Bob R's CL450 1 An expecting first time parent is easy to spot. The nervous fidgeting, bleary eyes from a restless night's sleep, fingers drumming in anticipation of what's about to unfold. Then comes the big day; the final push, words of encouragement from loved ones, unexpected fluids appearing from alternate orifices, then tears. Congratulations, you'll never forget the first time you give birth to a bike. That moment when calm descends and you can finally catch your breath. When nobody's looking, give it a hug. Be sure to take a step back and look at your newborn, there'll never be another first. And capture the moment on camera, a happy memory to look back upon when that fresh build turns out to be stroppy and uncooperative as it grows up. Bob R's CL450 2 Bob Ranew forgot the camera. So caught up with the joy of completing his first official build as Redeemed Cycles, it was only later that he realised he hadn't captured it for posterity. Headlong into the next build, the little CL was with it's new owner all too quick, eager for the bond between man and bike to form. So we're happy to see that Bob's finally got round to filling out the family photo album, because the bike's a cracker. The build came about after Bob was the first paying customer of a guy called John Ryland, who started up a small outfit called Classified Moto... and we all know how that's gone. Having fallen in love with the process of transforming a forgotten bike into something special, when co-worker Jerry Bodrie started asking about his ride, Bob agreed to help him build a Honda Scrambler of his own. Bob R's CL450 3 A rummage through the murky back-pages of Craigslist brought up what looked to be a great candidate in Tennessee, about 300 miles from Bob's base in Raleigh. A truck was borrowed and the road trip was on. However, like the angelic photo's of your friend's children on social media, the truth involved a lot more blood, sweat and poop as Bob and Jerry found out. "Man do things always look better in photos. The 1974 CL450 was in pretty bad shape; there was a title and it would crank, but that was about it." The complete lack of functional brakes came as a (literal) surprise and d a heavy layer of black gunk on most of the mechanicals meant they had their hands full. Bob R's CL450 4 This was no glamorous hi-tech workshop build, the bike was heaved down the steps into Jerry''s basement for a proper assessment. Thanks to full time day jobs and familial commitments, the guys could only work on the bikes on Tuesday nights after work, so every minute was precious. Stripping the bike down is always the fun part and the CL was soon a bare bones frame. After that, came the Olympic Ski jump sized learning curve; "Starting with the fork seals it was one challenge after another. Cutting wires that should have never been touched. Burning the skin off our hands with aircraft stripper. Losing parts, and just making a general mess of things. But looking back on it, we learned from our mistakes and we never gave up." Bob R's CL450 5 The original CL tank was replaced with a 1974 CB450 non-scrambler item item. With the rear of the bike cut and looped the slightly larger dimensions of the CB tank give the machine a beautiful 50:50 tank/seat ratio. Wheels were stripped and painted before a pair of chunky Firestone ANS tyres were squeezed on, Bob even painting the raised lettering for a little vintage flair. The seat, to Bob's own admittance is not exactly La-Z-Boy comfortable, but it was the first attempt at upholstery. Having completed other builds and learnt a trick or two, he's just recently gone back and revised it, much to the relief of Jerry's beleaguered posterior. Tracker bars, gum grips, bobbed fenders and simple instruments give classic poise, while the mechanics remain original but fully rejuvenated. Bob R's CL450 6 Smartly, Bob and Jerry didn't try to do it all on their own. Builds can get stuck and languish when enthusiasm wanes due to road blocks, and much time can be wasted chasing your tail on something that isn't an issue for someone who's 'been there. done that'. They reached out for help from folks more knowledgeable and experienced on the trickier items like re-wiring the electrics and re-jetting carbs, ensuing the bike charged and ran like a champ. Bob R's CL450 7 To our eyes, the key to the success of this build are the great proportions and that it's not over worked; the guys didn't dote too much and the lightly polished alloy and original paint compliment the stocky stance perfectly. "This bike will always remain special to me and it kickstarted my next 4 builds at Redeemed Cycles. The experience demonstrated what I believed to be true: With an eye for design and some basic mechanical aptitude, a regular Joe can actually build a pretty sweet bike. Jerry loves his Scrambler so everyone is happy." Bob R's CL450 8 Redeemed's latest build, a CB550 is just receiving it's finishing touches and will roll out of the delivery room soon, followed by a pair of CB750s. We hope Bob remembers the camera this time! Be sure to catch up with Redeemed's progress on their Facebook page
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