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Stored 41 Years: 1974 Honda CB450 K7

Finally, a motorcycle that has been stored longer than one of mine has been, I don’t feel as guilty now. This 1974 Honda CB450 K7 has been off the road since 1980 so that’s probably a solid forty-one years of not having been used regularly, or maybe at all. They have it listed here on eBay in Syracuse, New York, and the current bid price is $3,002.

Compared to the Honda CB77 SuperHawk, a 305 cc bike that it replaced, the CB450 was very impressive. It was Honda’s swing-and-a-miss in their attempts to compete with the British bikes and Harley-Davidsons that were so popular in the 1960s. That isn’t to say that they were great bikes because they were. They were made from 1965 to 1974 and you know my love of first-year or last-year vehicles.

As the CB450 evolved over a decade, they went from an unusual chrome-tank bike that had a look almost more similar to my 1965 Honda 65 Sport – other than the engine, of course – than this “modern” orange one for sale here. The seller says that this one has been hidden away since 1980 and it’s appropriately dusty and dirty but it sure looks like it would clean up nicely. I don’t see any real damage anywhere from looking at the photos.

Seeing this heavy layer of dust makes me really want to dig my 750 Yamaha out of a storage shed where it’s been since 1986, that’s ridiculous. Honda needed a little more oomph in order to compete with Triumph, Norton, Harley-Davidson, and other manufactures’ 500 and 650 cc bikes but this one wasn’t doing it. The early bikes had the “Honda hump” gas tank which wasn’t exactly streamlined and beautiful compared to the later 450s like this one.

The engine is Honda’s 444 cc double-overhead-cam twin-cylinder which had 43 horsepower and you may be able to see the rust holes in the exhaust pipe in the photo above. They’re both rotted out according to the seller who says that this one-owner 450 turns over and all of the lights work but they haven’t tried to start it. I’m surprised at the high bids on this one given the amount of work that needs to be done, especially the exhaust and unknown engine condition. Hagerty is at $3,700 for a #3 good condition bike and $5,600 for an excellent one. Have any of you owned a Honda CB450?

Comments

  1. RoughDiamond Member

    That’s a cool Honda 450 in a color. I’ve been looking for an original Honda 305 Super Hawk in my area for many years.

    Like 3
  2. 370zpp 370zpp Member

    My first Honda road bike was identical to this one. Actually, it could even be the same bike as I didn’t live too far from Syracuse in 1974. I only kept mine a few short months. Just long enough to send me back to the dealer (Lakes End Marina) for its big brother – with four pipes. I never looked back.

    Like 6
    • Bob S

      My first bike was a 76 cb360t, great starter bike, but like you 370zpp, didn’t last long before the 78 cb750f super sport was sitting under my butt.

      Like 2
  3. Doug from MD.

    What amazes me now is all the different engine sizes available in those days. From 50cc up to 750cc and all the different sizes in between. I wanted a 175cc and my dad came home with a 125cc such is life as a teen. But what was the difference between the two not much really. Great days for motorcycles and to be a young guy growing up and nearly all my friends had trail bikes. Never owned a 450 but my brother had one someone tried to make a chopper out of. But that’s a whole other story. Good luck with the sale.

    Like 6
  4. On and On On and On Member

    I had a 1972 I bought in 1975 for cheap with lo lo miles. Back then they were abundant, guys going for larger bikes. I do remember the bars vibrated at certain frequencies. Good times were had by all back then.

    Like 9
  5. George Mattar

    With the prices of vintage Honda motorcycles lately, this could be a deal. The seller also has NOS parts for sale. A CB 750 Honda sold on BAT for $24,000 a few days ago.

    Like 4
  6. Frank D Member

    Prices are climbing on original Honda bikes. This could be an easy restoration.

    Like 2
  7. Todd Fitch Staff

    Sweet bike, Scotty! As you know I have a 1980 Honda CB650C so I have a soft spot for this 450 twin. Mine was my Dad’s in the ’90s when he bought it from the original owner with 3000 miles on it. When I got it from him in the early 2000s it had 11,000 and now it’s got about 14,000. Other than replacing the starter solenoid with one from a lawn tractor, it’s needed nothing, and gets faster the more I ride it. Sadly it’s been idle as other vehicles have sucked up my time, but I look forward to getting it in the wind again. Thanks for the memories!

    Like 6
  8. TBAU Member

    I have the 1975 CB500T twin which was the replacement for this model and used the same engine, slightly bored and stroked to 500cc.
    They have the unique torsion-bar valve “springs” in the head and it was the first production bike with DOHC. It vibrates like hell so any headlights seen in the mirrors are figure-eights but I love it.

    Like 2
    • Terrry

      I had a ’75 500T too..it had dark brown paint and a brown seat!, also a ’69 450 before it, and you are dead right about the vibration!

