1974 Rickman Honda CR750

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This 1974 Rickman Honda CR750 was purchased by the seller nine years ago as a new old stock kit and assembled to period specification by a noted European motorcycle restorer. The seller states that considerable effort was made to create a bike that is an accurate representation of what was available to enthusiasts of the time, including correct-style Dunlop TT100 tires, English “Stadium” bar end mirrors, and original nickle-plated center and side stands. Utilizing many of the mechanical components from a Honda CR750, the bike is powered by an 810cc inline-four that has been fitted with Keihin carburetors and is paired to a 5-speed gearbox. This Rickman is now offered with a clean New York title in the seller’s name. The Rickman brothers made a name for themselves by building nickle-plated frames that were both lighter and more rigid than the factory offerings of the time. Buyers would get a frame, swingarm, forks, fiberglass bodywork, wheels, brakes, clip-ons, and rear sets and then install a donor motor and electrics. This example was recently on display at the Lars Anderson Transportation Museum as part of the “Beauty of the Beast” exhibit. Photos of the build process can be seen in the gallery below. All fiberglass pieces are in finished the original orange gel coat, and the only painted pieces are the side covers and headlight shell, which were not originally supplied by Rickman. The tank has been coated with Caswell two part epoxy to prevent damage from modern fuel blends. All instruments and switch gear are correct Honda parts, and the wiring harness is a fused unit sourced from a late production CB750. About 8k miles have been covered since the build was completed. The engine is a 1971 K1 Honda CB750 inline-four that has been rebuilt with an 810cc kit and a Norris R cam grind. Rebuilt 28mm Keihin carbs with velocity stacks improve the mid range power, and new old stock HM300 pipes with modified baffles give a throaty exhaust note. The frame retains its original nickel plating, which the seller mentions is completely intact. This bike also includes a rare Japanese market nickle-plated side stand. Brakes are the correct Lockheed single piston discs both front and rear. The wheels have been rebuilt with spokes that are one gauge larger per a 1975 service bulletin written by Craig Vetter that mentioned racers were having a problem with broken spokes. Tires are modern versions of the period Dunlop K81 TT100s. The seller states that this is a very authentic example and has provided a brief-walk around video below.

Rare Rickman: 1974 Honda CR750

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This 1974 Rickman Honda CR750 (VIN 2F4148G) is a special bike featuring great cosmetics nose to tail, with several rebuilt parts and a 60cc displacement increase over stock. The Rickman brothers were known for cobbling together interesting and capable bikes, and these Honda-based machines were considered to be some of the best they offered. The seller says it starts right up, rides well on the road, and has spent the last 12 months on display in the Larz Andersen Automotive Museum. Find it here on eBay in Mount Kisco, New York with reserve not met. A nickel-plated frame constructed from Reynolds 531 manganese molybdenum is the backbone of this bike, and was known to drastically improve handling characteristics over the stock Honda frame. Fiberglass bodywork is said to be original, and wears a gel coat finish in Competition Orange with no obvious flaws. The seller says that the fuel tank has been lined with epoxy, and that the wheels have been rebuilt with larger-gauge spokes. The cockpit is pretty straight forward with simple controls, large dial (OEM Honda) gauges, and clip-on style handlebars. An upgraded wiring harness with fuse box was installed at some point, but otherwise everything appears to remain much as it was when new. A little over 8k miles are shown on the odometer. The four-cylinder is a 750 Honda from 1971 that’s been bumped up to 810cc. The seller notes good midrange punch by way of a Norris cam, 28mm Keihin carbs, and screened Velocity stacks. The exhaust was replaced with NOS HM300 pipes, and the factory baffles have been modified according to the seller. We can appreciate why this bike was chosen for display at a museum, but would much rather see it in action out on a track or some local twisties.

