SEVEN YEARS IN THE MAKING
Rich finally begins his voyage of restoring a 1970s Dunstall CB750
It’s November 2009, and the desire for a winter project bike to resurrect in time for spring 2010 is burning the midnight oil away to nothing as the holy trinity of MCN Bikes for Sale, ebay and Gumtree are exhaustively scanned in search of a likely target.
Then a casual glance at the website of a dealer I’d bought my previous project from sparked my interest in something I wasn’t even looking for. It was a gloriously kitsch looking piece of 1970s superbike excess – a Honda CB750, festooned with Paul Dunstall tuning parts and accessories. A quick call, and a freezing ride into West London, later I’d bought three bikes. No, I’m not sure how that happened, either. Now my garage had a café-racer CB750 K2, VF1000F and the Dunstall filling it, and I was £1500 lighter. Having realised fairly fast that I couldn’t do all three, I moved the K2 and VF on, leaving me a Dunny that owed me just £265. Bargain.
Having relieved it of decades of dust, dead spiders and detritus I stood back and felt pretty damn pleased with myself. There were bits missing, and some wrong parts, but it was mostly there, seemingly very genuine, and boasting a rather pleasing patina.
Clearly it’d had been crashed at some point in 1980 or 1981, the German road tax sticker on the headlamp bowl revealing that it was last on the road in the year up to August 1981. The lock stops are badly damaged, and there are minor grazes on the left-hand engine casings. Whether this was the point when it became a Dunstall is impossible to tell, but the fresh two-pack paint on the bodywork – transforming it from yellow to red – could hint that it was already wearing this ridiculous frock.
The bodywork is Dunstall Devastator, comprising a seat unit and tank cover (the tank beneath is a standard K2), enormous fairing and mudguard. Beyond that, it has a Dunstall Decibel 4-2-2 full system, Dunstall rearsets, and a shonky set of fake Dunstall clip-ons. There’s also a set of nice finned engine covers, and a niggling suspicion that it’s fitted with the 900cc Yoshimura conversion.
So where have the last seven years gone? Many other projects have got in the way, but I’ve gradually chipped away at the Dunny, scouring the net for spares, and stockpiling parts from David Silver, with a view to getting to the critical mass point where I can turn preparation into action. Tantalisingly, that process has now started in earnest. Tune in next time for the stripdown, and beginning of the rebuild.