      Like 3
  9. Howard A Member

    This is a really neat find. My 1st road bike, was a 1967 Honda CL450 KO scrambler, the only year with a pipe on either side. A friend owed me money and I got the bike. I also got my 1st and ONLY speeding ticket ( in 50 years of riding) on that bike. The speedo didn’t work, he had me clocked at well over 80 in a 55, but felt sorry for me, and reduced it to 79. It was a tank, and off road bikes were in their infancy, and many got their 1st taste of off road biking on those bikes. The CB street version shown here was an okay bike. I believe it was marketed for the people that didn’t want the fantastic, game changing 750, 4 cylinder, and still wanted the vertical twin. Yamaha had a similar bike, and offered a reliable, cheap alternative to the British twins, with all the same shortcomings of a twin, they just didn’t leak oil. This was a good all around bike, more for a city rider, I bet plenty went cross country, and never missed a beat. The 4 cylinder “crotch rockets” and 6 cylinder cruisers put an end to the vertical twin, at one time, the best there was. Great find, good luck with parts. So many were thrown away, or at the bottom of some junk pile, and I read, although some disagree, electrical parts are in short supply( get it? Short,,,)many were junked because they lost spark and couldn’t get a stator or something, and they weren’t worth keeping anyway.
    https://www.cyclechaos.com/wiki/Honda_CL450#/media/File:1967_honda_Cb450d.jpg

    Like 3
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      I think you’re right about parts, Howard. Hopefully this one will hit the road again. (and, Happy Birthday, by the way!)

      Like 1
      • TBAU Member

        Almost all parts for these bikes, along with excellent how-to videos, are available from Common-motor dot com.
        They are in Texas and ship everywhere ( including Australia luckily ).
        I wouldn’t normally give free publicity but these guys, along with their Youtube Channel, are just so helpful in keeping our old Honda twins alive.

        Like 4
    • On and On On and On Member

      I didn’t know Howard, happy birthday and many, many more. BTW, that CL 450 you had is quite valuable today……….I sold a 68 CL450 K1 a couple years ago very low miles to a gentleman from France.

      Like 1
  10. Jeff

    I owned a CB 450 in 1977 that I bought from a neighbor. It was dark blue and had that English bike look without the leaks. I always thought that the engine size was just right as it was fast enough for me. I sold it in fall of 1978 when I got orders for Germany. Haven’t ridden a bike since but this one brings back memories of being young again

    Like 1
  11. GCS Member

    Wouldn’t a little lucas oil sprayed in the cylinders and carb rebuild get it going? I’d have to watch a few youtube videos. .I’d hope some kind of pipes are available…

    Like 1
  12. John Revels

    Didn’t Honda make a 450 Hondamatic? I have 2 really nice Hondas left(i had a barn full of harleys but i am selling them off)— a 1982 Honda 500 Turbo, and a 1984 Honda 650 Nighthawk!

    Like 1
  13. david R

    Pipes are shot so find scrambler exhaust, tank and side covers, make it a CL 450, much better looking

    Like 2
    • On and On On and On Member

      There is more to the difference than just the body and exhaust configuration. The big difference was the camshaft which gave the CL a lower torque curve and midrange power. Was very drivable at 30 to 50mph…….I personally preferred the CL and had lots of 350s and a couple 450s……….great bikes…….

      Like 1
  14. JC

    Amazing gave the exact same bike to a kid that i thought would do something w it – he junked it – i cried!
    Ugh. Great bike thump thump thump …
    Still remember .. it was 1989 then lol had a Ninja 900 Then too ! So it sat ….
    Hence the gift to a good home ….
    Fun times

    Like 1
  15. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    SOLD for $3,002.

    Like 1
  16. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    Scotty, what model is your Yamaha 750?
    I had a ’79 XS750F Triple and loved it.

    Like 1
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      You almost nailed it, PRA4SNW, mine was a ’78 XS750E.
      Here’s a horrible pic of it from 1985. I bought a trunk and had it painted to match the factory saddlebags and got a better seat for trips along with a Windjammer. I need to get it out again and strip that stuff off to get it back to original.

      Like 2
      • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

        Thanks for sharing. I hope you’re able to get it out and enjoy it once again.
        I would do the same thing – strip her back to her original beauty.

        I think these only came in a couple of colors each year – red for ’78 and mine was black with gold striping.

        Like 1
  17. Vern p

    I loved the metal flake on that orange paint. Last week I just bought a VF 1000 interceptor. Always wanted one when I was a young man in the 80s.
    Found this one and looked in awesome condition but hasnt been started in over 10 years. Owner gave up on it and I picked it up for 1500 bucks. Pretty sure the carbs are pretty gummed up and the smell of the fuel confirms that.
    My biggest fear is my wife though, just bought a new BMW GSA and didn’t tell my wife about the Honda.
    Wish me luck lol.

    Like 1
  18. BRAKTRCR Member

    I had a 1971 450 in 1973. I bought is from a friend, that bought it from the original owner. My friend had it 2 days, because when he brought it home his parents flipped. So, I gave him what he paid for it. I loved the bike, punished the poor thing, and it came back for more. Just a look at the tach, with a redline of over 9,000 rpm, and it would walk up to that redline with ease. I ran mine with some worn out glass pack type mufflers. It was pretty loud. Howard, mine leaked like a Harley of those days, but the way I remember it, everything leaked in those days, VW’s were bad, Corvairs, all small block Chevy’s too
    The bike did very well stop light to stoplight, a quick google search showed 14.8 1/4 mile times to compare to a 71 GTO 400 4 speed of 15.2 or a 70 Boss 302 with 14.6 times So that seems pretty quick to me. I wish I could find a nice version of my 71, it would be fun to be on one again.
    Hope the new owner of this 450 has fun with it

    Like 2

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