Wrecked '02 RC51 Project "wrecks to riches" - Honda RC51 Forum : RC51 Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 03:59 PM Thread Starter
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Wrecked '02 RC51 Project "wrecks to riches"

As promised, here's the start to my RC51 project. This is the sister bike to my fiancee, chixwithtrix's project.

This bike was found and purchased through some accidental craigslist ninja-ing thanks to the fact that we keep a pretty close eye on the low price motorcycle listings. She popped up listed as something like a RC1100 or some other oddball name that wasn't correct which I think is the only reason that I wasn't beaten out by a hundred other craigslist searchers. It was listed up for $1800 but the seller clearly said in the add that he would take $1500. For the heck of it I told chix to text the guy and see if he would take a flat $1000 cash on the spot and some haggling later, he agreed.

Within the hour I became the owner of a very much worse for the wear SP2 RC51 with parts of unknown provenance, a salvage title, and at least two wrecks and probably a theft recovery to its name. It wouldn't start, it had one headlight and the only fairing piece was a perfect condition left side. The list of other problems could go on for a while so I'll just cover them as I find and fix them.

Originally the plan for the bike was our standard fix and sell routine. I figured I would get it running and able to go down the road and pass it on to someone else for a project. We hadn't been riding much for the summer and I wasn't really feeling the need to have another bike. That all changed as the weather got nicer and we started riding again. Suddenly I was quickly reminded of what it is like to ride my first generation SV650 naked bike for Houston highway blasts with friends riding liter bikes... Needless to say the need for another big bike got back in the blood and I started taking another look at the ugly duckling RC in the garage.

My current plans are to get the bike running (no response from the start button when I picked it up) to make sure there's nothing major wrong on the mechanical front, then start into the major issues, then on to cosmetics. With any luck I plan to have the bike at least ugly and ridable by the time that the good weather comes to stay in Houston.
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post #2 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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So here's the bike and chix as we are picking it up:
And here she is when we got her back to the garage



Earlier in the week I got her up onto the lift. By this time the power commander and better condition tank had been "borrowed" for project stitch.

[/img]

Lets just take a quick look at some of the lovely work here... Here's the electrical tape that has been holding up a wiring harness for some time. That right next to the wonderfully rattle canned upper triple clamp. Yes, that is the entire roll of tape still hanging at the bottom.




How the guy managed to rash up this part of the fork is beyond me. I also noticed that one of the lower pinch bolts is missing...


It doesn't actually look that bad in the picture but this is the wiring for the tail lights. At least 8 butt crimps, all of them I could pull the wires right out, two that had already been pulled out, and twice as much wire as necessary. I'd be surprised if the lights on this thing worked half of the time.



My first bit of work, cleaning up that wiring. It actually looks worse since I haven't re-zip tied everything and put the ECU back in (currently working on a way other than looped zip ties to hold up the undertail).



Other than the work in the back, I've sorted out the "wiring issue" that was keeping it from turning over - blown fuse on the starting circuit. It turns over, but until I get a tank on it I won't get to hear it run, and that has to wait on a new banjo bolt for the fuel line since the old one was stripped out from someone using the wrong size allen on it.

I've also done some little clean up work to fix things the idiot previous owners did. The throttle tube and switch assembly are both pinned into holes in the right hand bar, but the PO had managed to miss the hole, smashing the pin out and mangling the hole for the throttle tube. I had to dremel the pin down on both pieces a little and got that all to fit cleanly. I've also got replacement bolts on the way for the stripped and oxidized ones on there right now.

Finally, I started doing a little clean up work on the rear cylinder head area.

Last edited by iBang; 09-14-2012 at 04:16 PM.
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post #3 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 04:47 PM
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A bit of a long road...keep us posted, leakdown test maybe? Just to get a good idea what's going on...bent valves, worn rings dire need of a valve adjustment you know that sort of thing...



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post #4 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 09:59 PM Thread Starter
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We'll see. If there's any issues with how it runs a leakdown will likely happen. If she starts up nice and happy and runs right, I probably won't bother.
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post #5 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 10:15 PM
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Really? Seems like it would be a good idea to get a check-up on the engine, considering how rough the rest of the bike is. That's a lot of time and parts money. I didn't catch it, but is the right side rashed? I noticed the left radiator looked straight. Nice stand too.
That scrape on the fork leg is where she kissed a concrete curb when it tipped over.

John, 2000 RC51 #000100

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post #6 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 01:20 PM Thread Starter
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Both sides show some rash and damage. The left radiator is straight, but has a big weld on it from an old repair so it looks like crap.

The problem is that I'm not willing to tear down the engine. If there's anything suspicious about how it runs when I get it together I'll sell it as-is to someone who wants a more in depth project. That's just not what I'm looking to get into here. I'll deal with the basics, but if it gets that intense I'd rather put my time and effort into something else.
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post #7 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 02:09 PM
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Get chix to do it.
As fast as she rebuilt that fork leg in the video, she'll have those vavles checked in no time flat!
A compression check is easy and a good indicator...

John, 2000 RC51 #000100

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post #8 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 02:43 PM Thread Starter
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Oh, valves? I might go through the top end and check the clearances on all of that. Its just the bottom end I don't want to get into. Anything under the valve cover is fair game.
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post #9 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 09:23 PM
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I am just learning about these bikes, and the pictures do not clearly show it, but does this bike have an SP1 swing arm?
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post #10 of 52 (permalink) Old 09-16-2012, 12:14 AM
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Originally Posted by 92VFR View Post
I am just learning about these bikes, and the pictures do not clearly show it, but does this bike have an SP1 swing arm?
Yes it is an SP1 swing arm

-2001 Honda RC51 sp1 " Slightly Modified "
-2001 Honda 929RR Erion Edition
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