This will be another ongoing section. Because I’m only through the engine (August 2015), I’m sure there will other items as I move to wheels, brakes, etc. Here are some items that you’ll need to buy or to rent from Auto Zone or another local auto parts store.
Auto Zone has a wonderful tool rental program. I believe you rent the tool for three months, put down a deposit, and have 100% of that deposit returned when you bring the tool back. You’ll probably buy something else there when you go, so it’s a win-win. This allows you to avoid buying a tool you’ll only use once, and the store gets a little more of your business.
As an aside, you’ll probably need to buy a lot of tools if you’ve never done anything like this before. I have become a regular customer at Harbor Freight. Their prices, staff, and wide selection of tools are wonderful. I’ve purchased several hundred dollars of equipment from them including the motorcycle lift, specialty tools, to the large standing toolbox I use for my tools. I’d buy stock in them just on principal if they weren’t privately held.
- Engine stand (Buy) – TC Bros makes a good one that’s sold on Dime City Cycles. It’s the one I purchased and use.
- Motorcycle Lift (Buy) – Harbor Freight has a good one that’s often on-sale for $89. It’s also very small with castors that can wheel the motorcycle around the garage.
- Valve Compressor Tool (Buy) – This isn’t available from Auto Zone or Harbor Freight. You’ll have to buy one online. com has one. For the CB, you’ll need the “C-Clamp” type compression tool.
- Valve lapper tool (Buy) – If you’re going to reseal the valves you’ll need this tool and valve compound. There are several Youtube videos dedicated to this task.
- Impact Screw Driver (Buy) – This little beauty would have saved me from destroying several pieces of hardware in the disassembly process. As you hit the bottom with a hammer it either loosens or tightens at the exact moment of maximum downward pressure on the screw or bolt head saving it from being stripped. There are several YouTube videos showing you how to use one.
- Caliper (Buy) – You’ll need this for all of the exact inspection measurements you’ll have to make while working on the bike.
- Telescoping Gauge Set (Buy) – This is to measure the diameter of cylinders. There are expensive and cheap versions of this. I like the one from Harbor Freight that you use in conjunction with calipers. You’ll definitely need to make this measurement to determine if the cylinders need to be re-bored (vs. honed) and what sizes you’ll need. There are more videos on how to use this on Youtube.
- Dial Indicator (Buy, if needed) – you’ll need this for roll out measurements. A critical measurement you’ll need to take is the valve freedom inside the guide. Again Youtube is helpful. However, there is a trick to avoid using this tool.
- Feeler Gauges (Buy) – you’ll have to use this multiple times to measure clearances between one part and another.
- Slide Hammer (Rent) – There is only one bearing on the CB750 that you’ll need this for (with a puller) in the lower portion of the engine. Rent it.
- Puller Set (Rent) – You’ll need this to pull off the rotor and one of the bearings on the CB750. The rotor is a bitch to pull off. You’ll have to be very patient and tap it with a hammer to pull it. I actually broke one of the puller legs pulling off my rotor.
- Stud Extractor (Buy) – I tried every Youtube method out there, the most famous being the “double nut” method. There are also several extractor designs. The one linked here is the one I used. It doesn’t work on studs that have been on the motorcycle for 40 years. You have to get one of these and a long ratchet handle or maybe a longer breaker bar to increase leverage. You’ll need to put a nasty amount of torque on each one of the 16 bolts of the motorcycle (for a CB). Be very careful because these bolts are long and you don’t want to break one in trying to remove it.
Some other more general items. These would all be “buys.”:
- Torque Wrench – You’ll need one rated between 5 and 50 ft/lbs. You may have to buy two (a ¼ inch and a 3/8 inch) to make sure you cover the entire range.
- Pick and Hook Set – There just a lot of things you’ll use this for. Get a set.
- Drimmel (or like tool) – You’ll need this to cut down bolts and screws. There are several odd sized screws that aren’t available anymore on the CB (59mm, 21mm, etc). You can use a Tap and Die Set, or you can buy longer bolts/screws and cut them down with a Drimmel. It’s up to you.
- Surgical Gloves – I find this saves me hours and hours of hand washing. I use 5mm.
- Parts Washer – great for cleaning all the nasty old parts from the motorcycle including the carb parts.
- Polish Set – for all of the aluminum covers.
- Shop Apron – There are a bunch of hipster leather and denim shop aprons online for hundreds of dollars. Harbor Freight has a denim one for $3.99. I’m all for spending the money when it’s necessary, but that’s a pretty simple quality vs. price value comparison for me.