Project Full Circle:Ninja 650 gets a makeover

Discussion in 'Some Assembly Required' started by sailah, Nov 9, 2012.

  1. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    The top can't and that needs to fit the swingarm. The bottom is just probably threaded but thats not the important end. Plus I'm not sure if there would be effects from running usd with the oil in the reservoir
    #81
  2. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Brought the newly machined stem over to my buddies to use his hydraulic press and pop the stem from my CBR project out of the Emig triples and press in the new stem I made. Dropped in the bearings and brought it home today to test. I'm going to need to take it out again and make up a thin spacer to add under the bottom bearing to drop the lower triple away from the head tube a little as the clearance was too close. Other than adding a dust cap to the top, that project is done for now.

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    This is the cockpit from the CBR I swapped over. Debating how I'm going to set this bike up. I would like some wind protection and am think I might go rally fairing like the KTM 640. If I go that direction I will put the stock gauges in the dash along with a GPS. If I decide to go lightweight I will run the Trailtech with the Vapor.

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    Front end mocked up. This is essentially the exact setup I will run. 320mm Braking rotor, Braking caliper and Braking MC. Wheel is a stock KTM 21/1.85" Excel. Forks are from an 05 KTM RFS bike. I will probably rebuild them with fresh seals and bushings and new oil. I do have some 0.58 springs I bought for the CBR but never installed.

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    It's amazing how fast you can move on a project when you keep the custom work to a minimum and try and use smart solutions. I originally wanted to make a new tank up front and a new seat, but that is a TON of work. I threw the seat on this bike and had my hands on the bars for the first time. Feels really good. Obviously I am going to be going with a custom location for the footpegs so I put my feet where I thought they should be. In an ideal situation I would have the tank shorter by an couple inches and the seat forward the same, but it's really pretty good.

    Because I decided to stay with the stock tank but still want 6 gallons, I picked up a Rotopax 1.75G aux tank and mounting kit. I will be trimming the stock seat pan as well as refoaming it so that Rotopax will be closer to the subframe than I am holding it. I will make some simple hoops for Wolfman Luggage like JD is Rocking:deal, the Rotopax will be inboard of those and the exhaust will be similar on the other side.

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    This is in the general vicinity of where I want the pegs. I will probably end up getting some steel plate cut that I will weld to the existing frame and then support from the underside with a welded strut to the frame spar holding the engine mounts. Should be very rugged. Shifter will pivot off the tapped hole in the end of the tube you see and run a linkage to the stock shifter that I will cut.

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    I also did some more figgering on the chain alignment. With the spacer inboard of the CS sprocket pulled out and the CS sprocket slid as far as it will go, I am 3/8" from perfect alignment. I currently have a 1/8" spacer on the rear sprocket so I will probably get a new one waterjet cut from 3/8" plate. Might have to do a little dremeling on the swingarm to clearance the teeth but I think I am ok. I will also source some high strength bolts to make sure I don't have any issues and back them up with locknuts.

    So I think I will try the swingarm centered for now but leave myself a wide top shock mount so I can shift it over if I decide to go the offset wheel route at a later date. Does mean I will be cutting the top spar on the subframe and remaking that, but fairly minor.

    I'm really cruising along on this build. It's amazing how fast things can go when you have a couple builds under your belt. Things are just apparent to me now where as before I would spend days thinking through how I would do something.
    #82
  3. OhioPT

    OhioPT Adventure Wannabe

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    Pete, the reservoir on the Husaberg shock is on the opposite site ;) You can run a shock upside down, but I wouldn't want the reservoir that exposed on a bike that'll be used in the dirt. You can cut the reservoir off, weld in a fitting and use a stainless line to relocate the reservoir where ever you wish.
    #83
  4. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Well those should be easy and cheap to find:lol3

    Can I come over and steal yours?:deal
    #84
  5. TooFast

    TooFast Long timer

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    #85
  6. OhioPT

    OhioPT Adventure Wannabe

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    lol, good point :D
    #86
  7. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    the muffler is gone locally to a buddy that has a Versys. You still want the header? I can't imagine it's worth the shipping as nice ones are $40 on ebay.
    #87
  8. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Getting the shock to fit is going to be easy, just need to clearance the spar and maybe weld in a gusset. I still need to run a diagonal to match the other side.
    #88
  9. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Time for an update

    I machined up a dust cover. It was way more complicated than I thought. I started off with a 3" diameter aluminum rod and turned and hacked until it fit. It's still grinding slightly so I need to clearance some more. Good enough for mock up purposes. The only thing I have left to do on the front end is to press the stem back out and insert a clearance washer to space the lower triple away from the stem just a bit.

