forks; going with the '82s, at least for the time being
PXL_20210713_192620083.jpg
  • Replaced coolant tube gaskets (4 o-rings; 2 sticky ones at the heads)
PXL_20210716_195049222.jpg[/attachment]
PXL_20210716_201103651.jpg
  • Replaced timing belts and polished the covers
PXL_20210717_160852708.jpg
PXL_20210717_170140524.jpg
Belts had been done before with OEM Honda product. Someone had marked the pulleys with sharpie to help line things up. I don't know if others use some sort of tacky glue to help hold the rubber seal around the covers, but I have not used anything. It can be tough as a one-person job.

The big hope now is that replacing the coolant gaskets eliminates that water issue AND no funny business emerges that might be connected to a head gasket or head.

Next up is valve adjustment, carb install, and tank install. Barring a head/head gasket issue that didn't show itself back when I first fired up the Cab, this project is well over the hump. I'm amazed to think that I might be able to register and ride it before September. (Heck, once my son gets back, we may be able to put it on the road by August - probably not.)
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#40

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

Wow! Time flies. I didn't realize I hadn't put up a progress report since mid-July.

I took the plunge on a Harley Sportster exhaust conversion and finally have it sorted out.

My auto mechanic handled welding shortie Napa reducers (2" ID to 1.75" OD) to the headers. I mocked it all up as best I could, and he tacked the reducers on so I could test it before he finished it all up.

On Friday evening, I bolted up the pipes and started to dial things in. I ended up using the original mounting brackets, enabling me to retain the stop for the center stand. I'm pretty pleased about that part.

There's a pretty narrow window between clearing the center stand and getting under the bag mounting brackets, but things came out better than I imagined.
PXL_20210731_170343304-one.jpg
PXL_20210731_170403407-two.jpg
PXL_20210731_170428397-three.jpg
I did have to do some bending/cutting of the brackets - and there's a bit more to do to really lock things in.

Getting it all symmetrical is more than a little challenging, and I still have work to finagle it all - after I cut and paint the brackets. But both sides are within about 3/8" of each other on length, sweep, and angle out.
PXL_20210731_223224495-four.jpg
I'm going to have to put a heat shield on the bottom of the bag mounting brackets, but I have some aluminum I think I'll use.

(Not sure what's going on with the photos getting inverted, but I was unable to fix it even by inverting, resaving new filenames, and uploading again. Alas.)
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#41

Post by DUGG »

Looks like it came out good. Easy enough to add a heat shield under the bags that deflated the heat. I’m curious how much your mechanic charged to weld it up?
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#42

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

DUGG wrote: Sat Aug 07, 2021 9:21 am Looks like it came out good. Easy enough to add a heat shield under the bags that deflated the heat. I’m curious how much your mechanic charged to weld it up?
At initial consult, it seemed like I'd get out around $50. In the end, it was $100 total, which is a bit less than one shop hour. I think they factored in the 10 minutes of consultation, the 5-10 to tack weld the reducers so I could test it all out, and then the welding itself. The reducers left a huge gap that needed to be filled, and he tested it to make sure it didn't leak water. Total: $50 for Sportster mufflers (plus the drive/fuel/tolls), $100 for welding, and $10 for eB... used Harley clamps. Better than $400.

I bolted it all up with new crush washers on Saturday evening and ran it through heat/cool cycles to cure the VHT header paint. You know it: the copper crush washers were hiding and reluctant to come out.
PXL_20210806_222051136.jpg
It sounds pretty good. It isn't mellow like the originals are, but it's not as loud as my 650 with stock pipes either.

But... In the heat treat cycle, I sprung a leak at the right coolant line o-ring into the head and at the fitting to the head. This is the OPPOSITE side of the leak I had when I bought the bike. These are newly installed Honda parts, and I was super careful about fitment. I've run the bike on/off with water - no overheating - for maybe an hour total since those were installed, but this was the first run with fresh coolant. Then the leaks went away. I'm going to order more gaskets AND watch things. I need to buy another o-ring for the water pump cover/lower rad hose attachment point, as that mating surface has a drip-drip-drip.

I adjusted and synced the carbs late on Sunday, with help from my father-in-law, who supervised by gesticulating and grunting as the Hg levels jumped/fell through the vacuum adjustments. It's sounding pretty darned good. He's an old rider, had a GL1500 about a decade ago, and kept telling me it sounds good enough.

Daylight at the end of this tunnel, and it isn't a train coming my way.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#43

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

I've been busy - at work, mainly. This has meant a bit of a stall on notable bike progress. But it's been happening.

Last week, I rebuilt the front calipers with all new bits, including SS pistons. I had hoped to avoid a full rebuild of the calipers, and the rear looks to have been done in the not-too-distant past. The fronts, though, just didn't pass the sniff test, even after I worked them over (in/out) with a c-clamp, wood, and fresh fluid.

The week before, I worked up the headlight bucket, signals, and other electricals. It's a hodgepodge scenario on the signals, with VT1100s up front and what I think are '70s CB750s on the rear. I drilled out the original license bracket/taillight to bolt in the rear signals.

