Author Topic: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!  (Read 15084 times)

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Offline DanielB

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1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« on: November 24, 2010, 05:25:19 pm »
Hello all,

I have been browsing these forums for a while and see all of the awesome projects and builds on here has really got me motivated to do something myself.  I have basic car knowledge but this is the first bike I've worked on.

So, last week I finally found MY CB550.  I drove up to Austin as soon as I could (the next night) and picked it up!  I was so excited to get the bike I probably looked over a few things that a buyer should look for :embarassed:.  

On to the pictures!  The night I brought it home:





At home!



With a new headlight and the sissy bar off:




Now, my first set of problems (of many more I'm sure!)  I have oil leaking from here:



I have my Clymer manual I just really haven't had a whole lot of time to really spend some time on the bike.  Hopefully there is an o-ring under there that has gone bad!  Tomorrow morning before the Turkey Day festivities I can investigate this a little bit more!

1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline Tom in Newcastle......Ontario

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2010, 05:45:23 pm »
Hi Daniel

Those last couple pics sure look good........

.Yes there is an "o" ring under there..

Use a 6 point socket if you can,if the cap is tight a 12 point may round the corners off..

http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=17788.0    this link should lead you to the Honda 550 manual.
1978 cb 550k......stock,my first re-build


Loud pipes suck.......

If you buy something.........pay for it !
If you sell something .......ship it !
If you say you are going to do something......do it !
If you have a question about something......ask it !
When the seller answers ........let him know whether you still want it or not !
If you receive something .....let the seller know you got it !
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Offline Stev-o

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2010, 06:39:05 pm »
That should be no biggie, but it is soft aluminum and will strip easy.

Make sure you get the right size o-ring,
remember, everything on the bike should be metric.

'74 "Big Bang" Honda 750K [836].....'71 Honda 750K project.....'76 Honda 550F.....K3 Park Racer.....K5 Fiddy Dolla Special!......CB500 Fiddy Dolla Special too!!............plus plus plus.........

Offline kck3

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2010, 10:35:50 pm »
Nice looking 550.  I have the same bike-but wish mine came with the 4 into 4's instead of the kerker.  The side covers look like they are off of a '78.  What are your plans for the bike?

Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2010, 12:28:57 am »
Thanks guys! I will have to order that o-ring.  Also, after putting some cardboard under the bike it looks like I have 2 other oil leaks somewhere. Gonna have to track those down.

kck3 - I plan to put some different bars and probably a different seat to get a little bit of that cafe look.  Mostly, I want to learn about the bike and slowly clean up/restore while making it my own.  What did the side covers from the '77 look like? These are in very good shape so I was excited to get them!
1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline Stev-o

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2010, 08:38:23 am »
Bet there's a minor leak at the shifter, mine has one too.

The '77 had a gold side cover emblem.

Check out the models by year here:

http://www.sohc4.net/index.php?q=node/204

'74 "Big Bang" Honda 750K [836].....'71 Honda 750K project.....'76 Honda 550F.....K3 Park Racer.....K5 Fiddy Dolla Special!......CB500 Fiddy Dolla Special too!!............plus plus plus.........

Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2010, 08:13:07 pm »
I went out this morning and the bike wouldn't start :(  I put the battery on my battery tender and the light stayed on the indicator that the battery was dead... hmmm.  The electric start was working but the bike wasn't turning over or stumbling? Another thing that needs to be added to my list.

I really didn't have any time today to mess with it.  I think the differential or the u-joint broke on my 2002 Trans Am that I drive every day.  Once that happened, 10 minutes later my fiance calls and says her Camry won't start. Back to back car trouble?! UGH! Hopefully tomorrow I can find the problem with the T/A and I can focus more on the bike.
1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline Stev-o

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2010, 05:47:00 am »
Check your cable connections - on the 550 and the Camry.
'74 "Big Bang" Honda 750K [836].....'71 Honda 750K project.....'76 Honda 550F.....K3 Park Racer.....K5 Fiddy Dolla Special!......CB500 Fiddy Dolla Special too!!............plus plus plus.........

Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2010, 03:52:52 pm »
Well, 2nd round of problems and I feel dumb for having these.  I was just trying to change my Speedometer and Tachometer cables and am having some issues.  

The first issue, the screw holding the speedo cable into the front fork is stripped. (thanks PO!) Any suggestions?



Next issue, I dont want the ones holding the tach cable to have the same fate!  It seems really hard to get these 2 out without pulling the tank.  Is this correct? I have to remove both of these screws?  Any tips?



Is there an alternate bolt/allen head I can put in place in case I have to change the cables again?

« Last Edit: December 06, 2010, 03:55:41 pm by DanielB »
1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline Gearheadgreg

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2010, 05:04:35 pm »
I had the same problem with the screws on my 750f, Got a Dremel tool and ground a slot for a flathead screwdriver to remove the screw, or a small Vise grip to grab it .nice ride ya got there good luck!
2001 Honda Supercharged Valkyrie   <iframe width="480" height="360" src="http://s1218.photobucket.com/user/meloafer/embed/slideshow/"></iframe> Just having some fun

Offline joeyputt

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2010, 05:10:32 pm »
That is a good idea for getting the screw out. Your tank should come off very easily, just turn off you petcock (fuel valve) and remove the fuel line, hinge the eat open and take the rubber loose from the back of the tank and pick the rear of the tank up slightly and pull the tank towards the rear for removal.

