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Honda Fireblade: classic or not?

Honda Fireblade
ER Classics Desktop 2022

1993? That's 27 years ago! A 27-year-old motorcycle. Is it old? Is it classic? We are talking about a Honda Fireblade, a CBR900 RR.

That was Honda's more than successful attempt to market a super-fast, street-legal road racer. The history of the Honda Fireblade began when Honda wanted to market a model with the brute speed and power of a heavy sports engine, and the ultimate maneuverability of a light sports engine. It was decided to develop the frame and block at the same time, and to coordinate them completely. The result would be the 1992 Honda Fireblade, which had the weight of a 600cc super athlete and the power of a 1000cc machine. Despite the high selling price, the engine was an instant success.


The competition woke with a start

The competition soon decided to manufacture such engines to hitch a ride on the success of the new Honda, resulting in a performance race between Suzuki, Kawasaki, Yamaha and Honda in the Honda CBR1000 RR Fireblade, GSX-R1000, ZX class -10R Ninja and the R1. All super fast high tech toppers that, in a current market where you can usually drive 100 km / h, now look a bit overpowered.

But when these motorcycles were still trotting freely, full throttle was often used

They were also often used on track days. And there the Blades did a great job. Things were really good. Their only technical weaknesses were that the second gear cams could wear out too quickly (due to wrong or too little oil). In addition, the cam chain tensioners were extremely sensitive to wear. The first problem can be recognized by driving at around 5000 rpm in second gear and then pulling the throttle open. When the engine shoots out of gear, it's your turn for a baking overhaul. The second problem, the cam chain tensioner, can be recognized by the noise the engine makes. If the block makes a ticking noise, chances are that the cam chain tensioner is worn. In fact, the Honda Fireblade is a trouble-free bike, especially compared to other sports bikes. There are Blades that have turned a ton and are still healthy. Of course, professional maintenance has been carried out.

Another weak point: Fall damage

For us classic riders, a Honda Fireblade is an incredibly potent motorcycle with an incredibly strong engine and mind-boggling bike section. But the Fireblades were machines bought by people who did not find all those capabilities impressive, but challenging. And on track days, the drivers went to extremes. And more than sometimes they went beyond those limits. So pay attention to old damage when purchasing such an icon. If the original exhausts are on that is great. But if they look much neater than you would expect, they may have been set up just for ferry purchase. From a classic perspective, a standard Honda Fireblade is the best Blade. But to find one with the original muffler?

The condition of the sheet metal must be in accordance with that of the rest of the engine (replacement after fall). The stop lugs of the steering wheel must be virgin. There should be no frame damage under the tank. We found our photo model at Dutch Lion Motorbikes from Grubbenvorst and that Blade is wonderfully cherished and damage-free.

All in all, the Fireblade is a classic

If you check all the Classic Features, you cannot conclude otherwise. And the name Fireblade? Actually, the Japanese wanted to call their sporty topper 'Raitoningu': 'lightning'. But somewhere in the process, a translation has simply been made.

Honda CBR 900 R Fireblade: 893 cc, 122 hp at 10.500 rpm, six gears, dry weight 185 kg, average consumption 1 in 15, top speed over 260 km / h.

More articles about classic engines can be found via this link

Also interesting to read:
- Suzuki GSX-R750. A legend
- Honda VF750. A Honda with a backpack
- The Honda CBR 1000F. What should we do with that?
- Also quite a lot of bodywork: The Kawasaki GPZ900 R
- The Honda CB1100RC (1982), a Real Race Replica

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