Today, we have a very special CB750 build from Mark Wasson of Oregon. Mark currently lives in Germany and works in Afghanistan, training Afghan commandos and special forces, and he wanted a CB750 street tracker inspired by the 007 series of stock cars that his father built and raced on dirt tracks around the Pacific Northwest in the 1970s.
The base bike is a 1976 CB750SS, built by Mark’s father, Ray Wasson, and Tom Smurzynski of Unique Fabricating, a race car fabrication business in Central Point, Oregon, that’s an integral part of the Ariel Atom community in the United States. Since Mark is only able to return home for a few weeks a year, most of the communication about the build was done via email and phone.
The result is one very special hot rod-inspired father/son build. Right now, this Honda street tracker is currently in the belly of a ship on its way to Germany, where Mark will have more time to ride it. We’ll let Mark himself give you the full details.
CB750 Tracker Build: In the Owner’s Words
Starting with a 1976 CB750SS, the team of Ray Wasson and Tom Smurzynski of Unique Fabricating in Central Point, Oregon went to work on a custom hot rod street tracker.
My father, Ray Wasson, has built and raced go carts, motocross, flat trackers, trials bikes, drag cars, circle trackers, four wheel drives/pullers, river race boat engines, and basically anything that goes fast and makes a lot of noise. He has worked on projects from the land speed record holding Phoenix Diesel (Editor’s Note: a 4000-horsepower, 9-ton goliath that’s hit 251.2 mph!) to river racing boats.
Tom has raced for the Project Motorsports Chevrolet Cobalt team and worked at Brammo Motorsports, the North American builder of the Ariel Atom, and has delivered one to Jay Leno. Together they make one hell of a custom building team.
Going back to the late 60s and early 70s, I remember my dad and Uncle John flat track and TT racing in Southern Oregon on a 500 Triumph. I grew up on motorcycles, and then helped my dad build three short track stock cars; a ’56 Chevy, ’66 Chevelle and a ’67 Camaro. All were hugger orange and black with the number 007. His cars were famous in Northern California and Oregon for most of the 70s.
He continued to build racing engines at Bert’s Custom Engines in Gold Hill, Oregon, in the late 70s and into the 80s. When he asked me if he and Tom could build me the first CB 750 café racer, I said “No Dad, I don’t want a café racer. I want a flat tracker like you and Uncle John used to race and it needs to look like the 007 series of stock cars you used to race.” He cracked a big old smile and said, “you will have serial number 001.”
I work in Afghanistan training Afghan Commandos and Special Forces and have only a few weeks a year to visit my family or even return to the USA. I had to communicate by email, phone calls, and photos I found on the internet to relay my idea of the type of bike we were going to design and build. This proved difficult at times, but eventually they figured out what I wanted and built the bike exactly how I imagined it.
The engine had to be loud, powerful, and full of trick racing components just like the engines he had built in the past. Some of the parts used include:
- Carrillo rods
- Weber 40 DCOE carbs
- Hand built intake manifold
- Ported head
- Wiseco 836cc pistons
- Kibblewhite valve train
- Electronic ignition
- HD Barnett clutch
- Webcam 63a
- Joker Machine engine covers
- Cyclex primary chains
- Cyclex 4-2-1 header (rewelded and ceramic coated)
- Italian GPR baffle (custom made inlet)
The gas tank was fabricated by Tom using a split Fat Boy tank. He transformed it into a one-off single tank with a Monza style gas cap. The rear fender was a front fender off some sort of Harley that looked like a good starting point. It was cut up and highly modified and is a definitely a one of a kind rear fender.
I went with a Moon 500 series fuel tank for the oil tank. I see many of the bikes trying to hide the oil tank, but I felt it should be seen and have a unique look, much like the beer keg gas tank in our first ’56 Chevy stock car.
When it came to lights, blinkers and electronics, I wanted to make sure it was street legal in Germany, as that is where I reside and where it must pass the rigorous TUV certification. I selected e-approved parts such as the Paaschburg & Wunderlich dual fire headlight, Kellerman rear turn signal/brake lights, Motogadget motoscope classic digital multi-purpose instrument, M Blaze cone handlebar end blinkers, M Unit digital control unit, and an M Lock digital ignition lock.
For the exhaust system, I chose a ready-made Cyclex 4-2-1 header. It was cut at all the weld joints, re-welded, and ceramic coated inside and out. It is mated to an Italian GPR Deeptone e-approved muffler with a DB killer installed. The system sounds bad ass, but it will have a hell of a time getting TUV approved.
The front USD forks are off of 2004 CBR1000RR. The original 1976 front brake caliper was used with custom built adapters. The mount for the right side caliper was cut off and ground smooth by hand. No speedo cable would be used, as I opted for a Dakota Digital GPS speed sensor.
The original hubs were powder coated black, and new aluminum Excel wheels and stainless spokes were strung by my dad. The tires are vintage Dunlop K70s, with a wider 3.50 in the front.
I opted for Weber 40 DCOE carburetors with 28mm chokes. I am still in the progress of getting the tune perfect, but will most likely change to 30mm chokes as these seem to work best on other 836cc Honda’s on the dyno. The carbs are stock now, but I have ordered another set that I will re-jet the carbs based on recent 836 Honda dyno testing being done in Arizona, and then paint them to match the bike with gloss black and Chevrolet orange Eastwood ceramic engine paint. I will change out the top and bottom cover screws with Pro Bolt race spec etched black bolts. The idea is to build and customize the carbs in Afghanistan and take them to Germany in my suitcase next time I go on vacation. I will bolt them on and take the bike directly to a dyno tuning shop in Germany or the Czech Republic.
The frame was ground smooth and TIG welded, then ground smooth again and sprayed with Hugger orange epoxy paint. The swing arm was reworked as well, grinding off the ugly ridges and re-welding all the seams. A custom chain guard was then fabricated and mounted to the swing arm.
I currently have Progressive rear shocks, but these will be swapped out for Fox Podium RC1s in the near future. I am also swapping the black valve cover for a black/chrome cover from Cyclex.
The first test ride was from Southern Oregon to Los Angeles on Highway 1. The bike handled super, was powerful and sounded like it is supposed to; it is Fast and Loud and attracts a lot of attention and a lot of “what kind of bike is that, I like it!” from other motorcycle riders and the general public.
Contact Unique Fabricating:
Interested in a custom CB750, 550, or 350? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org!