If you look at the classic motorcycle world, the cake is divided
There are enthusiasts, clubs and specialists for most brands and types. That hasn't always been the case. Because once you had to be at the Vehikel to find a set of exhausts for a CB 750 K2 after a day of digging through boxes under a trestle table. For 100 guilders. For the whole set. There was also an air box somewhere for a CB750 K0 and a set of cable operated carburettors. When purchasing the four carburettors, the metallic red air filter housing was included for free. Because parts for old Japs? The only thing that was obvious about them was that they weren't worth anything.
Everything in the meantime
In the meantime, the parts supply and documentation for almost all classic cars have risen to great heights. Just like the prices of the parts. But 'better expensive than not for sale'. And so a restoration of – let's take it again as an example – a Honda CB 750 K2 can cost just € 6.500. And that was exclusive of the purchase.
Such a modern restoration can therefore be perfect in detail if all information is completely in line with the work and the purchase of the 'hardware'. And the love and expense are in the details. We heard that the crown piece of a BMW R90S should not be painted, but epoxyd. We heard that a very early, far from perfect CB750 tank was paid $3.250 because the molding for those first tanks was out of order. If you look through the tank cap, you should see a few ridges in the bottom plate of the tank. And what you don't know about such a single cam – and I once bought an almost perfect copy for 2.000 guilders – is in the SuperProfile hardcover.
The flow of information and goods is a phenomenon that needs to grow
When I fell in love with Russian sidecars more than 25 years ago, the then present knowledge was at the UDCN, the Ural/Dneprclub Nederland. The parts were also in that corner. And the joint Russian-loving file of motorcycle enthusiasts cherished the legendary unreliability of the Soviet veterans and knew that their passion had little material value.
In the meantime, that problem has also been solved. The knowledge has grown. Books have been written about it. The parts supply has become optimal. Oh, yes: and the prices – especially the side valves – are bravely on the rise.
And then you score a Chang Jiang, or Xiang Jiang OHV
Chang Jiang's Chinese side valves are still quite identical to the BMW R71 and the IMZ/KMZ M72s. The side valves have a certain cult value. There is information about them. There are things for them.
But then you blunder into a Chang who looks like the less smart of identical twins. A 750 cc OHV that is a loveless copy of a BMW R75/5. The thing was largely disassembled, but there was a German 'Brief' included. And according to that document I now have a CNAMC 750G or YZ7. The year of manufacture is somewhat unclear. And there is virtually nothing readable about it on the Internet if you are not proficient in the Chinese language – which Google Translate also has a hard time with.
And will such a Chang ever become a highly regarded classic? Then I have a buddy seat and two wheels left for sale.
And in the meantime, I'm just muddling on. Luckily the whole rabbit seems to be made up of stuff coming from BMWs, Urals and Dneprs. But if someone knows more than me? Then I would also like to know. For now I know that Chang Jiangs are also sold under the brand names Dong-Tiang, Feng-Tong, Chang-dong, etc….