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Messages - DesertDragon

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I'm rather certain reserve is over 1 gallon.
So - we're talking about the stock 1991 to 2003 tanks ...
Not sure why you're certain about the "over 1 gallon", but every spec sheet I've seen including the owner's manual says .79 for reserve...
(except for when they round it up to .8)
Maybe you're thinking of a different bike.

When my battery went south I switched to an AGM.
Zero maintenance, no vent tube, and it's still performs like new after almost 12 years.
I leave it on a battery tender junior when parked.

According to the factory spec sheet:

Fuel tank capacity    4.76 US gal (18 liters)
Reserve capacity      0.79 US gal (3 liters)

Reserve is included in total capacity, so you've got nearly 4 gallons until reserve.. okay, it's only 3.97..
If you like the look of the new tank, that's a good reason to change it, but for fuel capacity... Not so much.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Still Alive and Kickin'?
« on: January 13, 2018, 12:43:11 PM »
Still "alive and kicking" in 2018 and about to take a short ride (100 miles) to visit a local Walgreens...
Having a 50+mpg bike helps - both in a cheap ride and a lot of fun..

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: January 06, 2018, 08:04:44 AM »
Some good comments..
Minimal required corrective action has been my experience as well, Larry.

The bad news, as stated by DesignFlaw, is that there are fewer examples left as each day passes.

The good news, is that for those of us lucky to own a 'Hawk, is that not only do we have a reliable bike that we can ride, but we're also riding a classic. and people love classics.
I agree that "value your bike for what it does for you, not by what you could sell it for", and by this measure, I am getting that value.
But when you do need to sell it, there won't be a buyer shortage.

It provides another reason that makes the effort of keeping your bike in good condition worthwhile.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: January 05, 2018, 10:32:30 AM »
I've said this ma times before:  "It's a good deal if you think it's a good deal.  Doesn't matter what anyone else thinks."

I know a couple years ago, I was helping a friend find a Nighthawk.  Neither of us could find a running one for less than $1500 and the ones we did find weren't around long enough to even look at.  One guy sold his Nighthawk while he was on the phone with me and that was for $2500.  It was insane.  We finally found 650SC for $1500 and I'm pretty sure the only reason was because it was stolen.  But that's another story.

If you restrict yourself to one particular bike or criteria, you can expect to pay more or wait longer.  Sometimes you get lucky.  Waiting longer means time you're not riding.  There is value in that.  It's the same reason why amusement parks can charge extra for a Fast Pass ticket vs regular admission.   Time is money and vice versa.

I will agree with pants about the features of newer bikes, but they are features to me and not everyone.  The FJR is a pain in the ass to work on.  I don't work on my bike much so simpler maintenance is a non-issue for me, but others like a simpler machine because it is simpler to understand and work on.  Or they look at those features and see additional things that need to be maintained and/or replaced at a greater cost.  Take throttle or drive by wire for example.  There's no cable so it should last longer, but if it does fail, it's a $1000 bill rather than a $50 cable.

As for the fear of being stranded, a newer bike may help with that fear so alleviating that with a newer bike is worth something.  But you could be stranded no matter what vehicle you're driving for a million different reasons.  I agree with mollusc on this one.  Don't hold back until it gives you a reason not to.  Being stranded makes you have one bad day no matter how far away from home you are.  Fear of being stranded can make you miss a hundred great days.
I really liked your post. 
I think you pretty well articulated the entire new vs old thing, and that one man's features are another man's flaw...
Like a really pretty bike covered in plastic. 
Oooohhh it looks so sleek - If you like that it's a feature.
If you don't, it isn't.
In my case I have a practical reason. 
I've dropped my 'Hawk several times in the dirt up here - It's a very challenging dirt road environment - With case savers, the repair was dusting it off.
With a full bodywork fairing, the damage cost would be considerable.

Beyond that, I like the look of naked bikes, because the engine is part of the look of the machine, rather than it being an ugly hidden component under some bodywork.  I'm apparently not alone in that regard, evidenced by the resurgence of nakeds in the market.
It is also why I like air cooled engines - By design, they need to be out in the breeze where you can see them, and considerable art is used to make them look appealing.

Your experience in looking for a NightHawk for your friend was similar to my experience further back in the day.
A great condition, low mileage 'Hawk is increasingly hard to find, and pretty well impossible at a "low" price. 
I wanted a CB750 and it took me months to find the right bike.
For me, the cost and wait was worth it, as over the last going on 12 years, it's been a very easy machine to live with.

