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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I own a Honda Shadow 600 VLX and love the little guy, it was my first bike and runs so well. I also own a couple Harley Davidson's but am looking at buying an early 80's V45 Sabre.

I really like the look of them with a fairing but don't know much about the history.
Were they a reliable bike?
What's a fair price for one?
Are parts hard to get for them?
 

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Nice bike if you're into that. They have sort of a cult following, like many old bikes, and you can find a ton of info for them on the web.
Parts are fairly easy to find in my experience.
They do have an oil/lubrication issue which is fairly easily corrected. I don't remember the details but I'm sure someone here does.
Pulling the carburetors is a real pain in the rear.
 

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The 1100's (V65) were the ones with the cam wear problems because they weren't getting enough oil. I'd love to get my hands on a Sabre. 83 was the last year for the 750, they had to make it a 700 for the last years it was in production, at least in the U.S. Nice powerband, pulls like a train up to the red line. They weren't as popular as the Magnas or the Interceptors, but they are nice bikes if you can find one that's in good condition. Don't pay more than $2000, even for a V65.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks guys I went and looked at one the other day. It needed some love and to be honest I'm not sure i drank the Kool-aid. Needless to say I passed, I'll keep my eye out for another but am not gonna hunt for one.
 

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I just picked up an 85 for $500 not running. Nice engine! Good primary balance. Just be sure to keep the oil changed and use a good grade synthetic.
 

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The engines were reliable as a rock, the oil issues had more to do with how they were ridden, are high volume oil lines and how to deal with it available. The first 82 models had no rev llimiter and could rev well past redline floating valves and ending up with 8 bent intake valves. The later models had limiters, but a good eye on the tach is the best thing.

The sport touring was where the Sabres really shined. They were GoldWing smooth and with bags and fairing, did the job well.

As for the cam thing, I'd check with a Honda service department or hit a V4 forum to learn more there.

Sometimes a minor issue becomes an all encompassing thing. Like the crank clearance issue on the early V-four Interceptor 500. Honda caught virtually all of them replacing entire engines on new bikes, yet it haunts the bikes due to the rumor mill. The 500 Interceptor was incredibly reliable and still considered an incredibly good handling motorcycle after all these years - handling is handling.
 

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The 1100s were the biggest culprits for premature cam wear, and any that have survived this long are likely to be just fine.

The 700 was a tariff beater, and what I know of them the 700 got a tweaked head so made basically the same power as the 750.

I've also heard that the 750 crank is a direct swap if you want those 50ccs back. But to be honest, I don't find my VF700C (Magna version instead of the Saber, same engine) lacking for power.

The VF series of bikes from the 80s (Magna, Saber, Interceptor) are somewhat notorious for a weak 2nd gear (mine suffers from it). At one point Honda released an upgraded gear with better dogs for stronger engagement, but it's hard to come by now.
 

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The second gear problem with these bikes is pretty common, and I believe there's a guy on the V-4 Musclebikes forum who fixed it without splitting the case.
 
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