Thursday, December 29, 2016

Painting the Buell headers

The Buell front forks were leaking so as a result I had to rebuild them.  While I was waiting on a few parts to arrive, I thought I take the opportunity to give the headers a bit of a clean up.  With some left over heat resistant paint I coated them a few times before curing them on the bike.

My camera ran out of battery while I was spray painting them so I had to find a substitute video to show the similar process.

Let's see how long the paint lasts for.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Build Diary Video Part III - TW200 Rear Fender Mount

I finally had some free time to edit some footage of making the rear fender mount.  Quality isn't that great as I'm using an old point and shoot.  I also forgot to film some of it including making the threaded bungs.

TW200 Build Diary Part 3

Monday, December 12, 2016

The Experiment - Yamaha SRX250 Cafe Racer

We found this bike on ebay as a stock 1987 Yamaha SRX250.  I was pretty excited to win the bike at a fairly low price even though there wasn’t much information at the time about this particular model.  Which is no surprise as Yamaha had only manufactured this for a couple of years.

We had picked up the bike from an area in Brisbane known for it’s close proximity to a large university and it’s toga parties.  I spoke with the then owner for a while, mainly small talk about the weather, the government and the fact that this might have yamaha’s 80’s experiment gone wrong, he then mentioned that he was in fact a scientist at the nearby university.  Irony aside is was only fitting that we named this “The Experiment”.

Once we removed all of the plastic a neat looking frame begun to reveal itself.  We kept the stock tank and hand shaped the rear seat cowl, with an integrated LED taillight.  We sourced some leather from an old mercedes bendz that we used to cover the seat pan.

Bars are controlled through some mini toggle switches to clean up the recycled clip ons We also added a nice stainless shorty exhaust to give it a throaty note and finished it off by airbrushing a mad scientist on the tank.

It all came under budget by reusing and sourcing some second hand bits and doing everything ourselves, besides the upholstery.

I was fortunate to have this bike on display at a new Maker Space opening and managed to finally take some shots.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Project Tonka - Rear Fender Mount

Things have been progressing pretty well.  With the fibreglassing of the fender complete I finished up with the rear fender mount over the last weekend.  I wanted to make this a single sided affair as on the right side of the bike I wanted the exhaust to be the hero and I felt having a support bracket to the rear fender would have spoilt that.

I made this out of 12mm round bar with 18mm slugs to connect them. This took a little time to get it right with a proper roller but I managed to bend the bar well enough using just a simple jig and a blowtorch.

I then created some bungs to mount the fender.  I had tapped 3 of them but snapped the tap inside one of them and took me the rest of the day to remove it.

I then reinforced the two supports with some steel sheet to stop lateral movement while riding.

Hoping to get the seat glassed this week so I can finally disassemble everything.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Build Diary Video Part II - TW200 Skid Plate

Finished off the custom skid / bash plate for the TW today.

Originally I wanted to give aluminium brazing a go for the first time but the stock that I'd bought ended up being too thick.  Because of this slight oversight, bending it would have given me a hernia.  So I spent a while thinking about the alternatives and I came to the conclusion to make one up with some left over steel sheet.

I first mocked it up with some cardboard and then used it as a template although not 100% accurate it did give me a good base to start.

Once I'd cut and bent it to the correct shape I tacked everything into place, once I was happy with the fit I welded it all up.  I then added some holes to reduce weight using a stepped drill bit.

The edges still need a clean up but will do all that before sending off to sandblasting.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Build Diary Video Part I - How I made the TW200 Custom Fender

I had the original intention of documenting this build on video but as it turns out doing this requires charged batteries and new memory cards.  Two things that I didn't have at the time I started working on the bike.

I did however manage to setup the gopro for the fibreglass process.  Cut down a days job into under a minute.  Excuse the quality of video I'm still working on my editing skills.

I'll try and document most of the process from now on.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Project Tonka - Rear Fender Construction

Have made some good progress on the TW200 over the last couple of weeks.  Originally I was going to use a steel black fender and cut and shape to suit.  However I wasn't happy with the outer radius as most of these off the shelf fenders that would fit the 7" wheel were flat.

Scrap Ply to use for the plug

I decided to shape my own creating a plug out of plywood to replicate the radius of the wheel.  Once that was done I filled the spaces with expanding foam.  I probably should have used the two part expanding foam as the builders foam left too many air pockets after being shaped.

Nailed into place

Expanding foam to fill the voids

Should have used 2 part expanding foam as there were so many air pockets

Then I glassed a female mould with 2 layers of woven cloth and a layer of chop strand.  Because the foam wasn't perfect I had to spend a bit of time sanding and filling the holes left by the foam.

Next I created the final male mould, this time I used a Vinylester Resin for increased flexibility and strength compared to the Polyester.

Vinylester Resin with woven mat
Final result after sanding.  Ready for primer and paint

It came up really well after a trim and a light sand and fits perfectly to the rear tyre and is also super lightweight.  Now to fabricate the mounting hardware.

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