Still-Boxed Straight-Six: 1981 Honda CBX

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This uncrated “1981 Honda motorcycle” could be nothing more special than a CB200 based on its seller’s description, though we immediately recognized what’s visible through the disintegrating cardboard box as an exotic and desirable straight-six CBX. The provided frame number (JH2SC0600BC301688) also confirms that the bike in question is indeed a penultimate model year example of Honda’s flagship bike of the era, a bike most memorable for its incredible twin-cam, 24-valve, 105 hp 1047cc straight-six and the otherworldly sounds it produces. The seller says very little, though they do believe the bike to be complete apart from its title–this won’t necessarily prevent one from getting the bike on the road for the first time, though unused or not, it’s still going to need some mechanical TLC before you’d need to worry about registration. Find it here at Obenauf Auctions Online near Chicago, Illinois with no reserve. Special thanks to BaT reader Speedbump for this submission. Photos don’t provide a whole lot of detail, but the bike does look complete as claimed. Chances are it’s going to be very dusty, and anyone serious about getting it ready for the road will certainly have a lot of brake and fuel lines to inspect and likely replace due to oxidation. The bike appears to be equipped with a full fairing, and fortunately the abundance of intact plastic wrap seen on many components should provide at least a little protection to paint and decals. Tires too are likely ready for replacement. Here’s a look at what the bike should look like once cleaned up and assembled. Here’s the crate’s shipping label–note that the bike appears to have been in Illinois for decades now. And finally, here’s Leno discussing his identical ’81 in-depth. The whole video is worth a watch, but for those impatiently waiting to hear what a long pull through the gears sounds like, go skip ahead to about 12:00.

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