I've owned lots of bikes over the years, and I don't view the 'Hawk as a transition to an upgrade to something "better" sometime in the future, but that's me.  I like what I've got.

Despite the 'Hawk being an "old technology" machine (which it is) the market would seem to indicate their actual value is substantially greater than some might suppose. I contend that the "cream puff" low mileage NH750 for $1500 does not exist, and hasn't for some time as you found out...
Neither does the great condition $500 '57 Chevy exist.. 
BTW - A restored to original '64 VW window bus was just valued by Donald Osborn on Jay Leno at well over $100,000...
While older vehicles are less than current in their technology, that does not equate to diminished value.

There is a reason - While there are lots of current offerings being manufactured, classic machines that have a following are in shorter supply as time goes on.  While it can be truthfully said that a more modern machine can be had in a similar price, that doesn't mean it is a better value, because part of the value equation contains the variable "appreciation" (applicable to a limited supply) or its inverse - "depreciation" - applicable to any recently produced product....  So, over the near term, while a "modern" example of a bike in plentiful supply is likely to be reduced in value, the inverse is more likely in a bike that people want, but can't so easily get.

In other words, like you noticed, the market drives the cost by demand.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: January 04, 2018, 11:45:02 AM »
I have to laugh...
One thing about the 'Hawks that is nearly universally accepted, is that they are one of the most dependable bikes EVER MADE.
Does that mean they tolerate outright abuse? 
That's one reason why I was willing to pay a premium for a scoot that was well cared for.
Paying extra for that care was worth it to me. 
The compression on my 21 year old is new factory spec as of my last recent test.
Now, nearly 12 years after purchase, I've still never been stranded or even had a problem, and I'm 100 miles away from anywhere.
I can't say that about several new cars I've owned over the years... 
New doesn't mean no problems, actually, it can be just the opposite, because the new machine is relatively untested.
I do perform maintenance, and take good care of my machine, but in the case of the Hawk I can do a lot more riding with a lot less maintenance.


Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: January 04, 2018, 08:00:24 AM »
  Regardless, I've ridden dozens of modern motorcycles and I'm just saying - the NH was good, but no where close to as good as it gets.
I guess it depends on what you like, Pants. 
For me, my 'Hawk has been ultra dependable, amazingly economical on both fuel and insurance and comfortable to ride.
It has plenty of power for me and easily leaves most vehicles on the road with 4 wheels, and some with 2, behind.
I have no desire to keep up with the squids, and for me a 140+ mph top end, a benefit of taller front gear, is more than fast enough.
Since switching to super, I can cruise at 75-80 all day with better than 50 mpg, and better than that at sedate speeds.
With the radials and suspension I'm running, I've got no problems in the twisties or doing a high speed interstate slalom course on roads with as many potholes as pavement.
Other than new tires for its wheels, it never needs to see a dealership - just the wheels - and I don't need to change my rubber out 4 times a year because it's easy on them too.
If I wanted a hyperbike, I'd buy one - I've owned them -  but I don't.
Most don't need bleeding edge performance in the real world, and for the kind of driving I do, the features you describe don't pass the cost-benefit analysis for me.  In any legal driving situation, you would not be able to run away from me, and while I could be outrun by your bike if you ignore the rules of the road, I could also wave while riding by as you are talking to one of the boys in blue. 

I never made an argument that the NightHawk was the best at anything, but it is very good at everything, so for me that's more than good enough.
While clearly that is not the case for you, it doesn't mean it's a mistake for me enjoying the bike I have.. and I do..

Hmmm.. 65 F sunny and light winds... I'm going for a ride..

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: January 03, 2018, 08:49:35 AM »
I'd agree that improvements have been made, and along with them come complexity.  And cost.
As far as your price spec... I would think it a challenge to find ANY low mileage pristine condition 750 for $1,500 - especially with a lot of accessories.
As far as standards... Not so many choices until recent years.
While asking price for that bike was on the high end, the guy will likely sell the bike close to it when the weather is good for riding...
As you said, the market at work.

Anyway, I guess it's all in what you want. 
I prefer a scooter that I can do all of the maintenance on myself, and there isn't much of that anyway.
BTW, I'm still averaging 50 mpg plus using Mobil super...
Can you show me a dependable, low maintenance model used 750 I can buy for around $1500 that can give me 50 mpg cruising at 75?
I don't think so....

