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Old 07-05-2015, 06:31 PM   #1
ericthebeard
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Default Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Greetings,

Intros: I'm new to JJ, but have been lurking, searching, and reading throughout the years. Doing researching and ogling various build killer threads. And here I am starting off my own first project.

Bike story: Found this awesome deal locally on Craigslist. The dude selling it listed a pretty vague ad for a '55 pan and basically said I'm not posting a price or any shit. Just come look at it and make an offer. So I did and I snagged it up. There's a pretty dope story to go with her, I'm the fourth owner. She used to be in full period resto form, but then the owner switched it up. Here's how she sits now (to my current understanding):

Untitled





Deets:
-'55 Pan engine, full S&S internals rebuilt, Super E carb, S&S oil pump
-Matching-numbers '55 trans, Baker internals
-Shovelhead split tanks
-Evo contorls
-Newer (Evo?) front end, dual discs

I love swingarm bikes. No plans to hardtail her. I am probably going to ride her as-is (after addressing some issues from sitting for a while, details forthwith on that work) and lean as much as I can about her habits. But then tear into the style and start to make it my own.

But I will say. I am new for sure and this progress will be slow going. Hopefully people here can assist with bumps and trials along the way.

That's all the shit I can think is valid for now.
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Old 07-05-2015, 07:03 PM   #2
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

I like electronic ignition and disc brakes as they make riding enjoyable to me not exciting. I leave exciting to the younger folk.
You'll be happy with dual front stoppers but not as cool as a guy running rear only.
Please say you paid way too much to make us looking for a Pan feel better.
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Old 07-05-2015, 09:03 PM   #3
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I like the balance struck on this machine, its very close to what I'd do on my own:
Points ignition, kick only, basic wiring and systems....
-but-
Disc brakes, Cycle Electric 12v alt kit, new engine guts, sealed chain...

Not interested in a spool front, but may change over to a single disc with a good (and less visually massive) 4-pot caliper. The REAL sex-machine it will become is going to probably evolve with an 18 rear and 21 front. Narrow it up, but not a lane-splitter.

I, in fact, feel like I stole this machine. I have been trolling CL and EBay for a while (and even threw out some bids for cone shov's and a genny shovel, but lost or didnt make reserve). Trust me, I am poorer than yesterday. But, fuck. Cannot believe I have a pan in my garage right now...

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Old 07-05-2015, 09:05 PM   #4
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

She already started marking her space on the way home.

My life forever now:

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Old 07-06-2015, 12:03 AM   #5
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

What happened to the motor number? How do you know that it is a '55 ?
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Old 07-06-2015, 12:11 AM   #6
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That's part of the saga. Basics:
Dude A steals the bike from Dude B, the first owner, in the 60's thereabouts. Dude B is apparently a legendary nut around the parts, files off the VIN and rides it like that for years. Later, after A and B made amends and A legally owns the bike, he gets pulled over and the cop sees the filed case. I guess back then you could get a "state assigned" VIN thats a replacement for the original. So there's a little official metal tag next to the old number area thats "55FLXXXX". She's titled as a 1955 HD FL with the same VIN.

Bill, the owner I bought her from, picked the bike up from the local legend. He had lost his leg crashing the bike and had it mounted up over his fireplace like a stuffed Jackalope. From the 1996 Iron Horse feature on the bike, written from the guy I bought her from, "What my extensive research after getting the thing home revealed was that it was a heavily modified, patchwork, clusterfuck daily rider that had been in a mondo wreck."
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Old 07-06-2015, 12:16 AM   #7
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Bill did as close to a period correct restoration as his budget would allow, and that version of the bike was in the mag:

Untitled

He then got tired of the barely-stopping brakes and hardtail ride. Apparently at that time a dude rolled into the Monroe swap meet with a pristine '58 swingarm frame, so he bought it up and started the conversion to what it is now.
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Old 07-06-2015, 03:40 AM   #8
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

That bike is desirable just for the story around it alone. Congratulations!
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Old 07-06-2015, 07:27 AM   #9
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Nice bike sounds like you did good.
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Old 07-06-2015, 11:57 AM   #10
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Saw that thing on craigslist forever, Glad someone finally picked it up. Excited to see what you do with it.
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Old 07-06-2015, 01:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VonWegener View Post
That bike is desirable just for the story around it alone. Congratulations!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Okie Pete View Post
Nice bike sounds like you did good.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobberadam View Post
Saw that thing on craigslist forever, Glad someone finally picked it up. Excited to see what you do with it.
Thanks everyone for the support. Def in the deep end now.

I have a "style notebook" on influential builds and build details. I began to write it all out with my plans and chopper pics, then I got logged out and lost the whole thing. Poop.

Suffice to say, I've done a lot of "mental chopping" for my eventual bike. And even after I lay out my super cool-guy elaborate plans, I just need to stare at the bike for a while and let it guide me...
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Old 07-06-2015, 01:30 PM   #12
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

A tasty beverage always helps me stare...
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Old 07-06-2015, 04:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JAWS View Post
A tasty beverage always helps me stare...
If I keep doing I end up seeing two panheads in my garage.

Perfect.

Which reminds me...
Before my major involvement with motorcycles I cut my get-shit-done teeth on sailboats. I lived on sailboats for close to 8 years in Seattle, starting with a 1934 sloop (all wood, obv). The sailing and boatbuilding community has "sitting and staring at the thing" down to a codified art:

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Old 07-09-2015, 10:35 AM   #14
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Alright, question time, round one:

I am planning on embracing the wide-glide front end with the 16" rims. Switching it over right now is outta scope and I actually think I am going to prefer the look. This bike was never going to be any sort of lane splitter.

I would like to fit a front nacelle like this one as well as cowbells, Cherry's pan from Basara Japan (pre crash):



Because of the mashup nature of my initial build, I don't know whether my later model trees can mount one... Here's what I'm working with:



I am pretty sure all I need are those side mounting holes on the trees and I'm set. But can anyone verify before I hop on EBay and tear down this rabbit hole?


Second question: I love the look of the flush mounted headlight on Cherry's bike. I imagine he has to have either a) some sort of internally aligned or adjusted light so it actually illuminates something useful for riding at night rather than just pointing uselessly skyward or b) he's a crazy fucker and just rolls with a aesthetics-over-utility headlight.

Thoughts? I am trying to think of how I could mount internally aimed light in there... like a projector moving independently of the nacelle-mounted lens and bezel.

I took off the front fender last night (+50 choppular points for me) and continued the "long staredown" with the bike, looking for it's style...

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Old 07-09-2015, 12:44 PM   #15
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

The fork nacelle mounts too those holes in the sides of the top and bottom trees, the fork shrouds mount to the bottom tree, see pic, I think you may need to replace your bottom tree, as for the headlamp, could be made to work ok, but whether it functions properly, ??
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Old 07-09-2015, 12:46 PM   #16
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Cool bike by the way
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Old 07-09-2015, 07:01 PM   #17
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Rock on, thanks for the example pic.

So for the cowbells that flange (with the downward fasteners on the cowbell top) is part of the lower tree?

Theeese gonn looook guuuud

Untitled
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Old 07-10-2015, 03:37 AM   #18
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Yep, the flange the cowbells fasten too is part of the lower tree, hth
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Old 07-10-2015, 05:20 AM   #19
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Gotta love that J style!
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Old 07-10-2015, 04:09 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by panhead_pete View Post
Gotta love that J style!
YES

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Old 07-29-2015, 08:29 PM   #21
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Okay, back at it a bit... Still recovering from the financial hit from buying the steed and also just taking my time staring at her and letting it soak in.

