Sunday, February 8, 2009

A little history and a RD 400 in slow motion

So the whole reason I'm doing this project is the little past I had with my old RD 350. When I was a 13-14 years old my neighbor had one sitting around in his shed. For a year or two I bugged my Mom to let me buy it and get it running. The answer was always a BIG NO!!!!
Later another kid I knew who had a license bought it. He got it running and it seemed like every
Saturday he was pushing it home, and always with a different excuse why it was dead.
I've had two other two stokes in the past and it didn't take much to tell it was too rich with the oil mixture. I never told the kid what was wrong with it for the hopes it would end up with me for a low cost. If it was dead it was cheaper for me to buy.
He finally gave up on it and my neighbor gave him his money back. I bugged my Mom so bad she finally gave in and we made a deal to sell it in the spring after I had it running right! ;)

That's the good half of the story, now here's the low.
Spring has come and the bike is set up properly. I did find the oil injection pump set twice a fast as it should of been. I would ride it up and down the driveway all day on the weekends. I was 15 and only had a permit for a car, so it was killing me not to go farther.

Saturdays my dad would go to work second shift. My mom would clean the house all day and I would go unnoticed. I took off riding around on the main streets for a few hours and then I took it down a side street towards home. Just my luck there was a cop sitting doing radar. Doing the speed limit I was home free, so I thought. He pulled me over and I had no clue why.
Then he asked where my glasses were. I honestly didn't know it was a law.
So after being very polite to him he let me push it home but he arrested me.
My mom was so pissed not only for being arrested but because she had to ride in the back of the squad car with me. Mom didn't drive so it was the only way my Dad wouldn't have to leave work.
He gave me three tickets for no license, glasses and improper plates.
The other suggestion was to sell the bike before the court date and it would go better.

The bike was sold in a week or two for two hundred bucks. Some stoner kid showed up and his girlfriend paid for it. I was wreaked watching it go down and away from the driveway.
The court day went good and the cop told the judge I was a good kid that just did something wrong. WOW I was stunned. Got away with court fees and a warning from the judge to never come back.

So later a guy I worked with gave me a offer to buy his ill running Rd 400 and couldn't pass.
This bike was really in rough shape but I brought it home for 150 bucks. I bought some stuff to make it a little better but gave up on it. This was before internet got rolling and E-bay.

Two years ago my Mom died and it sparked all the old memories and of the RD 350 incident. So this is why I'm getting this old thing going. I just tinker and think of her while I work on it.

Bike is looking pretty good up front with it's new headlight. all new hardware including rubber bits. parts painted and wiring hidden.

Steering damper bolted up and it's need on this bike.

Electrical center taken apart and needing a sandblasting for some fresh paint. Also I need to find a new fuse box cover. Hopefully E-bay for that.

messy but that will change.

Polished Allen head bolts look way better than the old rusty phillips head bolts.
So clean and fresh.

Grabbed some KYB shocks off of E-bay that are from the 70's and the guy actually raced with these for a season on a RD 350. They seem pretty stiff but they should work better than the JC Whitney junk that was on there.

The next big thing will be getting the expansion pipes powder coated. Hope there not gonna drive me broke......