Honda CR125R 1980

This is my 1980 Honda CR125R Elsinore. It took me a year and a half to restore this bike to it’s original showroom condition, using as many NOS Honda parts as I could find. The most NOS Honda parts I used were purchased at Heli MX and Consolidated Motor Spares, other parts were purchased from ebay and the various swapmeets. The tank decals and matt black number backgrounds are the only – non original Honda – parts. From September 2013 and on the bike will be exhibited in the Swedish Motocross Museum of Magnus Frodig.

1980 honda cr125 elsinore right side

The fronttire is a NOS, like factory-fitted, Bridgestone M23 3.00-21.

1980 honda cr125 elsinore front right side

The reartire was hard to find so I kept the slightly used original Bridgestone tire.

1980 honda cr125 elsinore rear right side

Luckily I found a NOS Honda exhaust pipe (I have another one for sale!). The silencer needed new packing and was welded back together by  van Herpen Lastechniek.

1980 honda cr125 elsinore broken down right side

The scratched and discolored tank was brought back to showroom condition by Phil Cox of Plastic Renovations, he is a true plasticwizard. The finish of the tank even matched the finish of the NOS bodywork! The tank and side shield decals were purchased from Jeroen Wijlens’ company VMX Service

1980 honda cr125 elsinore gas tank

The frame, swingarm, brakearm and shocksprings were painted in the original “tahitian red” by Brush ’n Rush. All steel hardware is blue zinced by Galvin.

1980 honda cr125 elsinore rear wheel

The 1980 Honda CR125R elsinore in the  Swedish Motocross Museum of Magnus Frodig.

1980 Honda CR125 Elsinore museum

The restoration

This is the last air-cooled 125 Honda and also the last Honda with twin shock rear suspension. The bike was complete except for the rear fender. After changing the oil and filling her up with new fuel the bike ran after the second kick: a good base to start with!Elsinore no.1 blurred

The engine looks pretty neat, no broken cooling fins on the cylinder or head and no cracks or serious damage to the engine covers. The carburetor is fortunately not oxidized, the exhaust pipe has a few dents but is going to be replaced by a NOS one anyway .Close-up blok The rear of the bike, notice the missing rear fender and original Bridgestone tires.Achterzijde

Left side of the bike.Linker zijde

The frame after disassembly ready for paint stripping and painting.Frame elsinore no.1

Frame, swingarm and brakearm after paint stripping. It will be beadblasted before it is sended out for painting.Frame na afbeiten

Re-plated hardware by GalvinGegalvaniseerde delen 5

Rear brake pedal assembly.Gegalvaniseerde delen 6

Some black painted parts.Onderdelen zwart gespoten

The engine before disassembly, cleaning, inspection and rebuild.Blok voor revisie

Disassembled and cleaned engine. Blok uitelkaar

Rebuild of the engine with new bearings, seals and gaskets. Each part was inspected, wear parts were checked for tolerance with a micrometer. Any part that failed was replaced.

Blok inelkaar

Completed engine rebuild of the 1980 Honda CR125R Elsinore.2011-09-17 13.27.19

The frame came back from painting and I reassembled the bike a little to have an idea how it is going to look. The colormatch is perfect: I had a sample made from the NOS chain roller bracket. You can find the colorcodes here to have this color reproduced by your local paintshop.

2011-11-23 19.13.26

I beadblasted the hubs, repainted them and reassembled the wheels with NOS spokes. The rearfender was found in the USA, the sideshields and frontfender are the original ones that came with the bike, later to be replaced by NOS plastic.20120831_141535

Picture with the gastank and seat mounted20121107_221823

The airfilter cage was cleaned and Moto Air made a new airfilter on the original rubber base.Luchtfilter rekjeMotoair luchtfilters

Finally found the NOS sideshields, the decals were falling off so I cleaned them and applied new decals and number backgrounds20121221_134837

Removed the glue from the original decals and applied new “Elsinore” decals.20130203_185911

Applying the matte black number backgrounds, a precise job.IMG-20130225-WA0005

Left sideshield done completely.20130219_232104

Right side completed too and now installed on the bike.20130226_085126

After a desperate attempt to sand and polish the gastank myself I decided it was best to send it to Plastic Renovations.



NOS exhaustflange and front chain slider found on eBay.20130216_171911

Disassembled the shocks, beadblasted the shockbodies and sended the springs off to painting.IMG-20130111-WA0002Painted shock springs.20130220_183537