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: December 28, 2017, 05:08:57 PM »
Great post and great look’n bike. Cool you’ve got some dash accessories too; Hadn’t seen that on a NH.
Thnks for the compliment, ADV.
The Rifle Sport has a dashboard option which makes for a convenient gadget center..
Had a great ride today - empty interstate, new pavement, great weather.. All good!

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: December 28, 2017, 08:19:04 AM »
I wouldn't have bought yours either. :)
In the spring I doubt he'll have a problem getting asking price, like he said.
That scoot looks super clean and has some nice accessories, and according to the ad, pretty much everything wear-wise has been replaced.
Unless you do all of your own maintenance, that will be money you don't need to spend on a bike that needs work.
If the Pilot Activs are also new... adds to the equation.

I guess my point is, I'm sure you can find a lower price, but that doesn't mean you'll find a better VALUE. 
Maybe you will. 
Good luck.

I bought my bike in the late spring, not the best time for a low price, but then since I also had just doubled my money on the sale of a showroom new looking VF1000R, it was really only a $500 bike.
Again, for me, it was worth it...  because..
It's going to be 70 F today with light winds and I have a 100 mile errand...
From the economic perspective, should I take the 27 mpg cage or the 50 mpg bike... hmm..
From the "I love to ride" perspective...
Decision made.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: December 27, 2017, 03:51:20 PM »
I don't know the particulars, but I paid $3,000 for mine.
I don't regret it either.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: December 27, 2017, 08:30:41 AM »
Hey Norm,
If you like YELLOW (proven by scientific testing to be the fastest color made)...
Looks pretty sweet to me!
Already has a Corbin Gunfighter, tail box. bikini fairing on it.. If you like those..
Even if you don't, no permanent alterations.
Already has a centerstand and case savers, which are must haves...
I couldn't see a defect, except maybe for a slightly askew right front turn signal and maybe worn tires..
It looks like it was well cared for... After you pick it up, head West and I'll meet you at the Grand Canyon...

Removed several pounds of dust and dirt - mostly from rear wheel...
Cleaned and lubed tire chain and checked it, but as usual, no need for adjustment.
Oil still clean and right where it should be...

Hmmm... Time for a ride!

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Merry Christmas!
« on: December 26, 2017, 01:06:20 PM »
Now if only Santa had a NightHawk....
Hope you had a Happy Hanukkah!

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Merry Christmas!
« on: December 24, 2017, 12:09:53 PM »
Note to self:
Add Happy New Year as part of "Standard Christmas Greeting"...

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Found another NH for sale...considering
« on: December 23, 2017, 10:40:14 AM »
Engine is not black, its an older one...
Wow - I knew that the '96 was the first year for the blacked out engine (and Superior YELLOW paint)...
One cosmetic reason I chose my bike was because of the blacked out power plant...
So all 750 NH engines all black from 96 on? 
I had thought it was just an attractive option...

General Motorcycle Discussion / Merry Christmas!
« on: December 23, 2017, 10:29:13 AM »
Here's hoping that you all have a great Christmas with family and/or friends, and if your weather permits, have a great ride!
West of the Grand Canyon here, it's sunny and 60's for Christmas...
I'm thinking I'll get the "sleigh" out...

Ho! Ho! Ho! 


General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Found another NH for sale...considering
« on: December 21, 2017, 08:45:12 AM »
There you go!
BTW - If you talk to anyone knowledgeable about the subject, a used helmet is a bad idea.
I know you already have one, in "stylish yellow" as I recall...
For myself, having soft bags available is a plus, and a tank bag comes in really handy.
My 2 cents.
Did you ever find out what year the bike is?


General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Found another NH for sale...considering
« on: December 20, 2017, 08:39:06 AM »
Hey Norm,
It looks pretty clean except for the header discoloration.. Maybe it was/is running a bit too lean...
Kelly blue book is pretty much worthless for bikes, for a variety of reasons.
What year is it ??
A 2003 is worth more than a 1993...
Since it's dealer serviced, you might be able to talk to their service department to see what has been done over 10 years...
The guy should also have receipts.  If it's only oil changes, I'd be surprised.
Recent spark plugs (how they look speaks volumes regarding engine conditions) / Compression test results / carb synch and any other maintenance performed / replaced in the last 10 years (battery / tire AGE/ brake fluid change / etc...)
I would use the lack of some needed accessories (center stand / case savers) and any needed maintenance as bargaining chips.

