Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

saga of a CB250 n00b

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by chrome, Jun 18, 2009.

  1. OK, so I got my honda CB250 n00b bike.

    Last night, went down to campbelltown with a mate who has a license and looked over a CB250 which was posted at $1000 on TP. A few hours earlier the seller had called me to say that some other bloke wanted a look and would be there by 5pm.

    Alright, I say, I'll try to be there as soon as I can. Looked at the clock, 3pm, I'm in the city, fsck this is going to be painful. Left the office, grabbed $1500 from the ATM and got the bus home. Had called my mate who was waiting for me on his bike when I got there, we parked his bike in my spot and zoomed off in my car. Good plan. Except for everyone else leaving sydney around 4pm to go home! Argh.

    Anyway, as we're going down the street where this bloke lives (do they even have street lights outside of sydney? eesh) he calls me, "Other bloke is here, wants to buy it, where are you?". Ugh, don't like being pressured. Tell him we're 100m down the street, pull up, and theres no light on the bike and 3 blokes standing there.

    Asked him to move it into some light so he takes it to a 'shed', hooks up lights and we finally get a look at the beast. As described, its a 1992 CB250. They'd already started it, so couldn't cold start it. Everything checked out though. It was straight, though the tines were slightly twisted to the left. Some scrapes and stuff like that. All lights worked. Heated handgrips. Oil is black and gritty, will need an oilchange. Suspension/shocks all good. Seats ripped, taped up. speedo/tacho works fine. Tires flat. Test ride had it sliding all over the place.

    So, we go out, and the other bloke and I work out where each other's limits are in $50 increments. The seller is a genius for getting us both out there at the same time; he doesn't have to do any haggling at all and can watch us drive the price up. Other bloke wouldn't go past 1350, I would, so that was that. My bike! Still cheap, considering.

    Will post some pics up later.

    Anyway, mate gets on it, we zoom off to petrol station, fill it up with fuel and pump the tires up to spec, and he gives it a quick ride around the station, says it feels much better. So we head off and are soon heading down the highway to sydney. He's keeping up at 100.

    Turned off the M5 before we got to the toll, driving through the suburbs towards marrickville. He was behind me because he didn't know where to go, so I was keeping an eye on him in the rear view mirror. Good thing too, because I saw his headlight flashing off! Crap, he wants me to stop. Pull over, have a discussion.

    No, he wasn't flashing his headlights. Oh, crap, I say, must be a loose wire in there. We'll have to see how it goes. We zoom off, it gets worse. Seems to co-incide with his gear changes. I pull over, we examine a bit closer; the throttle is sliding around and the heated handgrip cable presses the starter button and shuts off the light. Oops. Ok, so that will need to be fixed.

    We get home fairly uneventfully, I have a splitting headache.

    Bike needs a new seat, indicator light on the indicator panel needs replacing, fixing of the throttle, oil change and probably a full service before its probably safe to ride. But thats ok, 1 month til I get my Ls anyway :)

    It seems to run well, but there's a few things that need to be fixed.
    • Throttle grip is loose, so it spins around the throttle sleeve, requiring you to twist it back every so often. fix: glue? What type of glue?
    • Needs an oil change. Oil is black and sooty.
    • Everything probably needs a clean. Air filter, etc.
    • Right indicator light on panel needs to be replaced.
    • Clutch is a bit stiff, needs greasing.
    Probably take a stab at this myself, unless someone thinks that would be a bad idea. :)

    Other good news was that I've been checking the myTests site every day for an earlier opening on the leaner course, and one opened up for next weekend, saturday & sunday! Win! I just hope it doesn't rain. Haha.

    Stuff I need to buy:
    • Oil
    • Gloves, Jacket, Pants, Boots
    • Glue :)
    • WD-40
    • Some tools. I have no idea what I need. Will print the service manual.
    Did I miss anything?
  2. Get an oil filter to.
  3. Unless you know what you're doing, I'd take it to a mechanic/shop for your 'first' service. At least they'll get it tip top, and let you know if anything else needs looking at.

    Grats on the bike too :cool:
  4. Mate should have got it checked out by the mechanic before you bought it.

    I think this becomes more important in older/cheaper machines because they're more likely to come to you faulty. Seriously, what is the $30 odd dollars to get someone to give it the once over? Rushing to buy a bike is risky business.