I'm still waiting on delivery of my second set of coolant line gasket/o-rings, and the bike leaks coolant as it heads into the right head - sometimes.

Today, I decided I was close enough for a shakedown run up and down my 2-mile road. Easy enough, some twisties, and the ability to get up to 60 or so - if one wants to risk the ticket.

Cabernet in the wild, 2 miles from home.
PXL_20210821_202731470.jpg
There's a limit to what one can tell on a four-mile ride, but I noticed a few good things:
  • The shifting is much less clunky in this '82 than it is on the '83 Blue Phoenix. Not sure if it's the difference between hard and easy living, luck of the draw on builds, an '82 vs. '83 thing, or maybe a rolled odometer on the Blue Phoenix that means she has 155k on her.
  • She seems not to stumble on acceleration under load - or not notably.
But there's always a problem - or several - isn't there?
  • While preparing to add the grab bar and secure the rear fender, I somehow sheared off the left shock mount stud. I've removed it to pull the bags and such, to get at the gas tank, to put on the rear bags and mock up the look/fit with the Sportster pipes. And I've screwed it back on. I don't think I ever torqued it up in any serious way, as I knew I needed to get it off/on another time or three. I think I'm pretty screwed on that mount and am really not sure how to proceed. I've posted to the tech discussion, hoping pearls of wisdom will trickle on down to me. I'm fearing I'll need to either get to a welder or drill the whole "stud" out and use a bolt. Damn.
  • Brakes are fine, but I want to keep an eye on them. For some reason, it feels like fronts may not be releasing as much as I'd like - a bit more than warmish rotors mean I need to be vigilant.
  • Those VT1100 front signals may look nice, but they hit the frame as the bars approach full lock. Moving them up avoids that problem, but then the backs of the signals hit the tank. I need to meditate on this issue.
  • Electrical. I've got something crossed up in the headlight bucket, as I get the neutral light in neutral AND whenever I pull the clutch lever. This makes for some fun "guess if you're really in neutral" games, which aren't really so fun. It's probably simple enough, but I need to get in there and poke around some more.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#44

Post by NotSoLilCrippseys »

Gaskets to address my coolant leaks arrived this week, and I stole a few hours to work on the Cabernet today.

I replaced the small o-ring seal in front of the water pump, which has been dripping a bit.
PXL_20210828_173728097.jpg


And I pulled the right coolant tube to address the leak above the head. It's pretty clear that pinched o-ring was part of my problem - despite my "super careful" approach to installing the coolant tube o-rings earlier - was a pinched o-ring.
PXL_20210828_171348902.jpg
It's possible that was my only issue with the leak, but I also re-replaced the gasket that mates the tube to the head.

I ran the bike through several fan on/off cycles - probably 30+ minutes, running it up above 5500rpm a few times. No issues on the coolant yet (fingers crossed).

I also got serious about my little electrical issue: the Neutral light was coming on whenever I pulled the clutch lever.

I had thought I crossed some wires when mounting up the bucket and put some real time in that nest - including a couple trips to the wiring diagram.

Then it was goldwing forums to the rescue, as the issue I had is an obvious symptom of a... wait for it... failed neutral diode.

The hard part was finding the darned thing on the bike. After that, easy peasy - because the gods saw fit to give me a spare - from our '83 GL1100 donor.

Here are a couple shots of the neutral diode in its native habitat.
PXL_20210828_211331219.jpg
PXL_20210828_212005242.jpg
Pull the airbox, and it's a plug and play swap.

I also relocated the front signals just below the Honda emblem. If my measurements are roughly accurate, I have at least 3/4" between the bottom of the rubber signal mounts and the top of the fork travel. I'm a little nervous about mounting them in that area, so I'll be watching fork compression and clearance carefully once I get her on the road. I do have about 3/8" of room between the signal and the frame at full lock, and it's all below the faux tank - so that's good.

And I'm awaiting delivery of my tap and die set to hopefully not screw up a fix on the broken shock mount stud. After considerable thought and suggestions from the NGW tech forum, I'm going to start with the least dramatic fix: tap a slightly smaller hole in the mount, don't go especially deep into the mount, and use a bolt and lock washer to keep the shock in place. First, the nut/bolt mostly keeps the shock on its post, so it's not taking all the weight. I don't want to risk weakening the part that does bear all the stress. Second, if that approach doesn't work, I'll be able to size up and drill deeper if needed. Third, if it all unravels on me, I'll drill out through the frame and run a bolt out through the hole. I think that's something of a last resort.

I'm really itching to plate this bike and run her 1000 miles to get a feel for the ride. That little 4-mile stretch last weekend was barely a tease.
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Re: '82 - Cabernet

#45

Post by Whiskerfish »

She looks Marvelous and has been selected as the NGW Bike of the Month for September!

Congratulations :guitar :guitar :guitar action1 action1 action1 anim-cheers1 anim-cheers1 anim-cheers1 shakehands shakehands shakehands dancr dancr dancr
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and a whole garage full of possibilities!!

Psst. oh and by the way CHANGE YOUR BELTS!!!!
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