Digital Desert camouflage the KLR650 step-by-step walk thru

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by klm4755, Oct 27, 2010.

  1. klm4755

    klm4755 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2006
    Oddometer:
    577
    Enclosed is a step by step walk thru outlining a project to digital desert camouflage a KLR650. I have seen several camo style bikes. The USMC adopted the KLR650 as it's primary motorcycle. The USMC version is shown below:
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    The USMC KLR

    I start all projects with a review of the components to be removed and modified
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    There are multiple techniques to apply camouflage.
    1. Paint
    2. Vinyl graphic decal
    I attempted to paint the bike one part/section at a time. I started with a mirror and front brake hub. To paint digital desert graphic the process is as follows:
    1. Remove and mask component
    2. Degrease and clean with alcohol
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    3. skuff part with 220 grit sandpaper metallic, 400 grit for plastic part
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    4. Primer 2x coats for metallic part, no primer for plastic part
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    5. Paint with light color first Krylon fusion khaki 2-3 coats
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    6. get female type digital template decal sticker (from e-bay)
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    mask the item roto hub shown
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    adding stickers to mirror
    paint with next darker color, mirror shown
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    krylon darker flat camouflage color
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    decals after usage, they are reusable....At this point I realized this is not going to work...The process is too time consuming and the results are marginal....So on to plan B
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    I ordered couple digital desert sheets from www.powersportswraps.com, they are shown below next to real digital desert camo
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    3M material
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    peal back and apply like a sticker, still not really happy with the pattern. So, on to a plan C
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    I ordered some double sided carpet tape from Lowes, Mildew resistant, very sticky....about the same as high quality duct tape
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    added a small swatch to the hood of my CRV....Held up well over 8 months thru 6 washes, lots of various weather
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    I ordered 10 yards of 100% nylon digital desert camouflage for $20 from e-bay. I ended up using about 70% of the material. I also ended up using about 6 rolls of carpet take, About 70% of the visable bike is covered in the camo cloth, 25% is painted in either Khaki (Krylon fusion ultra flat camouflage) or sand color for the high temp parts. About 5% is not pained, wheels, valve stems and such
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    Apply the double sided tape to the camo cloth, Use a heat gun to wick the adhesive into the nylon fibers, I also used a roller (shown later) to press the tape up against the fabric.
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    peal back tape protection layer with Exacto knife
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    I ended up consuming about 100 blades Exacto blade # 11 works best
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    peal back layer
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    lay part on top and keep creases to minimum, unfortunatly one the tape touches the part, it is very difficult to re-position
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    work thru, in this case, a part of the front fender
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    like so, full coverage
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    use Exacto to trim excess
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    trim out all holes
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    use heat gun to drape cloth and tape to form tight to contour
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    finished part
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    use soldering iron to cauterize the trim lines
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    after soldering iron to edge, keeps from fraying the ends
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    fork brace parts completed
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    headlight guard covered
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    headlight guard after trim
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    turn signal
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    let tape connect, not lap over
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    trim back with scissors
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    trim edge
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    finished turn signal, part paint part camo
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    turn signal attached to headlight guard
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    dissemble dash
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    mask dask
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    sand
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    ready for paint
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    couple of coats
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    fork brace
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    skid plate
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    for fork guard, the tape does not stick, so I'll use a 3M adhesive spray for rubber
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    stretch out the rubber fork guard and apply the cloth with adhesive, allow to dry, the cloth adheres very well
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    paint other parts
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    prep front faring
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    front faring
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    back side of faring
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    front forks
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    wrap around fabric
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    contact ends together
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    trim ends
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    small seam exposed
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    front end

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    running lights and fender
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    dash area
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    finished front area
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    checking swatches on bike.....
    To be continued..........
    Keithm
    #1
  2. Yooper_Bob

    Yooper_Bob Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2005
    Oddometer:
    3,221
    Location:
    Da UP, eh! (Marquette, MI)
    WOW!! :eek1
    #2
  3. bete

    bete misguided adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2008
    Oddometer:
    693
    Location:
    kansas Flint Hills
    As allways your projects are outstading, but you do reilize you will lose your bike and never find it now. :rofl bete.
    #3
  4. SCQTT

    SCQTT Zwei Kolben

    Joined:
    May 16, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,626
    Location:
    Mike's Sky Rancho
    The other option would be just to spend all that time riding it. :D
    #4
  5. Tarka

    Tarka Doesn't wave back.

    Joined:
    May 10, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,118
    Location:
    Across the pond.
    That`s a hell of a lot of work,but it looks awesome.



