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texas123

1985 Honda Big Red, part duex

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A few months ago I restored a 1985 Honda 200X, but realized it was too small for me, so I sold it. I started looking for a non running Big Red. I just picked up a nicely kept 1985 Honda Big Red. The bike wouldn't start or stay running, even with the choke on, so I bought it, cleaned the carb jets, replaced the fuel and it fired right up. Super easy compared to the previous one. The idle is high now, so I'll look again to see what I'd messed up. Anyway, here's the new one. 

Edit: Hey, if anyone lives near West Houston/Katy & would like to make a couple of bucks, hit me up. There are a couple of things I'm not certain about & would appreciate the help. This one is more complex than my 200X was.

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Edited by texas123
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That one is more dangerous. 

 

Don't think it's actually much more complicated once you get the rack and fenders off really.

High and low in the transmission makes it complicated but you aren't getting into that hopefully.

I would strip it to the frame and get all the rust now before it gets any worse. That thing looks in great shape!

 

Here is the most important thing you can do...

 

In-line fuel filter!

Good (Plastic) | Better (Metal) | Best (Glass)

 

What you will run into time and time again with these old metal tank bikes is a small piece of something getting into the pilot jet.

 

Other than that just reset the air/fuel screw to stock (2 turns out?) and make sure it's really clean again.

Choke sticking can be another tail-to-chase regarding idle.

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Edited by oh400ex

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3 hours ago, texas123 said:

I just picked up a nicely kept 1985 Honda Big Red. The bike wouldn't start or stay running, even with the choke on, so I bought it, cleaned the carb jets, replaced the fuel and it fired right up. Super easy compared to the previous one. The idle is high now, so I'll look again to see what I'd messed up. Anyway, here's the new one. 

 

thats a really clean big red, still looks to have the oem tires, once you get the carb issue sorted, you should be good to go. 

 

3 hours ago, texas123 said:

cleaned the carb jets,

 

what did the tank filter screen, and jets look like gummy over time with bad gas ? what other issues is she having ? 

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Got it going after I looked at it again. The throttle cable was too tight & pulling the slide up. Running like a champ now. I don't see any rust on the bike and everything looks original. I bought it from the second owner, who bought it 3 years ago from the original owners kids after he died. It sat in his garage except for a few rides he said. 

 

There is no hi/lo gear transfer case, just a super low (SL) gear, then 1-5th with reverse.

No fuel filter either, so I'll go get one Tuesday morning. The carb was nasty and had muddy fuel in it, probably a rust and fuel slurry. 2 of the 4 jets were very hard to open/clean. I ended up soaking them & using a copper bristle.

There seems to be a clunk in the front end when the suspension is unloaded. Maybe steering head bearings or forks. Don't know for sure.

It also pulls to the left on the road. I checked the tire pressure and all tires are 5.5 psi, but the sticker says 2.2 psi, so I'll change that tomorrow.

 

 

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im like TRBrider .... I'd hang on to that one! glad you got it all sorted, but this needs attention, the boot on the carb isn't pulled all the way up. as for the clunk, does this happen when apply the front brake, and can you wiggle the handle bars back and forth ? 

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Please be careful.

 

These might be the most dangerous ones they ever made. Know personally a few folks who had their worst ever wrecks on a Big Red.

I have had some pretty hairy crashes on one myself. At least the 200 wasn't heavy and was nimble enough to correct a problem. This one will lull you and then try to kill you.

 

Edit: 85,86 and 87 Big Red don't have high/low range and the older ones do I guess. The one I owned had low range.

I don't think I've ever ridden one without high/low come to think of it. Mine was also kick start.

Edited by oh400ex

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the 250ES is a killer , LOL -----  140 stitches , 7 broken bones , weeks in the hospital , months off of work 

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9 hours ago, _Wilson_™ said:

im like TRBrider .... I'd hang on to that one! glad you got it all sorted, but this needs attention, the boot on the carb isn't pulled all the way up. as for the clunk, does this happen when apply the front brake, and can you wiggle the handle bars back and forth ? 

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Good catch, I'll fix the boot, again.

The clunk is only when the fork rebounds all the way up. It's a pronounced metallic clunk. It does pull moderately hard to the left when I'm on the street if that helps.

Also, I can't tell if the danger warnings are serious or not. This thing is like a slug compared to my 4 wheeler. Even if it does go fast, I'm not sure it's designed for more than just putting around.

Not a whole lot to work on with this bike, but I'll start looking for something else to fix.

 

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Maybe the fork tube leaked the oil out on one side and it is slamming ----    might be the photo , the right fork looks bent under  the boot 

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1 hour ago, texas123 said:

Also, I can't tell if the danger warnings are serious or not. This thing is like a slug compared to my 4 wheeler. Even if it does go fast, I'm not sure it's designed for more than just putting around.

 

Hear this please. That is not a joke in the slightest. 

That ATC... the big red line are arguably the most dangerous bikes ever made.

 

2 hours ago, oh400ex said:

This one will lull you and then try to kill you.

 

This is true. Someone very close to me has actual permeant brain damage from (all things considered) a very low speed crash. 

There are more people with horror stories about big reds than the 200x. That is not a joke. Please be careful!

 

@Fishfiles Is it you that got-got by the big red or someone you know?

