Clymer Manuals took a close look at this custom built cafe racer, based on a 1971 Honda CB350 at the 2013 Heart of America Motorcycle Enthusiasts show and rally. The Honda 350cc twin of the 1960s is probably the bike most likely to be found in a basement, garage, or shed today, because between 1964 and 1974 it seemed like every other bike on the road was a Honda 350 of some sort. They were big enough to be ridden on the highways, yet small enough to not scare young baby boomers just learning to ride.
Clymer Girl and the crew didn’t have to go far to attend the HoAME show and rally, as it was just up the road at the Kansas City Airline History Museum in the Downtown Airport. The show was packed with classic vintage and antique motorcycles representing the best of British, German, Japanese, Italian, and American manufacturers. Some of the brands on display were Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, BMW, Harley-Davidson, Triumph, BSA, Norton, Indian, Cushman, Vespa, Laverda, Lambretta, Ducati, Matchless, Zundapp, Moto Guzzi, and more. There was everything from 100% perfect restorations, to well worn bikes daily riders, to full-on customized cafe racers, choppers, bobbers, dirt bikes, road racers – any type or style of motorcycle you could image. As part of the museum’s permanent exhibits, there were also vintage propeller driven passenger planes, including a Douglas DC-3, a Martin 404, and, the pride of their collection, a 1958 Lockheed Super Constellation.
With better than 35 horsepower, and a nearly bulletproof SOHC parallel twin, the CB350 was used for commuting, weekend riding, touring, and in the SL350 guise, even off-road exploration. This mildly modified example was given a cafe treatment, with solo seat and lower bars, and will provide years of fun carving corners while burning hardly any gas. With a top speed of just about 100 mph, depending on wind and the size of the rider, it is plenty fast for recreational use, and weighing in at just 300 lbs, it is easy to maneuver for even the smallest rider.
Read more about the Honda CB350 on Wikipedia
Clymer’s manual for the 1964-74 Honda 250cc and 350cc twins is exactly what you need to restore one of these bikes, or build a street tracker, cafe racer, or desert sled.