Honda CG125 1979 - realistic restoration project?

I'm might be having another breakdown, but I'm tempted by this Honda CG125 coming up for auction near me. No reserve on it.

One owner, it has sat unused since it's first MoT in 1982 when it had covered just 279 miles. It comes with the original bill of sale, V5, 1982 MoT, dealers wallet, workshop manual and service book. Apparently 'the engine turns freely', although I suspect that means without the engine running.

I have no experience in the restoration of bikes, but this one looks in quite good nick, considering the year. I'm going down to look at it next week with a view to bidding on it, and am wondering if anyone's done any bike restoration and can advise what I should be looking out for. There seem to be plenty of CG125s still running, so I guess parts can be obtained.

Is this a realistic project for a newbie?
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There are copies of cg125s (I think the sang Yong wolf for one)

There certainly used to be plenty of new parts available, check out David silver spares (if the company is still going)
They were a good source of most things honda, and I assume still are.
 
If it does turn over, and it looks sound, I would be tempted at the right price.
The forks are shrouded, so might not be too bad underneath.
I am slightly swayed by the fact that I learnt to ride on one.
 
I’ve never restored a bike let alone been on one, but that is the type of project I’d go for if the selling price wasn’t unreasonable just for the fun of seeing if l could do it. This side of the pond is only having online auctions so far and people being pent up has driven prices to ridiculously high amounts, hope you get a good deal if you go for it.
 
Isn’t it the most popular motorised vehicle in the world? Still made in Pakistan.

You shouldn’t struggle for spares.
 
Apparently 'the engine turns freely', although I suspect that means without the engine running.
It means the engine won’t start, but you can turn it by hand meaning the engine isn’t siezed. It’s sat so long it’s not advisable to kick it over and try and start it. Oil will be in shít order, seals and gaskets could be perished and your spark plugs are now just plugs.

Looks like a great starter project for the novice. I doubt there’s any specialised tools needed to strip it.

Get a tripod for your phone so you can video stripping it. Expect a mouse nest or two and your wiring loom could be fucked, but checking it is all part of the learning curve which you can gain off YouTube.
 
Do you want to get it into running order for you or "Just left the factory in 1982" condition ?
The first one should be readily achievable, the second might take longer, more cash and time.
 

Joshua Slocum

LE
Book Reviewer
no more than 800 pounds
but its likely the billy big bollocsk will big the price up, then try and sell it on ebay for thousands
the frame is pressed and welded steel, you need to identify whether it has corroded in the structural areas
spares are no problem, but to keep the machines value only use origional parts
David Silver Spares will help
also keep any parts you remove as patterns or in case you ever sell it
its a fairly simple OHV engine with a rotary oil filter, I would simply pour oil in it with the plug out and turn it over, then change the oil, any sign of water in the oil and its a rebuild job
make sure the toolkit is with it, they often get nicked while in the auction house by the anorak brigade, its under one of the side panels


or just buy a new one
12 volt electrics
better lights
better brakes
electric start

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no more than 800 pounds
but its likely the billy big bollocsk will big the price up, then try and sell it on ebay for thousands
the frame is pressed and welded steel, you need to identify whether it has corroded in the structural areas
spares are no problem, but to keep the machines value only use origional parts
David Silver Spares will help
also keep any parts you remove as patterns or in case you ever sell it
its a fairly simple OHV engine with a rotary oil filter, I would simply pour oil in it with the plug out and turn it over, then change the oil, any sign of water in the oil and its a rebuild job
make sure the toolkit is with it, they often get nicked while in the auction house by the anorak brigade, its under one of the side panels


or just buy a new one
12 volt electrics
better lights
better brakes
electric start

View attachment 477859
Raised eyebrow here - why water in an air cooled job ?
 

