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Old 03-04-2011, 09:55 PM   #16
oregoncoast
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Old 03-05-2011, 04:33 PM   #17
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Old 03-05-2011, 04:49 PM   #18
vabuckaroo68
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Way Cool

Mr McQueen would be proud. I'd have to take her by and show her to one of last legends since he's out in CA as well (Mr Smith, of course)
I'd love to do something like that too. Have to until funds are avail for a crazy idea like that.
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Old 03-05-2011, 06:05 PM   #19
Otis the Sasquatch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adiablolex View Post
no please carry on
PLEASEPLEASE!

I just got here. I'll pull up a chair and wait.




That would be just the ticket for the Ozark Mountain fire roads I used to wander.


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Old 03-05-2011, 06:21 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vabuckaroo68 View Post
Mr McQueen would be proud. I'd have to take her by and show her to one of last legends since he's out in CA as well (Mr Smith, of course)
I'd love to do something like that too. Have to until funds are avail for a crazy idea like that.
I did a search for old pictures of Malcom Smith for something or another and never saw a picture of him on a Triumph, though he must have been on one or two.
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Old 03-05-2011, 06:37 PM   #21
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Old 03-05-2011, 06:42 PM   #22
Bud Tugly
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Desert sleds are way cool!
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:19 PM   #23
lstzephyr
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This is a really cool story and the picture you posted as a teaser looked awesome!

Lets hear some more!
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Old 03-13-2011, 01:16 PM   #24
earwig OP
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After a quick carb rebuild and a pair of new plugs, it was only few kicks to get her snarling back to life.

A handful of trips to my buddy's british bike shop had her in fresh fluids, ignition bits and fork gaiters. Road ready, if still a little rough.

So . . . Desert Sled . . . where do I start?

The seat will be very critical. I want an old Bates seat, short to expose as much rear fender as possible, gotta have high pipes, definitely a skid plate, that ugly oil tank has gotta go, replace that zener and rec with solid state . . .




During a visit to my buddy's shop I spied a nicely battered old gas tank up on a high shelf. Hmmmm . . . I never liked Trudy's slim tank and the paint job is far too shiny for a proper desert sled. It's a very faded '70 TR6 tank. I think they called the color "Spring Gold", but it's green. Usually a nice medium metallic green, but this one has really faded into a flat almost olive drab. It's got a wide black stripe up the middle, with only a few remnants of the gold pinstripes lining the black stripe. Just the right amount of dings and scrapes. We work out a trade and I'm back the next day with Trudy's shiny black tank for the swap.

Yep, this is more the direction I want to go:






My buddy also has an old set of high pipes he'll let me have really cheap. They're too dented and rusty for most people, but they have a set of period snuffers on them, and just the right look for Trudy. Cool!




I spend an evening cleaning the pretty thick layer of grime off of them and banging out the worst of the dents in the tight bends near the head. My plan is to install them the next morning.

After stripping her old pipes and all the hangers, I'm ready to fit the high pipes . . . but . . . WTF? they're too small for the exhaust spigots. Oh crap! These are 500 pipes!!!

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Old 03-13-2011, 05:15 PM   #25
Otis the Sasquatch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by earwig View Post
...a nicely battered old gas tank.....an old set of high pipes...
...makes for a Great Start!
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Otis the Sasquatch screwed with this post 03-14-2011 at 08:14 AM
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Old 03-13-2011, 06:13 PM   #26
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Old 03-13-2011, 10:41 PM   #27
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You did the right thing by starting your build with deliberate efforts to make a bike that you can mix it up a bit with and not worry about it. I started out with the same intention, but one thing led to another.
If you don't mind me asking, who is your bud with the shop?
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:40 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xcuvator View Post
If you don't mind me asking, who is your bud with the shop?
Thaddeus at Empire Classics. He had to close the storefront this Summer, but still does business out of his home.

Nice bike!
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Old 04-01-2011, 11:57 AM   #29
earwig OP
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So, while trying to sort the pipes I get back in to some of the basics.

She's never had head steadies. They're the little steel bridges between the top of the frame and the top of the cylinder head. I've got handfuls of the 60's style head steadies.




But, these are useless with the '72 motor in a '66 frame. The later style ones will bolt to the head, but won't match up to the frame, so I'm gonna have to get creative.

What I'm trying to do is bridge the little gap between these holes on the front of the head and frame:




And this similar set on the rear:




After some head scratching, measuring and visualizing, I think I can get it done with some chunks of 1" steel angle.

This little piece should be plenty.




There are some challenges with the bulges and angles of the head, but I think some judicious bending will be enough to get me there.

A few minutes with the porta-band and I think I'm on the right track.




I should have drilled at the apex, but WTH, we'll call this a prototype!

Drill a few holes . . . and I'm pretty much there.




The rear one needs a little bend, but has fewer clearance issues, so I can leave a little more meat.




Fits just right:




Wow! I should have done this years ago. Really smooths her out, feels like a new bike!

I'll have to redo them with a little better craftsmanship next time . . . but all things considered, not bad for an hour of my evening, and I still made it to the bar to meet my buddies for a few drinks.
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Old 04-01-2011, 01:29 PM   #30
BubbaJim
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Thumb 'Sled Rocks!

Hey Man, OK you've got our attention!! Great story about what's lookin ' like it's gonna be a neat rider's machine and not another trailer queen. Good on ya!
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