But I did snag some Zombie Performance riserless bars for a sweet song.

Untitled

Mocked up with the existing controls:
Untitled

At this point I'm not going to be changing the front end for a while. I would love a narrow glide setup with a 21/18 wheel combo, but its not in the cards financially. Plus everything on her now is totally functional and in very good condition. So I'm putting my cash elsewhere and beginning project "make the wide glide and dual 16's look sexy". If Cherry (above) can make it sexy so can I.

Next up is the controls. The plan is a repop spoon front brake cable lever actuating a remote master, then to a single side disc. And switching to a rocker clutch setup with jockey shifter. Basically a "me too" setup but whatever. I'm not looking to be clever, just shape my ride.

That'll clean up the bars a TON.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:34 PM   #22
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

To the ass end:

She currently has a shovelhead (square) rear swinger, and a GMA axle mounted disc brake.

One of these gems:


Is there anything forbidding me from switching to a round swingarm other than locating a mounting point for the brake brace? I assume the pivot bolt and rear axle is a straight across swap? And if the wheel is properly spaced for the above rear caliper, it'll stay that way on the new swinger?

Cheers.
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Old 07-29-2015, 10:34 PM   #23
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The pivot bolt is the same. The rear axle is not.The easiest way to do this is get an 3/4" diameter axle kit that fits between the axle plates on a round swing arm. The distance between the plates is different, and you will need either spacers with flats milled into them to fit the openings on the axle plates, and shorten your current axle, or a custom axle and spacer kit the right length with the flats milled onto the axle head and opposite spacer to center the axle in the axle plate openings, like the old rigid axles had. I am currently doing the same thing for a guy, and I used the V-Twin axle kit for just this purpose. the biggest modification I will have to make is welding a brake brace tab to the bottom of the swing arm.
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Old 08-02-2015, 10:37 PM   #24
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Sweet, thanks for the info. Do you happen to have the VTwin part number for the axle kit needed?
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Old 12-13-2015, 06:07 PM   #25
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Its been a while, but things have been slowly moving along with the bike.

Slow and steady.

First off, Ive been making a black friday parts list for a few months now and pulled the trigger on some key bits while they were easier on the pocket book.

First off is a Pangea Speed ARC clutch pedal. Andy was nice enough to set one aside for me before they go to chrome. I want the look of this ride to be more muted, at least for the metal finish. Very little chrome. I plan on parkerizing many of the parts, this pedal included:



I'd also like to modify it al la Blackbetty's Killer Smile long bike and attach a little nubbin' for a heel perch when chutchin'.

Next up I scored a BDL primary. Probably going to keep cooped up in the tins (well vented of course) but I'm happy to be able to close off the factory auto-leaker with this one:



More mundane, got a trans plug for the speedo gear:



And grips:

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Old 12-13-2015, 06:21 PM   #26
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Lowbrow also was having a half off sale on their aluminum fenders. I had assumed that I was going to do the typical steel fender, painted in kind with the tank, but after thinking about it it seemed pretty dope to go with a polished/brushed alloy fender offset with the rest of the paint scheme. After "researching" some on other bike with this style, I also pulled the trigger on a 6" wide Manta Ray fender:



I've also finally taken off the fender struts here too. The shock bolts have a sliiiiight taper to them which made them not seat home all the way without the struts acting as a spacer, so I just threw on some washers to hold space so I can bolt it all up fully for now.

And on the bike, the plan is to rock simple mid-height shotgun style pipes, but on the left side. I got a head start on this with a portion of a rear cylinder crossover pipe... which I would expect is the most complex set of bends in the whole system.



I already lopped off the end of this pipe and the exit of this pipe isn't really headed in the right angle, but its a good start.







The general flow of the pipes hopefully will generally follow the upward angle of the primary tin top, and have a little kickout just before the shocks... and hopefully be really no wider than the shocks additionally.
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Old 12-13-2015, 09:40 PM   #27
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

My first visit to your build thread. I like it, think I'll stay tuned.

I'd like to expand on something you were talking about last July, the fork tins/headlight. Although the one in the pic isn't one, and probably lights up the trees (the green kind, with leaves.) I've thought you could probably use a V-Rod headlight in that application. And to carry the fatness from the headlight tins down to the sliders, accordion boots. In the pic below, the boots are from a BSA and compressed a little too much. They need a trim. The headlight here is a 5¾" unit that resembles the original, only scaled down. Needed to be set in the concave a little more. Also, you'll need panhead style tins, or reproductions. The ones from a Heritage Softail or Fatboy won't work, too long.

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Old 12-13-2015, 10:16 PM   #28
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Awesome, thanks for the complement. I hope people find this interesting. I'm going to be asking plenty of questions along the way so I'm trying to "give back" by showing off as much as I can of the build.

Regarding the tins... that's something I've waffled on over and over. The current (ever changing) plan is to not run a nacelle but possibly run cowbells. I keep trying to think of a way to make the flush light work without, as you say, only lighting up the trees... can't really without a lot of expenditure that I'd rather apply to other aspects of the build at this point. And I'm glad I didnt out and buy a softail or fatboy tin set only to find it doesn't fit!

For now I'm going to stick a smaller ~4.5" Bates-style headlight deep in the tree gap. That or the super trick wee little one Speed Dealer sells that was used on the Visionary Panhead "The Saint". Part of me likes how disjointed that would look inside of wide glide trees.
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Old 12-13-2015, 10:21 PM   #29
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Oh yeah, I also ditched the S&S Teardrop air cleaner for a Chopper Dave's unit I found on ChopperSwapper...









She's now a race bike.
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Old 12-14-2015, 07:49 AM   #30
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I like where you are going. Inmyarrogentopinion, hydraulic front ends look great. but then I come from 60's flat track.
I have one word for you to put in your memory banks.....Linkert........
Oh, and be sure to check the front cylinder exhaust spigot. That is what killed my pan....
Yeah, I should have kept it and fixed it, but first you have to be young and stupid....
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Old 12-14-2015, 12:05 PM   #31
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I like where you are going.
Thanks man. Glad people are diggin it.

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Inmyarrogentopinion, hydraulic front ends look great. but then I come from 60's flat track.
Me too. Besides, one of my main desires in picking up this sled was that it was the duo-glide frame. And springer front ends are just silly attached to a hydro rear.

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I have one word for you to put in your memory banks.....Linkert........
Hmmm... care to elaborate? I'm not a true-believer in the S&S but that's already on there are works well enough. What do I gain by switching over to a linkert?

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Oh, and be sure to check the front cylinder exhaust spigot. That is what killed my pan....
Yeah, I should have kept it and fixed it, but first you have to be young and stupid....
I checked that out when buying her, the front spigot has been repaired, re-welded a new sleeve on it. Welds look clean and even if nothing else... So there's that...
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Old 12-15-2015, 07:10 AM   #32
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

I tried a couple different carbs on my Pan with little luck until the folks at Brown's in Dallas suggested I go back to the Linkert that was originally on the engine. Found a good one, rebuilt it, and had no problems starting from then on. Just my experience, your mileage could vary.
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Old 12-15-2015, 02:11 PM   #33
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Mother what year/model are those BSA gaiter/rubber boots off of? Thanks!
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Old 12-18-2015, 10:08 PM   #34
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Just trying to get ideas started for a new floorboard fwd mount, now that the shift perch it ditched in favor of the Pangea ARC clutch...

Also generally getting my metal shop skills and tools sharpened. My running philosophy is "if I simply give a fuck every step of the way, the end result will be awesome".