No Reserve: 1991 BMW K1

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This 1991 BMW K1 shows 70k miles and has been in the San Francisco Bay Area since new. The K1 was BMW’s flagship sport bike and is powered by a fuel-injected 987cc DOHC inline-four paired to a close-ratio 5-speed gearbox. Described as a presentable example that could be ridden home by the purchaser, this example is largely original apart from a Fox shock absorber and Alcantara seat material. It was acquired by the seller three years ago, and a level 2 service was performed within the last 2,500 miles. Current mechanical needs include a leaking fork seal. This K1 is now offered at no reserve with a clean California title. The fairing design was wind tunnel developed and offered a drag coefficient of .34, which was the lowest of any production bike up to that time. The bike was capable of over 140 mph and is equipped with four piston Brembo calipers and ABS. Age related damage includes dull paint as well as some abrasions to the fairing from a stationary drop. Several scratches, paint chips, and minor cracks are detailed in the gallery below. Some corrosion is visible on the aluminum cases and drive line. The fuel gauge does not illuminate. The 987cc DOHC inline-four made 95 horsepower when new and is said to start easily, run well, and pull hard with no oil loss. Owners manuals, the original tool kit, recent receipts, and extra keys are included in the sale, as are factory soft cases with rain covers. The seller has provided videos of a brief walk-around and a cold start that can be seen below.

Momentum Machine: 1990 Honda NS50F in Rare US Spec

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This 1990 Honda NS50F is one of only around 200 exported to the US for that model year, the only it was offered here. Despite its size, these are street legal bikes capable of around 60 MPH (depending on the weight of the rider). This one looks to be in pretty good shape despite non-OEM mirrors and a scratch or two, and the seller says it runs very well and is fun to ride. Brakes are by drums at each end, and this one doesn’t even have the optional tach–motorcycles don’t come much simpler, and that’s a big part of the appeal. Find it here on Craigslist in Lompoc, California for $2,500. Special thanks to BaT reader Andre for this submission. The seller notes 3,400 miles, and adds that the oil injection pump has been disabled–pre-mix will need to be added at a 32:1 ratio. The tires, chain, and battery are all reported to be new, and paint finish on the little single and expansion pipe still looks very good. Just in case you didn’t notice the lack of fins on the barrel, huge Liquid Cooled scripts on either side of the tail are there to make it clear. The non-factory mirrors don’t gel with the rest of the bike too well, and NOS or even good used replacements probably won’t be easy to come by. That’s a pretty small nit to pick though, along with a few scratches on the tank. A tach was optional, so shifting the 6-speed gearbox will need to be done by ear. Tiny two-stoke bikes can be a lot of fun, but at well under 200 pounds soaking wet, you’ll want to ride this one an empty stomach for best results.

Original-Owner 1979 Honda CBX

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This 1979 Honda CBX shows just 8,549 miles and was purchased new by the seller in January 1979 at Long Beach Honda in southern California. Powered by a 1047cc DOHC inline-six paired to a 5-speed, the bike is said to remain very original and has always been garaged. Ridden mostly on weekends, it spent most of its life in Huntington Beach, California before recently relocating to Arizona. The seller states that it has received yearly oil and air filter changes, as well as fresh tires and batteries when necessary. This CBX is located in Overgaard, Arizona and is sold with an extra carburetor set along with a clean California title in the seller’s name. The bike still wears factory paint, though the front fender has a few scratches and there is visible corrosion on some components. The bike has only been ridden by the seller, primarily on California’s Ortega and Pacific Coast Highways. The original mirrors, front turn signals, and an aluminum rack were removed for a cleaner look, though they are included in the sale. Always garaged, the seller states that this CBX has never been down and that the original paint is not faded. The fork lowers, rear shocks, and center stand exhibit some corrosion from years of coastal riding. The seller states that the seat is original with no tears or splits. The 1047cc DOHC inline-six made 105 hp when new and featured a 9,500 rpm redline. The engine has required only periodic servicing over the years and has never been rebuilt. The cam chain and drive chain have been adjusted routinely, but the carburetors have never needed tuning or synchronization. Cycle World Magazine recorded an 11.55 second quarter mile pass at 117.5 mph in 1978, along with a 140 mph top speed. The header pipes show some corrosion from years of heat cycling. The owner’s manual, factory service manual, and some period literature are included, though the rear turn signals and tool kit have been misplaced and are not. An extra set of used carburetors were purchased when the bike was moved to Arizona as the higher altitude was thought to require different jetting. The seller reports that the bike runs well on the factory settings, though the spare carbs will also be included with the sale.

