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1978 Honda 750 Four

I am trying to sell this for my wife's uncle. If you have questions or if you feel I have listed something incorrectly, please let me know and I will find out.

I believe this is a 1978 (based on the serial number) Honda 750 Four. It has 14k miles and for the most part is original. It has been repainted and the paint is NOT original but he said he wanted it more of a sport to stand out from the rest. The chrome is original but consequently is not perfect. After almost 40 years, it understandably shows its age. The seat has been recovered, but only the top so as to retain the original Honda side/back. The wheels are also not original and go along with the sport theme.

I/he will consider offers but there isn't too much room with the money he spent restoring it AND he doesn't need to sell. This is just sitting in a barn so no low-balls or it'll just continue to sit there.

Last Note, this is for sale locally on Gulfport/Biloxi Craigslist. I think I put some extra pictures on there.

List Date: 5/1/2015
Location: Escatawpa, MS, United States

For more info, click here to view the original listing: 1978 Honda 750 Four
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Just a few pointers on the bike itself. The tank, side covers, oil tank, exhaust system, seat, and idiot lights are not off a '77 or '78 vintage. They're earlier.

I'm assuming you stated 1978 because the last four numbers of the VIN are 1978. That is a happy coincidence! I looked at an SOHC site and I get a little confusion on the frame number but it corresponds to a '75 or '76. Can you still read the date of manufacture? It may not reflect the model year as they were often on the assembly line a bit before the model year.

I can't quite make out the engine number but I think it is also of the same vintage.

There are some other clues that I can't quite make out and I'm not entirely certain about as some of my reference material is at home and I'm at work.

The way the exhaust pipes attach at the head, the older bikes had a spigot that attached to the head, the pipes slipped on and had a finned clamp that had a single bolt that squeezed the clamp onto the spigot. The later ones had a finned collar that bolted to the head using two exhaust studs. I can't see this in the pictures that well. I do know the '77 and '78 had the later style. I'm not certain when the change took place though. But looking at the pipes themselves, they're not off a '77 or '78 as those didn't have the heat shields on them.

The seat is also an indication of the older style. The '77 and '78 had the hinge on the left side and the latch on the right, so when opened the stuff under was more readily accessed from the right side of the bike. I think the older ones hinged the other way around. The turn signals also are consistent with later models. I think those changed in '75 and stayed that way through '78.

The wheels aren't stock to the K model. All of the K bikes had spoke wheels. The F models got Comstar mags at some point. I'm not certain about the A models. The Comstars were only on the '78 F and A I think. Comstars only had 5 spokes.

The carburetors are also a clue, those are not the same as the ones on the '77 or '78 models.

What I think you have is a '76. But it could be a '75.


I think you may be asking a bit on the high side. Purists are going to be put off by the paint and the wheels. But you'll have to do a bit of research - as I mentioned in the other thread, eBay is actually a good reference. But restrict your research to bikes that have actually sold. Asking prices aren't a valid measure of value. Read their condition descriptions to see how yours ranks on the prices.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Good feedback and I appreciate it. I arrived at the 1978 for two reasons. First, as you mentioned the VIN says 1978. Second, I seem to remember when he told me what year it was, I thought "oh, that's one year off my birth year so I'll remember that". Problem is, I was born in 1977 so it could have been a 78 or a 76. Based on your notes and what I seem to remember him saying, I would agree with you that it's likely a 1976. I'll see if I can change that.

I absolutely agree that purists aren't going to like the fact that it wasn't done original. When he restored the bike, I don't think he ever intended to sell it. Unfortunately for him, he is in a position where he will want to sell it but has kind of shot himself in the foot by building what he wanted and not what would sell best. Lesson learned for him maybe. That being said, I think this bike might appeal to somebody who maybe grew up with one of these and liked it and wants another one (maybe for a grown child, etc) but doesn't want to spend the money for a high end restoration. I think this might appeal better to somebody who wants a nice bike but is willing to trade off for the non-original sporty look (that a kid would probably prefer).

Lastly, I agree $4000 is probably a little high. eBay is a good tool but as you mentioned price needs to be based on actual sales, not asking prices. Unfortunately, unless you watch the auction end, once it's gone, it's gone. There's no history of what it actually sold for in the past (again, unless you have it in you "watched items"). I saw one asking $4995 with higher miles. It was more "original looking" but not restored and still had pinholes in the exhaust (a common problem with these). Again, $4000 is probably a little high, but there is negotiation room in there. I've learned in the past that EVERYBODY wants to make offers and haggles. Nobody likes to pay asking price no matter how low it may be. So...ask high, say that you're willing to negotiate, and hopefully get some takers.

Again, thanks for the feedback.

