Author Topic: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project  (Read 1413 times)

Offline eight0

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1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« on: December 03, 2018, 03:23:39 PM »
Hi All,

I am a new member and having posted on the introductions board I thought I should officially start my project thread.
(Shamelessly copied and pasted from my intorduction post)

I have not had chance to go over the bike properly yet,  I was told it has compression but I haven't tried to turn it over yet as I want to soak some oil in the barrels first.
Wires are a rats nest, missing one coil, clutch is very stiff - could just be the cable, Carbs are all there and are unseazed, though I took one of the bowls off and its full of varnish. Tank has a big dent on one side, possibly a hole, need to do some more poking with a screwdriver. Wheels look un-dented and appear straight. Headers are ok and un-dented but the collector is toast and the exhaust is missing
All in all looks like I've got a big project on my hands. The clock is showing 56k so I think I may need to do a full engine rebuild on this one - which for me is going to be interesting as I've only ever rebuilt carbs before. I have restored one bike before - A Yamaha XS2 and although I did a lot of work on it,nit was running when I got it so I didn't delve into the engine further than replacing seals and rebuilding the carbs so I'm going to need a lot of help from the gentlefolk of this forum to guide me through it.

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On the advice from members in my introduction post, I am going to try and start the bike before I go any further. I've got the carbs ready to clean and have started collecting bits I need.
So far I have:

another coil to replace the missing one
Some cheap oil
oil filters
new plugs
new plug caps
cheap battery
compression tester
aux fuel tank

I'll need to temporarily wire it up to get the bike running as the loom is a mess. I'm no electrician but after a bit of head scratching I drew up this diagram.. will it work? I'm not worried about wiring in the alternator or reg/rec, (I don't think it need them)? as I just want to see if it will run. I wanted to check it has oil pressure which is why I added the light and thought I may as well add the kill switch and starter switch in too.

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I'll give the carbs a clean up this week, not a full strip down just yet - just enough to hopefully get it running.





« Last Edit: December 03, 2018, 03:25:26 PM by eight0 »

Offline SteveW

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2018, 03:46:36 PM »
Make sure the negative lead of the battery has a very clean connection to earth.

Mine didn't so the current went down the small earth wire in the main loom and melted it.
1974 CB550 K0
2000 CBR929RR Fireblade
1966 Lambretta LI150 Series 3
1980 RD350LC

Offline eight0

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2018, 04:29:40 PM »
Make sure the negative lead of the battery has a very clean connection to earth.

Mine didn't so the current went down the small earth wire in the main loom and melted it.

Ouch! ok I'll be getting the dremel wire brush attachments out then.

Offline hairygit

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2018, 05:08:05 PM »
Can't see any reason why it won't work electrically. As has already been mentioned, make sure the earth lead is clean both ends and where it attaches to the frame/engine. Best to use the kickstarter with the plugs out until you are sure oil is reaching the rockers/ valves, the oil light may extinguish a fair while before it reaches the cam area, safer to kick it rather than hit the battery too hard to begin with.

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If it's got tits or wheels, it's hassle, if it's got both, RUN!!!

Offline eight0

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2018, 08:58:15 PM »
Got the carbs apart. 3 of the float pins came out ok.. one is stuck in there. Rather than break the post I've seen on another thread that a decent automatic centre punch can work so i've ordered one.

Another issue is one of the needle jet (main jet)? housings has badly deteriorated, looks like I might need to find another carb.

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Stuck pin
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Corroded
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Offline Nurse Julie

  • 1973 CB750 UK K2.1977 CB550/4 Mongrel Brat. 1978 CB400/4.
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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2018, 09:19:05 PM »
You probably know anyway but be careful using any type of punch on the float pins, the towers snap for fun 😪😪😪
Im a Nurse, trust me, this won't hurt.....much !!!

LINK TO MY CB400/4 ENGINE STRIP / ASSESSMENT AND REBUILD...NOW COMPLETE
http://www.sohc.co.uk/index.php/topic,14049.msg112691/topicseen.html#new

Offline mickwinf

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #6 on: December 03, 2018, 09:53:27 PM »
use some heat on the post pins and be very careful. I have some carb bodies if you need one if i have the correct one, what number carb is it?
Love the 500/4 and 550 own 2 at the moment.