    Good luck with it though, hope u get off fairly cheaply :wink:
  5. Thanks :) Yeah, I think you're right. I was tossing up doing it myself but there is so many unknowns.

    Can anyone recommend me a bike service place that won't charge and arm and a leg, is trustworthy, and is in/near marrickville?

    Yeah me too. We'll see :) The engine seems fine. No rattling or knocking, very smooth revs and idling.
  6. Definitely agree with KBiker, Chrome. Best to get a 'line-in-the-sand' service done, and pay out more dollars in one lump to get a healthy bike, than have to pay for things as they go wrong.

    But, yeah, congrats on the purchase, and enjoy :).
  7. Ok, so I gave a workshop a call and they could work on a '92 CB250 no worries. They're quoting $99/hour for labour; $200 for general service and $300 to check valve clearances as well.

    Does that sound reasonable to people?

    They have a pickup service, so thats convenient for me, as I can't ride it yet ;)
  8. im in ur engine, ruining ur oilz

    Service would be best, get the valve clearances done - chances are they haven't been done or not for a very long time. Anyway, they pop open the head to to do them so they can poke around and see what condition the innards are in. Electrical work on a bike is a biatch so let them deal with it :p
  9. lol (cat)

    Yeah sounds like a good idea, will call em back.

    Both places I called in sydney will charge about the same amount. Sounds like the average price.
  10. When I had them done it was around $300 for the service from memory.
  11. Yep, 99 for just labour, or 200 for a basic service, 300 for a full service.

    I'm getting them to fix some other things though so i'll be paying extra for that.

    Also, both companies quoted $100 both ways for a pickup and return service, so I might have to pay that unless I can convince my mate to drop it off down there for me. :)

    My very cheap $1000 CB250 has cost me an extra $400 at the door, probably another $600 for service and repairs. Its now a $2000 bike :D Ah well, I guess thats how it is when you buy a 17 year old POS. Any further work on it will be by me, so this up front cost isn't so bad.

    Another $1000 for gear, and I'll be good. Speaking of which, I just went to a shop and got measured p for a helmet (a good composite full face RJays), leather waterproof gloves, cloth waterproof pants and cloth jacket, both with the armour inserts and the jacket has a removable waterproof bit and a removable warm bit so I can remove that stuff on hot days and hopefully not be sweating too much. The boots I'm unsure of, I looked at some ridin boots that go up past my ankles. I figure they're only meant for riding, I guess I'll need to keep a pair of shoes at work? The whole lot, $860.

    I just started the bike, it doesn't blow smoke, and started easily after being cold for 24 hours. So I think mechanically, its ok. Win.
  12. It's good that it starts well.

    But from what you have said, don't take that for granted. Still get it checked out to make sure it keeps starting well and you don't have to push it up a hill, in front of a large group of people..
  13. pics of the beast - just linking to them as the add image to post thing is broken and it seems embedding them is a big No No :)

    My old new baby next to my new old baby:


    Closer shot:


    Straight on:


    Yes, the front end is not straight. This was noted last night, but mate who test rode it says its not too far out of whack, and barely noticable when riding. Will get the workshop I'm taking it to see what they can do about it if anything; if not I will just deal with it. Wasn't expecting a perfect bike for $1400 ...

    The paint is remarkably ok for such an old bike. Bit of rust in places but nothing to the point of actual holes in exhaust. I'm rather tempted to take to it with a can of spraypaint and ratbike it for some reason .. but I'll resist. :)
  14. Don't bother getting an oil filter. CB250's don't have one.

    A tune up by a mechanic may be a good idea if you don't have the skills, but you can save a little money changing the oil yourself. And if it's old and gritty, the sooner the better.

    While they don't have a filter, they do have a strainer which is a bit of wire gauze located in the engine. You need to take off the clutch cover (RHS) to get to it. If you take that off you may need a new gasket if the old one tears (about $20 last time I got one).

    Also don't forget to oil and tension the chain properly.

    There is a fair chance the brake fluid hasn't been changed for a bit too. Worth doing.
  15. Did it come with a pinkie?

    Autosol on the exhaust & cans will have them looking like new!

    Recovering the seat in marine vinyl should be around $85ish!

    pop a spirit level on your bars as they might be the problem not the front end! from the pic the right hand (throttle side) appears to sit a little lower!
  16. Or, the seller is a genius for having his mate there pretending to be another buyer in order to egg you into a higher price. might have lodged the ad, realised it was worth more than that so talked his mate into helping him get what it is worth when A buyer fronts up. It's been known to happen.