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    Then I hacked up the subframe so the shock would clear. At this point, I'm ready for it to be on two wheels. I took the wheel off the CBR and used it in the Ninja. I took a 20 ton jack and used that instead of the shock to set "ride height". Might be a little stiff:lol3

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    As you see it, I have 26 degrees of rake, seat height is right around 36". Sitting in the stock Ninja seating position, it feels slightly stretched. But just. I slid forward maybe 2" and that's better. I might just have to shape the tank and extend the seat because it felt great sitting there.

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    Got a good feeling where I want the pegs.

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    I turned down the original CS sprocket spacer. I think I went a little too far. The chain still needs to come out slightly. I have a 1/4" spacer being cut on a waterjet I pick up monday to test. I think that will be fine, because it's pretty darn close right now. I'll have to clearance the swingarm where the bolts are on the sprocket as they will hit.
    #89
  10. Luke

    Luke GPoET&P

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    FWIW I measured a couple of dirt bikes and the ones that feel best when standing have the footpegs at 40% of the way from the rear axle to the front axle. Sitting at the front of the seats puts you right over the footpegs.

    In contrast, a Honda XR4 has the pegs forward of that position and it's more comfortable for sitting, but takes more effort to ride standing up; both standing up and staying up.
    #90
  11. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Luke,

    I think you are right but a lot depends on the sweep and rise of the bars. The only factory bike I have in my stable is a 2012 Husky and I think the pegs are too high for longer distance riding. Being on my third build allows me to see further down the path than before so I am planning on really spending time nailing the location of the pegs. As you pointed out it's important in both seated and standing positions.

    Fortunately I have a linkage setup on this bike and I enjoy playing around with that stuff. Making a cool linkage from rod ends and aluminum rod.

    As far as the seat, I need to put the tank on to really make up my mind. And in order to do that I need to mount the shock and in order to do that I need to design up a mount and in order to do that I need to get the sprocket spacer to see if the chain will align correctly...the design spiral continues on:deal

    I do think I will end up modifying the tank, I need to anyways to clear the shock so I might as well do what I want and get a little more comfortable seating position. I will end up losing a little volume but not much. I hope to offset most of the lost volume with a surge tank mounted above the swingarm that will house the fuel pump. And I still have the 1.75G rotopax to mount on the pannier racks.

    Oh and I got rid of two bikes in the garage and put them in storage for the winter, the FZ1 and the dirtbike. Thinking of throwing the CBR in there too. It's amazing how much more room I have. I don't have to climb over things just to get a screwdriver or move two bikes to use my lathe. Sweet!!
    #91
  12. ktmklx

    ktmklx Been here awhile

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    Enjoying your build Sailah. You mentioned being able have others follow your recipe, custom tank with relocated fuel pump and cut up shock mount and sub frame will take this recipe way out of the comfort zone for most shed builders. Just saying. You, on the other hand will have quite a custom ride.

    Do you know what your rear travel is going to be?
    #92
  13. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    how about the larger Versys tank? it's supposed to hold 5 gallons, but i put 5.56 in it out in BFE Friday night. the motor missed a beat just as i coasted up to the pumps. i did have two 1L bottles of fuel with me, so 6 gallons on the bike. you sure don't want 2 gallons on the pannier racks unless you're out west or above the border on a route segment with no known fuel stops. it's surprising to find a route with no fuel in the mid atlantic, but so many country and tiny town stations have closed in recent years, 4 gallons on the bike can get ya parked on the side of the road.
    #93
  14. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Yeah, it starting to fade away about making this build easily replicated. I wanted to go that route at first but I don't want to compromise things like seating position. If I went with a linkage suspension, which probably would have better due to shock packaging, then it would have been easier to keep components stock. But I didn't because I like the quality of the KTM stuff and I already have a build using it.

