Restoration

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While I did the body work on the fenders and tank, Kurt started reassembling the bike. Front tire and forks were first.

Then the rear tire, shocks, and handlebars.

Some of the parts from the parted out bike.

More of the parts.

Then the replacement engine was installed.

The Rebel is starting to look like a motorcycle again.

One more part that was cleaned up, the exhaust flanges that hold the pipes to the engine. One clean and one not yet, just to show the difference.

The replacement exhaust from the parted down bike. It was in much better condition than my original, with just a touch of roadrash on both pipes.

We could not properly mount the rear shocks until the rear fender was in place. But we could get the battery box and some of the wiring back on for the instrument cluster and the front lights.

The painted tank and fenders were mounted after they were buffed.

Now she looks like a motorcycle again. Ready for a ride - almost.

These are some aftermarket horns that we mounted years ago. They still work and looked better than anything we could find now, so they were cleaned up and reinstalled.

The original handlebar mounts were tarnished and the steel screws had tried to become one with the aluminum housing. This is a common problem. A friend who is good with a tig welder added some metal back in, but we had to finish the cleanup.

One cleaned and buffed handlebar mount and one not, just to show the difference. Yes, we cleaned the second one up as well before installing both for the final time.

Finally the Rebel is out of the garage and ready to ride! She had sat for almost 8 years, but was restored in less than 1 year - and most of that time was tracking down or waiting on parts.

First spin out. She's running ok, but not great. Seems the carb rebuild had missed cleaning a passageway. That had to be fixed. Then she wasn't stopping correctly, so we had to rebuild the front brake master cylinder. And we still have to give her some wings.

Time to don her wings. They are self-adhesive vinyl decals. Putting them onto a curved surface is tricky, but easily fixed.

All fixed now. The wings are very modern, but I think the color is better than the original orange and brown against the blue.

Her first show! Those saddle bags were made for Kurt's Shadow back in 1997ish. My son's 2017 Shadow is in the background. She does not look like a 34 year old motorcycle.

Finished for now and looking sharp!

The front of the bike. I've received many compliments on the restored Rebel.

Even in the shade, she's a showpiece.

A closeup of the engine and batter cover. We've had to tweak the idle setting on the rebuilt carbs but otherwise she's been great to ride.

The other side of the engine and the air breather cover. We rolled back the age to just 3K miles though she looks almost new.

When we first bought the Rebel, it did not have a luggage rack. But I was commuting on it and needed somewhere to strap down things, so we purchased this luggage rack. At this point we can't remember what it fits, but we think it was a Rebel 250.

After so many years, the chrome is cracked and areas are pitted and rusty.

A closeup of the underneath side where the rust is.

The crazing and pitting in the chrome is obvious here.

Even the mounting brackets are showing their age. So everything was sent in to the chroming shop for rechroming because finding a repalcement was just not possible.

The rechromed parts ready for reinstallation.

Now this beauty is completely restored, except for the electrical grimlin that keeps killing the engine about two miles into any drive.

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