No Reserve: 620-Mile 1981 Honda Trail CT110

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This 1981 Honda Trail CT110 is a reported two-owner example that shows just 620 miles. It is said to have been owned by a retired military officer who hauled it in his motorhome for travel around campgrounds. Power is provided by a 105cc single-cylinder engine paired to a dual-range 4-speed “auto clutch” gearbox. This bike is offered at no reserve on behalf of the current owner by his son-in-law with an original manual, factory un-crating instructions, and a clean Washington title. Tahitian Red paint features Honda graphics, with a few small dimples on the fenders and headlight ring. Minor scuffing is evident below the “Trail 110” logo on the right side. The rear luggage rack, chrome exhaust pipes, and brightwork appear in good condition. A spare gas tank and helmet holder are mounted below the rack. 620 miles are shown on the odometer, with approximately 19 of those added by the seller. A walk-around video is provided above. No mechanical issues are noted on the 105cc 4-stroke air-cooled single cylinder engine, and the oil was changed two months ago. When new, the fuel economy was listed at 140mpg and the engine made 7.6hp at 7500rpm. Uphill climbs are enabled by the 2:1 ratio gear reduction box, essentially creating 4 “low” and 4 “high” gears. A driving video can be viewed above, and numerous clear photos further detail the bike’s condition below.

100% Power Increase: 1960 Allstate Jetsweep

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This 1960 Allstate Jetsweep (VIN 083984) is a rebadged Cushman 722 Pacemaker as marketed through Sears catalogs and storefronts between about 1957 and ’60. The scooter has some fantastic Jet Age styling, and the seller has sympathetically restored and upgraded its mechanicals while leaving everything else original–an excellent decision. Originally fitted with a sub-5 HP engine, there’s now a specialist-rebuilt 8 horse engine in the stock tail location, and we appreciated that it’s still a Cushman unit. Find it here on eBay in Excelsior, Minnesota with a $3,750 BIN. Special thanks to BaT reader Robin S. for this submission. From the ad: “This scooter is a ‘survivor.’ It’s in remarkably original looking condition and very, very straight. I bought it last summer as a winter project, and I was going to restore the entire vehicle but could not bring myself to touch any of the bodywork. As they say, ‘they’re only original once,’ so I instead overhauled and rebuilt virtually every system on the bike. I also have about 100 hours of time spent totally and carefully cleaning every square inch of the scooter, and they very sympathetically putting it back together with all new moving parts, hoses, seals, cables, etc. From the outside it looks like 1960, from the inside it looks like it just left the factory.” All accessories including the light, speedometer, and horn are said to work. Brakes and tires are new, and hubs have been rebuilt with new bearings. In back, the original engine has given way to a more powerful (by around 100%) Cushman Husky item of 8 HP. The seller says it was rebuilt by one of the premier Cushman specialists in the country, adding that it “Starts easily, pulls strong, and sounds great.” Sale includes a part manual, shop book, and engine rebuild manual, as well as over $2,200 in recent receipts for parts and labor.