It does look like it's in very good cosmetic condition.
Normally "asking" $2500 means an offer is acceptable, and as Raven said, it can't hurt to make an offer.
I would suggest you do yourself a favor and wait to discuss price in person.
The last thing a seller wants to hear is someone trying to low ball before they even show up.
If you make a good "actual value" case, a reasonable person will negotiate. 
There's something about seeing someone with a handful of Franklins that makes the lower offer more acceptable.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Potential purchase (high mileage)
« on: December 14, 2017, 07:53:04 AM »
I would concur with the other opinions so far.. One item to add is finding parts if needed can be a challenge with any 30+ year old bike.
As Mollusc said, there could be a lot of life left in it if it was well cared for.. but if not, it well could be nearing serious trouble land.
It doesn't look particularly well cared for... not just the dents, but rusty bolts whisper neglect...
Excuse me if I'm a bit pedantic, but I don't know your experience level.
Things I'd ask (if you haven't already):
Bike history - How long owner had it - Why selling it - Any maintenance receipts - What has current owner done with it - CAN you let a mechanic check it out..
Check engine oil - sludge or really dirty - I'd walk
It starts and runs - does it smoke- was it cold when first started or did he use a lot of starting fluid a few minutes before you showed up?
How does it ride - clutch and tranny work ok?  Any weird noises (like grinding or whining final drive)
Head shake or not?
How about tire AGE - even if you've got tread, rubber much over 5 years only looks like a tire - Look at the DOT emblem 4 digits WWYY WW = weeks of year YY = year  e.g. 5012 is a tire exactly 5 years old (50 weeks into 2012, or mid December 2012).  Not a deal breaker, but maybe a negotiation point if other things look good.
Rubber parts condition - Some can be replaced aftermarket (e.g. hydraulic lines) but some others are likely shot and need replacement.
This may also tell you some of the story as to how the bike was stored.

I guess the first question should have been what you want to do with a/the bike.
Do you want a beater to blast around the block to get motorcycling checked off your to do list, or are you looking at a long term investment in keeping the bike ?
If it's the later, starting with a bike that has been cared for is worth the restoration effort.

According to Clymer for the 91+ NightHawk 750 series, the "later" versions of the cables are teflon lined and don't need lube.
They say don't lube them.  My bike is 21 years old, and I still have original cables that work fine, and I've never lubricated them.
Some say that when you think you need lube, you need a new cable. I would think a teflon lube would be okay in a teflon lined cable, but...
I did replace my speedometer cable, but that one isn't lined and needs grease.


Plus the occasional brake friction-material change, cable lube, and tire pressure top-off.
..trying to highlight the differences... tire pressure and wear parts are ubiquitous.. oem control cables with teflon lining don't need lube..

I still feel that my NH is the best bang for the buck, especially when the buck has priority.  bkr3
I agree Larry, especially when it comes to AFTER you buy the bike.
On the 'Hawk...
Cam chain adjust .. Nope.
Timing adjustment - Nope.
Valve adjustment - Nope.
Anyone with minimal skills can easily keep a NH750 maintained, and there isn't much to do.
Compare the never need to adjust 16 valve hydros to a 16 valve bucket and shim dealer adjustment option.
Over time, maintenance costs add up.
If you buy a cleanable oil filter, that means a filter clean, oil change and chain adjustments.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: Tank restoration
« on: November 22, 2017, 08:31:54 AM »
A one stop shop that does it all would be a custom builder / restorer willing to work on a Honda.
If such a place exists, the bill for what you are asking would consist of a long series of numbers and commas...

You might consider doing the internals yourself (you can find some good success stories on the forum).
Candy paint is incredibly hard to match, even for an expert.
It might be less expensive to have all the body work repainted rather than even trying to get the tank to match the other bodywork.

If you can find a similar paint, an auto body / paint place can "un-ding" the tank and shoot the paint / clear-coat.
Finding original emblems will be a job in itself.
If these are decals, you may have to do some serious scrounging and/or settle for something similar.

Probably not what you wanted to hear, but one of the issues with a 34 year old bike is parts (un)availability.

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