We like to think that we live in extraordinary times. We tell ourselves what is happening now has never in the face of human history happened before. For example, designing in the US and outsourcing the manufacturing to Asia. Reading today’s news might lead you to thinking Buick’s Chinese SUV is the first example of this, but back in the 60’s PABATCO in Oregon designed a dirt bike and outsourced the manufacturing to Hodaka of Japan. Find this 1967 or 1968 Hodaka Ace 90 for sale in Post Falls, ID for $650 via craigslist.
Back in the 1960’s PABATCO (Pacific Basin Trading Company), a subsidiary of an Oregon Farm Chemical company began importing Yamaguchi motorcycles into the U.S. When Yamaguchi folded in 1963, the employees of PABATCO designed a small dirt bike on the back of a cocktail napkin and contracted Hodaka to manufacture it.
Their first bike was called the Ace and was powered by a 90cc two stoke and was and excellent performer. It was very light at 170lbs which the 8hp motor had no trouble pushing around. The bike was street legal, equipped with full fenders and head and tail lights. This bike is missing its lighting and the stock chrome fenders have been replaced with some plastic-y junk.
Hodaka went on to create other legendary bikes with enigmatic names such as Combat Wombat, Super Rat, Dirt Squirt and Road Toad. The Ace was their first successful start. Hodaka’s are still remembered fondly by their fans. Every summer in the Oregon home town of PABATCO, the faithful get together for Hodaka Days. This Ace might be a bit over priced due to the missing parts and missing title, but maybe you can make a trip to Athena, Oregon and find what you need.
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