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Thread: Honda Z50A Monkey Bike

  1. #1
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Honda Z50A Monkey Bike

    In 1981 for my 4th birthday, my parents bought me a second hand Honda Z50AK2 Monkey Bike.

    It was originally Candy Apple Red but I wanted a yellow one for some shitty reason, so my dad rattle canned it yellow.
    He welded up a side car out of some mild steel and I spent the next 10 years or so blasting around the neighborhood on it.

    When I was about 15 or so, I decided I wanted it to be blue so I pulled it apart, rattle canned most of it blue or orange, then gave up and stuck it back in my parent's shed.

    About 3 years ago I was visiting my mother's house in Sydney and was helping her clean up when I came across the old bikes.










    Here's an original brochure showing what they looked like brand new.




    1.95bhp of fury @ 5000rpm!!!

    They were so cool even Michael Jackson had one.


  2. #2
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    They've got a massive following in Japan still with the Japanese doing crazy Japanese things to them.

    Monkey meets.


    Engine conversions.


    Big wheel conversions.


    Race monkey builds.


    WTF JDM builds.

  3. #3
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Anyway, fast forward 3 years and I've had mine shipped up to QLD.
    I've owned it for 36 years so it deserves a full restoration and build with a few tweaks.









    I've also got a bunch of random original parts that should make it easier.
    The headlight bucket and battery side cover are still in the original color.









    The most important part is the frame number which is within the range that can be legally road registered



  4. #4
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    James May has a great new series called The Reassembler and in one episode he reassembles a monkey bike from parts.
    It's a later version than mine with rear suspension whereas mine is an earlier hardtail.


  5. #5
    Little engine that could. itsnotagsr's Avatar
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    I had a candy apple red one too! Some **** stole it out of the shed and never got it back
    "If you can make black marks on a straight from the time you turn out of a corner until the braking point of the next turn, then you have enough horsepower." - Mark Donahue Penske Porsche 917

    "In Japan we no give fark for Subaru" - Trust Japan Technical Director
    (TM - AVENGE)

    "You can never have enough power. I remember when we had Group B cars... THEN we had enough power!"
    Juha Kankkunen - Rally of Argentina '02

  6. #6
    Two years in Lompoc... Lobster's Avatar
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    I was looking into finding one of these a couple of years ago to fix up in my spare time, as it would be simple enough for even my level of talent, and it would help me learn more about engines.
    Then I realised that they have now become collectable and are worth too much.
    Should have had this bright idea a few years earlier.
    Previously known as Lobster, Chuss's brother's anus, Chuss's brother, Lobsook, Lobstersock, Socks, Sockz, MissAmericaImportGirl, ClutchCLobster

    CJM 4 Life yo!

  7. #7
    Jak Sie Masz! trent from punchy's Avatar
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    this is fantastic.

    Is this the recorder holder for PFs Oldest continuously owned vehicle?
    www.markpakula.com
    2017 Subaru Impreza Hatch - for the grind
    2015 Cervelo S2 - for the fitness
    2005 Honda Accord Euro - for the wife
    1991 CBR250RR - for the fun

  8. #8
    Today you, Tomorrow you. tomvale13's Avatar
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    Wow, these are so cool.

    Are there many around in OZ, or can you import them from Japland?

  9. #9
    Slanted big_pete's Avatar
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    Awesome. Will watch build with interest

  10. #10
    Wannabe internet expert
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    The want is strong for a little Honda monkey. I've also wondered how many there are in Aus. They seem to be way more common in Japan and the US.

  11. #11
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    It's amazing what some parts for these cost.
    I have helped a few guys restore these in the last year and was blown away by what they have had to spend to replace some parts.
    www.brisbanecityfitnessbootcamp.com.au/brisbane-bootcamp/
    www.vapourblastingbrisbane.com.au/

  12. #12
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomvale13 View Post
    Wow, these are so cool.

    Are there many around in OZ, or can you import them from Japland?
    There are more around than you'd expect. Obviously the registerable ones are worth a lot more.
    You are better off buying a frame and forks because everything will need replacing by this point anyway.

    The best part is that Honda is still selling them brand new so 95% of the OEM parts are available new if you are willing to pay ransom money.

    http://www.honda.co.jp/Monkey/


  13. #13
    Registered User I'm DJ!'s Avatar
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    In on Juan. This will be great!
    DJ's don't need sigs

  14. #14
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uuheels View Post
    It's amazing what some parts for these cost.
    I have helped a few guys restore these in the last year and was blown away by what they have had to spend to replace some parts.
    Absolutely. I was shocked too.
    But if you look hard enough you can find most stuff.

    I ended up finding a new pair of fork springs which are no longer available at some random Honda dealer in the middle of NZ.


  15. #15
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Anyway, we started stripping it down.

    Tank and seat off. All the electrics will go in the bin and replaced with brand new stuff.




    My electrical skills as a 15yo left a bit to be desired.




    Oil out.




