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Discussion Starter #1
Motorcycle names are funny things. Some never receive a name. This means they never ignite my passion. Some gradually grow into a name that seems to suggest itself over time. Some seem to "tell" me their name from the very first meeting. This one is "Redeemer" from the first day. I'm not exactly sure why but there are a few thought patterns that lend support to this handle. I intend to redeem her for one - take an old and broken down machine and save her from the garbage heap and breath new life into her and remake her as I see fit. On the other hand she may very well redeem me! I know for a fact that having her waiting in the garage for me to get home from work is better than all the money I could spend on therapy. I am a better person when I ride in the summer and wrench in the winter.

By buying a number of old motorcycles over the years, fixing/modifying them, and selling them I have been able to finance my moto hobble over the years. In the back of my mind I have, for many years, had my eye on the CX family of bikes. I've always loved the quirky uniqueness of these machines. I've always knew I would own one when I had time space and budget to keep one rather than fix/customize and sell (I'm not sure about the budget but yet but here we go).

Earlier this year a 1979 CX500 followed me home.
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I had been watching the adds for a while and this one came up for $400. In my area a CX at that price is a real basket case but given that my plan is to rebuild down to every nut and bolt I thought I'd go take a look. As you can see, I brought it home. It looked better then I expected for the asking price.

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Discussion Starter #2
Now that she is home what am I going to do with her? I've begun reading forums and collecting photos of CX builds for inspiration.
Here she is with her stable mates.
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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Good news!!

After tinkering around with the birds nest where the headlight should be...
[video]https://www.bikepics.com/videos/transcoded2815099-720p.mp4[/video]

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This is better than I expected. She is a runner! In fact It seems she runs very nicely.
I think I will change my plan of attack. I was expecting to start with a full engine rebuild. Now I think I will do the frame, controls, electrical and all that first. I can do the engine after I get everything set up the way I want.
What would you do first?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Got the Redeemer all set up to be stripped.
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Now I can move her out into the work area and then push her back into the corner when I need the space for other things.

I'm still not sure what my vision is for this build. This is not much of a problem yet as this will be a slow process. I'd be surprised if she gets out of the garage for a test ride next summer.
 

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Congrats on your new bike!

Keep reading and researching, to decide if you want to restore or customise.
Either way, I would check all the basics, service the bike and ride it for a month or 2 before just stripping it. Check what you like and what not, what needs attention and what not...and take things from there.

What ever you do, safety is paramount.

Enjoy the ride and the forum!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Either way, I would check all the basics, service the bike and ride it for a month or 2 before just stripping it.
Enjoy the ride and the forum!
Good advice Speedster, but I'm looking at 6 months of frozen cold and snow. I'm not going to wait that long to start. The whole reason for buying the bike is to have a good winter project so I'm going to get started.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I haven't been getting much garage time but the imagination has been active.
My first instinct has been to build a scrambler. I like riding on back roads, on and off pavement so I was trying to figure out if I could increase suspension travel by 2 inches.
My wise wife said something like this, "you already have a Goldwing and this old bike will never be as good at distance riding so there is little point in thinking about touring ability. You already have a CB500x with quality Rally Raid suspension upgrades. This old CX will never be as good a scrambler as the CB is so why don't you build something totally different?"

She has a point. So now I'm really not sure what I'm doing. I love the look of all the cafe racers but I'm not sure I would enjoy riding one?

I'll start with stuff I will need to do in any case. The forks are leaking to I'll get the front end sorted and then I'll see what's next.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I've been stripping her down a little.
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Just about every electrical connection was cracking as I pulled them apart. I think I will eventually be doing a full rewire. Oh well. It was always been my plan to redo everything - making it into a brand new motorcycle.

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I think I might have to start deciding what I'm doing before I go too far.

One thing I'm sure of is that I will need to rebuild the front end - parts ordered. Next step will be to get the front end up in the air.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Got the forks on the bench. It will be interesting to see what is inside.
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I hope the bike stays upright for a while.
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Discussion Starter #12
What is inside the forks? Water, gray sludge, chunks and of course springs and such.
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Discussion Starter #13
Interesting things to think about. I found a local powdercoater who will run my stuff through with pipe and stuff they normally do for a reasonable price. That could change my plans some??
 

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Discussion Starter #15
little things that make me happy:
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New bearings for the wheels and head tube. Stuff you will never see but I will know are there.
 

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little things that make me happy:

New bearings for the wheels and head tube. Stuff you will never see but I will know are there.
But you will feel them
 
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Discussion Starter #17
Forks are all cleaned up and put back together. Tapered bearings are installed in the head tube. It took me a while to figure out how to press everything into place without the right tools but I think I got it. Then I had to take it apart a few times to get the correct washers and spacing. Looks all good I think.
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Discussion Starter #18
You might also notice that i cut all the junk off of the top of the handlbar clamp to clean up the look. I'm a very minimal dash.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I forgot to post the changes to the fork interanls.
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I cut 5 links off the main spring. This should make the spring a little over 10% stiffer. I found a connector at the hardware store almost exactly matches the length if the missing links. I've done this on other builds and it is as good an upgrade as anything free can be.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Can just see the sealed bearing in there, and now the front end is getting pretty close to rebuild. Just all the electric stuff but that'f for later...
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