Doomed bit:
IMG_2899 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

The ARC in relation with the floor boards, showing the missing fwd perch position. I am also contemplating moving the floorboard inboard, but that would also require no primary cover, a non-compensating sprocket type primary and relocating the rear master cylinder on the right side...
IMG_2897 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Marking:
IMG_2901 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Destroying:
IMG_2905 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Testing:
IMG_2906 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Rough shaping:
IMG_2909 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_2911 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Annnnd part of the way there.
IMG_2912 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Still need to make the commitment on leaving the boards as is or re mounting them. Then the bracing and final shape will come forth out of this distilled hunk of the earth.

I know it looks like poop now. Its much better looking in my mind...
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Old 12-19-2015, 02:51 PM   #35
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Cool bike Eric. I also saw that on CL and wanted to call many times but with a baby on the way I saved myself from a long stay in the doghouse and didn't.

If you are still wanting the lower triple tree and "cow bells" I have them and will hook you up for a good deal. I'm in Stanwood.

I'll be watching.
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Old 12-19-2015, 02:54 PM   #36
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sent you a PM
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Old 12-19-2015, 05:19 PM   #37
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Haha, we'll I'll think of buying the pan as saving you from the doghouse. Its a service I'm happy to provide.

I only recently got married AFTER buying the bike.

A little brazing practice today... I'm no master craftsman, just trying to get competent with metal gluing. I'm interested to see what they look like after a little cleanup with Mr Flappy.

IMG_2919 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_2920 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 12-29-2015, 12:02 AM   #38
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

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I only recently got married AFTER buying the bike.
Haha, smart move
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Old 12-29-2015, 01:33 PM   #39
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Haha, smart move
Thanks, I also made sure to complete a few pending rifle builds, apply for a 30 cal suppressor, and upgrade the laptop while I was at it.

Back to the project...

I've been mulling this over a bit and there is a whole chain of dependencies that need to line up right, as I want to get the foot board (or pegs) places. But for that I want to have my butt position set. And for that I need a seat. And for that I need my seat pan done. And for that I need my fender mounted.

-So-

Fender mounting.

I got the Lowbrow Aluminum fender on their black friday sale. Pretty stoked on it BUT I am not sure what extra considerations I need to make for it being aluminum. The sucker is good and thick, but I don't have a good intuition on what support it needs for passengers and gear riding on the back. Does anyone have experience with these finders?

Searching around I find many people (rightfully so) making comment on how Al is pretty soft and brittle compared to steel, but not all fenders are created equal.

Lowbrow's site mentions this when using the same fender for their salt racer project:
"I wanted to make strong mounts as the .125" aluminum fender needs to support the weight of a passenger as that is where the rider sits on this purpose-built race bike."
http://www.lowbrowcustoms.com/tech/h...fender-part-1/

And looks to be simply bolting right to the fender, no weld in bungs or anything like that. Just through-bolted to a 3/8 domed bung:


Now, that's a hardtail. My main thoughts are to make external fender struts flowing out of the drop-seat castings, not unlinke these from Jeff Wright of CoC (though, less speed-holey likely, and I know this is a chopped up shovelhead seat casting... ):



My fender will be cut back to stop at the high-noon position if not slightly shorter, but much more landing area for an extra butt or duffle than the one above.

My main question is: what do I need to do for strength? I FEEL like cantilevered struts with maybe an internal arch between the aft-most mount points should (could?) be sufficient, just sandwich-bolted through the fender?

The next step up from there would be to weld in bungs to the fender to distribute the bolt hole loads and relieve possible cracking at that point.

The next from there would be welding in internal bracing.

These last two are problematic as I don't have much Al welding capacity in house other than buying an alloy spool for my wee MIG and just go for it. Or if its really needed I'll seek out a pro with a TIG for this simple part of the job. But is it necessary?

There's your OCD post of the day.
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Old 12-29-2015, 01:43 PM   #40
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Also, do I need Mods to update the thread name? The bike has a name now.

New cool guy thread title:
"Zodiac: 1955 Swingarm Panhead Build"
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Old 01-02-2016, 08:09 PM   #41
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Onward regardless... There is incremental work to be chipped away at.

It's hard to even get a sense of proper chopper-dress-up with the fender at full circumference. First order of business was to get an initial cut on the fender, both to get it a more manageable size and, more to the point, to get a practice cut in with this material. See how it works, what doesn't work and so on...

Measure thrice, something reasonably orthogonal:

IMG_2940 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Tried marking it with blue tape for a cut line, with a "cut to" side marked:
IMG_2941 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

LOCK IT DOWN

IMG_2942 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

I spent a while setting up the cut, trying to find a way to immobilize the big boy and position the cut line to my body well.

Note: this may be trivial (no, this is trivial) for many of you. But this is my journey and I'm loving every minute of it.

Anyhow. Motherf(*&^er is strapped to a milk crate with an old military surplus cam strap, which is clamped to the bench. Then I went at it with a cutoff wheel. Just like the old days in Beirut.

Reasonably clean cut, and I get a bonus mini fender with a name tag:

IMG_2944 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Seriously considering filing it down to "Bro Tom", mounting it, and re-christening the bike. Sorry Zodiac...

Also, BroTom looks pretty good on there, very Narrow Strike Eagle-ish

IMG_2947 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

I may mount the nub initially and run that, the main reason I want the longer tire coverage is for a potential passenger pillion and/or gear landing pad (though sometimes its hard to tell the difference).
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Old 01-02-2016, 08:11 PM   #42
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Just realized I tripped onto another page here... people who are smart please go back a tick and weigh in on best practices mounting (thick?) aluminum fenders for neophytes.

THX
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Old 01-03-2016, 04:53 AM   #43
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Possibly the biggest killer of aluminium parts is going to be fatigue from vibration. You said the fender is quite thick so you could mount it with rubber grommets isolating it at each bolt but that is probably overkill. I'm thinking the rear of a four-speed frame doesn't move around much so I'd just bolt it securely, but making sure that any spacers/packers are shaped to fit (not trying to pull it all ways at once) and that it is supported back at least as far as you'll be perching the pillion.
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Old 01-03-2016, 10:50 PM   #44
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

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Possibly the biggest killer of aluminium parts is going to be fatigue from vibration. You said the fender is quite thick so you could mount it with rubber grommets isolating it at each bolt but that is probably overkill. I'm thinking the rear of a four-speed frame doesn't move around much so I'd just bolt it securely, but making sure that any spacers/packers are shaped to fit (not trying to pull it all ways at once) and that it is supported back at least as far as you'll be perching the pillion.
Thanks for the input... I'm going to try to get a pair of calipers on the fender itself (now that there's the center meat exposed from the initial cut) and post up a real number besides "pretty thick".

Meanwhile, playing chopper dressup with the "main" fender section:

IMG_2957 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:42 PM   #45
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Things that are now inbound:

-Mid Star rear wheel, BLACK LIKE MY HEART
-68-72 Juice Drum OEM drum and backing plate
-Assorted axle spacers and jazz for the rear bolt up on a round swingarm

Now... gotta source a round due-glide swingarm. Realizing that I need to do this now (if ever) to position the rear wheel exactly where it should be for mounting/positioning the fender.

Also bought a small spool of aluminum wire for the booger-thrower, going to test out how reliably I can glue Al together with the wee MIG. Given that it such a small job, I am hopeful that I can get some decent penetration and file and grind off all the extra metal that doesn't look like a sexy moto fender.
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Old 01-07-2016, 02:09 PM   #46
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Lets just say I learned a lesson on proper grinder use...