Sorry, one last update. I doubled checked a better quality picture (had to downgrade picture to meet the 4MB requirement) of the VIN that I had and it is: CB750E-2378892. I hate to ask you to verify for me, but if you can definitely tell me what year it is, it would be appreciated.
 

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Post up the engine number so I can tell if the engine is in the correct series of numbers to be original. That's a selling point. The numbers aren't matched definitely like older stuff (engine and frame same numbers).

That frame number makes it a K4 according to my book - 1974. Also from another source it is a 1974. See this chart (has frame and engine numbers): http://www.hondachopper.com/engine/engine_timeline/timeline.html
 

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Regarding eBay, you can do a search. If you look down the left side of the page you'll see several ways to modify the search. Auction only, Buy it now only and they've got completed listings. I think you may also be able to limit your search to include only items that sold.

I just did that search. I gotta admit I'm fairly shocked at what they've sold for. I'm not going to spoil it for you but have a look as I suggested. Just search 1974 CB750K. On the left side you'll see three options you need to check in order to get what you want, namely all the useless listings gone.

At the top where it gives you the number of results found you'll be able to check motorcycles or parts, motorcycles of course.

You can also select item location - I chose US only and got an additional one in Canada.

Below the search area you'll see where you can chose sold listings only. It won't go back more than however long a listing will stay up for access. IIRC that would be a couple of months.

I have to admit after seeing the sale figures I have no idea what you might get for the bike. It all depends upon how you word the listing, how good your pictures are, and the market you reach. The broader net you cast you may do better. It does look like there is some rust on your bike even though it looks good in the pictures. If the chrome has been worked over as best as you can then I think there is more limit on price. However, if someone has the time, some chrome polish and elbow grease can enhance value.

Close up shots are a good way to avoid people feeling misled by a description. One man's good condition is another man's POS. I went to look at a pickup some years ago that was listed in a newsrag, no pictures. Excellent condition. I drove about an hour to have a look at it. It looked like a tree fell on the tail gate, and a massive round bolder hit the back of the cab after being launched into the bed. I kid you not, the back window was gone and a new one wouldn't have been able to fit. It was customized with random steering, delayed transmission, easy access to the window regulator on the driver's side, which was good because you wanted to make certain you could roll it down to open the door. It also had a nice garbage chute where the radio once lived. I did take it for a test drive just for the excitement.
 

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I guess that I must live in a great area to buy motorcycles. My 1979 Cb750 was a dollar a cc. All it needed was sprockets and a chain. There is a bike shop in this area that sells good running bikes without cosmetic improvements and a bike of that year would probably sell for about 1500. But that is Ohio, and not where you are located

A bike of earlier vintage in excellent shape would probably be higher. People in the 750 cult like the sohc better than the dohc . Buyers are gonna freak if you do not have the correct year. He does have a title,yes?

When you get to the older bikes, original parts are important. I think the blue painted frame and the wheels are gonna hurt him. I also think that I could find a nicely done resto for his asking price or even less. Good luck
 

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I'm going to go out on a thorny limb and assume he doesn't have the title. Which is going to cost him. Many would say he's got a parts bike without one. There are title companies that will, for a few Benjamins, fix that for you. I've done better through vigilance and courtesy.
 

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I guess that I must live in a great area to buy motorcycles. My 1979 Cb750 was a dollar a cc. All it needed was sprockets and a chain. There is a bike shop in this area that sells good running bikes without cosmetic improvements and a bike of that year would probably sell for about 1500. But that is Ohio, and not where you are located

A bike of earlier vintage in excellent shape would probably be higher. People in the 750 cult like the sohc better than the dohc . Buyers are gonna freak if you do not have the correct year. He does have a title,yes?

When you get to the older bikes, original parts are important. I think the blue painted frame and the wheels are gonna hurt him. I also think that I could find a nicely done resto for his asking price or even less. Good luck
The SOHC models will fetch a higher price. The earlier ones are better. The improperly labeled sandcast ones being the more costly ones.

On the paint job, I was surprised to see what some non-stock bikes went for on eBay.

I also got a big surprise on some older Yamahas. I had a bunch of RDs I was trying to unload and looking around at eBay I may have given a few of them away. I've still got a nice '75 RD350, the orange one. Not perfect but it has placed a first or second (I had both 1st and 2nd and I can't remember which - the other was a '77 RD400 - sold!) at a small bike show. I thought they were in the $2200 to $2500 max range. Some have sold just shy of $5K on fleabay.
 

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I gave 1400 cash for my superbike. 4000 is like a pipe dream I think. completely mint with no miles.... well 10k is not what is on a machine that the speedo is disconnected on.
 
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