89 Honda Camino/PA50 newbie

Hi folks, new to the site, but been browsing since picking up an ’89 Honda Camino PA50.

I have found the link to the 83 manual and downloaded it. Is there much difference in the models and does anyone know of a manual for an 89 model is available to download. I could also do with an owners manual cause im not familiar with the controls, as you’ll see from my questions.

Does the camino have an electric (pushbutton) start, or is it purely from the pedals. How do the pedals start it. Could someone run thro the starting procedure for me.

What does the decompression valve in the cylinder head do? There is a lever on the handlebars to open it.

I’m having to strip the engine down, the manual indicates using various specialist tools (crank pullers etc). I’m at the stage of removing the rotor flange, and will need to remove the drive pulley, clutch, etc to split the crankcase. Anyone managed to do this with common tools, and not shelling out on new tools.

Also does anyone have any info on the various letters that follow the pa50 i.e. DXVL, VL, II

Re: 89 Honda Camino/PA50 newbie

Not much mechanical difference between models.. nothing that casual observation won't reveal. Manuals are for sale online .. Haynes has one and at least one website sells Honda parts-desk microfilm. Did you miss the Owner's manual on THIS same page ? It illustrates controls, etc.

Some later bikes did have batteries for improved accessory function but i never heard of one with electric start.


With the pedal-or-engine lever on the rear gearbox set to engine-drive: The pedals spin the rear wheel. The rear wheel then moves the belt. That spins the variator. Just behind the variator is a small starting clutch. At some low RPM that centrifugal starting clutch engages the engine's crankshaft, and pedal power is communicated to the engine.

The decompression valve vents cylinder pressure and allows easier pedaling-starting. As the pedals spin the engine some momentum is built up and, by then releasing the decompression lever, the engine should fire. Personally i never use the decompression function.. a well tuned bike starts easily.. but a child or any weaker person might find the decompression function useful.

I've got a couple spare engines but have so far managed to avoid ever splitting a case. I haven't bought any special tools for removing the flywheel, variator, etc but i do make my own crude tools when needed.. a welder, drill press and lathe, grinders, etc. are handy. It's not too difficult to damage some things by using the wrong tool or technique..


Near as i can tell, both the "Camino" and the "Hobbit" are PA50's. The 30mph PA50"II" Hobbit is distinguished from a 20mph top speed PA50"I" Hobbit (discontinued in 1981?).

That is the only reference to the suffix "II" i've heard of. The Camino did come in a slower (25km/h) version up until at least 1983 and was sent only (?) to the Netherlands. I don't think the single "I" was applied to it's name.

And, afaik, the different letters, DX, VL, Sport, Custom, etc have to do with minor style variations.. spoke or alloy wheels.. short or long seats, etc.

Some places don't allow 2 passengers on a "moped". Perhaps shorter shocks were used on a single passenger bike.. gross weight and overall height would then be different.

I thought i saw a Camino mounted with smaller than 17" wheels but can't be sure.. I have seen somewhat fancier body work on some Caminos than on others.

Re: 89 Honda Camino/PA50 newbie

Thanks Joew, i did have another look at mopedriders.org and found the owners manual, thanks.

Mine does have a battery, which i thought may have been for starting. it is a bit of a state, some of the handle bar controls are damaged, and missing a rear brake lever.

If i can get the engine to turn over i may restore it, unfortunately it has been laying dry for 15 years and the crank does have a bit of rust.

Re: 89 Honda Camino/PA50 newbie

Unless i see a reason to strip the engine, i'd resist the urge to go too deeply into it.. it's a well built machine and might not need complete disassembly. Anyway, what are you gonna do if the connecting rod bearings are rusted.. you got access to a new crank?

I'd remove the cylinder and piston and clean everything up, and directly lube the bottom end bearings with motor oil. Replace whatever gaskets need to be replaced (make 'em) and torque it down properly.

then, if everything moves freely, fire it up .. my bet is the thing will run fine. And after swapping a few brake parts from some other bike it'll be on the road.

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