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From the Owner

The ups and downs of owning a classic motorcycle


Clarence De Barrows' 1970 Honda CB750

Clarences-Bike 

Clarence aboard his well-kept 1970 Honda CB750, which he just recently pulled out of storage. 

Rider: Clarence De Barrows, Walnut Creek, Calif.
Age: 80
Rides: 1970 Honda CB750

Clarence’s story: “Your recent piece on Clarence’s BMW moved me to write as I, too, am a Clarence with a classic bike. It is out of the ordinary to come across another person with the name Clarence nowadays, but a story involving that other Clarence who also had an original classic bike that, like mine, was also kept in its original state is doubly unusual; therefore, the motivation for this story.

My classic is a 1970 Honda CB750 that I bought new in July of 1970. Actually it was a sort of a wedding gift from my wife, Adrienne. We had been married in June of that year and she financed the purchase, as I would never have been able to afford the $1,500 the bike cost from my meager funds.

I was mesmerized by that smooth-running Honda and rode it off and on for more than 10 years, at which time it had 34,000 meticulously maintained miles on it. As we advanced in age our lifestyle changed and the Honda took a back seat to other interests, but because Adrienne had made it possible for me to have it I just couldn’t sell the 750, so I put it in storage.

Fast-forward 30 years. I’m now an old man, a kind of classic myself, and my thoughts returned to the Honda. I retrieved it from storage and took it to Charlie’s Place (an advertiser in the Kickstand section of your magazine) in San Francisco to have the experts there make it roadworthy again. Suffice to say, they did a beautiful job. Many thanks to Charlie and Brandon. Now the classic 750 with the classic rider — I’ll be 80 in June — can, once again, be seen happily motoring around the San Francisco Bay area.”

bill geissler
8/2/2013 3:53:54 AM

Is this the original pre K1 CB50 with the sand cast heads and the independently not synk'd carburators ?


robert m
7/7/2012 3:14:34 AM

I also wound up with a "70 CB 750 which I rode from DC to Nova Scotia. In Southern NS I got into a rat race with a nut in in a Camero at speeds up to 100 mph. I'm lucky to have made it to 71 years old. On the way back south , still; in NS, I came over a crest in the 2 lane road and found the whole road filled with SHEEP! I managed to lock up both wheels and avoid making lamb stew of us all. A little farther along I came on half the road taken up by guys drying kelp for market. All in all it was a great trip./


calvin roberts
7/5/2012 6:09:15 PM

Clarence; I enjoyed reading your story and your Honda is quite nice. I do hope that your Adrienne is able to enjoy and appreciate the pleasure you have derived from that bike over the course of your lives, wherever she may be. Finding a woman who appreciated motorcycles during that era (when the "Hell's Angels" and "Easy Rider" were what influenced most of the non-riding public opinion of those of us who rode in the 60's and 70s) was not an easy task. You found a real gem of a woman I'm sure if she was willing to subsidize that gorgeous Honda of yours. Nicely done on both accounts!