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Discussion Starter #1
Earlier I asked about other folks that appreciate small displacement bikes from the 60's and 70's. I sold all my heavy bikes and want to put together a couple of vintage Jap bikes from that era. Tough to figure what a good price is on many. People think some of their stuff is made of gold. Plus I'm not sure where to start. Is a 125cc too small to enjoy riding? How about a 175? I know I'd like to find a decent 350. And a 750 would be a good find and nice to ride.

I don't want to restore them to trailer/display only status. I want them to look nice and ride nice. I want to ride them not just sit in the garage and stare at them. Any advice from those who have owned some?
 

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I always stuck with cb360's and CL/CB350's. I had a CL175 too. Personally, I wouldn't go less that a 250cc but would try to hover around the 350cc range. Why? You can hit highway speeds. Working on them to me, is much easier. One or two carb issues instead of 4. Lighter bikes too. I have my 79 KZ650 for sale mainly because I want to do another CB350/360 build. I built them to ride them. Not to show them.
 

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All depends on what kinda riding your looking to do with it. Slow trail riding, easy to tote around, camping, etc. The old Honda CT 70, 90, or 110 get's my vote. Something a tad bigger, Honda SL series are nice too. 350cc and bigger, there are a lot to choose from. Your going to get a ton of different answers. The old Honda CT's are still very popular, still easy to get parts for, and have been going up in value. Of course, this is my opinion. I'm sure others will chime in with good bikes to consider. Back in 1973, I had a CT 90 for almost a year before it was stollen. Loved it, and still want one today for my wife to learn to ride. You can find good runners from $750 up to $4,000 or so. I missed out on 2 nice ones in the passed month for under $900. Just bad timing.
I agree with above post if using on highway.
 

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A friend of a friend just gave me a basket case CB-750 and 500 Four that where left out in the weeds that caught fire! If I can get one or both of them running I'll have learned something.
 

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I always liked the Honda 305 Scrambler and the Super Hawk. Back then I was into dirt, two stroke was king because they made better power. At least that's what I thought. Had a Hodaka Ace 100 in the early seventies, great little bike. My brother had a Yamaha 250 twin two stroke,,,yds3 if I recall correctly. RD series was very fast for street.

Tom in Wichita
 

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We used to have a pair of 1972 Suzuki TS185J's (his -n- hers, blue and red and only a few numbers apart). Loved those bikes.

Very fun with about 18hp with around 220 lbs.... Would go anywhere.

 

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We used to have a pair of 1972 Suzuki TS185J's (his -n- hers, blue and red and only a few numbers apart). Loved those bikes.

Very fun with about 18hp with around 220 lbs.... Would go anywhere.

Hey I have a TS250 in my pole barn that needs a lot of love.
 

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750s back then weighed as much as liter+ bikes today.

Hard to beat the XL250 and XL350 for dualsporting. Both will do 80+ on the highway. CB400Four is an awesome machine for street--smooth, durable, stable, decent brakes, and handles half decent.
 

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Your TW looks awesome. That tank and burly front tire look good!!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The CB350 and the CL360's are both great choices. I think the wisdom of staying at around 350+ might be a good thought. I have my 2013 TW for putzing around town and carrying in my express van when towing the trailer so it's my travel bike as well. I'll be riding on the street exclusively so the 350's, 400's, 550's might just be the ticket.

I had about five CT90's and one CT110 a few years back. Fun to restore and ride. Great trail bikes. Not in a motocross way but popular among hunters and fisher persons. But that's not my mission. I'll be looking for a 350 or 360 CL or CB to redo and ride I guess. That 185 Suzuki is intriguing though. Jeez I get so ADHD when it comes to bikes. I'm all over the place. I want to own them all. Thanks for the input boys.
 

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I've owned four TS-185's. Couple of 74's and 75's and rode the snot out of them without any major problems. Too bad they still don't make them.
 

