How Fixing a Vintage Motorcycle Inspired a Career Change

Shasta Smith put years into restoring her 1972 Honda, emblazoned with her signature number 5. It inspired a passion for vintage motorcycle restoration that led her to open a repair shop and venue space in Sacramento, Calif. Photo: Ryan Angel Meza for The Wall Street Journal.

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Comment (74)

  1. Sweetheart



    In distinction & character

    Her eyes…are shining

    Radiant light

    Her innocence, compassion

    Everlasting Love, Amor


    Shasta Smith



  2. So what's the HP on your CL and what gearing are you running? My race bike makes right at 24 hp and we usually run a 17/35 for most tracks. Top speed is about 90 mph on a long straight like at Road America.

  3. yes I live in Sacramento and was given a 1963 flat track bike back in 1990 when I was a little kid still my father unfortunately passed away many years before I was able to ride so I have keep it and I was hopeing to know what it might coat to get it restored or if anyone be Intreasted in buying it.. it has all the important picses few missing but have the important part engine and fram seat and tank need complete rewiring… so if interested in buying call me at 9165096731

  4. Good for you girl. I just bought a 1979 Honda CB750 and I am restoring it to original. I also had a Honda CL 175 and it was one of the best bikes I ever owned. Would like to find another one. Also had 3 Honda 450's. Another great bike. My prize restore is my 1970 Norton Commando 750 Roadster which I still own.

  5. my first bike was a CD175 (single carb version) and it was totally bullet proof. Amazing little bike and already retro styled from new! Those Hondas had unburstable engines. Great memories!

  6. My first bike was a CD175, the early retro single carb version of Shasta’s bike. Vintage Monkey is now officially on my California venue list, if the powers that shouldn’t be ever allow us to fly again.

    Thank you for sharing this inspirational story

  7. That place is so self-consciously 'cool' its painful to look at. It's a bike shop for people who want a motorcycle as a lifestyle accessory. Like those boxing gyms that are aimed at advertising executives, lawyers and bankers.

  8. Awesome stuff, very cool little bike. 72 CB500 here, just learning the character of old bikes but I dig it. Super cool story, it sounds like an ideal life. I like her strong presence and character, plus brains and beauty..and passionate about motorcycles?! Triple threat.

  9. I do worry about who will keep and ride the BSA, Triumph, Velocette and Norton motorcycles currently slumbering in old Boomer's garages.


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