R80/7 + a newb = a long road to cafe

Discussion in 'Airheads' started by benthic, Jan 8, 2012.

  1. benthic

    benthic glutton 4 punishment

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    What a great couple of days!

    Last night I was out in the garage till about midnight, and back out this morning to try to get ready for today's Tech day...

    BOOM BABY!
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    test rides went well:) Mike and Renner came by and gave me their blessings and off we went

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    It was GREAT to be able to ride my bmw to a tech day again:)

    Sadly, my temporary seat and the aggressive position of the clip-ons made it very hard to ride the bike. After I got the bike home again I changed the clip-ons to a friendlier stance, but there isn't much i can do to the seat easily. I'm going to try to track down some foam tomorrow.

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    Funny story:

    This morning I was adjusting the mirrors when Mike showed up. Of course I stopped to say hello, and forgot what I was doing. 20 minutes later we were riding over to the tech day when i notice I only have 1 mirror, and Scott is not behind me anymore. We get to Aric's and Scott produces my newly busted up mirror;) I suppose SOMETHING had to go wrong;)
  2. hardwaregrrl

    hardwaregrrl ignore list

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    :lurk

    rad
  3. Mike V.

    Mike V. Adventurer

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    Spencer,

    Fun day today and nice to be on the road again with you. The bike looks and sounds great, very agressive in style. You did good Benthic! I wondered what happened to Renner when he disappeared from my rear view mirrors on our way to the Tech Session.

    Hoping to hear of Bill H's approval for your custom saddle.

    -Mike V.
  4. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    Seat looks good but p'haps a bit too structured. I favor impromptu. But your butt (and artisitic vision) is the true test.

    You've got the 'glas seat pan done, you're buying/fabbing the rear cowl. What's the plan on the seat? I'd suggest getting the upholstery done by a good and proven seat shop, because, as I just read in another thread "When you're out on the road in a cold dark and strange place, sensible beats sexy every time." [linky] They'll be able to fit the seat to you and the bike. I never realized how comfy the bike could be til I went the custom seat route-- numbbutt is just an unpleasant memory of the past.

    --Bill
  5. benthic

    benthic glutton 4 punishment

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    i changed the seat with some foam from joann fabrics (boy did I NOT belong there), and the rest of my old wetsuit.

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    and rode around today. the bike is MUCH easier to ride now, but the foam is NOT sufficient. oh well, it was worth a shot, and IS better that the first try;) Once I have the seat pan and cowling the way i want them, I'm going to have a seat professionally made, or at least try again with the correct materials...

    The bike is running great! I just wish i wasn't so nervous. nervous about the wheels/tires, all the work i did, etc. the only 2 real issues i'm having are that the front brake pistons don't seem to be releasing the discs all the way - the wheel drags a bit on the rotors. and the front suspension doesn't seem to be bouncing right, like i have some stiction or something... it's possible i didn't put the same amount of fluid in each fork (i may have lost count of the ml), but i don't think that would be causing what i feel. i could also just not remember what the bike felt like before... i'll keep looking into the issues...

    I hope everyone had a great weekend!
    Spencer
  6. benthic

    benthic glutton 4 punishment

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    I've been messing around all week with FG, and last night got to here:

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    not remotely done, but a step closer... hope to have more to show this weekend...
  7. benthic

    benthic glutton 4 punishment

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    Hi all! I finally have some some pics uploaded to show some progress on the rear cowling...

    I started by molding the tank.

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    then I cut 1 inch out of the width.

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    with considerable amounts of blue tape and cardboard, and the tank mold I had created, I mocked up the seat/cowling

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    glassed it

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    This is what I've looked like most of the week while I was sanding fiberglass and bondo. note the lovely pick air filters:)

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    man was it a pain in the ass. I know I did this "wrong", by not having a negative mold and all that. I underestimated the amount of work this would be. I kept having to reinforce the fiberglass with more fiberglass as it thinned out in places.

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    I have a new shop mascot.

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    last night I decided I needed to see what this thing was going to look like. I was having a hard time seeing all the imperfections in the bondo/fiberglass, so I sprayed some primer on it.

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    I'm pretty happy with the profile and overall shape.

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    I had this crazy idea for a luggage rack. I bent up some 3/4" alum flat stock and taped the pieces on to see what it would look like.

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    I'm not sold. I like the idea of a rack, but am not really into my prototype. I'll have to keep thinking on this one.

    I think now I will do some final reinforcing - add some more fiberglass to the underside, some final bondoing and sanding, and figure out out to mount this securely to the bike. after I do that, I might make a secondary seat pan that the foam and vinyl will attach to... or i could just have the foam and seat built right onto this pan... not sure yet.
  8. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    Not bad, not bad at all, sir.

    Using that positive 'glas replica of the tank as the foundation for the finished part wasn't a terribel idea-- making a negative mould and using that to produce a positive can be a PITA, also. The advantage is that you can easily produce more cowls if necessary-- it's less one-off. I do like the way your seat cowl echoes the tank.

    And hitting it with a light coat of primer to highlight surface imperfections is a good and typical practice.

    I think you are on to something with the rack. I'd try 1/2" wide bar to give it a leaner look and not use the fourth, topmost "rung" of the rack to make it look more aerodynamic. And instead of the squared-off ends of the rack pieces, make them more rounded, like an echo of the cowl surface. Simple=better.

    Have a Great Holiday!!!

    --Bill
  9. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    I like your work and the technique is interesting. The copying of the tank profile for the seat is inspired.

