By Anthony van Someren - 14 Dec 12
Is this bike just tooooo pretty to be a humble CB350? Quite possibly. Not only is the bike a real beauty to look at from a distance, the amount of work and detail that has gone into the build is astounding, and would put a few pros to shame. It was built by Ducatiboy from Do the Ton. This is his story: The donor is a pretty machine in itself, but this is no cosmetic overhaul. Every component has been stripped back, refinished and rebuilt, right down to the engine casings and instrument internals, never mind the OTT upgrades in suspension and chassis. The bike is a 1969 or 1970 CB350. It came with the upswept CL pipes on it but the engine number starts with CB350 so DB wasn't sure if that's the way the were supposed to be or if someone had swapped the pipes. It was sitting under a tree in a paddock on a farm next door to his parents property just outside of Queanbeyan NSW. The farmer said he could have it for free if he came and removed it from his property. According to the farmer it "ran perfectly" before it was parked up 10 years previously. Since then DB and his 13 year old son have spent 18 months in the shed slowly getting it together. Radial Brembo levers, Showa USD forks, led indies... The bike was stripped to the bare frame and 40 years worth of grime and grease cleaned off while unwanted lugs & brackets ground off, and rusty sections were replaced. It was then sent off for metallic silver paint. The motor was stripped to the crank. A new lower case had to be sourced from the US because of two broken engine mounts. The engine cases, barrels, head and rocker box were all prepped and painted with a spray can while the cylinders were rebored with 0.25mm oversize pistons & rings inserted. The head was serviced with original valves used plus new cam chain and tensioning rollers. Boretech electronic ignition, dyna tech coils, Ricks rectifier/regulator and a home made wiring loom took care of the electrics. The tank and seat came from Benjies Cafe Racers and the paint is by Collide-a-scope in Sydney. Rearsets are from Loaded Gun. Ducatiboy is 50 year old consultant anaesthetist in Sydney. He's been riding a bike daily since he was seventeen and hasn't even got a car. He fell-in with the wrong crowd in his 20s and started riding and racing Ducatis - which he's been doing pretty much ever since. He has no training in mechanics but has worked on bikes in his shed, putting a few parts bin specials together when he was younger but this has been the first time he's done it "properly". This CB350 is also his first 'old' bike and his first time inside a Japanese motor. Clocks were rebuilt and refaces, but retain the cracked glass to keep it looking old... Radial 4-pot Brembos on a 350. Jesus... From Ducatiboy: "It has been a huge benefit to both my son and I. For him, he is learning all about working in the shed, how to turn a spanner and the love of tinkering generally and on motorcycles specifically. For me, I have had the incredible joy of working together with my son towards a common goal and generally spending good time together at a time when many kids don't want to spend time with their parents." So, there you have it! Building awesome bikes is family therapy and will enrich your life. (well, that's how we read it). ...We truly love this build, but even more we love the human story behind it. If you wanna dig a little deeper there loads more, in fact pages and pages, on Do The Ton.