Classic Honda CB500-4 Cafe from Back Home now resides here

Well, its always great to add another ride to the stable here at home and this one is a real doozy, as this is a super cool Cafe Bike that was built a long time ago back home in England and is now all the way across the pond with me.

This 1972 CB500 Four still wears the original license plate from Back home and I love the fact it is still there as it brings back so many memories of my Motorcycles I owned when I resided in England and super stoked to have this with me now.

The bike is a time capsule in a way and really is how we built Café Bikes in my era of the 70’s, this is a very cool ride, not my favorite Color I must admit but a true old Café of my era that i saw everywhere that I rode to and hope to get this fired up soon.  This has not run for many many years, carbs are stuck, front brake is stuck and am sure the tank needs to be recoated inside as it is a Fiberglass version.

Bodywork is very reminiscent of the Bimota series of styled bikes and I will one day paint the whole bike again as the frame is painted that teal color and I thing a New Livery would be just what the doctor ordered, but that’s for way later on, as I need to get to work and see if I can get the 50 year Old inline four to breath a new lease of life once again.  She has never run in the USA so will be eager to get this sorted out and will be fun taking it for a run around the twisting roads in the canyons that I have here where I live.

I am super excited to get the old girl going and see how she handles around the country roads around here, the rear sets are pretty cool and set back nicely, so my legs will fit tine on this machine, I do have to source another Master Cylinder but no Biggy there and I know the brakes will need to be gone through and again, no worries there either just time and energy of which I have bags of.

The Carburetor’s are another story, as they are stuck and I will tear these ones down to see what the issue is and address the issue to get this running again, no idea what the wiring is like either so a full inspection is needed to see where the lay of the land actually lays and I can get some sort of List together of parts needed and work to be performed on this half century bike.

Its sits pretty level too which is nice has a made up 4 into one exhaust system, front header is stainless and rear is steel, interested to see how it sounds once she bursts into life, of course I need to get a new battery, new plugs and oil plus filter etc. but that is the same for any bike that’s not run in years.

You don’t see too many of the CB500 Models, mostly the slightly bigger 550’s, so its cool to have a 500 four here at the shop and look forward to kicking this back into life once more and seeing how she handles on the Southern California Tarmac.

These are a fun compact Powerhouse of a machine and back in the day, Several CB500 machines were entered in the Production TT races on the Isle Of Man in the early 1970s. Bill Smith won the 1973 500 cc TT Production race (four laps) riding one, 8.2 seconds ahead of second place Stan Woods mounted on a Suzuki Two Stroke Twin.

I remember doing this to my Side Covers back in the day to get the thing to breath, ha ha, so much fun back then trying all you could to squeeze extra power out of your Motorcycle, these carbs need to be totally over hauled but it will sound so nice when running again.

Something about home made Rear sets that I love and this is  a great little set up, no show chrome here, just road racing type rear sets that get you a more low down ride and faster gear changing etc.

I wont make any Modifications as such as this is a Classic Cafe with British Styling, but will make sure it runs well, Hard and sounds throaty for sure, I may change the headlight for an earlier style as that’s an aftermarket version and bring the headlight in more towards the frame and change turn signals to a stealthier look but early style.

Its a fun little Road Rocket and am sure with this Ohlins steering stabilizer, this will help with the wobbling in the tight bends that lay around where I live and will keep you updated on how this rides later on in a blog on the website.

So there she is, a great British Build Cafe Bike that oozes Nostalgia and I am happy that I will be able to ride this soon and remember the days I used to go to all the Road Races around the UK on my little Buzz Bomb.

Thanks for reading my Blog today, hope you fig this bike as Much as I do and I shall be doing follow ups as I go along as many of you ask if I can keep taking photos and writing what antics I have gotten up to with these Classic in line Four Machines.

I guess its time to get back into the Barn and turn some wrenches today, the Carburetor’s first, then the brakes, but love what I do and the challenges ahead, I will of course keep you posted on how I do here at Carpys Garage.




Steve Carpenter

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