    Engine out. I didn't try kicking it over as it had been sitting for so long but the kickstarter was stripped anyway.




    Down to a bare frame pretty quickly.


  16. #16
    Registered User farmsci's Avatar
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    Rad! Following with interest!
    1990 E30 BMW 318is - In progress!
    1974 KE25 Corolla Coupe - So much rust...
    1955 Matchless G9 - On the road and loving it!
    1954 Matchless G80 - Because the one above runs too well so I need something more broken...
    And a fucking 1962 Rover... Because that makes sense

  17. #17
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Started stripping down the frame.
    A couple of timber off cuts screwed on top of a little table on wheels makes an easy bike stand.
    All the shitty rattlecan paint came off like water but the original candy finish was a fucking nightmare.




    I've already got all new correct OEM badges and stickers for the frame tucked away.



    The original build date is stamped inside the rear.
    A lot of bikes have lost the date by chains chewing out the inside of the frame.
    This one is 730130 and reads in reverse so it was built 30th January 1973.


  18. #18
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Picked up a little compressor and a sandblasting gun.




    Threw the frame into a sandblasting cabinet aka cardboard box.




    Just like a new one.









    All done.
    I haven't decided whether to paint or powdercoat the frame yet.
    The smart choice is powdercoat but the finish might be rubbish compared to a proper HOK Candy Apple Red paint job.


  19. #19
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    So good!
    Good luck with it all mate.
    Quote Originally Posted by turbosurfer View Post
    Looks like zero
    Anyway fuck the RS its a ford so it will just fall apart.
    The laugh is on you clowns.

  20. #20
    Registered User 9triton's Avatar
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    cool -

    what makes a registrable frame in Aust ?- pre 74' when bikes had to have compliance plates?

    EDIT - I think that's 1 Jan 1976 onwards?
    Last edited by 9triton; 18-04-17 at 11:51 AM.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by 9triton View Post
    cool -

    what makes a registrable frame in Aust ?- pre 74' when bikes had to have compliance plates?

    EDIT - I think that's 1 Jan 1976 onwards?
    There are a couple of different types.
    Australian U-types like mine that have the indicator tabs on the forks and tail light bracket can be registered.
    The GE or General export ones without the brackets and just reflectors on the forks cannot be.
    The J1 and JZ models with compliance plates can be.
    All the later 80s and on dirt bike style ones like Z50R, CRF can't be registered.
    I believe there are a few 40th Anniversary bike that were complied too.

  22. #22
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    The other thing I've started is cleaning up the hubs.
    I wasn't sure whether I could save them properly but I wanted to keep the early A hubs rather than late model ones or chinese replacements.






    I've only taken them to 1000 grit so far so they have a fair way to go.
    The hard part is getting the pitting out properly.
    I'll get the pitting out, take them up to 2000 grit and then polish them. Should come up pretty good.


  23. #23
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    There was a bloke on here QABB i think it was who built an absolute beast one of these.
    If you have a search i'm sure you will find it
    I like Football and Porno and books about War

  24. #24
    Registered User 9triton's Avatar
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    that does look shiney -

    vapour blasting is good for alloy parts.

  25. #25
    whaddayatalkinabeet brasher's Avatar
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    ahh man this takes me back, these and QR50's. I think everyone had their first ride on a QR.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by 9triton View Post
    that does look shiney -

    vapour blasting is good for alloy parts.
    I've heard that it's great.

    If I end up rebuilding the original engine, I'll definitely use it to clean the cases up.

  27. #27
    LS7 Prius = Proper HYBRID Walt Kowalski's Avatar
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    Sentimental great project. Impressed.

    Fun little things. Still remember my 100Kg Dad riding one with a big smile like a monkey in a circus.
    Logical debate beats name calling any day. My Badges Of Honour so far in PF: Racist, Bigot, Islamaphobe, Numpty, Moron, Far Right Wing Nationalist, Far Fight Wing Fascist, "raving fucking lunatic", "dumb" & climate "denier". AND they are just SOME of the pathetic tags that I've been labelled by SOME here. HINT: Those labels are signs that the accusers have lost to logical debate.

    Maybe it's time for them to check some facts. Here's a good starting point: http://www.mostdamagingwikileaks.com

  28. #28
    Registered User QABB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bryan View Post
    There was a bloke on here QABB i think it was who built an absolute beast one of these.
    If you have a search i'm sure you will find it
    Hey!

    Take it from me, these bloody things are a money pit! I sold this one for $10k and lost on it...



    Great fun hobby though.

  29. #29
    Thank you for smoking <---cop's Avatar
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    Oh yeah I hear you! What engine is that? DOHC head?

  30. #30
    Registered User Milkman Don's Avatar
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    Will this project get finished?

    Awesome keeping from the olds, so much stuff gets tipped over the years without thought. I've seen a few builds of these and like QABB says above they are a money vortex.
    Quote Originally Posted by Faux Forg View Post
    I agree with Rdyno

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