IMG_2990 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-08-2016, 08:11 AM   #47
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Wow - yeah, be careful. Use two hands, a backing plate on the disc and the accessory handle when possible. Clamp or secure your work piece so you can use two hands.

ALWAYS use two hands with a wire brush. They can snag, jump back and wind themselves into your clothing and body before you know what happened.

Also use a separate disc for a aluminum and steel. Don't mix the two.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:07 AM   #48
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

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Wow - yeah, be careful. Use two hands, a backing plate on the disc and the accessory handle when possible. Clamp or secure your work piece so you can use two hands.

ALWAYS use two hands with a wire brush. They can snag, jump back and wind themselves into your clothing and body before you know what happened.
Thanks, I will say that I was basically going all those things. It may be a little unclear from the pic, but those are burn holes from the spark stream coming back at my body. Using a cutoff wheel with good body alignment (two hands, extra handle, guard on and set for best position...), I did some test cuts to see if I really wanted to tackle the seat pan cuts with the grinder, and when I got done saw the two smoldering holes in my jacket.

Luckily its my "shop jacket", but I should probably get a sturdy shop apron for such activities. I always wear leather gloves, full face shield, and ear pro with this stuff now. Makes me more calm and focused on the task at hand and yields much better results.

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Also use a separate disc for a aluminum and steel. Don't mix the two.
I did not know that, thanks!
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:52 AM   #49
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In conjunction with dorking around with fender alignment and positioning, I got a jump on the seat pan.

Started with basic patten making using file folders... quickly figured out that they are a bit too flimsy for my use and methods. I was taught pattern making for wooden boat construction and interior fitting, so I just copied the logic to choppering? Who knows, did I mention I have no ideas what I'm doing?

Picking up the initial width for the first flat section. I wanted the edges of the seat to hit right in the center of the tube sections.
IMG_2978 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Picking up various angles and taping bits and pieces for fitment rather than trying to cut everything to size right off.
IMG_2981 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_2982 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

The first drop seat section:
IMG_2983 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Hinging on the rise section:
IMG_2985 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Just playing with curling the material for the final run off the strut ends:
IMG_2987 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

After the aforementioned hole in my jacket, I transferred the first flat section to some sheet (12 ga hot roll) and cut it on the band saw. Then cleaned the lines up on the bench sander, which worked very well. nice crisp lines.

Def going to round out the sides more. I'm not going to narrow up the frame on this bike like the VCP "The Saint" or Narrow Strike Eagle, but want the seat waist to cheat it a little and bring the eye to a narrower line, even if it means leaving a little muffin-top of tubing poking out...

IMG_2992 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Before I get along much further I need to get some spacer sections between the plate and the frame to account for paint and upholstery on the final seat.

Oh, and mount the fender so I can figure out the "pommel" for the seat. Going for something like a cobra to mild scorpion-ish rise... well see.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:59 AM   #50
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Dorking around with fender fitment at work, copying Jeff W's CoC shovelhead struts on paper... helps me learn the angles to draw it out, its fun, nerdy, and better than working.

He initially used a wee flap of fender on his '79 swingarm shov build, but then abandoned it for a Crazy Frank.
IMG_2972 by Eric Bott, on Flickr





One of my all-time fav builds, but doesn't fully fit the vibe this bike is throwing out...
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:21 PM   #51
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Lets see here... where did I leave off?

First off, got some parts in from auctions and other shenanigans.

Scored a killer deal on this black mid-star rear wheel:

IMG_3073 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

The chopper fairy also dropped off a late model juice drum:

IMG_2997 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_2998 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Came with a rear axle, all the sleeves and spacers needed (I think, anyway) and the lug bolts.

IMG_2994 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

With the new rear wheel coming in I gained a little more wiggle room in my one-car garage to maneuver the bike around on the dolly sans wheels. I never really had good access to the left side of the bike. Since I'm building left-side high pipes, I really wanted to be able to take a standoff from the bike when mocking them up to dial in the flow...

This also mean I get a new perspective on the scoot in general:

IMG_3021 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3022 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:28 PM   #52
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Then started on the pipes... something I'm really excited about and intimidated by, mostly because I *really* want them to be as sick as they look in my head.

We'll see.

First off some basic mockup and tinkering with some welding rod to get an idea of the bends I will need.

IMG_2996 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Careful observers will double check my math and realize I f'd up. Mixed up radius and diameter when ordering... but really I just had to buy the tightest bend I could find for the initial loop on the front head, to loop back, up, and to the left to exit on above the case deck and stay inside the frame.

It seems that Paul Cox is the only one I've seen that builds left side high pipes with any regularity. I love the look, and the totally uncluttered right side as a consequence.

This is what I'm somewhat going for for the pipe lines (Cox's Barracuda)



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Old 01-18-2016, 07:38 PM   #53
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Playing around with general positioning with some random straight bits.

IMG_3029 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3031 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3032 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3033 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-19-2016, 02:20 PM   #54
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Got my (for now) final front pipe mockup and tacked together.

Stared at this a bunch, the old painters tape and paracord dangle.

IMG_3060 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3061 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3064 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Then to the bandsaw, sander, hang, stare, sand, stare, fuss, file, the fuckit.

IMG_3035 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

(I am pretty embarrassed about my welds... they suck. I know.)
IMG_3062 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3034 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3065 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Fitted a longer bit for the final runout, and got it basically where I wanted it: Parallel with the line created by the cast manifold split, and tucked in reasonably tight to the frame. Terminating the pipe before the aft-most part of the oil tank meant it could hug in a little more. Probably will add a little turnout at the tips.

IMG_3066 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3067 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3072 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3068 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3069 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3070 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-19-2016, 02:52 PM   #55
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Are you comfortable you'll be able to get to the clutch pedal with the front pipe?
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Old 01-19-2016, 02:56 PM   #56
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Are you comfortable you'll be able to get to the clutch pedal with the front pipe?
I *think* so. But maybe not. I figure I can always mock up a heat shield if need be, or move the petal. Not sure yet but its a good thing to keep in mind.

But I am letting the pipes dictate things a bit, I'll build around them...
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Old 01-19-2016, 03:54 PM   #57
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

turn the grinder 180 degrees - shoot the sparks away from yourself and cut backwards - keep your old coat
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Old 01-20-2016, 12:06 AM   #58
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Are you comfortable you'll be able to get to the clutch pedal with the front pipe?
Well, I just went out, sat on the bike and made vroom-vroom noises....

and you're totally right, that pipe position isn't going to fly. Thanks for the catch man.

Started to reposition it lower and therefore tighter into the frame, along the taper of the jugs.

Chop chop chop
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Old 01-20-2016, 07:14 AM   #59
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

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Started to reposition it lower and therefore tighter into the frame, along the taper of the jugs.
my eye says the pipes need to follow the top of the primary cover. I think that is what makes the IL pipes work. I made a set very similar to what you are doing, and that little bit of upsweep really makes a big visual difference. but its just my opinion, and your pipes...
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Old 01-20-2016, 09:10 AM   #60
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

I had a stock 59 FLH that I truly loved maybe more than any bike I ever had. I had a heart attack, 2 strokes, and throat cancer all in a 5 year span. I got to the point where if I didn't get it started in the first 2 or 3 kicks after prime I was done. Short story I sold her for a electric start bike. Now 10 yrs gone and feeling great, I regret selling her to this day. Your Pan brings back fine memories. Personally if I had that Pan I would name her (Lost Dreams)
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Old 01-20-2016, 10:17 AM   #61
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my eye says the pipes need to follow the top of the primary cover. I think that is what makes the IL pipes work. I made a set very similar to what you are doing, and that little bit of upsweep really makes a big visual difference. but its just my opinion, and your pipes...
You're totally right... with the pipes high I liked the contrast it almost made with the slope of the primary. But down low the conflicting lines just make the pipes look saggy.