    But I don't care for the rack. It will serve no function therefor it becomes useless appendage like exhaust port holes on a Buick. :lol3
  10. Renner

    Renner combustophile

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    honestly: the initial effort is looking great and deserves better than to be cluttered up with a rack.

    If you must have a rack, then there's plenty more room for creativity... something that compliments the cowl and maybe can be easily removed on occasion.

    IMO :freaky
  11. hardwaregrrl

    hardwaregrrl ignore list

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    Lookin' good:thumb

    Not feeling the rack either. Would you really use it? Or would it just be bling....I was thinking something like this.

    <a href="http://hardwaregrrl.smugmug.com/Other/misc/16038929_6qzPj6#!i=2283732289&k=3TfHSJM&lb=1&s=A" title="Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug"><img src="http://hardwaregrrl.smugmug.com/Other/misc/i-3TfHSJM/0/L/rack-L.jpg" title="Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug" alt="Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug"></a>

    But have it follow the line of the cowl. I like the thin tubing on the tank rack.
  12. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    Ummm, lukewarm reviews of the rack. Still, toting stuff is a sometimes necessity. Howsabout discrete attachment points for an elestic net or the hooks of a net? You'd need some sort of retractable shelf at the bottom to keep things from sliding south.

    --Bill
  13. Renner

    Renner combustophile

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    now there's an idea
  14. benthic

    benthic glutton 4 punishment

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    good comments all. I agree, as I mocked it up, the luggage rack is not working, but if you remember 30 or so pages ago: ;)

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    I had mocked up a possible cowling/luggage system. So a cowling rack WOULD be functional. I like having a small bag to leave on the bike that has a lock, a rag, etc... hardwaregrrl - those triumph tank racks are what gave me the idea:) I didn't have as much time in the garage last night as I intended, but i'm going to fiddle with the rack idea a while longer, but trust me that I won't be drilling holes in the cowling all willy-nilly;)

    what i DID do last night was get the cowling mounted to the bike. I'd been struggling with the locking pin hole getting in the way because it is raised above the tube, so, finally convincing myself i could cut the subframe, i excised it:)

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    that gave me a nice clear tube to put some brackets on. I'm probably going to add some additional brackets elsewhere, but this at least gets me started.

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    what do you all think of the kind of seat that snaps on vs. the kind that lays in?

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    i'm not sure which way to go...

    I've also not been crazy about the turn signals being so far way from the brake light, so i made a bracket to move them from the existing subframe holes (a popular location among cafe builders), back to the tail light. I think this will increase my visibility by having all 3 lights closer together, and i think it looks better and less like a rocket ship;)

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    only one turn signal is in place as I ran out of time last night. I'll probably put some reflective tape on that bracket as well.

    after that, the wife and I went to Burger Lounge for a late dinner where we ran in to local airhead, Randy:) we chatted a bit over his gorgeous blue/white pinstripes /6:) It was a very nice evening:)

    Today! I'm off to the auto paint store to try to get an orange color that will match the tank:) I have a paint scheme in mind that I hope to get done this weekend:)

    happy end of the world everyone:)
    Spencer
  15. Mike V.

    Mike V. Adventurer

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    Spencer,

    Have you thought about discarding the tail rack idea and finding a suitable tank bag to carry any items if and when it's ever needed? I can't imagine you needing to carry a sleeping bag or anything substantial unless you plan on making extended rides. It may be a suitable option. Just a thought.

    Looking good.

    -Mike V. / San Diego
  16. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    Or just put the tailrack on hold-- finish the rebuild, finish the seat and tailpiece and go ride. As you ride you'll get inspiration.

    Remember you just went through a MAJOR build of this wonderful bike, a traumatic mishap and now a rebuild. Don't need to get burnt out, Grasshopper.

    --Bill
  17. benthic

    benthic glutton 4 punishment

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    Hi all! With my office closed from Dec. 24 to Jan. 1, i had grand visions of productivity. So of course i got sick the Saturday before Xmas:( and sadly i'm still sick. BUT! i had a few spurts of activity, not all of it good, but i couldn't lie on the couch the entire holiday.

    i finished moving my turn signals to the new bracket i made

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    and I turned an empty acetone can into a housing for the wiring and run/brake/turn modual (it is actually prettier now, this was a prototype)

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    then i started some paint since the weather was not to bad. disclaimer - I don't like the paint scheme. it was an idea that didn't work out, but i gave it a shot. also, i learned a lot about painting (which i don't have any experience in), so I'm much better prepared for the next time i give it a whirl... or i'll just pay someone;)

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    then i put some rubber on the bottom of the seat pan where it rests on the frame and subframe

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    and messed with the foam i got from Jim's Auto Upholstery (yellow) and some of the softer foam from JoAnn Fabric (green)

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    a bit of gaffer tape later and I have a temporary seat:)

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    then i polished up some aluminum disks for side covers

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    despite still being sick i wanted to take the bike out and ride around my neighborhood, but of course, it started to pour rain. sigh. can't win this week.

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    I hope everyone is having a great holiday season, and have a wonderful New Year!

    Spencer
  18. Renner

    Renner combustophile

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    :clap

    good to see this update Boss.

    Mods vs. Rockers coming right up!
  19. benthic

    benthic glutton 4 punishment

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    I had to ride it at least once this year;)

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    I'll be ready!

    Happy New Year everyone!
    Spencer
  20. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    Looks good! How's it feel?

    Happy New Year, all!

    --Bill