12th Pictures

Stefan Wolf

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The 1980s Honda CBR 1000 F is the ultimate yogurt cup. We took a trip with the classic.

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The mudguard also nestles aerodynamically around the fork’s lower tubes.

Stefan Wolf

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Air slots and the recessed, yet easily accessible fuel tap characterize the side panels of the fairing.

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Fine tuning: Even with the exhaust, the transition to the rear silencer, no edge should disturb the perfect airflow.

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Wide transom arms, optimized in the wind tunnel, should ensure good consideration with minimal air resistance.

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The rounded rear end with integrated rear light is also part of the concept.

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Clever and well-designed air inlets ensure perfect air flow.

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Breathtaking but not exaggerated: the large dials in the complete, easy-to-read cockpit promise easy turning and high top speed.

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On the move with the Honda CBR 1000 F.

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The Honda CBR 1000 F rolls in with a 989 cm³, water-cooled inline four-cylinder four-stroke engine. Output: 132 hp at 9,500 rpm.

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The peak output of 132 hp is at 9,500 rpm.

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"Dynamics through aerodynamics" It was said about the Honda CBR 1000 F 1986 in MOTORRAD issue 18.

Exit with the Honda CBR 1000 F type SC 21

Yoghurt cup classic

Content of

Hiding the technology completely behind a plastic shell broke ground in the mid-1980s. The Honda CBR 1000 F and CBR 600 F in particular soon established an abusive term that was to become a common generic name – the yogurt cup was born.

D.he “yoghurt cup” par excellence, the Honda CBR 1000 F, turns 30 and thus a classic car. It’s unbelievable how time flies and which once futuristic-looking bikes are now reaching the classic age. Such a fully disguised large-scale flounder was never a classic and never will be, no matter how old it gets, many supporters of openly displayed technology will now rant. Partly rightly, on the one hand. On the other hand, this era of motorcycle history cannot be denied, and, as we all know, the pendulum has swung in the other direction again and given us modern vehicles in the classic guise of retro bikes. So let’s just go on a journey through time and let the fully dressed Japanese work on us today. It will be a personal journey through time for me because I once owned the successor to the SC 21, a SC 24 from 1989, and have positive memories of it as a difficult, but extremely confident and fast sports tourer.

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Exit with the Honda CBR 1000 F type SC 21
Yoghurt cup classic

Sufficient engine cooling is provided

Our Honda CBR 1000 F of the first type SC 21, which we found by chance, is extremely well preserved for almost 30 years and has only about 12,000 kilometers on the clock. Owner Dietmar Stauch bought the CBR second-hand six years ago. Incidentally, with hardly fewer kilometers, because he did not drive too many on it himself. The vehicle registration document identifies Herbert Stauch as the first owner (not directly related or related by marriage), a once nationwide known, very active Honda dealer who had numerous reports drawn up for tire approvals and performance conversions for Hondas. No wonder that the 1000 series, officially delivered in Germany with 100 hp, was soon dethrottled to 132 hp, which only required the expansion of the passage in the intake manifold. Incidentally, Honda had initially carried out the throttling all too thoroughly – the first specimens tested only produced 90 hp. Only with reworked intake manifolds with a slightly larger passage could 98 hp be measured, which enabled an extremely respectable 237 km / h top speed.

But let’s first look back at the initial phase of development. Apparently there was the self-critical realization that many motorcycle customers simply cannot get excited about the V-engine concept. For the then current VF 750 and VF 1000 series with V4 engines, an alternative was needed. Honda developer Isamo Goto therefore relies on water-cooled inline four-cylinders "without high-tech frills". Nevertheless, he wants to build the fastest machines in the 600 and 1000 class. In addition to engine performance, he particularly values ​​aerodynamics. The full fairing worked out in the wind tunnel is intended to minimize air resistance, relieve the driver of wind pressure and protect them from annoying mechanical noises. For this purpose, insulation material is attached to the inside of the cladding. Sufficient engine cooling has been ensured: The air flow on the Honda CBR 1000 F is directed past the oil cooler under the headlight and the water cooler, in order to then flow backwards under the tank and the seat.

Bridge tube frames made of steel instead of aluminum

In order to achieve a low air resistance, in addition to a streamlined design, but also a small overall width. The work of the engine developers helps the aerodynamicists here: the four-cylinder Honda CBR 1000 F carries the alternator piggyback behind the engine block. That saves overall width, the one-liter engine measures just 495 millimeters. And it weighs "only" 85 kilograms, and thus ten kilograms lighter than the air-cooled Bol d´or engine, Goto proudly proclaims at the launch. The short-stroke four-valve engine, which is designed for high speeds, allows the mixture to flow in through 31-millimeter valves, while the exhaust gases make their way through 27-millimeter exhaust valves in the direction of the four-in-two system, which does not save on weight, but does so in terms of performance as the better variant than a four-in-one system.


