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A tale of woe, and maybe hope ...

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I recently picked up what I thought was a 1984 VF750F with less than 2K miles (claimed) on her, turns out to be an '83.  I have an '84 VF700F that I bought new in '85, rode her until 2008 when she quit running, and she's been 'put up' ever since.  I have always wanted the 750 sister, and I allowed that long time desire to cloud my judgement.  The 'clouds' were so thick that I overlooked numerous red flags and still made the purchase, probably for double what the bike is worth.


Some red flags I ignored:
- was told she had run 'recently', but we couldn't get her to start
- throttle action sticky as h*ll, could hardly get the butterflies moving, choke no better
- nasty smelling gas in float bowls
- clutch not operable
- front brakes barely there, rear brake not working
- right side fork cap missing
- much dust/crap found under seat and in the tail section area
- lower fairing melted on left side
- model/VIN sticker normally attached to the frame on right side, missing


PO revealed that the bike had been down.  Not so much a red flag, but I should have taken a much closer look after learning this.  Should have paid more attention to the title/VIN as well.  Instead, I took her home.  I ran a VIN check on the actual number, and the report shows 1 accident, no salvage, no theft, and multiple registrations.  With every re-registration, the odometer reading is claimed accurate, a claim that isn't worth all that much I'm afraid.


At home, I had a closer look:
- VIN on frame does not match that on title, 2 characters incorrect
- front right caliper attached with mis-matched bolts
- right side engine mounting bolt incorrect
- right side muffler exhibits minor scrapes
- mirrors are not original
- battery strap bolt not original
- right side sidecover lower mount tab broken
- spark plugs not stock


So enough of the woe, there may be some hope.  On the plus side:
- externally the tank is in good shape, PO sealed the inside but may have sealed the fuel feed as well, so this is a minus and a plus
- the upper fairing, side panels, and tail piece still look good, just minor scuffs you'd get with a 'barn find'
- seat cover original and in good shape (no tears)
- all the electrics (headlight, turn signals, etc) work
- the engine cranks and spins freely
- there is spark
- the radiator looks fresh inside as far as I can see in there, copper look is good
- forks are in good shape, almost like new
- inside of valve covers very clean, cam/valve area very clean, cam lobes appear to have almost no wear.  They are 90% grey still, little to no polish, and no pitting

- transmission shifts up/down thru gears by hand at least


So, overall,  I'm disappointed, but it's my fault.  Now my plan is to clean the carbs and see if she'll run.  If she does, I'll warm her just enough to drain the oil, then have a look inside the crankcase covers.  If these areas appear as fresh as the cam area, I'll try to make her street worthy again.


I'm not sure what I gain by writing this, but I feel better having done so.  And should I go ahead with this project, I will be using all the knowledge about 1st gens that this forum (and the 'other one') has, which is considerable :biggrin:.



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I know that "my own damn fault" feeling. I bought a 1998 VFR earlier this year. A picture showed perfect fairings. I drove a loooong way to get it and was probably sleep deprived when I looked at it. I rode it around the block and on to the trailer. After all, every one of the prior four used fifth gens was sound as heck. Got home and took a close look. It was heavily damaged by corrosive salt.  (palm to forehead slap here). Restoration begins later. 

"Sometimes you're the windshield, sometimes you're the bug". Mark Knopfler.


We just need to chalk it up as tuition in the school of Hard Knocks.  

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Hope is the last to die.....


On the up side, interest on money in the bank is 0.05%...


"I tinker, therefore I am"

René Descartes


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2 hours ago, Dutchy said:



On the up side, interest on money in the bank is 0.05%...




I actually see that some US bank savings rates are as low as 0.01% ... so, even ?better? :laugh:.  Another plus for me, although I'm still working, I've also started collecting a monthly pension payment from a former employer.  It's not much, but it's more than the bike cost ...



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