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Kawasaki 1974 250.jpg 4-10-2008 8;57;42 AM.jpg Brandon Ave, Celina, Ohio  1974-1977 003_edited.jpg

I'm not sure anybody but me would call the 1974 Kawasaki 250 a "Classic"....but as my first bike, one that you could ride anywhere, street, dirt, gravel, and even MotorX, this bike will forever be my all time favorite....I've had big street rides, middle size street and dual sports, but nothing, not even my 2014{yet} gave me as much pleasure to ride and own...of course this may be waxing nostalgic after 40 years have passed since I purchased it new...but it was and is my all time "Classic"...and I would love to have one today, but I would be riding it, not showing it.:cool:
 

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View attachment 10782 View attachment 10783 View attachment 10784

I'm not sure anybody but me would call the 1974 Kawasaki 250 a "Classic"....but as my first bike, one that you could ride anywhere, street, dirt, gravel, and even MotorX, this bike will forever be my all time favorite....I've had big street rides, middle size street and dual sports, but nothing, not even my 2014{yet} gave me as much pleasure to ride and own...of course this may be waxing nostalgic after 40 years have passed since I purchased it new...but it was and is my all time "Classic"...and I would love to have one today, but I would be riding it, not showing it.:cool:
I love the old Kawasaki 2-stroke dual sports, but called enduro or on off road bikes back then. My 2nd shift bike was a 74 Kawasaki MC1 90. That was my favorite bike. Had it a long time, and put close to 100K miles on that thing. I'd still love to get one now, just to have as that bike made my life. I see them for sale from time to time. I didn't say anything about them due to 2-strokes being fazed out, plus parts are hard to come by these days.
 

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I asked momma if I could have a new CB1100. She said no. I asked if I could have a new TU250 and she said no. I tried to explain how they were current production classics. She didn't care. She said if I keep what I have they will be classics one day too. I'm losing my touch.
 

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I love the old Kawasaki 2-stroke dual sports, but called enduro or on off road bikes back then. My 2nd shift bike was a 74 Kawasaki MC1 90. That was my favorite bike. Had it a long time, and put close to 100K miles on that thing. I'd still love to get one now, just to have as that bike made my life. I see them for sale from time to time. I didn't say anything about them due to 2-strokes being fazed out, plus parts are hard to come by these days.
Yep no such thing as a "Dual Sport" at least by name back in 1974-75....On/Off Road and take off the mirrors and we called them Motor Cross Bikes :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Maybe a 2000 Kawasaki W650 would be nice. New bike old look. I think Kawasaki did a nice job imitating an old Brit bike with the W650. Kick starter and all. One issue is price. Haven't found one for under $4800. Like some other bikes they seem to be more popular now than when they came out. Like the Honda Pacific Coast and the Big Ruckus motor scooter. Had 2 Pacific Coast and three Big Ruckus.
 

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This might sound silly, but if you can get a ride on a Honda S90 it will be a total treat in riding enjoyment. Not so of all small displace Hondas. The trail 90 was a great bike cuz everyone said it was. It handled crappy (even though on a VERY tight asphalt road I out-ran two Harley Sportsters). I think they held up so long was that the carb was small for a 90cc (The S90 had a stronger cam and larger carb) and the engine was un-stressed. This yielded a bike slower than it needed to be. I speak thus after having owned between 35-50 of these. I have also had many CT70s. I have kept my last two of these for 30 years in the back of my storage. I actually would tip my hat to the CT70 over the CT90. Handled better (though the forks have almost no dampening.. uh.. the rear shocks don't either). I enjoy riding them on trails more than the CT90. But still- the S90 was an unusually nice motorcycle.
 

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I gotta track down the guy where I used to work at that would come in on a mad max era kz1000. Only sport bike I ever wanted. Had a sportster rear fender on it. Basket case wiring all over. But it was a real kz. I didn't have 1800 bucks to drop or I would have bought it in a second. Would turn it into a stripped down street monster. I want to put a supercharger on everything I drive. Think I got a problem. I will have that bike. The sportster fender looked nice on it too.
 
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