F800 Stealth bike build

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by Ronin ADV, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    So in the beginning my F8 looked like this:

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    Then after many farkles and some new paint it looked like this:

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    But despite all the positive feedback I got on this look in the De-beaking thread (insert sarcasm), I still wasn't completely satisfied. I'm not a big fan of the low fender and since Lost's spectacular crash, I have been meaning to get around to re-doing the brake lines. In addition to this, my F8 is set up primarily for the dirt and I wanted to simplify the front end with less breakable stuff like blinkers and mirrors sticking off. So after a bit of work I have come up with my latest version. And a new version needs a new color. So if its going to be black, why not go all out black.

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    #1
  2. linksIT

    linksIT nOObie

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    Looking good like the front fender.
    #2
  3. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    Before I get into any specific description I want to thank all the inmates who answered my questions (Lost, Dendrophobe, GP Racer, MCMX, and others I am forgetting. All these guys did these mods first. I shamelessly copied them and modified things to my own bike. Once again ADV comes through as a repository of bike knowledge. I think I'll divide my description of my mods into three parts: The fender / fork guards; the brake lines; and the bars / lights / other stuff.

    There are several excellent fender mods described on ADV. I like the look of the KTM 690 fender so I went with that one. First order of business was to strip the bike down.

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    My dog Boof assuming the management / critic position:

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    The stock plastic plate that covers the horn is reused to help attach a new fender mounting plate. First you have to drill a 3/4" hole on the right corner that will allow the brake line to pass through later.

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    I built my fender mounting plate out of 1/2" thick PVC plate (available through various sources including Amazon). Its relatively light weight and strong and can be worked with woodworking tools such as a table saw and router table. I tried several different versions and various hole patterns but ultimately settled on this one:

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    The KTM fender needs a 3/4" hole near the front two holes so you can reach in with a socket and grab the main mounting bolt that comes down off the triple clamp (M8 60mm).

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    From the bottom of the triple you can attach the plate with 2 M6 bolts near the back and then by using a longer M8 bolt down through the stock horn mount you can pass this down through the stock plastic plate and the new mounting plate. This will pass through the larger aluminum spacer visible near the front (spacer from Aluminumspacers.com, I think its 3/4" long). The fender is then bolted up onto the PVC plate.

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    The fender is attached up to the PVC plate using M8 bolts passed through aluminum spacers. By changing the lengths of the spacers you can vary the angle of the fender. After trying different combos, I went with 3/4" length spacers both front and back. This gave me the right angle and clearance I wanted.
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    #3
  4. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    I really like the new fender. When you first did the de-beak, I thought to myself that I would have removed the lower one and kept the upper. This is even better!:clap I did like the green color, though.:cry
    #4
  5. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    The fork guards take a bit more effort. I went with the same Kawasaki ones that GP Racer described in his mod.

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    I liked the idea of the upper plastics ring that goes around the fork tube for added strength. However, after getting the product in hand and looking more closely at it I was less impressed with the ring idea. I just couldn't see how to fix it to the fork tube so that it wouldn't shift around or eventually be knocked loose so I bagged that idea. I still wanted to achieve maximum stiffness / security to the fork guard as the brake lines will attach here so I started looking for other options. I knew I was going to have to make some mounting brackets for the bottom of the guards and then I noticed that there is also another mounting hole up high in back on the bottom of the forks where the rear strut of the OEM fender attached. So I decided to mount a metal bracket from here up to the side of the guard.

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    The fork guards have three holes in the bottom and the forks have two bolts at the bottom for attachment. The rear one lines up OK but the front one (pointed out in the picture) doesn't line up.

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    Therefore the attachment bracket has to be shaped to fit this hole combo. I fashioned mine out of 16 gauge(?) sheet metal and cut it with a jig saw, then bent and shaped it with pliers, vise, grinder and a file. The holes are marked and drilled and I used several small aluminum spacers to fill in the gap between the bracket and the guard.