 

2 hours ago, Fishfiles said:

140 stitches , 7 broken bones , weeks in the hospital , months off of work 

 

Edited by oh400ex

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41 minutes ago, oh400ex said:

 

 

 

@Fishfiles Is it you that got-got by the big red or someone you know?

 

 

 

No ,  it was me , didn't mention 3 operations in the hospital and numerous in the doctor's office procedures that hurt like he!! , jaws wired shut for 19 weeks  ----  took 6 months to get back to working , was a 1986 TRX250ES 

 

 

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What makes the BR more dangerous that any other ATC?

 

I have a 185 that @basfnb's brother gave me.  Needs a lot of work.

 

I honestly have such slow reflexes that I figure a 4wheeler is plenty dangerous for me.

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23 minutes ago, Fishfiles said:

No ,  it was me , didn't mention 3 operations in the hospital and numerous in the doctor's office procedures that hurt like he!! , jaws wired shut for 19 weeks  ----  took 6 months to get back to working , was a 1986 TRX250ES 

 

Wow. Thank you for sharing but I'm sorry you ever had to go through that... man

 

17 minutes ago, jeepwm69 said:

What makes the BR more dangerous that any other ATC?

 

I have a 185 that @basfnb's brother gave me.  Needs a lot of work.

 

I honestly have such slow reflexes that I figure a 4wheeler is plenty dangerous for me.

 

Nothing in particular mechanically... it's more of a feeling.

 

"That's just a little lumberjack" 

"It wouldn't possibly hurt me... "

"I rode that when I was a kid"

"I remember my grandpa riding one of those..."

 

This thing just looks and feels so tame but the combination of the instability, it being heavy and the balloon tires being bouncy is just no good.

 

What I said earlier pretty much sums it up...

 

3 hours ago, oh400ex said:

This one will lull you and then try to kill you.

 

I don't know of a single machine that has hurt more people I love than the Big Red line. I would still own one... while knowing I am riding a tiny monster.

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I learned to ride atvs (atcs) on a 110 honda atc with the hi/low. I think i've told the story on here before how i didn't know it had high until one day i was messing with the chain and was like, HEY WHAT'S THIS DO! (dad's little secret) as a 11/12 year old. That was the day i rolled the thing over. I still can't tell you how it happened, just driving on the same loop i always did just a little faster and whoop, there i was eating dirt and the 110 running upside down. I was lucky and didn't hurt anything and gained a lot of respect for the machine.

It was a sad day when the fuel line rotted through while my brother was riding it and started on fire in the woods. She melted down to a crisp. I was hauling 55 gallon drums of water up into the woods with the farmall A and wood trailer to put the small woods fire it started out. once again pretty lucky as it could have been worse. That might have been the hottest fire i remember being near. all that plastic and big balloons fueled by gas and paint. I believe the frame is still sitting at my parents place about 50ft from where she burned down.

 

 

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4 hours ago, texas123 said:

Good catch, I'll fix the boot, again.

The clunk is only when the fork rebounds all the way up. It's a pronounced metallic clunk. It does pull moderately hard to the left when I'm on the street if that helps.

Also, I can't tell if the danger warnings are serious or not. This thing is like a slug compared to my 4 wheeler. Even if it does go fast, I'm not sure it's designed for more than just putting around.

Not a whole lot to work on with this bike, but I'll start looking for something else to fix.

 

 

thank you, i wouldn't worry too much about the dangers of a riding a three wheeler, I'd say most are from riders who are used to riding on 4 wheels, and not thinking, riding a three wheeler requires much more body English to control, at least the few times I've had road one on two wheels, i was still able to control it, but it was not fun at all, lol, why honda didn't put a wider stance axle in the rear is beyond me.. 

 

4 hours ago, Fishfiles said:

Maybe the fork tube leaked the oil out on one side and it is slamming ----    might be the photo , the right fork looks bent under  the boot 

 

i agree with fish, did you shake the handle bars to see if the steering stem bearings are faulty ? fish, which was it that shade said he'd never ride again ? 

 

Edit: for what shape it's in , I'd still take it.. i looked it over again, that's one clean low used machine, there's a bunch of collectors that would jump on that in a sec! 

Edited by _Wilson_™

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8 hours ago, Fishfiles said:

 

No ,  it was me , didn't mention 3 operations in the hospital and numerous in the doctor's office procedures that hurt like he!! , jaws wired shut for 19 weeks  ----  took 6 months to get back to working , was a 1986 TRX250ES 

 

 

Ouch, sorry to hear that. Wasn't trying to be synical, but the ones I drove as a kid were 90-110cc. I'm just comparing it to the Can-Am's we used to have; those were monsters! And they could go well over 70 mph.

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Just got back from riding the Big Red in Sam Houston Ntl Forest. Kind of a rough riding, unforgiving bike to be honest. It's not suited for recreational use compared to a 4 wheeler. Anyway, kind of fun to go out in the woods, but just don't expect much out of it thrill wise. Lot's of questions and somebody offered to buy it, again.

 

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Had an 86 model just like her. Sold her after I got my 300, worst decision I ever made. Only wreck I had was on a sheet of ice when she tipped on me. Wasn’t hurt but scared the $#@! out of a 16 yr. old me. They can be dangerous but you have to get used to them. Had a buddy that had a Yamaha tri moto, it was lighter and faster than my Honda and we used to ride double on it! Wonder we made it.

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