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Motorcycle Repair/CL450 cam chain master link.


I overhauled a 1972 Honda CL450. I purchased a cam chain from Sirius Consolidated Inc. It was a continuous chain, ie no master link. I broke a link to install it in the engine, then I purchased a master link from the same company. The pins are solid and the chain breaker/rivet tool I purchased cannot peen a solid pin. The shop manual for this bike says " use a vise grip to peen the ends of the master link". I have had no luck peening these pins with the vise grips or the Motion Pro Chain tool.
I had purchased a OEM Honda master link,(these pins had hollow points) but the diameter of the pins are too small for this chain; .117" and the other pin diameter is; .124".
I have tried peening the pins with a small sharp chisel,to cut a "X" but it just bounces off of the pin.
The 250/305 engines all have a clipped master link, why can't that style link be used on this 450? Plus, when I was in Japan, working on the 250's, we would wrap a little piece of safety wire around the master link clip and plate to insure it wouldn't work loose.  Any help you can give would be appreciated. Keep in mind, that the master link is only exposed while on the cam sprocket.
Thank You,
From another old Honda Fan.
Paul Paddock
P.S. Go to and click on "Paul's Rides" and you can see my 1966 CL77 that I completely restored. Please note while viewing, that "winker lights" have since been removed and the seat foam has been restored.

Paul... see this link below where a guy made a tool from a bicycle repair tool

If you can find an exact clip type master link and wrap the sideplates with wire, it will probably work fine as long as you aren't racing it.


Instead of modifying Vise Grip jaws, think about a small bolt cutter and using a flat plate on one side or grind off the sharp opposite cutter side, so it becomes a base for the other side to cut into the rivet end.

This is why I prefer the 250-305s......

Bill Silver

Motorcycle Repair

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Bill Silver


Need help with vintage Hondas from the 1960s? I am an expert with 250-305cc bikes in particular and most all of the other pre-91 models, in general. I do NOT claim to have a great deal of experience on Gold Wings, Cruisers, ATC/ATVs and dirt bikes.


I have owned/ridden/maintained Honda motorcycles for 35 years. I have written five books on Honda repairs and collecting. I was a service manager for two Honda shops back in the 1980s.

VJMC (Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Club) of North America

VJMC newsletter, as editor for two years and as contributing editor currently.

3 years auto shop in high school, teacher's aide in Automotive Technology in Jr. College, Diesel mechanic course in college, self-taught mechanic and automotive writer.

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