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Honda Shadow 750 Cafe Build

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I wanted a simple speedometer with basic functions and didn't require a lot fiddling about with calibrating and sensors and stuff...so I got this cheap Chinese model. Don't know how well it'll work, but it's the right size. I made the bezel out of some aluminum I had on hand but I think I'm going to make another...that one ended up too large around the clock and I hate that hole in it (it was scrap). I might shoot it black first, though, as I'm a little concerned that if I make it too small it'll be too flimsy.
I think I'm going to running a small fly screen...that'll help with the wire clutter.

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And I'll have it known that old road signs are among my favorite things! I've been using them for years for other projects. I needed a chain guard to lift the brake line up. This was a simple job and I think once all the sign goo is scrubbed off and it's brushed it'll look pretty slick...or I got a nice yellow sign without too many bullet holes in it I might make another one and leave the sign stuff on it. I might drill some speed holes in it haha
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Use a portion with bullet holes in it.
Saves weight and gives it that gangsta cred.
 
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I remade the bezel. Took my time and did less with the grinder and more with the die cutter. Still not perfect but it looks a LOT better I think. Got it wired up as well. Going to play around with making a little flyscreen this weekend mostly to cover the cable clutter and the white backside of the clock, but it'll also give me a neat little place to mount the GPS antenna. I'm hoping the GPS actually works...won't find out until I'm moving, though.

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Decided to strip and brush the chain guard. All my signs are too big, not enough variation in them to tell that it's actually part of a road sign. I think it looks good, though.

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I was going to stick with the rough rebar shifter but I REALLY wanted the rearset to work...just couldn't sort it out when last tackled. I sat and looked at it today until I was able to find some kind of inspiration...and I was able to. I had to chop up the shift links and shifters from four other bikes to make it work but I made it work. It does have a little more "flop" than I like but it shifts and that's the most important bit. I can put a guide on it to keep it from flopping around but I'm worried it might bind the link. I'll see how much of a problem it is once I'm riding it.

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It was a beautiful day so I rolled both bikes out of the shop (plus I expected to have some company that it pays to have something interesting to talk about or else we talk about politics).

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The CX500 is a skinny little thing but it still makes the Shadow look like a toothpick.

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I even took her out for a little ride to go through the gears and to make sure it all felt "right". Video ends abruptly because my GoPro is acting up...I use to love this little Hero 3+ but the last several times I've used it the video and sound quality were poor and it kept shutting off. I need a mount that'll work with my phone.


I also broke it! I was trying to keep from burning through the rod and in the end it screwed up my weld...oh well. I rewelded it but got it a **** of a lot hotter so it should be good now.

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...and discovered a coolant leak! Not sure where it's coming from yet.

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The VT1100 has a coolant crossover tube between the cylinders that will leak as the orings age but it doesn't look like the leak is in that area if the VT750 engine even has a similar crossover.
 
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Yeah the 750 has that same fitting but this is coming from the front of the engine. I "think" it's leaking from the hose or the hose fitting but I'm not certain yet. I'm going to have to fire it up and sit and watch the area and see what happens.
 
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You get an oil change! And you get an oil change! And you get an oil change! And you get an oil change! And you get an oil change (and a tire fill with slime)!

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Also sorted out my coolant leak...couldn't get a decent picture but it was a hose clamp not quite tight enough on the forward water port. Once clamped and refilled it was mostly solid...I sorted out that I was also leaking what I thought was coolant but what turned out to be condensation being forced through a seam...as well as oil dripping from numerous points. I expected to have to do lots of gaskets. Went to check my oil, though, right after shut down and there was a very audible hiss of pressure...my crankcase was not venting. Turns out my valve covers were swapped and the PCV doesn't work on the front cylinder. I'm like 90% I got it off that cylinder but possible I botched it. Works now and that's what's important!
 
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I've always hated the whole "look at my Jim Beam coolant reservoir" type stuff but my reservoir is busted (the leak) and I had to improvise. I have a proper aluminum one coming lol

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I also went shopping last week! Some meth addict was selling a Predator 7kw generator for $50 and as it turned out he had a set of ZX6R forks and wheel sitting there...so I bought those for $20, too! The wheel has a little bend in it but the forks and rotors are straight. A friend of mine who deals with classic bikes picked up a ton of wheels at a swap meet and he had a K5/6 GSXR600 wheel in the mix...doesn't help him none but it'll be a little profit for me. Not much all told, but it'll fetch most of what's left in finishing out the shadow!

Best bit, though, was a found that wheel on the bottom there at a hole in the wall shop in Odessa (BTS motorworks, they sell on eBay, fun guys)...RC46 5.5" wheel in good shape for $100.

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I'm looking at wrapping the tank in vinyl, but not sure yet. I like crazy abstract stuff, rust/patina finishes, but also clean solid colors. Makes it hard to pick. I keep shifting from a glossy silver, flat black, and then off to something weird. I've sent a seller on eBay a request for this print but without the skull...I like the background but the skull is silly.

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I also got the horn hooked up but didn't take a picture...sorry...
 
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I did laugh a little bit at the gun cleaner aerosol can you made use of being a gun person. But it works for now. The bike is looking good
 
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Finally got to spend half an hour on it.

It actually handles pretty well. I expected some quirkiness but it's fine. Turn in is obviously not like a sportbike but it's not muted like a cruiser...which, really, when the geometry it's about how I expected it to be. I'm sure there's a technical term for it that I just don't know, but the back seems "heavy"...like every turn is on the rear wheel. Rear tire is old, hard, and absolute rubbish...and it rubs on the swingarm lol...I'm thinking it'll be a bit better with a fresh tire (on the way).

I will have to invest in some heat shielding for the header pipes, and probably ceramic coating as well. If you're moving at all there's a big enough air gap that it draws the heat away easily, but if you stop for more than thirty seconds you can feel it. I sat on it idling and it took five minutes to get to a "I can't do it anymore" point lol. Luckily I will not ever have to deal with traffic.

Vinyl should be here this week for the tank and fender. It's going to be that punisher skull graphic but the print is big enough that I don't think it'll show. I'll go back this winter or something and do something else.

Lots left to do but it's at a point where it's all the little things.

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