    All that trouble to make others think their digital cameras are faulty. :D
    #5
  6. carburated

    carburated Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    429
    Location:
    northern california
    I love that you left the reflectors on the fork legs. :lol3
    #6
  7. klm4755

    klm4755 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2006
    Oddometer:
    577
    I believe the reflectors are req'd by law.
    Keithm
    #7
  8. klm4755

    klm4755 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2006
    Oddometer:
    577
    The fuel tank removed from the bike
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    drain the fuel
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    remove the fuel cap, mark the major direction of up/down as the camo patter should be aligned vertically and horizontally.
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    gross cut the size needed. I'll use 3x sections to envelop the tank
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    start on side
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    trim edges as you go
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    side view 1st layer
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    added protector back on sticky layer, don't want to press down yet, will form a seam at the tank crease
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    add additional top layer, match the exposed layers together
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    allow to contact
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    press together
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    trim flash
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    paint exhaust guard and tank guards
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    clean, scuff (with 220 grit sand paper), prime engine and exhaust with high temp primer
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    paint engine with high temp stove paint, sand color
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    paint carb, and exhaust
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    close-up of paint on engine exhaust
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    standoff view of progress
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    camo the tank guard bags, I used a 3M adhesive
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    finished left bag
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    need to mount the bag here
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    size the mounting panel needed
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    trim as needed
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    de-burr edges
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    good fit
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    quick check fit...A-ok
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    interior bag bracket, tap 4 mm hole to support mounting bracket
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    fits like so..
    Camo the mounting panel
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    both sides
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    trim flash
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    attach mounting plate on bike, with heavy duty cable ties
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    bolt bags to bike mounting panel
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    Tank faring
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    engine paint job
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    paint steel horn...notice the high pressure line. I separated the actual horn from the air source
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    the air horn mounted here
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    front view
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    high temp paint used sand color
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    fuse box shown
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    front view
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    top of tank installed
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    front view with lights on
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    progress so far
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    side view
    To be continued.......
    Keithm
    #8
  9. klm4755

    klm4755 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2006
    Oddometer:
    577
    [​IMG]
    side panel
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    trim edges
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    edge sample
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    side panel on bike and overall progress
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    Rear parts off for paint prep
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    sanded rear foot pegs
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    painted parts
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    painted exhaust
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    rear wheel cleaned, sanded, masked, ready for primer
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    rear wheel after paint
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    remove masking on rear wheel
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    painted wheel
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    rear brake line covered
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    finished rear brake system
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    primer swing arm
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    misc parts painted
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    rear rack, I seemed to get better at keeping the fabric applied without creases as I went
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    underside view
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    looks good
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    set-up for panniers
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    just flip on material, best to use a single piece
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    flip again
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    camo pannier lock
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    pannier lock before and after
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    pannier cables...lower line = 12v line to power phone, ipod and heated clothes, upper line to control heated gloves and jacket
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    inside pannier
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    swing arm view
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    back view pannier lock, turn signals, plate frame, extended fender, and rack shown
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    right side view
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    underside view
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    seat...draped with 3x sections
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    Right side pannier
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    front view
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    left side view
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    left side pannier, knobs control heated gloves and jacket
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    front offset view
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    dash view
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    left side view
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    ready to ride...notice I have a 2" drop kit
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    Enjoy
    Keithm
    #9
  10. space

    space a.k.a. Jake

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,653
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Holy.
    Crap.

    :thumb
    #10
  11. doogiepooch

    doogiepooch Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Oddometer:
    986
    Location:
    Canton, NC
    #1 - I like it, took bawlz and imagination to do that to your bike.
    #2 - I'm curious to see what it looks like after a few months in rain, mud, road debris, chain grease etc. But the patch on your car still looked good so maybe it will look like new also.
    #3 - How do you like your windsheild addition? I've been thinking about ordering that thing.
    #11
  12. schattat

    schattat Long timer

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,477
    Location:
    Frankfurt am Main, Germany
    Damn, you're quite the artist!!! :thumb
    If I ever need a paintjob done I'll let you know!!! :freaky
    #12
  13. scrminbanshee

    scrminbanshee Awsome

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2008
    Oddometer:
    829
    Location:
    puyallup wa
    I think you might have to much free time on your hands.
    #13
    eakins likes this.
  14. pluric

    pluric Gimpy Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2006
    Oddometer:
    19,466
    Location:
    Salt Lake
    Sorry, after all that work it's kinda WTF?

    Each their own.
    #14
  15. Ben99r1

    Ben99r1 Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,112
    Location:
    Pomona, Calif.
    That's crazy in a good way. You better go to a surplus store and buy a matching outfit. Ben
    #15
  16. welder

    welder Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,530
    Location:
    paradise
    Yeah I don't get it either. you took a good looking bike and with alot of work made it look worse. And why wear a florescent vest on a camo bike? I do however appreciate the skill and determination it took to do this. I'm not trying to be negative, just keeping it real.
    #16
  17. SprintSix

    SprintSix Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2009
    Oddometer:
    152
    Location:
    Ohio
    I like it. Vinal wrap may have been a cheaper choice for some of the stuff. But there is a major problem with camo. It works. That things a death trap on the street now.
    #17
  18. a1fa

    a1fa Throttle Jockey™

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    14,785
    Location:
    Arkansas
    Why for the love of god. People already have a hard time seeing motorcycles. Notice how you blend in with the pavement.
    #18
  19. eepeqez

    eepeqez Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,072
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    And then ring your insurance company and show them what you've done, and see if they still want to insure you?
    #19
  20. Mercury264

    Mercury264 Once you go Triple...

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Oddometer:
    23,026
    Location:
    Masshole
    :eek1

    Words. Fail. Me.
    #20