    I'll keep detailed drawings if someone wants to do it, but I think you are correct it would be a fair amount of custom work. I will say that this build has taken so much less time because of the ability to see "around the corner" and anticipate mistakes. That was a 50% time savings right there.

    Everything you see up until now, if you had the KTM parts and the machined parts in your hand, you could do in a couple hours if you were working straight. I have not yet welded anything.

    You could avoid the tank issue by just accepting where it is and leaving the seat stock.
    #94
  15. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    That's a thought. I don't have one to check though...:augie. Originally I was going to make a subframe tank but that was a ton of work and as you know it's not necessary for range where I live. That's why I like the Rotopax setup so much. Adds 1.75 gal, is very light empty, super tough. Just leave it empty and you won't even notice it, fill when needed. It adds another useful feature of being able to easily fill a buddies bike, instead of the petcock bottle filling method which stinks.

    I think the stock Ninja tank is 4ish gallons add another 1.75 and getting 50 mpg should be enough range for almost any situation.
    #95
  16. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    would be ok if you averaged 50mpg on a trip with a combination of surfaces and speeds, but i've never seen it. once you crank up the speeds, the mpg falls off a cliff, and you're into the 30s for economy. the only time i could get any of the ptwin bikes to the 50mpg was on gravel where the average speed was less than 50mph for the whole tank.
    #96
  17. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Hmm, that's interesting. I have just assumed that it got that for mileage, but just as a guess. Hell my KTM 950, carbed and tuned for max hooliganism, got 35 mpg riding like a jagoff everywhere:lol3 Guess I'm surprised that a bike without a lot of HP would get crap for mileage but you would know the best.

    My FZ1 with more than twice the HP got 42 MPG over an 1800 mile trip from Pittsburgh to NC and back. And I was riding like an absolute idiot with routine 12,000 rpm sweeps. And that was hand calc'd using GPS for mileage.

    Looks like a lot of 45-55 mpg reports http://www.fuelly.com/motorcycle/kawasaki/ninja 650r/2007

    But that is a street bike and I'm sure mine is going to be much worse with wind resistance
    #97
  18. sailah

    sailah Lampin' it

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    Put the real dirt shock (had the SMR on there) in and found it's about an inch longer.

    I need some help getting the top mount close. I obviously did not do my homework correctly on the CBR as I had the top mount too far forward which really softened up the shock action.

    As I see it, I am trying to duplicate a RFS KTM geometry within limits of what i have to deal with the Ninja frame. I removed the spring so I can cycle the shock.

    My buddy locally took a pic of his 450. It appears, with the bike fully sagged, the front shock mount is about an inch forward of the swingarm axis. We already confirmed the extended length of the shock, eye to eye. I also know the distance between the top shock eye and swingarm center.

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    Anyone have any better advice than just randomly guessing?:lol3 I do need to set the rake. I think I am going to make up a single arm that I can tack weld on to check my specs with it sitting under ride weight.
    #98
  19. larryboy

    larryboy Chopper Rider

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    I'd ask your buddy to put the bike on the ground, measure swingarm angle and shock angle, then play with those numbers. Pretty sure you do your bikes with super steep swingarm angles and that might drastically change your spring rate and angle.
    #99
  20. sanjoh

    sanjoh Purveyor of Light

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    My dirt ninja gets 52mpg avg at 75mph loaded (3 givis) on knobbys.

    Best mpg was on a ride with a KLX that was tached out at 55mph, 72mpg:deal

    Worst is 43mpg riding deep sand.

    The stock ninja is over geared, which tends to keep you around the 3200 rpm rough spot that this motor seems to have. I'm running 14/52 and it is peppy:evil

    Looking forward to the solution you come up with on the tank. The stock tank is too wide with the pegs in the right spot which for me is forward about 6" from the stock location.