Requiem for a Rust Pile: The Sea Beast Prequel

| 4/11/2019 3:56:00 PM

Honda frame
Deconstruction of the Sea Beast complete.

Since the proclamation of my intentions to become an AHRMA racer, time seems to have slipped into overdrive. My to-do list gets longer, but more specific, all the time, and I frequently find myself taking meals (read: snacks) in the garage. Nitrile gloves serve to protect my food from my greasy hands.

In the inaugural post of this series, I Am a Racer, This is My Machine, I outlined the series of events that lead to my being in possession of three CB350s, and my subsequent decision to race the amalgamation of those motorcycles. However, as noted in that post, two years had passed between the acquisition of the first bike and my invitation to the world to come into my garage (via the internet, of course) and see how a vintage race bike is built. While that process is most assuredly moving towards a raucous conclusion, I thought it would be prudent, if not interesting, to take a step back in time and examine the two years following the initial purchase, during which I polished my skills with a drill and easy-out set, and made up myriad new swears. At this point you might be protesting “But, Mr. Peabody …” but I can’t hear you, so into The Wayback Machine we go.

Rusted motorcycle parts
Just a little bit of rust.

Despite being uninitiated and possessed of only intermediate mechanical aptitude, I understood that complete disassembly of one or more of my project motorcycles was in order. The thought process was that I would remove every removable part of the original bike, and then replace what was lost, ruined or never present with bits from the two donor bikes. So far this model has served me relatively well despite the lack of appreciation I once had for cataloging. At this point I would like to interject a piece of advice for anyone considering undertaking a project like this for the first time: catalog everything. Take photos, take notes, take your time. If a screw or bolt is broken or has to be drilled, photograph it, measure it, note its home. I did not perform this step efficiently and it has bitten me 95 percent of the times it has resurfaced. Hear me now, or hear me again later as the echoing voice of I Told You So in your head.

Removing paint from Honda frame
The frame, partway through removing the paint.

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