Saturday, 7 September 2019

Another newcomer

Here's the CX500 again, that I showed you a while ago. This week, it's circumstances changed somewhat: The bike's story is that it was bought by my son, who has a keen interest in older bikes but also has a full time job, wife, a four year old, two year old and one more imminently arriving - he struggled to find the time to sort it out & went and bought a brand new RE Interceptor which he loves - the CX has come to join my small stable of Ariels.

It's a 1978 'Z' model, first registered in April 1979 - so it is quite an early one and if any of them become collectable, it will be the early ones. Its got the barrel shaped front brake master cylinder; black tabs where the Comstar wheel spokes join the wheel rims; black plastic one piece radiator shroud; no flyscreen and a rear drum brake. The steering lock is on the left side of the headstock and the engine breather pipes from cylinder heads to T-pipe junction thence to airbox: all adds up to a genuine 1978 bike.

It's done 31,000 miles and has had the camchain tensioner modification. I rode it 27 miles across Norfolk to collect it and it goes well...

It's got a few faults:
  • the tacho doesn't work - probably the cable, notoriously difficult to get to
  • the tyres are Dunlop Arrowmax, 100/90-19 on the front and 110/90-18 on the rear, both manufactured in 1998. They are hard - you can feel it white lining and twitching in corners. I'll be replacing those shortly
  • the sidestand was stiff - now that I have lubricated it it is wobbly. Worn, and the spring is weak
  • the gear lever is bent and I cannot easily get my foot under it
  • the fork gaiters are loose (it should have the short wipers, typical of the late 1970's) and the forks need their seals replacing; they probably need oil too
  • the offside rear damper is leaking
  • the helmet lock is missing
  • the toolkit is missing
  • it probably needs an oil & filter change and the coolant replacing
  • it needs a good clean and a repaint in several areas; various bits need replating
It arrived with a top box and a horrid rack - my son replaced the rack with the correct grab rail and repainted the tailpiece. It also had this peculiar seat - the PO was a quite a short bloke and had this low seat made for him. Son Thomas replaced it with an eBay seat and recovered it.

He also cleaned the carburetters, replaced the battery and cleaned up the stator connections, chasing a misfire. Since it runs fine for me, I guess he found it.

This is a 1978 Honda brochure. After much deliberation, questions to the VJMC and to the CX Forum, I have realised that I also need some stripes and to paint the nose cowling Helios red...

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