I've got quite a bit more fiddling and fitting to do, but it'll be worth it in the end getting it right.
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Old 01-20-2016, 11:03 AM   #62
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and you're totally right, that pipe position isn't going to fly. Thanks for the catch man.

Started to reposition it lower and therefore tighter into the frame, along the taper of the jugs.
Ha - no worries. I wanted to mention before you put 40 hours in

I'm not sure if it would create heat issues, but you could also contour the exhaust to clear the jugs and pull the pipe assembly closer to the motor. I contoured a pipe (cut out a segment, reverse the segment into the pipe and weld) to clear the bottom of the ignition cover on my shovelhead.

I can't find a great pic right now, but you can kind of see the edges on these:



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Old 01-20-2016, 11:13 AM   #63
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Ha - no worries. I wanted to mention before you put 40 hours in

I'm not sure if it would create heat issues, but you could also contour the exhaust to clear the jugs and pull the pipe assembly closer to the motor. I contoured a pipe (cut out a segment, reverse the segment into the pipe and weld) to clear the bottom of the ignition cover on my shovelhead.
For sure... this really *is* my first rodeo so trying to keep all the variables in mind when building is quite a lot. I did almost spend 40 hours building myself into a corner.

With the pipe contouring, what did you use for cutting the segments? I imagine you'd want as fine a kerf as possible for fitment when you flip the section back over.
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Old 01-20-2016, 04:30 PM   #64
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Hmmm - I might have used a cutoff on the air tool. Those have a smaller wheel and finer kerf, but I'm pretty sure that I probably (ahem) used the tiny Dremel cutoff wheels to keep the smallest kerf.

Here's a pic:

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Old 01-21-2016, 01:51 PM   #65
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Hmmm - I might have used a cutoff on the air tool. Those have a smaller wheel and finer kerf, but I'm pretty sure that I probably (ahem) used the tiny Dremel cutoff wheels to keep the smallest kerf.

Here's a pic:

Good stuff, thanks for that.

I've spent the last few evenings cutting, filing, fiddling, cursing, and messing with that front pipe. It seems I got lucky and landed the first fitment pretty well and this lower fit is fighting me all the way.

Again, worth it. Gotta do it. Gonna figure it out. But goddamn...

Getting them kicked up more to flow with the primary chain-soon-to-be-belt slope. Not sold on keeping the primary in the tins yet, but the end flow should be similar enough either way (I hope).
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Old 01-25-2016, 10:39 AM   #66
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Obigitory "vroom vroom" shot, tinkering with foot positioning. Now thinking about ditching the floorboards for pegs off the rear floorboard tabs.

Then hacking up the Pangea Speed clutch pedal and integrating that with the left mount...

IMG_3098 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-25-2016, 10:46 AM   #67
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Also got a round swingarm from Cody Guthrie on the board here (Thanks again!), unfortunately the fine-thread 3/8x24 axle adjuster pots were a little buggared up.

Found a random 3/8 NF tap to chase the threads, carefully mucked with it for about half an hour trying to get it started in the threads before realizing it was a left-hand tap. WTF. At least I didn't "persuade" it any more than I did.

Got myself a proper thread chaser and with a lot of lube and washing out got it re-established. In hind sight it would have been really good to grab a rifle bore brush to clean out the cut gunk. May still do that if they continue to feel gritty...

IMG_3095 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3096 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3097 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 02-04-2016, 11:10 AM   #68
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Some progress, exciting parts arrivals, more teardown and attempted arson!

First off, got the round swingarm in hand and the existing tapered bearings were sad looking... at least that's what I was assuming they looked like under that 7 lbs of grease.

IMG_3133 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

The other side was missing the seal flange thing and the bearing cage was spun in the housing. That was easy (ish) to beat out.

IMG_3134 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Then zero progress, lots of pounding with a drift with little effect (and little desire to get tooooo crazy on it). The inner lip of the outter race, still left stubbornly in the housing) is protected by a seat in the housing... so getting a purchase on it for pummeling was slow going. Until someone on here suggested welding a nub on the race to pound against. Damn near lit the whole thing on fire. Turns out grease is flammable.

SUCCESS.

IMG_3141 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3140 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

New bearings are on the way, and I'm going to try to clean this guy up as much as I can (for mockup purposes at least) until then.

Also got the stock clutch basket pulled off the mainshaft, and the front pulley. Ready to replace with the belt primary.... once I can find a shop to press out the Primo clutch hub out of this old setup and into the new basket.

IMG_3131 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3132 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

I also need to just sit and stare at this for a while while I imagine up foot control solutions. I want to keep things open but am too much of a pussy to run with at fully open belt... not for gross bodily harm issues just dont want my pants and shit chewed up in it. Or my foot, that applies too.

So, the left side puzzle is minimal but good looking belt guard (mostly guarding the upper, rear portion of the front belt... the hungry bit) with the foot peg location with a clutch pedal. All looking sezzy of course.

And with the tins out of the way I can get at the speedo gear, replacing it with a plug form Baker.

IMG_3137 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Small victories.
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Old 02-04-2016, 11:15 AM   #69
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

I think our adopted Japanese kickass builder friend Mr. Daikoube has the right idea for my setup... taking inspiration from his PERFECTLY well executed Knuckle (NOT my pics).














I like the integration of the foot mount, mounting location, and integrating that with a good looking pulley guard.

Plus its never a bad time to ogle that bike again.
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Old 02-04-2016, 01:29 PM   #70
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

New bits! Got a new front wheel/brake combo.

Its a '68 Bonneville TLS 19" round thing. Very excited how this looks all mocked up.

IMG_3165 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3166 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3167 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

The 8" drum is a big boy. Classy stopping.

IMG_3150 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3151 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

She should clean up nice...

IMG_3154 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 02-04-2016, 01:43 PM   #71
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

Now for the question and answer period: Getting the Triumph wheel to the Harley wide glide.

What I know thus far:
-Triumph is designed for a 20mm axle.
-Harley axle is 3/4" (~19mm).
-Bearings in the Triumph hub are Timken/Fafnir 204k, 20mm bore x 47mm OD x 14mm wide.
-The backing plate is also sleeved to ride on a 20mm axle.

My plan was to make a combo axle sleeve/inner spacer like this after putting in new bearings (the 6204-2RS are the sealed 20mm bore replacements for the 204k's) like this (from DBBP.com):



And then typical 3/4" spacers outside the hub for centering the wheel and side load transfer.

BUT. That would leave around 0.5mm of meat left on the sleeve between the stock axle and the inner race. Seems not only small but a pain to machine.

OR the other option is to make a copy of the Harley wide-glide axle with a 20mm center section instead of 3/4". Then in assembly I'll have a set three of 20mm ID spacers to go between the fork leg and bearing, between the bearings, and between the opposite bearing and opposite leg. Same philosophy as before.

So... which option does ya'll suggest?

Pics of junk:

Triumph axle:
IMG_3159 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Triumph left side bearing on the axle:
IMG_3161 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Trans Atlantic axle standoff:
IMG_3163 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3164 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Figurin' the bearing OD:
IMG_3158 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Right side bearing in the hub, the backing plate rides on this inner race:
IMG_3157 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 02-12-2016, 11:20 AM   #72
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

To some rear swingarm work...

You may recall that the bike came with a square shovel style swingarm. That wont do. So I got more or less to the end of the swingarm conversion part of the sage (minus re-painting).