BaT Video Inspiration: The First Baja 1000 – 27 Hours to La Paz

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“Tired dirty and happy they finished the first running of the NORRA Mexican 1000.” The winning time, set by Vic Wilson and Ted Mangels in a Meyers Manx was 27 hours and 38 minutes. The 50th Anniversary of the 1967 NORRA Mexican 1000 is only three weeks away. “Some day when a broad modern highway runs the length of the Baja California, these men, these conquistadores, will be remembered with the same respect as those pioneers who crossed the American plains more than 100 years ago.” Check out the conquistadores here and be inspired. https://youtu.be/vpNlLzwxY4U

Pacific Northwest BMW Buying Adventure: Part 4 – Cascadia Classic Photo Lessons

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Thanks for the great response to the Pacific Northwest BMW Buying Adventure: Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3. The story continues… I can spot a Cascadia Classic listing on BaT from the 1/4″ thumbnail on my smartphone. The photographs have a clean, professional look that sets them apart. One of my goals on this trip was to visit Portland, Oregon to watch Cascadia’s Bob Waldman photograph a car. Bob graciously agreed and told me to meet him at his shop at 11:30 AM since he likes to start shooting at noon. As a photographer, the idea seemed crazy to me. I would never shoot a car at noon in bright sunlight. But I checked my assumptions and decided to watch and learn. It soon became apparent that noon in Portland during the winter is usually bright overcast, which allows Bob to shoot cars without any shadows. Watch and learn, Bob knows his stuff. Bob’s galleries are always impressive. Check these out: http://bringatrailer.com/listing/1978-chrysler-lebaron-town-country/ http://bringatrailer.com/listing/1968-volvo-220-wagon/ When I arrived Bob was ready to go, he looked at the BMW 535is, nodded approvingly, then pulled the 1971 Saab 95 Wagon out of the garage, and we were off. Bob drove to his favorite photo location, parked the car, and was quickly at work. He travels light: a canvas camera bag with a Nikon, a short telephoto and wide-angle zoom lens, a tripod, and an apple box. His background as a commercial studio photographer is apparent–if the sun pokes out from behind clouds, he patiently waits for another cloud. He uses the apple box to get a higher view of this part or that. He plants his tripod in one location and photographs the car from the same side in the same light. Pro tip: for overview shots, the camera remains in the same place, and the car gets moved. Bob also photographs the interior completely from both sides. It is this methodical attention to detail that separates Bob from other photographers. Back in his office, he wants to look at each interior shot to compare the light and shadows and pick the better image. Even more importantly, he includes photos of flaws and the galleries are not overly processed or filtered so they convey an honest representation of all aspects of the car. After shooting for 60 minutes in a breezy 39 degrees, we went back to Cascadia Classic to thaw out with hot coffee. Bob offered a fine cigar, and I accepted. I asked him what type of cars are his specialty: “I love all cars: Citroens, Volvos, Mercedes-Benzes from the 60’s through the 80’s, four-door sedans. A lot of guys won’t look twice at a four-door car. I love them. I also love well-preserved low-mileage survivors. Unrestored, original condition cars are always in demand. Like the license plate frame says, ‘Follow your bliss.’ That’s what I try to do.” A native of Kansas, Bob has been taking photos nearly his entire life. He graduated in 1988 with a Media Arts degree from Kansas University. A year later, he moved to San Francisco to hone his craft as a professional photographer. He worked in a large commercial studio where he learned the art of lighting and the business of taking pictures. After five years in San Francisco, he had grown tired of looking for parking everywhere he went. He and his girlfriend Liz loaded up his Volvo wagon and moved to Portland, Oregon. They married in 1995 and have a 16 year-old son. “Since moving to Portland, I’ve had about 30 daily drivers in the 23 years I’ve lived here. I’m fickle, that’s how I got into this business. I would drive my wife crazy coming home with a new old car to replace the one I bought the month before. And each one was going to be the one I was ‘keeping!’ One day she said, ‘you’re miserable shooting for Nike, why don’t you start selling those crazy old cars you keep buying?’ So, I moonlighted selling classic cars for a year and made the change for good in 2001.” Of all the daily drivers you’ve owned, what was your favorite? “A ’37 Dodge Businessman’s Coupe tops the list. It was so cool to drive a car that was close to 80-years-old and use it like it was just a car. Every morning, rain or shine, summer, and winter it always got me where I was going. One time the fuel pump failed, but it let me know by spitting little bits of fuel; still working enough to get me home and not leave me stranded. I took my kid to school in it every morning. I would tell him ‘you’re probably the only 13-year-old IN THE WORLD that is going to school every day in a ’37 Dodge.’ After the tenth time I said it he would just nod.” “Part of the fun of doing this the way that I do it is the discovery process. I get to live with them, learn them, know them, that is what’s so special. When they sell, it’s like I’m making a connection with the owner. They get excited about the same things I get excited about.” What have you learned over the years? “The people I sell cars to, they don’t need these cars, they want them. They either owned one years ago or wanted one years ago. It’s a memory for them; a positive memory that I get to fulfill. I love that.” “I think that a lot of people make the mistake of disparaging cars because they’re not desirable in the marketplace; too ugly, too slow, or generally unloved. You may own a highly desirable and valuable car, but it can be an unhappy car. You may own a malaise era barge that most collectors laugh at, but it’s a happy car. You know the difference once you’ve lived with it for awhile, they’re like people, and your relationship with them reveals their personality as time goes on. It’s all about that relationship, so it doesn’t matter what the market’s perception is, it’s your perception that’s important. You just have to listen to what the car is saying to you; everything else is just noise.” Take a look here for how the Saab station wagon gallery turned out: 1971 Saab 95 Wagon. After decades of car buying, what advice do you have? “I believe that you can never pay too much for a good car, and you can’t buy a bad one cheap enough. You’re always better off buying the best that you can afford. Buying a project and coming out ahead at the end very rarely happens. And even if you do, there are other costs not accounted for: stress, disappointment, frustration, impatience. Buy the car that’s already done; you’ll be out enjoying it instead of pulling your hair out.” I enjoyed spending some time with Bob and watching his conscientious and thoughtful approach to his work. BaT is fortunate to be the outlet for his unique finds. We look forward to highlighting more of our great sellers. But for now, we were headed north to pick up our team members arriving at Seattle Airport.

