The 1974 Honda CR836
In February 2017...
We purchased a very tired 1974 Honda CB750 with 44,000 miles, and unrideable.
The 95 Customs team crafted a vision for the bike - a modern re-interpretation of the 1970 Daytona-winning Honda CR750 Race Bike, deconstructed to it’s barest essence.
It was decided right away that this would be a bespoke build, with no fiberglass or store-bought bodywork. So the team at Ohio Metal Shaping was involved from the start.
The two teams aligned around the following principles:
- The bike must be built around the rider, and perform without compromise
- This will not be built as a show-bike, but as an authentic, serious and everyday rideable performance bike
- We will pay attention to the details most others ignore or avoid
The 95 Customs team designed the bike to be comfortable, functional and sexy. Ohio Metal Shaping would take the design intent and hand-craft each piece, detailing every part by hand. Every body panel on the bike is unpainted bare metal. This was not just an aesthetic choice, but as a no-excuses testament to the high quality of the hand-crafted metal work. The gas tank, fairing, front fender and rear cowl are aluminum. The oil tank, side cover, and frame plate are steel. Unique details include an incredibly innovative and complex frame plate that acts as seat support, battery tray, gas tank hold-down, and support for electronics, oil tank, side cover, and brake light. And it’s not even a visible part.
The oil tank and side cover alone are works of art. The oil tank carries more volume than the factory tank, while being less than half the size in side view. The left side cover mimics the oil tank profile, and conceals all the electronics and wiring. When the two parts are clam-shelled together, they look like one part, and with no exposed fasteners. This creativity and attention to detail allowed a visual openness typically only seen on smaller bikes, and almost never on a dry sump bike.
The mechanical performance has been built to live up to the promise provided by the appearance. The engine has been bored out to 836cc, with increased compression and more aggressive cam profiles. The suspension has been rebuilt and updated with higher performance spring rates and damping capabilities. The bike weighs more than 50 pounds less than the starting bike, and with significantly more power and performance.
All this thoughtfulness, effort, and attention to detail comes together in a bike that pays homage to the past, while looking lean, mean, and seriously capable.