The "new" more-period-correcter swingarm had.... shall we say... "crusty" bearings. Needed replacement.

IMG_3133 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Getting them out was learning experience. Basically lots of pounding (and cleaning overloads of excess grease) yielded this:

IMG_3140 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And that inner race was STUBBORN. Finally got it out with a little help from JJ-ers by welding a lil goober on it for traction with the drift. Then more hammering.

IMG_3141 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

New race going in, with the perfectly sized impact socket to even application of violence.

IMG_3192 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Checking even seating:

IMG_3193 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

New tapered roller thingies:

IMG_3196 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Basic assembly:

IMG_3197 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Turns out the stud on the right had pretty jacked up threads. Also turns out that buying a new set of (cheapo) studs is basically the same as getting the 5/8"x18 die with a large die holder. So... re cut the threads, keep the OEM studs and save my bike from another overseas part. Feels good.

LARO8402 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Install swingarm (getting drag roughly set, everything's going to come apart later for refinishing then get all locktite'd and torqued).

IMG_3199 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Still have the 12" shocks... not sure if I am going to keep them for the lower ride or find some 13.5"-ers.

IMG_3202 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 02-12-2016, 12:13 PM   #73
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

very cool!!

i've got one of those same front hubs, laced to an 18" for a future project. My plan was to make a whole new axle (option B in your case).

What are your plans for the brake stay? welding a tab to the lowers?
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Old 02-12-2016, 12:39 PM   #74
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very cool!!

i've got one of those same front hubs, laced to an 18" for a future project. My plan was to make a whole new axle (option B in your case).

What are your plans for the brake stay? welding a tab to the lowers?
Thanks man, glad you diggit.

Oh yeah... with the hub. I have a new axle out for machining. Option A is bad in my case because that sleeve would be ~0.5mm thick between the inner race and harley axle. Seems too thin and sketch. So I'm making another axle, copying the wide glide one but with the center section 20mm rather than 3/4". Then its just a matter of getting the spacers cut for the "harley style" application rather than the captured Triumph style.

For the stay, I am likely going to shave the legs down to the lower brake bolt ear on the right side and make an anchoring bracket to stick in the backing plate slot. Its already at a perfect height, and all the other casting BS can go.

IMG_3169 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3168 by Eric Bott, on Flickr


The stay itself will be attached at that lower hole and the outter bearing spacer. I got the inspiration from seeing the PM caliper adapter on the Lowbrow Pan-American build. Going to make it thick and steel and beefy. Maybe lightly modify the anchor point in the backing plate for a lil through bolt to retain the tab for peace of mind (there is a lot of meat around the casting on the back side). At least thats the plan in my head. I am just wanting to get the axle made, bearings replaced, and spacers fab'd first... then I'll see where everything is at and cross that bridge then.
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Old 02-12-2016, 12:57 PM   #75
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

The Pan-American caliper setup:




So, like this (anchored at the axle and a single brake tab) but the anchor on my hub will be in line with the fork leg and (theoretically) the whole thing will be quite visually minimal other than the one brake tab.

Welding a Triumph-style nub onto my fork lower would be the most minimal solution, but since the wide glide legs are much further away than the stock Trumpet ones I am concerned about the torque/leverage they'd have to overcome rather than pure shear forces.

And I'm not equipped to weld aluminum.

And it's a cast lower. And welding that seems more scary. And again, I'm not equipped to glue Al.

Steel is reel.
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Old 02-12-2016, 05:04 PM   #76
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

I would think that welding a tab to the leg is a very elegant and good looking solution. Everytime you add stuff to something that could be an elegant design makes it look cheap and begs the question "but why didn't he....."

I suggest getting a block of aluminum 1.5" wide and whittle it down so it has a round tapered side to match the forkleg and on the other side keeps the wider base for a 1/4" and then gradually narrows to become the brake anchor. Like the mountain in strange encounters or the Matterhorn in Disneyland...
Aluminum welders are everywhere. Aside from welding shops street rod places always have somebody who can weld alloy. Motor rebuilders also always know somebody.
This way you will be totally custom and the envy of Seattle...
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Old 02-12-2016, 05:10 PM   #77
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I would think that welding a tab to the leg is a very elegant and good looking solution. Everytime you add stuff to something that could be an elegant design makes it look cheap and begs the question "but why didn't he....."

I suggest getting a block of aluminum 1.5" wide and whittle it down so it has a round tapered side to match the forkleg and on the other side keeps the wider base for a 1/4" and then gradually narrows to become the brake anchor. Like the mountain in strange encounters or the Matterhorn in Disneyland...
Aluminum welders are everywhere. Aside from welding shops street rod places always have somebody who can weld alloy. Motor rebuilders also always know somebody.
This way you will be totally custom and the envy of Seattle...
Well when you put it that way...

"The envy of Seattle" has a nice ring to it.

Welding some 6000-series to the leg casting shouldn't prove a problem for a competent Al welder? And making a wide-based tapered anchor shape will make it strong enough for the torque and shear loads?
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Old 02-12-2016, 06:46 PM   #78
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

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Welding some 6000-series to the leg casting shouldn't prove a problem for a competent Al welder? And making a wide-based tapered anchor shape will make it strong enough for the torque and shear loads?
I'm pretty sure you would be fine. Sure being based on that engineering degree I received some 45 years ago If you want to go all out you could also build up the receptacle on the backing plate.
The leg won't turn because the axle won't let it and if you have a nice fit there will be no sound.
I think your bike just got a name..
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Old 02-12-2016, 08:20 PM   #79
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I'm pretty sure you would be fine. Sure being based on that engineering degree I received some 45 years ago If you want to go all out you could also build up the receptacle on the backing plate.
The leg won't turn because the axle won't let it and if you have a nice fit there will be no sound.
I think your bike just got a name..
Your 45 year old engineering degree trumps my 5 year old laser-microscopy Phd. :P Its on! Luckily I've got some time to work out the logistics of this now, its not going to be a blocker for a bit...

She's had a few names float in and out but none have stuck. All my motorbikes have gotten very awesome "organic" names. Recently she's been officially dubbed "Zodiac", I just can't figure out how to update the thread title

But every good aristocrat needs a TITLE, not just a name.

"Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle"

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Old 02-12-2016, 08:53 PM   #80
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

I'm sure one of our moderators can help you updating the thread title. It is kinda catchy.
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Old 02-12-2016, 09:06 PM   #81
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Default Re: '55 Panhead Yet-To-Be-Named

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Originally Posted by ericthebeard View Post
I just can't figure out how to update the thread title

But every good aristocrat needs a TITLE, not just a name.

"Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle"

Quote:
Originally Posted by VonWegener View Post
I'm sure one of our moderators can help you updating the thread title. It is kinda catchy.

I updated the title, but it only does it for the first post. I'll try to get to the bottom of having it update for all the other posts. Stay tuned.
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Old 02-12-2016, 09:08 PM   #82
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I updated the title, but it only does it for the first post. I'll try to get to the bottom of having it update for all the other posts. Stay tuned.
Kickass, thanks!
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Old 02-13-2016, 06:27 AM   #83
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Just went through the whole thread, love the work you're doing on this pan sir. I have a 52 myself very much a lane splitter chop albeit. For somebody with "minor grounding" in engineering and fab you're doing a sterling job. My Quantity surveying quals don't really do me a justice I'm all maths haha. Look forward to more progress!
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Old 02-13-2016, 05:07 PM   #84
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Just went through the whole thread, love the work you're doing on this pan sir. I have a 52 myself very much a lane splitter chop albeit. For somebody with "minor grounding" in engineering and fab you're doing a sterling job. My Quantity surveying quals don't really do me a justice I'm all maths haha. Look forward to more progress!
Thanks! I love the lanesplitter look for sure... I'm just letting this bike speak to me and it seems to not be going that way. Especially keeping the cherry duo glide frame in place...

