Saturday, September 17, 2011

Post 29: V Star "Bobbing" Part 2

With the band saw, I cut the basic 2 part clips, levers, and lever mounts out of 3/4" solid brass bar, and rounded them with the belt sander and the air grinder. The bottom section of the handlebar clips were tapped 1/4"-20, and an 1/8" aluminum plate sandwiched between the two halves.
The 1 5/8" holes for the forks were cut with a bi-metal hole saw fairly easily, but for some reason, I was having a hard time cutting the sideways 1" holes for the handlebars, and ended up letting a machine shop do it, as well as bore the 1" holes in the lever mounts to mount them at the end of the handlebars.

The reverse levers will be rounded with the hand held air grinder and polished, then fitted in the handlebar mounting brackets after these are drilled and shaped.
I will have to figure out a way to move the brake fluid reservoir and connect it to the lever.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Post 28: V Star "Bobberization" Part 1

I ordered some 27" black 1" drag bars which I will cut in half, and designed some clips to attach them to the top of the front end tubes. I also designed reverse brake and clutch levers, and bought a 3/4" x 2.5" bar of solid brass to cut them out of.
I will use rods instead of cables and move the brake fluid reservoir off the handlebars for a cleaner look.
The grips will be made of stacked wood slices,in alternating colors(padouk and birch?).
I will make old fashion brass choke levers and turn signals:
I will use coiled copper tubing oil and gas lines, brass or copper velocity stacks on the carburators as the beautiful "Willow" shown below, and decorative "steampunk" brass and copper rivet strips on the tank:

I found a source for reproduction cloth covered color coded striped wire, and I will probably use the second amber one throughout (lights, spark plugs, etc...) to match the brass parts and the gold leafed gas tank:

I will use leather straps and an aluminum, brass and padouk box to hold the battery, leather roll tool bags, and a strapped on gold leafed spare gas mini jerrycan with a leather holder:

A lot of the chrome plating on the engine will be blacked out, soiled, weathered, swirl sanded, or otherwise distressed. The exhaust will be wrapped in fiberglass ribbon and I will find a close fit chopped rear fender like the bike below:

I love the suspended seat above too, but the fat and wide Mustang seat with backrest the bike came with is so damn comfortable I am considering keeping it and covering it in distressed buffalo leather instead...

Post 27: Yet Another bike

Yes folks, I guess three motorcycles weren't enough, I just got a fourth bike on eBay. It was a local bike, and a deal I really couldn't pass up: a 2001 Yamaha V Star 1100 with 21000 miles for only $2000. The showroom price was $3990, but the dealer apparently was tired of looking at it, and I got lucky with the bidding. It's very clean, except for leaking front forks, runs well(very noisy straight pipes), and really is quite a looker in metal flake vermillion with this "Indian style" turned up extended rear fender . It is equipped with two front disk brakes with stainless lines.
It was dripping with chrome, some real, some plastic(which I can't stand), most of which has already been removed. I got it as a project bike anyway, with the intention of chopping it into an old fashion bobber with a "Steampunk" flair...
Something a little bit along these lines, but with more brass, copper, gold leaf, brushed aluminum, blacked out chrome, painted wheels, and wood:

As you can see in the picture, the forks were extended 4", but since the rake was not increased, the bike is high in the front, leans way over on the kick, and is rather hard to handle in tight turns because the trail is wrong.
Rather than spending $300 putting back stock top tubes, I decided to slide them up 4" in the triple trees, and use clip on bars at the top end.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Post 26: Rafik Kaissi and RK Concepts

I just discovered a fabulously talented and totally original bike builder, an Artist really. Rafik Kaissi is from Lebanon, and his designs are unique. He placed 2 bikes in the 2011 World Championship...
He has a great web site:
I particularly like the Springframe:

but also love the Chain with it's backpack copper fire extinguisher gas tank:

and the asymetric and minimalistic design of the S: