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Old 12-26-2011, 05:13 AM   #61
rtwdoug
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Hey Alex
so you want to build a chopper........
buying a frame & going from there is one way, but its a long expensive way to do it. I see alot of people that go that route, but if you dont have alot of experience in it, you will buy alot of wrong parts that wont fit, and it could be come too much of an ordeal, causing you to lose interest.
A Panhead is a good choice (altho as everyone knows, you'll never be able to ride it anywhere far, as they are not dependable, being an old harley)
seriously tho, you wont find a cheap pan motor (unless you get real lucky)
And be careful of a basket motor, as many times, it will be a collection of unusable junk parts. I see those alot.
If you dont have real good mechanical skills, and not alot of money, I'd suggest starting out with an evo sporty (93-03) those are some of the toughest motors HD has built. (04 & later are rubber mount, dont get that.)
if your patient, you can find a bike for about 2k, or a lightly wrecked one for a little less. A buell is also a good way to go.
Then get a frame & swap over electrics & motor (if you consider a buell, google 'mutant buell') theres complete frame kits to turn a buell into a chop, uses the stock wheels, forks, etc. Thats about the cheapest way to get into a HD powered chop.
Or, you can buy/build a big twin evo chopper (I'm not talking about those goofy fat tire things) the good thing about that route, is that if later you find a pan motor, you can stick it in the evo chassis.
building a sporty/buell chop will run you 3-5000 (of course you can get lucky & find cheap used parts & save some $)
an evo chop will run 4-7,000 (again, patience & luck determines the price)
Start hitting swapmeets. I've been to some in Harrisburg & York, the york one in Jan is great. its not a harley only meet, and all kinds of stuff turns up there.
As far as a dual sport chopper, well, thats just plain crazy. Choppers can only stay on nice paved roads.

Doug

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Old 12-26-2011, 06:02 AM   #62
Tucson Jim
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Quote:
Choppers can only stay on nice paved roads.

and not very well at that. While I admire your ambitiousness I fail to see why anyone would want a poor/dangerous handling, no suspension, unreliable, POS bike. Is it the '...hey everybody look at me...' syndrome? Or the '...I'm a badass...' image you long to project?

Get a smaller used jap bike and ride around a while. Because when you fall off your home made chopper due to a poor design, broken weld or lack of riding skills chances are you won't be able to play the piano any more.
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Old 12-26-2011, 08:05 AM   #63
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Originally Posted by Tucson Jim View Post
and not very well at that. While I admire your ambitiousness I fail to see why anyone would want a poor/dangerous handling, no suspension, unreliable, POS bike. Is it the '...hey everybody look at me...' syndrome? Or the '...I'm a badass...' image you long to project?

Get a smaller used jap bike and ride around a while. Because when you fall off your home made chopper due to a poor design, broken weld or lack of riding skills chances are you won't be able to play the piano any more.


WOW I love your positive enthusiasm for a young mans dream and desire.........................challenage the status quo. So FO
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Old 12-26-2011, 08:14 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by motoboss View Post
wow i love your positive enthusiasm for a young mans dream and desire.........................challenage the status quo. So fo

+1
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Old 12-26-2011, 08:29 AM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rtwdoug View Post
Hey Alex
so you want to build a chopper........
buying a frame & going from there is one way, but its a long expensive way to do it. I see alot of people that go that route, but if you dont have alot of experience in it, you will buy alot of wrong parts that wont fit, and it could be come too much of an ordeal, causing you to lose interest.
A Panhead is a good choice (altho as everyone knows, you'll never be able to ride it anywhere far, as they are not dependable, being an old harley)
seriously tho, you wont find a cheap pan motor (unless you get real lucky)
And be careful of a basket motor, as many times, it will be a collection of unusable junk parts. I see those alot.
If you dont have real good mechanical skills, and not alot of money, I'd suggest starting out with an evo sporty (93-03) those are some of the toughest motors HD has built. (04 & later are rubber mount, dont get that.)
if your patient, you can find a bike for about 2k, or a lightly wrecked one for a little less. A buell is also a good way to go.
Then get a frame & swap over electrics & motor (if you consider a buell, google 'mutant buell') theres complete frame kits to turn a buell into a chop, uses the stock wheels, forks, etc. Thats about the cheapest way to get into a HD powered chop.
Or, you can buy/build a big twin evo chopper (I'm not talking about those goofy fat tire things) the good thing about that route, is that if later you find a pan motor, you can stick it in the evo chassis.
building a sporty/buell chop will run you 3-5000 (of course you can get lucky & find cheap used parts & save some $)
an evo chop will run 4-7,000 (again, patience & luck determines the price)
Start hitting swapmeets. I've been to some in Harrisburg & York, the york one in Jan is great. its not a harley only meet, and all kinds of stuff turns up there.
As far as a dual sport chopper, well, thats just plain crazy. Choppers can only stay on nice paved roads.

Doug





The master chimes in! Thanks for the tips. How does one go finding out about where and when these swapmeets take place?


Since you say the low end of the scale for an evo chopper is around 3k, this project may have to wait a while, or at least progress very slowly . That sportster on craigslist I posted about a page ago or so seems like it could be a good candidate for a chop, though.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Tucson Jim View Post
and not very well at that. While I admire your ambitiousness I fail to see why anyone would want a poor/dangerous handling, no suspension, unreliable, POS bike. Is it the '...hey everybody look at me...' syndrome? Or the '...I'm a badass...' image you long to project?

