You remember our pals from Common Motor Collective, right? The little old bike shop from Texas has been serving the needs of small and medium-displacement Honda motorcycle nerds for ten years now and shows no sign of slowing up. Along with parts and accessories, CMC also produces clear, concise how-to videos covering just about everything you might need to know to keep your 70s-vintage CB running. The shop's latest series covers one of the bigger headaches facing classic bike mechanics—electrical systems.
If you wrench on classic bikes, you know how much of a pain their electrical systems can be. Thanks to brittle, rotten, decades-old wires, intermittently failing, 70s-era components, and the ham-fisted hackery of previous owners, chasing down and identifying electrical issues can be a real nightmare. In this latest series of videos, CMC's boss Brenden breaks down a bike's electrical systems into short, easy-to-digest videos to help shade tree mechanics like me diagnose and repair shorts, faults, and other problems.
In the first video, Brenden uses a very clean CB350 to explain the ground circuit. Throughout the 14-minute video, he shows us how to identify the ground circuit, why it's important, and how it works on a vintage Honda. From there, the videos go into discussions of the positive circuit, the horn circuit, the neutral light circuit, and even the rat's nest of wires stuffed into the headlight bucket. There's even a video that does a top-to-bottom look at the bike's ignition system.
While these videos focus on classic Hondas, since that's CMC's bag, the basic ideas are common across pretty much all classic motorcycles. Despite working on some classic Hondas, I still consider myself a true-blue Yamaha man and I can tell you that these videos will make a handy reference for me going forward. So, if you have some wrenching lined up on a classic Honda this summer—and you absolutely should, it's good for you—you should check this series out as well as CMC's how-to backlog.