Over the weekend, I finally sold my 1981 Honda CB750 Custom. It took just shy of 21 days. That’s by far the longest I’ve ever taken to sell a motorcycle or scooter. Then again, Chicago is a very different market than Minneapolis/St. Paul. I think the appreciation for older Japanese bikes just isn’t here the same way it is in the TC.

I encountered the typical parade of no-shows, spectators and low-ballers, but I’m glad I stuck to my guns. The most entertaining thing about those guys was how upset they seemed by my price. How dare I want what the bike was actually worth? That was the thing though, that motorcycle was worth every penny of what I was asking, and being patient paid off when the right buyer finally came along — someone who actually understood what he was getting. Someone who saw the value in an old bike that ought not to need any work for a long, long time. I hope he enjoys it and I hope it gives him tens of thousands of fun, trouble-free miles.

Financial gains aside, the real value of this experience for me was everything I learned about the mechanics of an old motorcycle that’s been sitting for a long time. While I certainly had a lot of help from Robb and Jeff at BCM, the vast majority of the work was done with my own two hands. To see the machine come fully back to life over a few weeks of cumulative work was really, really satisfying. It makes me feel that much more confident that I’m ready to tackle the next bike that comes along, whatever that may be.

Meanwhile, with some cash in hand, it’s time for the next machine. Not just any machine, though. It’s time for another scooter.

Nathaniel Salzman