Bike of the Month - September 2007
My name is Ross Campbell and I live in Perth, Western Australia. When I was a lot younger, I used to race a 1978 Honda CR250R. After getting the racing bug again by buying a 1973 Honda CR250M and racing with the local club I began to think maybe a resto project would be the way to go.
Who would have thought that an Australian, working in South America and advertising on a US web site would prove to be the source of the next 18 months worth of work for me - and additionally the bikes he had were here in Perth - it was meant to be!
After having a look at the "pile" and negotiating a price I took home what was one "semi" rolling chassis and two other bikes in boxes. Uunfortunately some of the parts proved to be Yamaha but the making of a single bike was well under way.
From this point forward the resto took a pretty standard direction. Everything was stripped down. Frame blasted and powdercoated, hubs laced with H/D stainless spokes to SM Pro rims (the intent was to make a rider and not a concourse garage queen but..........) new DC plastics from the Australian distributor (Les at Vintage Plastics), new seat cover, cables and the list goes on. The major work was of course the motor and Ray Easson at Ray Easson Motorcycle Engineering helped here.
All the bearings were replaced, gearbox checked, new liner, piston and rings installed to bring it back to where it should be. Rod Gilchrist helped with the painting of the tank, side panels and motor and this was an excellent job. Other odds and sods such as rollers, bearings etc were sourced from Bruce McFarland here at Red Devil Racing in Sydney. Of course lots were sourced from Ebay as the local scene is certainly in its infancy here in WA and even "over East" there aren't lots of parts available - the FOX AIRSHOX came via Ebay at around 0200 one morning.
Believe it or not the hardest parts to find were the rear brake torque arm dust caps and the sprocket cover but recently have turned up from WA and the Netherlands. I must say every body I have dealt with in the course of the resto, regardless of where they are in the world, have been excellent except for one "nameless" individual in Melbourne who decided after he had my money he didn't want to send the parts - and Ebay is pretty useless at customer support I can tell you.
I have also completed, whilst waiting for the last few parts, a 1982 Suzuki RM 250 Z resto and I am actively looking for an 84 CR 500 - just because I can!!!!
And to finsh the story - the hardest thing facing me now is working out how to answer the wife when she says - "why do you have so many bikes?"