Missed Opportunities: 52-Mile 1981 Benelli Sei 900

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This 1981 Benelli Sei 900 (VIN BGB01062) is said to be entirely original down to its factory-fitted Pirelli tires, and condition is essentially indistinguishable from new thanks to an incredibly low odometer reading of 82 kilometers. The seller says it’s been stored properly over the past 36 years or so, and promises that it’s ready to be driven despite the old rubber. Though these 900 versions were released in response to Honda’s CBX, the original, 750cc Sei of 1972 was the world’s first production six-cylinder motorcycle, and both models remain some of the most exotic and interesting bikes of the era. Find this one here on eBay in San Francisco, California with reserve not met. Reads the ad: “A remarkable, all-original Benelli 900 Sei–never registered, only 80 kilometers total. As-new in all regards, stored with care for over 30 years. Cosmetics are excellent with perfect chrome, polished alloy, and rich Italian Racing Red paintwork. All the original, unique badges are in place and in as-new condition.” Here’s a quick look at the cockpit and through the shallow fairing. Note the odometer–82km works out to just about 51 miles, all of which could have been added pre-delivery. Unfortunately the seller offers no clues as to how the bike came to be so little-used and well-preserved. Again, from the ad: “Mechanically cherry with extremely low mileage and proper storage, ready to start and entice with one of the most exhilarating exhaust tones ever created. Original Pirelli tires, Campagnolo wheels, dual-link roller chain drive and Brembo brakes all A-1. Ready to ride and enjoy or continue to preserve in as-new condition. Comes with complete Italian documentation. Will be sold with a current California title.” These later bikes lacked the 750’s radical flared six-exit trumpet-style exhaust system, but still sound great like the seller promises. It’s a shame this one’s never been enjoyed properly, but the opportunity to see one as it left the factory nearly four decades later is certainly pretty cool regardless.