Get a smaller used jap bike and ride around a while. Because when you fall off your home made chopper due to a poor design, broken weld or lack of riding skills chances are you won't be able to play the piano any more.




I think you should get a Camry, but you probably already have one.

Btw, I do have a "used jap bike", a 21-year-old Kawasaki Concours that I ride everywhere. Pretty much as bland and carlike of a bike as it gets. I don't need to project any kind of "image" because I ride year round in all weather as I don't have a car, and take multi-day trips, when I can, during which I don't stay in hotels. So I really have nothing to prove in terms of the largeness of my dick or the badassitude of my bikerdom. Also, hopefully the 10,000 or so miles I put on each year, mostly commuting in heavy traffic, takes care of the "riding skills" part.

For me the point of building a chopper would be for the challenge, both the mechanical and the ride. I suspect there is something about taking a long trip on a "poor/dangerous handling, no suspension, unreliable, POS bike" that you've put your own sweat into to build that is not present when you're buzzing around on the "Jap bike", as competent and practical as that bike may be.

I hate the stupid Harley marketing but in this case they have a good phrase for someone like you:

"If I have to explain, you wouldn't understand".


And for further reading, click on RTWDoug's profile and look for the thread called "The Wrong Way Round, on a Chopper".
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Old 12-26-2011, 08:40 AM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IRideASlowBike View Post
this project may have to wait a while, or at least progress very slowly .
thats why I vote for start with a frame. you might bolt a rear fender on it and get a major kick out of it. months later you see a different fender and next thing you know old fender off new fender on. all on an unpainted frame thats never rolled or cradled an engine. engine will be easy once you have the $$$. but picking choosing wheels, front ends, etc etc. will be major fun.

my friend built a significant business on chopper/vtwin parts. he has a catalog and you can build a complete bike from it. here is one of the bikes they built/build for trade shows I really like. 23 inch wheel up front and really sets nice. you could slip anything in there. pan/knuckle/shovel/evo. I'm wanting it.

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Old 12-26-2011, 08:48 AM   #67
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That reminds me of Zed's chopper.
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Old 12-26-2011, 09:12 AM   #68
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now this thing, which is a very close replica, feels like the front wheel is held onto the forks with rope. flops all over and scary as shit to imagine steering. I'm sure once moving it ain't so bad but no thanks I'll watch.


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Old 12-26-2011, 09:26 AM   #69
IRideASlowBike OP
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Originally Posted by nachtflug View Post
now this thing, which is a very close replica, feels like the front wheel is held onto the forks with rope. flops all over and scary as shit to imagine steering. I'm sure once moving it ain't so bad but no thanks I'll watch.




I'd love to have that bike. In the documentary about Easy Rider, Peter Fonda did say it was a bitch to ride, especially at slow speeds.
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Old 12-26-2011, 09:40 AM   #70
rtwdoug
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hahaha Im not a 'master' at anything.

But, look in local bike mags for swapmeet dates, also google is your friend. theres also motorcycle event sites like motorcyclemonster.com
york is 3rd weekend of jan, at the fairgrounds. setup is saturday, swapmeet is sunday. I always try to get there for the setup, as thats when you find the best deals. Sometimes they wont let me in early, so I'll just spend the 40.00 for a vending spot, even if I just want to buy. its usually worth the extra $, just for the deals I find. (if you just walk in like you are supposed to be there, usually you wont be bothered)
I'll be at the IMS show in NYC same time as york this year, which really sucks. It will be the first york I've missed in several years.

A sporty is going to be the cheapest way to get into a chop. (american made)
Jap bike chops are cheaper of course, and a good way to get your feet wet. You can still find CB750 chops pretty easy for a grand or so.

Doug
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Old 12-26-2011, 10:13 AM   #71
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Nice 750 chop:




Crashed jap bikes are the way to go for me, sporties cost too much around here. Being able to weld opens up a lot more possibilities.

I'd recommend the OP to take the money he might sink into this chopper idea to buy tools. Build yourself up instead and when that cool project comes along you'll be armed with the tools needed to work on it.
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Old 12-26-2011, 10:17 AM   #72
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True. Parts won't be worth shit unless I know what to do with them.

There are some welding classes I could take at the local technical college, I checked it out. The problem is that I go to school in Baltimore and that wouldn't work out with the schedule. Either way, this project is gonna be very long-term, and I doubt anything will happen for a while, as all my time for the next year or so will be taken up by practicing and preparing for several international competitions. I might go to a swapmeet or something, but as far as actual construction, nothing will probably happen till at least next winter. Also depending on how those competitions go.
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Old 12-26-2011, 10:30 AM   #73
rtwdoug
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Hey Alex, did you get the tshirt ok?

Doug
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Old 12-26-2011, 10:43 AM   #74
nachtflug
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Originally Posted by IRideASlowBike View Post
True. Parts won't be worth shit unless I know what to do with them.
yes and no. you take a naked frame and bolt an oil tank onto it I'm sure light bulbs will start going off. a rear fender. floorboards. a back wheel with spacers and a brake pedal connected to it.

think big.

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Old 12-26-2011, 11:26 AM   #75
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Hey Alex, did you get the tshirt ok?

Doug
No, not yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nachtflug View Post
yes and no. you take a naked frame and bolt an oil tank onto it I'm sure light bulbs will start going off. a rear fender. floorboards. a back wheel with spacers and a brake pedal connected to it.

think big.

I'll be on the lookout for parts. I feel a complete bike is out of my reach right now, but if I find a cheap frame maybe I'll go for it.
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