Always good to have another 550 here!
Joe - Owner/Operator of DWMS Racing World Class Engine & Motorcycle Building www.dwmsracing.com

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Offline Stev-o

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2010, 06:30:57 pm »
Use an impact driver on the screws that aren't stripped:



About $12 at Autozone.

Yes, you can replace those bolts with stainless hex heads, go to

The Nut Place
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(713) 462-3147
'74 "Big Bang" Honda 750K [836].....'71 Honda 750K project.....'76 Honda 550F.....K3 Park Racer.....K5 Fiddy Dolla Special!......CB500 Fiddy Dolla Special too!!............plus plus plus.........

Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2010, 05:00:39 am »
That is really close to me, thanks Steve-o for the address!
1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline MoMo

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2010, 05:39:23 am »
Nice looking  bike, don't see many around here in that good stock condition.  I bought a metric set of o-rings from Harbor Freight-the valve cap size is in there.  Larry

Offline kpier883

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2010, 06:16:38 am »
« Last Edit: December 08, 2010, 06:26:27 am by kpier883 »
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Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2010, 05:54:36 pm »
So I have a feeling this isn't suppose to come out inside my tach cable...



So, I need a new one of these: (tach drive?)



Anyone know where I can get one?

I need one of those and a new horn now.  Hopefully I can get both of these things soon, we are having some cool weather!
1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline Tom in Newcastle......Ontario

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #16 on: December 09, 2010, 06:00:02 pm »
Daniel I have a spare $20 which includes shipping..........BUT.............I'm in Ontario Can and it would probably take 8-10 days  to get to you.

PM me if you want it ,I can get it out on Fri.
1978 cb 550k......stock,my first re-build


Loud pipes suck.......

If you buy something.........pay for it !
If you sell something .......ship it !
If you say you are going to do something......do it !
If you have a question about something......ask it !
When the seller answers ........let him know whether you still want it or not !
If you receive something .....let the seller know you got it !
If you get something and are happy/un happy with it .....let the giver/seller know !
If you have any kind of issue,shipping/receiving/quality/price/shipping charges etc !
Communicate

Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #17 on: December 09, 2010, 07:24:47 pm »
Daniel I have a spare $20 which includes shipping..........BUT.............I'm in Ontario Can and it would probably take 8-10 days  to get to you.

PM me if you want it ,I can get it out on Fri.

I appreciate it! I will let you know.

I found this on ebay: http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1978-Honda-CB550-CB-550-tachometer-drive-_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem4155051495QQitemZ280599270549QQptZMotorcyclesQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

That what I need?
1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2010, 08:42:14 am »
Daniel I have a spare $20 which includes shipping..........BUT.............I'm in Ontario Can and it would probably take 8-10 days  to get to you.

PM me if you want it ,I can get it out on Fri.

I appreciate it! I will let you know.

I found this on ebay: http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1978-Honda-CB550-CB-550-tachometer-drive-_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem4155051495QQitemZ280599270549QQptZMotorcyclesQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

That what I need?

I hope the '78 is the same as the '77! I assume it is... Just bought this one!
1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline Tom in Newcastle......Ontario

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2010, 08:47:04 am »
Just had a quick look on motogrid and the gear is the same for all 550's so I guess that the whole thing should be ok

http://www.motogrid.com/pages/parts/viewbybrand/7/honda.aspx
1978 cb 550k......stock,my first re-build


Loud pipes suck.......

If you buy something.........pay for it !
If you sell something .......ship it !
If you say you are going to do something......do it !
If you have a question about something......ask it !
When the seller answers ........let him know whether you still want it or not !
If you receive something .....let the seller know you got it !
If you get something and are happy/un happy with it .....let the giver/seller know !
If you have any kind of issue,shipping/receiving/quality/price/shipping charges etc !
Communicate

Offline DanielB

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2010, 12:29:01 pm »
Got my new tach drive and new tach cable on.  Tach is VERY slow to respond.  After reading here on the forum it looks like the insides of the gauge might be gummed up. I don't think I am up to the task of taking that apart so it will have to wait!

1977 CB550K - Project Thread: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80164.0

Other toys: 2003 Cobra | 2002 WS6

Offline Really?

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2010, 05:54:10 pm »
You might be but maybe not, don't let the bike intimidate you.  If you can handle the newer stuff (your cars), this thing will be a dream once you start diving into it.

Anyway, I needed a reason tag along.  Nice to see another Texanite in here!

Offline Tintop

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #22 on: December 15, 2010, 06:28:26 pm »
Nice buy DanielB.  You don't see many up here (Cdn) in that kind of shape; that haven't had work put into them.  Yours is a show bike compared to what I started with. ;) :) 
1977 CB550/4 Cafe - Speed Warrior / BOTM 03/11
1980 CB750F (project)
Whittaker GBF Vintage Racing Sidecar (XS750 power) - ITG / 151's / CMR Racing Products (SOLD)
1976 CB400 SS - stock / BOTM 04/11 (SOLD)
1973 CB750 K - basket case (SOLD)
77 CB550 Cafe build
550/750 Filter Thread
Sidecar Rebuild Thread

Offline benjamin550

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2010, 06:31:49 pm »
Dont worry about digging into either the tach or the speedometer. I did it not too long ago and it was super easy. There is a few good threads around here on the subject, one if i recall had great step by step photo instructions. If you have to remove the needle, and it wont come out easy, spray something in there to loosen it up first, I pulled to hard and broke mine.

Offline Zaipai

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Re: 1977 CB550K3 - Not first bike, but most def. first build!
« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2010, 07:39:23 pm »
Looking way better then my 550 did when I picked it up..

Welcome aboard.

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