    Still, $1,400 is a pretty good price for a CB250 in any case. I'd definetely be taking the bike to a mechanic even if its for a full mech condition report. That way you have a check list of everything wrong, tackle the stuff you and your mates can handle and then get the mechanic to fix the rest. If you get the bike fixed up for under $2,000 all up, you can't complain about that.
  17. +1 thats what i said to nuXnux last nite....

    but still cheap
  18. Yup!

    Budgeting about $600 for getting everything to spec on the bike by a professional mechanic. Taking it to the shop tomorrow morning, so they can work on it all next week at their leisure, and take it for hoons around the neighbourhood if they want. If they break it, they can give me a new one off the shop floor ;)

    It needs new springs for the rear, I've decided. Bouncing up and down, I can make it bottom out its suspension. Yes, I'm heavy, so maybe its just me, but I'll see if I can get them to put some stiffer springs on it. That might make it a little more expensive to fix, heh. I'll talk to the blokes there and see what they reckon.

    Insurance, I just bought, $237 for comprehensive, insured the bike for $2150 which was the minimum, and I guess that'd be enough to get a bike not unlike it if I do stack it. Which would be sad, because I think she's actually in pretty good nick other than some scrapes and the slightly twisted front.

    I've decided I'll spend some decent money on gear thats going to last me, and has good protection, so I'm going to get a nice leather jacket that I can unzip the inner bits from to make it slightly less warm in summer, and I'll get a raincoat for rainy days. Hopefully I can find a fat bastard size jacket tomorrow. Need some pants and boots. have the helmet and gloves, got fitted for that last night.

    I'm sure I'm making loads of mistakes and assumptions, but I guess everyone has to do that before they figure out exactly what they really want.

    Haven't been this excited for years :D
  19. good boy! *pats head
  20. An update; got my bike back yesterday morning. Everything runs smoothly, they replaced the rear tire and the front fork seals, straightened those up (they weren't bent, just skewiff), did a full service. Came out to $700 all up. Caringbah Motorocycles, if anyone wants to know - the bloke there, Chad, called me up to make sure I was ok with the rear wheel and seals before he did them, so I have no complaints about the cost. I figure they needed to be done to get it re-registered in october anyway.

    Minor kerfuffle when I did the walk around on the bike, the brake light would work for the rear brake but not the front brake. Asked the bloke in the shop, he came out with a $20 switch for the brake lever and fixed it. Didn't charge me for his time ;)

    My mate, who is still a bit of a new rider, he got his unrestricted license a month ago. He just bought a 99? 98? CBR600F and has been having a horrible time. He came around to my place on it, and his keys fell out of his pocket somewhere on the way here, and that was the keys for the petrol tank. At some point the lock for the ignition was changed and they didn't change the tank lock. So that was a bit of drama.

    Went off to Caringbah, picked up my bike, came back, drove back to his place, looking for keys, got spare keys, came back while looking for keys again, got his bike moving out onto the road, and I could hear a clicking sound. After a bit of investigation, found that the front disc brake was warped, and the click was the caliper every time it clicked back into a resting position.

    Note to self, have lots of spare keys, and don't but them in outer jacket pockets...

    Anyway, went to my first day of prelearners yesterday, and had a great time. The trainer at Clyde, Chris, really good bloke - takes the time to make sure you've got it right, gives you encouragement. I had a few moments not giving the engine enough throttle when engaging the clutch but after a while I started getting the hang of it. Got some thumbs ups when going around corners.

    Second day is today, and I'll leave early again today so I'm not late :) Gives me a chance to sit around and watch the previous session too :)

    Having great fun, can't wait til Monday night when I have my L plates in my hand and can take my bike out for a spin around the block :) I think the industrial areas near my place may be some great places to practice, I just need to make sure I keep out of the way of trucks and forklifts.

    Oh, total damage for my learners:

    ~ $1500 for gear
    $1400 for bike
    ~ $700 for servicing
    ~ $250 for insurance
    ~ $50 for rego

    ~$4100 in total, not counting prelearners and license test fees.

    I'm pretty glad I went and got a second hand bike first, the damage could have been much higher if I'd bought a new one.