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    After returning from getting powdercoated (black of coarse).

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    And the rear strap.

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    All bolted up this configuration turned out to be stiff as hell.

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    #5
  6. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    Time to drain and get rid of those crazy crossover brake lines.

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    For my brake lines I used the Spiegler lines and the dimensions posted by MCMXCIVRS here:

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showpost.php?p=15422828&postcount=142

    The left fork guard comes with a attachment point for a brake line clamp but the right doesn't. So I made a small bracket out of metal and attached this to the right fork.

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    Then with both attachment points in place I found these billet brake line clamps to attach the lines to the guards.

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    The brake lines then can be attached to the calipers, run up through the stock plastic upper plate and then they arc over from each side and meet at a common central T fitting. From here a short line connects the T to the ABS return then another line up to the master cylinder. The real crux of this whole brake line change in my opinion is making the bracket that will attach the T in its central position over the horn. While this may look simple enough, there are several tricky clearances here such as the steering stop, and the diagonal strut up to the instrument cluster. These all come into play in subtle ways in the final assembly to allow the lines to turn and flex up under compression smoothly. I actually made four different versions of this bracket before I got I right. I tried a flat bracket with spacers and various bend and hole combos before the final product. The bolt that attaches this bracket is the same M8 60mm that than goes down through the horn bracket, the plastic plate, the triple clamp and is attached to the PVC fender mounting plate described previously.

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    In position as viewed down from the left front:
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    View down from the right front:
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    Close up:
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    The yellow zip tie points to the steering stop that must be cleared:
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    After filling the lines with new brake fluid I did get a ABS error code so I took it to my dealer to get this cleared and as luck would have it, the code went away as I got to the dealer. I had it checked anyway since I was there and everything was cool. These length lines seem to be right on and after a couple dirt test rides, so far everything moves smoothly with no problems as the suspension compresses.
    #6
  7. murph76

    murph76 Been here awhile

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    nice- had mine black since apr 10- love it
    #7
  8. señormoto

    señormoto Supermoto Abuser

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    I really like the new look. Great work on the front fender. I'm putting an orange 950SE fender on mine once the new WP forks arrive.
    #8
  9. dendrophobe

    dendrophobe Motorbike Junky

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    Lookin good! I haven't seen anybody do the high fender with the beak remover before, it looks good! I'm pretty partial to green 800s myself, too! :lol3

    Have you sized that up at all? The 950SE fender looks the same as the 690, but is a bit bigger... Most people switching over on the 800 or the KTM 950/990 Adventure have found that it's a tad too large. If you have the opportunity, try putting the 690 and 950SE fenders side by side...
    #9
  10. señormoto

    señormoto Supermoto Abuser

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    I have both 525EXC and 950SE fenders, the EXC one definitely doesn't fit at the rear as it's too long. The 950SE fender fits just about perfectly; I'll know more when I move the brake lines around as they're in the way at the moment and preventing a test mount. I don't have a 690 fender around for comparison.
    #10
  11. toro618

    toro618 Long timer

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    Very nice setup.

    Where did you get those billet brake line clamps?
    #11
  12. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    They are Fastway brake line clamps (#22-9-906). I found them on OEMcycle.com.
    #12
  13. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    On to the bars.
    I have used Highway Dirt Bikes guards on my WR and I have very happy with them so when I wanted to change out the F8 guards they were the obvious choice. One of the really nice things about the HBD's is that they offer multiple options including signals, mirrors, pre tapped bars, etc. I used the opportunity to also change my bars and got some new Pro-Taper Woods High bars (pre tapped to accept the guards). The stock bars have a small hole on the left side where the left hand grip / buttons attach:

