Tag Archives: cb500-4

Honda CB500/4 “Goldie”: First Ride

Having got “Goldie” back right at the end of probably the warmest and driest September ever and with a dreadful weather forecast, it was with some trepidation that I looked out of the bedroom curtains at a reasonable hour (post Suzuka Grand Prix) to find a glorious sunny (if not warm) morning. Time for a ride…

Nervous. Last time I rode one of these was about 5 years ago and I’ve ridden a series of modern Triumphs since then. Would it go? Would it stop? Would it piss fuel all over the swingarm and the road?

The answer was “Yes” to all of those…

CB500 First Ride Oct-14 (Custom)

Fuel on. Choke on. Thumb the starter and she bursts into life.

As I remember, a cacophony of rattles at tickover with that glorious four-pipe Honda soundtrack.

First impressions? The front disc brake is absolutely useless (even on a dry sunny morning) – I’m going to have to take it apart and take a look. The throttle is very heavy and it feels very small.

I guess it is about the same physical size as the Street Triple that I rode the other day, albeit with less than half the power. I am definitely sitting “on” it and not “in” it as I do with the Tiger.

Filled it up with fuel. Yes it leaks out of carb #1 (more fixing to do). The neutral light doesn’t work and the indicator switch has no central detente.

I really need to do a few miles and then go home and check that all the nuts & bolts are still there, that the tyres are still inflated and the oil level hasn’t dropped. I needn’t have worried. It was great.

After 20 miles or so I headed home. Maxed at about 75mph (ish) which was fine. Felt good, handled OK (a bit hard) and sounded great.

All in all, very pleased. It is still filthy after 8 years in a barn and there’s definitely a “patina of age” about the bike. Love it!

Old Bikes Never Die

… they just get used.

I could have titled this “Steve visits Steve” but Steve(2) is shy so I can only feature his bike.

This is a 1974 Honda CB500/4 that is used (almost) daily and has been maintained to do just that. You won’t find many NOS parts on this bike. Everything works (but may not be original), it is taxed and MOT’d.

And it sports a Scottoiler!

Here’s  the bike:

1974 Honda CB500-4

The modifications list reads like a 1970’s dream:

  • Laser 4-1 exhaust
  • Braided brake lines
  • Avon tyres
  • Pod filters

Here’s me (Steve) on the bike in the garden:

1974 Honda CB500/4 with Steve

Note the 2004 10th anniversary SOHC4.net t-shirt!