~Since 2004~
A site about memories, thoughts, photos, and unrepentant opinions about motorcycles and motorcycling after four decades of twisting the throttle.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Six Is Enough

1980 Honda CBX engine. Nikon D90

There have been a few one-off street bikes built with more than 6 cylinders busily creating noise and horsepower, the Morbidelli 850cc V8 comes to mind along with the Drysdale 1000cc V8.  No, I won't count the Boss Hoss, as they use a car engine in their two wheeled extravaganza.

For real production bikes no one has gone beyond the 6 cylinder machines that Honda, Benelli, Kawasaki, and now BMW, have or are building in series production.  There has long been a rumor that Honda will cut loose with a 8 cylinder Gold Wing one day just to prove they can do it, which is seemingly why they built the 1000cc CBX back in 1979. 

So this week's photo is a 1980 Honda CBX that I photographed a couple of years ago.  With it's lovely, wide, beast of a motor and a great sound when equipped with some 6-into-anything-but-stock pipes, the bike is still a crowd pleaser at bike shows and has a devoted following of owners.

I test rode a CBX long ago and it was nice, even a little intimidating for it's time, but the daunting tune up costs for 6 carbs and 24 valves was enough to push me onto a more sensible Suzuki GS850.  I loved the 850 but the CBX was and still is a way more interesting ride.


FLHX_Dave said...

Too many pistons! Carb syncing sucks! More moving parts!...but it's nice to have that feeling underneath your butt.

CBX...I must be old because this is one of the bikes that stands out to me...31 years later. And to think there was time where this was the latest and the greatest...pffftttt...I'm gonna' go drink an ensure now.

Webster World said...

Yea! Those carb's.

Unknown said...

While I'd love to ride a CBX once for the novelty, it's one of the few 'old' bikes I have no ambition of ever owning. It has to steer like a stuck pig. The k1600 though, that I would take to bed and hold tight all night.

Behind Bars - Motorcycles and Life

Doug Klassen said...

Dave, Ensure today, prune juice tomorrow. Aging is a slippery slope.

Brady, each generation of bikes is the greatest, best handling ever. I expect in 30 years the new Beemer 6 will be quaint and an odd beast to ride, assuming one can even get gasoline to power it.

GF said...

The one thing I will say about 6 cylinder bike engines, they do sound awesome :-) I have never heard a real motorcycle with an 8 cyl but it must sound beautifully

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