Seriously, its pretty overwhelming that people are digging this build. I've spent years ogling build threads on this site and others, and being in a position to make something people appreciate feels pretty fucking good. Especially for a guy with a single car garage and some style.

Again, my philosophy is "give a fuck with every, single piece of the build and it'll turn out well".
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Old 02-13-2016, 07:38 PM   #85
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Thanks! I love the lanesplitter look for sure... I'm just letting this bike speak to me and it seems to not be going that way. Especially keeping the cherry duo glide frame in place...

Seriously, its pretty overwhelming that people are digging this build. I've spent years ogling build threads on this site and others, and being in a position to make something people appreciate feels pretty fucking good. Especially for a guy with a single car garage and some style.

Again, my philosophy is "give a fuck with every, single piece of the build and it'll turn out well".
Yeah I totally dig your look, I'm very much in to the jap scene, when I got my pan from the US it's got some chrome, but I prefer the ride it in the rain jap style look. You can't go wrong with it.

No need to be so gracious, the stuff you've done looks really solid. Eagerly awaiting your next update.

Rhys
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Old 03-26-2016, 09:37 PM   #86
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Alright, back at it. The most movement and progress has been in the tanks department. I was fairly set about a wassell style tank for the bike, but then the newly released Lowbrow narrowed splits came out. That messed up my plans, in a good way I guess. I've been waffling back and forth between the two for a while... I am about 50/50 between them style wise, but the price difference is pretty significant ($160 vs $400). That got me thinking.. I've been trying to sell the perfectly good shovelhead 5 gal fat bobs that came on the bike to no avail, so how hard is it really to just axe the pair myself?

So, like any modern material girl, I turned to the internet and asked:
http://www.jockeyjournal.com/forum/s...58#post1831458

Then with just enough info and confidence to be dangerous I dove in.

Lining out the split lines:
IMG_3360 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3361 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3362 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3363 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Then got to cutting (after a bath of hot water and dish soap on the insides to keep my eyebrows and fingers happy).
IMG_3363 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3365 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

One down!

IMG_3367 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Now I gotta make the other look the same. It would have been good to mask both off first then cut, but I was too excited.

IMG_3368 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3370 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 03-26-2016, 09:47 PM   #87
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Didn't really know what it would take to get the existing tank lining material out of there and was starting to get ready for a big sandblasting bill... but the wire wheel made pretty decent work out of it.

IMG_3375 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

May still get them blasted before final assembly, but this took the lion's share away.

Checking for overall symmetry and flatness.

IMG_3376 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Trimming away lil bits o fat:

IMG_3378 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Mating them up. The plan it to get the top ridge of the two halves lines up then temporarily tack them together (copying Supercroton's method). Then fix them to the table to make a new universal flat bottom and "tunnel" notch... Hard to explain, pics will show it when I get there.

IMG_3379 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Checking estimated overall width of the new skinny (minus the eventual gap between them).
IMG_3381 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Rough shape for the "tunnel" notch. I want the two halves to be ~1/4" to 1/2" apart at the top, then flair to a 2" width to make it around the neck castings and top tube and whatnot...

IMG_3385 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Matching up the top seams:

IMG_3386 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3387 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Eyeballing twist in the halves. This is really not too important now because I am going to replace the factory bottom.

IMG_3388 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 03-27-2016, 08:07 AM   #88
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Love the build, enjoy reading it from beginning to current status. If you weld a short bead on the inner race it usually will just tap out or fall out on it's own. I do this all the time at work. A one inch long bead usually does the trick, and saves a lot of time and pounding. The burning grease does stink though.

Keep the updates coming!
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Old 03-27-2016, 01:55 PM   #89
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

This is a great build, I love what you are doing with the pipes and that air cleaner is off the hook.

I would put a new jacket on your wishlist!

Or is that a pic of you on the bike having repaired it!?

Dan.
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Old 03-27-2016, 05:09 PM   #90
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Wow!!! Now I want to hack up someold tanks I got.
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Old 03-27-2016, 10:53 PM   #91
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

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Love the build, enjoy reading it from beginning to current status. If you weld a short bead on the inner race it usually will just tap out or fall out on it's own. I do this all the time at work. A one inch long bead usually does the trick, and saves a lot of time and pounding. The burning grease does stink though.

Keep the updates coming!
Thanks! I did have "fun" starting grease fires in my swingarm gallery... I probably chose the hard way but getting that bastard out without marring up the mating surface itself is reward enough

Quote:
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This is a great build, I love what you are doing with the pipes and that air cleaner is off the hook.

I would put a new jacket on your wishlist!

Or is that a pic of you on the bike having repaired it!?

Dan.
Haha, yeah I patched it with a piece of nylon spinnaker tape. Its funny, growing up my mom had her "barn jacket" (for walking out to the horse barn for morning and evening chores) which was a ratty old down overcoat covered with duct tape patches and feathers leaking out from all the other yet-to-be-patched-or-repatched-holes. Once she say my repaired jacket she noted how proud she was that I was carrying on the tradition.

But... I have a leather welding/grinding apron on the wishlist now

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Wow!!! Now I want to hack up someold tanks I got.
Thanks! Ask me how inspiring I feel once I actually start in on the hard work putting them back together and making something out the mess I started...

But by all means, get chopping! Get in over your head! Its a great way to learn!
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Old 03-28-2016, 01:42 PM   #92
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

I like what your doing with the tanks.
I see a lot of people keeping them two separate pieces these days instead of making a one piece alien type tank. I'm curious why? Just looks or?
I dig it. just curious
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Old 03-28-2016, 02:07 PM   #93
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I like what your doing with the tanks.
I see a lot of people keeping them two separate pieces these days instead of making a one piece alien type tank. I'm curious why? Just looks or?
I dig it. just curious
I can't speak for everyone else, but for me... style. Pure style.

I'm just the kind of guy who always seems to pick the hard way
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Old 03-29-2016, 06:05 AM   #94
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

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Originally Posted by ericthebeard View Post
I'm just the kind of guy who always seems to pick the hard way
Nothing wrong with that. Sometimes you have to pee on the electric fence for yourself.

Loving the build and the energy you're putting into it. Can't wait to see the tanks come together. I made three before I decided I liked the one I used. Looks great man. Next installment please.
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Old 03-30-2016, 01:06 PM   #95
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Nothing wrong with that. Sometimes you have to pee on the electric fence for yourself.
Haha, no doubt

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Originally Posted by Jesse_in_NY View Post
Loving the build and the energy you're putting into it. Can't wait to see the tanks come together. I made three before I decided I liked the one I used. Looks great man. Next installment please.
Thanks a lot... I feel like I have a TON of half-done pieces for the bike right now, but once they all start to gel things are going to pick up some steam in a really exciting way. Still have to make a large order for metal and bungs for the next round of fab work:

-new tank sides/bottoms, mounting brackets
-fender inner bracing and struts
-foot peg mounts integrated with the clutch petal and pulley cover
-spacers for the custom font axle
-rear MC mounting place and brake pedal
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Old 03-30-2016, 05:13 PM   #96
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Looks like your struggling a little to get your cuts straight, I will give you a tip if you dont mind.