Joshua Slocum

LE
Book Reviewer
Raised eyebrow here - why water in an air cooled job ?
been stored in a damp shed without being protected and waxed, lots of surface corrosion ,so water can get into the frame sections and corrode them, some ones grandad has karked it and the relative think because its old its a gold mine
I had three from new they were ok nice motorcycles, but not cheap to refurbish
you are looking at a grand alone for the chrome bits
and re-chroming them wont come much cheaper
plus it needs tyres, inner tubes and rim tapes
and the rubber parts like pipes replacing, the carb overhauling
all wheel bearings replacing as they will have dried out
rubber swing arm bushes replacing
shock absorbers rebuilding
buy a new one and ride it
that will get sold to a wheeler dealer
scrubbed up with chrome polish a new battery and made to run and then bigged up about rarity and originality
I saw an immaculate origional well cared for one go for 2 grand last year, people were not rushing to buy it
and its easy to nick
buy a CB125F and fit a tracker and enjoy it
 
I'm might be having another breakdown, but I'm tempted by this Honda CG125 coming up for auction near me. No reserve on it.

One owner, it has sat unused since it's first MoT in 1982 when it had covered just 279 miles. It comes with the original bill of sale, V5, 1982 MoT, dealers wallet, workshop manual and service book. Apparently 'the engine turns freely', although I suspect that means without the engine running.

I have no experience in the restoration of bikes, but this one looks in quite good nick, considering the year. I'm going down to look at it next week with a view to bidding on it, and am wondering if anyone's done any bike restoration and can advise what I should be looking out for. There seem to be plenty of CG125s still running, so I guess parts can be obtained.

Is this a realistic project for a newbie?View attachment 477852View attachment 477853View attachment 477854
Have you got a current bike licence?
I wouldn't be too surprised if a fresh battery, petrol, oils and filters may make this a runner and even pass an MOT - if so, and it's cheap (incl those expenses) you have a learner bike.

Three givens for any restoration:
It will always take longer than expected.
It will always cost more than expected.
It's almost/usually as expensive to restore a small bike as a big one. (Paint, plating, polishing, cables, wiring etc).

Bigger bikes are safer if you're thinking of passing test or already have that category.

Only worth it as a runabout if very cheap IMO. There'll be better potential projects if you look a little longer and deeper into modern Japanese restorations.
 
been stored in a damp shed without being protected and waxed, lots of surface corrosion ,so water can get into the frame sections and corrode them, some ones grandad has karked it and the relative think because its old its a gold mine
I had three from new they were ok nice motorcycles, but not cheap to refurbish
you are looking at a grand alone for the chrome bits
and re-chroming them wont come much cheaper
plus it needs tyres, inner tubes and rim tapes
and the rubber parts like pipes replacing, the carb overhauling
all wheel bearings replacing as they will have dried out
rubber swing arm bushes replacing
shock absorbers rebuilding
buy a new one and ride it
that will get sold to a wheeler dealer
scrubbed up with chrome polish a new battery and made to run and then bigged up about rarity and originality
I saw an immaculate origional well cared for one go for 2 grand last year, people were not rushing to buy it
and its easy to nick
buy a CB125F and fit a tracker and enjoy it
The OP stated he was doing it as a project, that all sounds perfect for such a thing.
 

Joshua Slocum

LE
Book Reviewer
The OP stated he was doing it as a project, that all sounds perfect for such a thing.
AYe but too many of my friends have gone dreamlike into a project without being realisitc about costs and timescale
guess who used to end up sorting them out !
also before buying any classic bike or car, you should drive or ride one of the same model
A friend of mine is a retired motorcycle engineer, used to work for the police, he was given a nice Triumph twin in boxes, a year later its rebuilt exactly to factory spec ( he looked after enough of them to know)
he was doing it for a friend, , he said that he considered buying another one and doing the same
however when he gets Machines MOTd he takes them to a place about 25 miles away as the nice roads let the machine warm up, and he can make sure its all ok
after the test he took it for a longer run
and was glad to see the back of it, the vibration at anything above 55 was excruciating, and exactly how they always were
he bought an R60/5 instead
 

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