Kosmoto Customs builds a Kandy Purple CL…
Earlier this month was the fifth annual Victory Moto Show in our hometown of Savannah, Georgia. While we showcase bikes from all around the world, we’re always amazed at the quality of the builds from close to home. One of the standouts was this ’72 Honda CL350 from Jon Kosmoski II of Florida’s Kosmoto Customs, whose father is none other than Koz, founder of House of Kolor — the world’s first custom paint brand, founded in 1956!
Jon got his first bike at 16 — a CB160 — and he’s been owning, riding, and wrenching on air-cooled Hondas ever since.
“In 2010, at age 50 I started restoring the 1963 Honda CB77 Superhawk I’d owned since 1980, and before I was done had bought two more project bikes. Since then, I have restored four CB77s and four CB160s and have built several custom/restomod Hondas for a total of 18 bikes so far.”
He received this ’72 CL350 as a basket-case from his friend Nick of Jacksonville Beach’s Garrison Moto, who was trying to free up some space in his shop.
“The goal was simply to turn the pile of parts on my garage floor back into a running, driving, and beautiful vintage motorcycle.”
What’s more, Jon wanted to reuse as many parts as he could, spending less than he had on his previous builds — he estimates he has just $2000 in this build! He completely rebuilt the engine, scouring eBay for replacement parts, and went through just about every nut and bolt of the build (literally), keeping the original lines and charm of the original CL with subtle upgrades and customizations throughout — full details below.
Of course, the paint is one of the signature elements, and Jon did the job himself. As to be expected, the paint itself is all from House of Kolor:
“I have painted a lot of motorcycles since 2016, but I still consider myself a beginner at custom painting. Luckily, I can always call my dad for suggestions and advice. I vacillated between candy green or purple and am very glad I chose purple.”
We absolutely love the candy purple paint and can confirm that it’s doubly stunning in person! Below, we talk to Jon for the full story on the build.
Honda CL350 Scrambler: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.
My name is Jon Kosmoski II. I’ve had motorcycles around me my entire life, as my dad is way into cars and bikes (my dad is the founder of a famous custom paint company called House of Kolor). I got my first bike at 16 (CB160) and have owned nothing but Hondas ever since.
In 2010, at age 50 I started restoring the 1963 Honda CB77 Superhawk I’d owned since 1980, and before I was done had bought two more project bikes. Since then, I have restored four CB77s and four CB160s and have built several custom/restomod Hondas for a total of 18 bikes so far.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the donor bike?
The bike is a 1972 Honda CL350 Scrambler.
• Why was this bike built?
The bike was received as a basket-case with a clean title from my friend Nick at nearby motorcycle shop (Garrison Moto) who was trying to free-up some space.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
The goal was simply to turn the pile of parts on my garage floor back into a running, driving, and beautiful vintage motorcycle.
A sub-goal was to re-use as many parts as I had laying around and to spend a little less than I had on my other recent projects. I had completed full restorations of a 1968 CL175-K0 and 1969 SL350-K0 that had been very expensive (~$10,000 in parts for those two.) I think I have less than $2000 in this CL350 build.
• What custom work was done to the bike?
- Bobbed rear fender (not just chopped off, but a new beaded edge was welded on and shaped to look like it came that way from the factory).
- Trail-Tech Vapor Electronic Tach/Speedo (air and engine temp, date/time odometer, etc.)
- Larger tires Duro 3.25×19 front and Duro 4.00×18 rear
- “Speed holes” in the chain guard
- Custom tail light and turn signals
- Custom aluminum dashboard panel with LED indicator lights
- Recovered seat with new chrome buttons
- All metal parts were sand or vapor-blasted back to bare steel, broken stuff welded, dents pounded out, body filler applied as needed before a full base-candy-clear paint-job.
- Many new stainless nuts and bolts; re-used original bolts were zinc-plated
- Non-painted aluminum parts were sanded and buffed to a high shine
- Wheel hubs were polished, new brake shoes and bearings, new spokes rear (re-zinc-plated original spokes up front since it is hard to find new ones to buy)
- Rims sandblasted and painted Satin Black
- New OEM-style rear shocks
- Carbs and petcock rebuilt with new rubber gaskets and seals
- New cables, fork gaiters and fuel lines
- Renthal “Road” handlebars in Titanium gray
• Does the bike have a nickname?
I have had nicknames for other bikes, but have not been able to come up with one for this bike – any ideas?
• Can you tell us what it’s like to ride this bike?
The riding experience is not too different from a standard 70s-era CL350. I have built bikes with drastically altered seats and footpegs that made the riding position different than stock, but I decided not to do that with this bike to maintain its classic look and feel.
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
The donor engine was a mess and needed a lot of parts hunting on eBay to find better/undamaged parts to get it running again. It fires right up and idles and runs like new and has never leaked a drop of oil or fuel.
I am also very happy with the paint job. I have painted a lot of motorcycles since 2016, but I still consider myself a beginner at custom painting. Luckily, I can always call my dad for suggestions and advice. I vacillated between candy green or purple and am very glad I chose purple. The paint is all from House of Kolor: KD3000 primer, Orion Silver base, KK10 Purple Kandy Koncentrate carried in SG100 clear base, Galaxy Grey mixed with Orion Silver to create the darker silver-gray. Finally, all was buried in USC01 Show Clear.