Offline eight0

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #7 on: December 03, 2018, 10:00:21 PM »
use some heat on the post pins and be very careful. I have some carb bodies if you need one if i have the correct one, what number carb is it?

Ok I'll give some heat a go.
The one with the deterioration is the third one in from the left of the bike. The one with the stuck pin is the first one on the left. Not sure how the numbering order goes

Offline mickwinf

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #8 on: December 03, 2018, 11:27:02 PM »
i have a set with one carb worse than yours, i think on mine it was the end one but cant remember which one, will check and let you know. they are numbered from the left side of bike as you sit on it, the carb with the choke control is number 1.
Love the 500/4 and 550 own 2 at the moment.

Offline Oddjob

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #9 on: December 04, 2018, 01:17:25 AM »
Best tip I can give you is buy a decent set of JIS screwdrivers, all the cross headed screws which are JIS will have a small punch mark on the head, JIS screwdrivers are a perfect fit for these screws and you risk rounding them off with a normal Phillips screwdriver.

Decent set for a decent price here.

https://ruggedroads.co.uk/epages/00cbb604-5d1c-407e-8207-580e14387ec5.sf/en_GB/?ObjectPath=/Shops/00cbb604-5d1c-407e-8207-580e14387ec5/Products/%2212705/6/8%22
Don't play stupid with me, I'm better at it

Offline Seabeowner

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #10 on: December 04, 2018, 08:35:31 AM »
Some solvent first and then +1 on the gentle heat. I use a flattened off nail and a light taps with a tiny 2-3oz hammer. That is about the most moth eaten main jet tower I've seen. Always on US bikes, I've not seen much of it on UK bikes.
Phil
1971  CB500K0
1973  CB500K1
1975  CB550F1
1978  CB550K

Offline Trigger

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #11 on: December 04, 2018, 08:44:58 AM »
Cut down between the post and the float with a very thin blade on a dremmel, then drill the remains of the pin out of the post. Tricky but not impossible  ;)

Offline eight0

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2018, 12:25:17 PM »
i have a set with one carb worse than yours, i think on mine it was the end one but cant remember which one, will check and let you know. they are numbered from the left side of bike as you sit on it, the carb with the choke control is number 1.

Thanks Mick! ok its its number 2 with the corroded jet post then, if you have a spare housing your willing to sell that would be great!
Hopefully I'll get the pin out of Carb 4 and that won't need replacing...

Best tip I can give you is buy a decent set of JIS screwdrivers, all the cross headed screws which are JIS will have a small punch mark on the head, JIS screwdrivers are a perfect fit for these screws and you risk rounding them off with a normal Phillips screwdriver.

Decent set for a decent price here.

https://ruggedroads.co.uk/epages/00cbb604-5d1c-407e-8207-580e14387ec5.sf/en_GB/?ObjectPath=/Shops/00cbb604-5d1c-407e-8207-580e14387ec5/Products/%2212705/6/8%22

Thanks Oddjob, Bought a set of Vessel JIS screwdrivers for my last project.. eye-wateringly expensive but saved me on a few occasions.

Offline mickwinf

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #13 on: December 04, 2018, 01:48:37 PM »
ok this is a number 2 carb, looks to be in sound condition. Yours for a donation to the site
Love the 500/4 and 550 own 2 at the moment.

Offline eight0

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Re: 1976 CB550F1 (what have I let myself in for) Project
« Reply #14 on: December 04, 2018, 04:13:57 PM »
ok this is a number 2 carb, looks to be in sound condition. Yours for a donation to the site

Thats brilliant Mick! Thanks so much. I will send you a PM.

In other news.. I managed to get the stuck float pin out with the help of an auto punch. it freed up the pin in the towers but was still well and truly suck in the float so I had to cut the float and pin with a dremel, but its out!

Are the aftermarket floats and pins from DSS any good? I don't really want to pay £50 for an OEM one.