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Air slots and the recessed, yet easily accessible fuel tap characterize the side panels of the fairing. Photo show: yoghurt cup classics

The frame is also conventional – a tubular steel bridge frame instead of aluminum, called a “diamond frame”, does not reduce weight, but costs. Although the Honda CBR 1000 F has not become a lightweight, it should still offer nimble handling. For this purpose, the aerodynamically styled cast wheels (the departure from the former Comstar wheels) are now the same size at the front and rear: 17-inch wheels should combine the handiness of 16-inch models with the good-naturedness of 18-inch models. With 110/140 millimeters at the front / rear, the tires are also extremely narrow. Good for handling, but 132 hp also want to be put on the road.

So now I want to test how it all feels like today – the key is in, owner Stauch wishes me a lot of fun and with the choke pulled, the four-cylinder starts at the push of a button. Just Honda. Admittedly, the foursome runs a bit rough, perhaps due to the long standing. It will probably help to warm it up and then drive it a little free. From the beginning it is clear – the 262 kilos don’t want to hide. Maneuvering is and remains work. You sit deep in the saddle, behind the moderately sporty cranked handlebars that lie well in the hand. The easy-to-use clutch and the crisp, precise gearbox form a well-coordinated unit, and the Honda CBR 1000 F can be set in motion at low speed. Feet up, the pegs are quite sporty, the legs are more bent than you would allow a sports tourer to do. A little more seat height would lead to a more active sitting posture – okay, that’s complaining at a high level.

A top speed of 250 km / h is certainly an understatement

The 1000 pushes evenly, there is enough steam everywhere. Even if you want to move forward quickly, you don’t have to turn down the gears, that much becomes clear quickly. The view into the cockpit impresses me today as it was then – the clear design, the good readability and of course the speedometer scale up to 300. I never exhausted my Honda CBR 1000 F back then, and I will not do that today. But in view of the possible top speed, the scale, including a little advance, doesn’t seem that exaggerated. Whereby the 250 km / h of the open 132 PS version entered in the certificate are certainly an understatement. First, slowly drive up onto the main road, in the fourth step on the gas, shift, accelerate, shift, and I’m already in the sixth at 150, without any spectacle, without orgies of revs. Performance makes you confident and calm – that’s what the Honda CBR 1000 F conveys to me then as now. There are more suitable motorcycles for racing, but hardly better ones for quick, relaxed eating of kilometers. Well, the wind protection is not perfect – the airstream flows discreetly along the legs and blows unabashedly, but evenly and free of turbulence, to the lower edge of the helmet. However, constant speeds around or beyond 200 are no problem either. The vibrations of the engine are kept within limits, as intended and promised by Honda, thanks to a balance shaft that rotates at twice the crankshaft speed and is driven directly by the crankshaft via primary gearing.

No noticeable good weight distribution


Stefan Wolf

Wide transom arms, optimized in the wind tunnel, should ensure good consideration with minimal air resistance.

The chassis is also quiet – no swaying, no wobbling, the Honda CBR 1000 F moves stoically on its way. But what about off the four-lane roads? We leave the leveled terrain and turn onto small, winding side streets. Here it quickly becomes apparent that the brakes offer decent deceleration that can be adjusted well, but the sheer mass simply pushes. And when braking in an inclined position also over the front wheel towards the edge of the curve – the good weight distribution of 50.5 to 49.5 percent on the front and rear wheels praised by Honda is not noticeable. The Honda CBR 1000 F feels rather top-heavy and has a high center of gravity. Nevertheless, with a bit of emphasis, it can be chased quickly through alternating curves and swallows the unevenness of the course cleanly. The tuning of the air-assisted telescopic fork (with a relatively ineffective anti-dive system) can be considered a success, and the versatile, adjustable Pro Link system at the rear cushions and dampens confidently. If you run into a vehicle, a quick turn on the accelerator in high gear is usually sufficient to overtake. If things have to be more jagged, the four-cylinder delivers evenly increasing pressure across the entire engine speed range, if necessary up to the red area at 10,500 rpm. However, it is practically never necessary to turn it off, whoever shifts at 8,000 rpm always has plenty of pull on the chain and enjoys good connection in the next gear.

The ingenious inlets and outlets in the cladding create a kind of suction effect, which should divert the warm air to the rear and not bother the driver with the engine heat even when driving slowly. The driver is also spared the sight of the technology under the four-part fairing. Purists will regret that, but the rather untidy-looking hodgepodge of hoses, lines and units is not really nice to look at. Thanks to solid and reliable Honda technology, it doesn’t have to be screwed on very often. In view of the low mileage so far, this will probably stay that way for a long time – this Honda CBR 1000 F is far from being recycled.

Offers for the Honda CBR 1000 F

Used Honda CBR 1000 F in Germany

Who is also a cult one "Yogurt cups" want to increase should take a look at the used motorcycle exchange. There you can find the Honda CBR 1000 F in top condition and at reasonable prices: Used Honda CBR 1000 F in Germany

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