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    Cross drilling the new bars is much easier if you can hold them stationary so I built a jig to clamp the bars to:
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    After installing the guards I opted to get the turn signals also. The front LED blinkers are integrated into the plastic hand guard shield.
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    This allowed me to pull off the OEM incandescent bulbs. The wires are accessible near the OEM blinker location:
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    I just clipped the wires above the connectors, then traced the wires back and re-routed them up to the guards.
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    The rear ones are nice little billet lights that can be bolted directly to the bike after the stock blinkers are removed.
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    The wires are routed through the back hole on the bike and the hole closer to the front of the bike accepts a bolt that secures the light to the bike. I had to drill out the blinker slightly to accept the stock (M6?) bolt.
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    Red / blue (positive), brown / black (negative):
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    #13
  14. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    Now for one minor headache. When I used the HDB lights on my WR, I had to get a new flasher relay (12 o clock labs). This was pretty much plug and play. On the F8 however, the flasher relay is not separate on the bike but is part of the computer and you cant just change out a relay. HDB actually includes a flasher relay when you buy the blinkers and while this may work on a KTM it is a no go on the F8. Typically when you change from incandescent bulbs to LED's the lower draw causes the lights to blink too rapidly. For whatever reason when I changed to the HDB LED's the blink rate was just fine but the instrument display shows a lamp error code and the yellow error light turns on when you use the turn signal. After calls to a few different dealers, no one could come up with a simple fix. I then tried to use the Wunderlich "Flash Killer" which is supposed to increase the resistance and therefore make the computer think the OEM bulbs are still in use. Not only did this not work, it actually caused the blink rate to increase (as well as the ongoing error code). For now I am just ignoring the error code as the blinkers work fine and I'm going to try some different resistors from Custom LED to see if they will work.
    #14
  15. LukasM

    LukasM Long timer

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    Nice work Ronin! :clap

    Looks pretty bad ass all in black, and those mods are certainly all very functional. Can't see much on the bike that I would improve or change, and that's rare for me. :D

    I don't like using resistors for the blinkers because they are bulky, heat up and waste electricity, even if not much. I have heard that BMW can reprogram the computer for the LEDs so it doesn't show the lamp error. Since they are offering their own LED blinkers stock in some countries and also for retrofitting, it would make sense that they can do that.

    Maybe check with Joel and I will also post on the German F8 forum to confirm.
    #15
  16. toro618

    toro618 Long timer

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    Thanks Ronin.

    Did you have to drill and mount a custom tab on the right fork gaurd to attach the line clamp? I have the same gaurds but have yet to mount them.

    Also FYI for anyone doing the brake line conversion. This was the first thing I did on the bike when I bought it in 2010, and have roughly 2000 offroad miles. The system works under all conditions without a hitch. The one thing to watch out for is the plastic bar that travels right above the horn and attached to the instrument cluster....in tight right hand turns, the brake line going to the master cylinder rubs against this hard plastic bar and eats away a little untill a U is haped from the constant rubbing. After I saw what was happeing I just cut a peice of a auto fuel hose and zipped tied it around the brake line. So now when the brake line hits that bar, atleast it has some protection and will not wear a hole on it.
    #16
  17. Moto4Balance

    Moto4Balance Gas Passer

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    Thanks for adding to the repository with a great write up!
    #17
  18. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    Thanks for all the feedback guys.

    Lukas - I would really appreciate it if you find out anything about the LEDs. I discussed this with two local dealers and neither had any sort of answer for me. I believe the BMW (and TT) LEDs actually have some sort of resistor incorporated into the light already. You are right about the downside of resistors but so far I cannot come up with another fix.

    Toro - Yes I made a small tab to attach the brake line to the right fork guard. It is described and pictured in one of the above posts. Thanks for pointing out the line rubbing issue. Are you talking about the diagonal piece that slants up to the instrument cluster right above where the T is mounted?
    #18
  19. k Dog

    k Dog Nomad

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    Where did you get the little mirrors?
    #19
  20. Ronin ADV

    Ronin ADV Gear addict

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    They are part of the Highway Dirt Bike guards. I will write a more detailed description with pics soon.
    #20