In 1983, Honda would release their new model, the Shadow brand. Little did they know, 40 years later, this bike would see a resurgence in popularity. The Shadow would become one of the favorites among metric bike builders.
Above is a 1984. The bike keeps basically the same appearance over these four years of production. The one problem the Shadow had, politics. Its first year, it was a 750. By 1984, to be able to ship the bike to America, it was lowered to a 700cc engine.
The picture above, it is an original, American, 1983, Shadow 750. By the next year, this would no longer be an American model, to compete with cruiser brands, but a Canadian model. In Canada, China found less shipping laws, and was able to deliver the 750.
Honda changed their displacement on the Shadow, only for America to drop the laws on imported engines. By the end of 1985, the Shadow label would reach 1100ccs on American soil. The 700 would, once again, be a 750.
The top speed of these years, is 100mph. It is a cruiser, that is enough. Im just kidding. Let’s make it faster.
First, she needs to slim down. You can remove so much junk off this bike, you can even throw away the fuel pump, and really see an improvement. There are EPA plastic containers everywhere. The airboxes are first to go! To do this, you are going to need volcitey stacks. TJ Brutal offers a nice set. You will need the ones for two carbs. The strange thing, it cost the same as a bike with a single carb. You will spend $100.
These stacks are going to give you an extra little boost, making your 750 a little more thrilling. Next, lets lower it down. The Great thing about this, you can do it two ways. First, you can replace the shocks with lowering struts. This will give the bike a meaner, faster, look. It will also lose some weight. Some people decide to do this, just to get the fender to seat closer to the tire. A strut kit is around $50.
Next, because stacks gave her good lungs, give her a singing voice! She needs new pipes. A good option is to chop your pipes, and use the wrap above. Let’s make it pretty, though! For that, why are going to turn to Justin Alexander. Not only is this man an artist, when it comes to rebuilding bikes, he is a one man Shadow army. He offers everything from brackets to relocate your speedometer, custom pipes, $130 hardtail kits. These kits are a step above the rest. He has already welded them together, making installation easier. These types of parts cost whatever you want to spend…
Those are some shorties, but I would let them scream down my streets! But, we have a problem. Now, your bike won’t run. We should have done jets, first. What fun would tech be out off the gate? We need precision. We could get them off of ebay, cheap, cheap, or we could spend a little more than $40.
Another option for a lower ride, is a hardtail. This gives the bike an older school look, and sleeker stance. With the addition of a bobber seat, it is a pretty good ride. Thats a nice sidecar…
My favorite place is 6sigma. They have service. They are not Ebay. If you have a question, they answer, promptly. They are also super technical, when it comes to your order. They ask about , intake, exhaust, and even what altitude you plan to ride at. 6 also offers 7 stages, at the same price. You can go back to factory, or to racing. I KNOW! WIPE YOUR MOUTH! Unfortunately, the NOS system is not for any bikes over 500cc. I had your mouth watering, didn’t I? I asked…
Shadows have grown in popularity over the last few years. This has inspired builders, rebuilders, and customizers, all around the world. This year alone, Honda has seen a serious jump in resale. I think to think it is us, building our dreams…
From Bobbers, to Cafe racers, to choppers, to rat bikes, a Honda Shadow is a great place to start. They are also great bikes to restore. They have a great look, a nice sound, and a clean ride. Now, they are becoming completely customizable!
That’s all I got! Thanks for sharing your pictures, and allowing me to use them! I hope you all enjoyed reading this, and im looking forward to writing about the next motorcycle!