Lay the cut sides flat on your bench ,,also lay a Pencil flat on the bench as well then run the pencil around the bottom of the tanks. You will get a nice straight line to trim too
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Old 03-30-2016, 06:33 PM   #97
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Looks like your struggling a little to get your cuts straight, I will give you a tip if you dont mind.

Lay the cut sides flat on your bench ,,also lay a Pencil flat on the bench as well then run the pencil around the bottom of the tanks. You will get a nice straight line to trim too

Totally. I am planning on basically doing that (also copying Supercruton's mehod) to get the final cut lines for the bottom and inset sides.

(Image from SC's build thread: http://www.jockeyjournal.com/forum/s...+tanks+triumph)



I hope the top cuts are close enough to fine tune together symmetrically because I left very little meat to trim to on the initial cut... we'll see.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:56 PM   #98
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

I have never noticed the peak running dead centre before. Do you do anything there is its good to go?
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Old 03-31-2016, 02:17 PM   #99
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I have never noticed the peak running dead centre before. Do you do anything there is its good to go?
You mean the ridge in the green tanks mated together above?

First off, that's Supercrouton's tank job. I just posted the pic for reference to my plan.

Second... they're only stuck together so they share the same plane in space for the bottom cutout. After the line was scribed they were separated and cut further, into the individual tank halves.

Hope that makes sense...
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Old 03-31-2016, 02:28 PM   #100
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Ah, thanks Eric. Always interesting to see others work. I am way down the list when it comes to being a good fabricator!
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Old 03-31-2016, 05:37 PM   #101
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I have never noticed the peak running dead centre before. Do you do anything there is its good to go?
He already answered your question, and the alien tank was mentioned earlier...but the ridge / peak in some production versions (maybe only the GME version) of the alien tank was a preservation and nod to this being a feature of guys turning these into one-piece tanks. It's that detail that I think makes them much cooler than the smooth ones.
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:08 AM   #102
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More work done.

I realize I am jumping around a lot with bits and bobs on the bike without actually finishing anything fully yet. Part of that is ADD, but the more adult-like reason is that I do want to get a "proof of concept" for each of the parts I have imagined in my mind before I invest lots of time finishing out any one in particular. Make sure all the little pieces and details actually fit together and function right as they're built. So I'm making all the parts in parallel, a little at a time, all at once.

So, today little bite out of the problem was starting on my mids setup. Again, there is a reasonably complex (to me at least, not to many I'm sure) setup I am imagining for the foot controls involving foot pegs and front pulley cover al la Daikoue (the awesome Japanese builder).

First off, pulley cover. Take one compensating sprocket outter primary tin:
IMG_3308 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

A little laser surgery:
IMG_3310 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3311 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3312 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3313 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And some aw-sheet metal patching:
IMG_3334 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3335 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Now. This is my very first foray into sheet metal work... LOTS of welding and grinding and welding and shaping and fucking about. You can see lots of voids and junk in the "final" product that'll be bondo'd. If nothing else it taught me lots.

Here's the general idea for its placement and use:
IMG_3340 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3342 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:11 AM   #103
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

I like that alot!!!
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:25 AM   #104
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The next part was/is the piece to tie this into the frame and give a good support mount for the footpeg.

Some jib-jabs from Lowbrow and 1" stock:
IMG_3490 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3492 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

A little "damn I wish I had a milling machine"
IMG_3493 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3496 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Then to something I've been hemming and hawing over... brazing. Basically, from my "research" it's generally held that brazing is a cancer on modern "choppers". But, on the negative side, 1) I don't have a TIG, 2) I'll likely not get one soon as the cash I'd spend on that I'd rather put elsewhere (like a mill?) 3) I'm fine paying a pro to do the more complex metal gluing like aluminum work and TIGing up the gas tank halves.

On the pro side, 1) I know how to braze and think I'm pretty decent enough at it and can make pretty fillets, I learned from bicycle frame builders, 2) I have a good setup for it, not a MAP torch and flux-cored turd maker 3) I enjoy it (which makes me want to get a TIG setup).

Anyhow, fuck it I'm going to braze these bits and probably others.

Slather it in brazers snot after a good cleaning:
IMG_3497 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

The drill bit is there to show me the bung orientation as I'm working, keeping it aligned.

Some preheat and flux sizzle:
IMG_3498 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Aaaaand BRAZING IT ALL ITS GLORY:
IMG_3502 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

No touchy yet.

Now touchy:
IMG_3503 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And touchy lots. I did a lot of cleanup mostly to see what works best and practice shaping things. After wire wheeling off the leftover flux post bath:
IMG_3504 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3505 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Hand file work:
IMG_3507 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_3509 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

It's not to final shape yet but I'm just playing around, slowly approaching the method I want to use for the rest of the bits.

General fitment. Still needs to be bent vertical around the pulley.
IMG_3520 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And how it'll work with the pulley cover. Basically tucking in behind it and running high enough for the foot peg to attach to in the middle of the cover.

IMG_3523 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

I realize I devoted a LONG post to just this little part. Can't really tell (through my excitement and passionate moto fab lust) if that's a good thing or bad thing.
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:42 AM   #105
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I like that alot!!!
Thanks!

Anyone want the back half of a repop primary cover?
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:52 AM   #106
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One more angle for good measure:
IMG_3518 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 04-20-2016, 12:46 PM   #107
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Looking good, but I'm concerned about the strength of that peg mount in its current form. I see a simple rework being to cut a notch in the bung, allowing your flatstock to index into the material prior to brazing. It will look the same and be a considerably stronger joint. Also, weld it...
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Old 04-20-2016, 12:52 PM   #108
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Looking good, but I'm concerned about the strength of that peg mount in its current form. I see a simple rework being to cut a notch in the bung, allowing your flatstock to index into the material prior to brazing. It will look the same and be a considerably stronger joint.
Good call, that would also eliminate all the shaping required to get the top radii to match and fit up well. The 3/4" hole saw is too inaccurate and sloppy for the 3/4" OD bung... Ended up boring with a 5/8" and hand fitting from there.

This left-side mount will be anchored in two places, but on the right side it (probably) will be floating off the single frame tab and I'll definitely be using that fitup method. Thanks!

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Also, weld it...
Got a spare TIG to loan me?
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Old 04-20-2016, 01:59 PM   #109
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Looks good to me. The braze goes where the flux went and you have plenty of surface there to connect the two parts. I just don't understand what it is you are building. Combined footpeg and belt shield?
Let's see where this is going.
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Old 04-20-2016, 02:15 PM   #110
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Looks good to me. The braze goes where the flux went and you have plenty of surface there to connect the two parts. I just don't understand what it is you are building. Combined footpeg and belt shield?
Let's see where this is going.
Thanks for the vote. The angle of the floor tab will give a little bit of shear force ( cosine(A) ) but most will be directly atop the bung. That's my armchair engineering at least...

The total "assembly" is basically what you're getting at... I wanted the pegs right at the pulley more or less. I didn't want to worry about the belt eating things, or rubbing on my boot for the fwd clutch pedal (Lee style), and liked the idea of having the little flat to rest my foot perched up high too. And I didn't want full tins covering the belt.

I was inspired by Daikoube's killer Knuckle:




Some drawings playing with the overall design (ignore the "bridge" with the clutch pedal between the kickstand cluster and the cover):

Untitled by Eric Bott, on Flickr

That "bridge" was trying to get another point of contact for the cover so it'll not twist and stay firmly affixed to the frame relative to the case. Another option would be to fasten it though to one of the the inner cover mounting holes on the case around the crank pin. It would be pretty slick and "invisible", but I don't like that option in that I see the bike taking a fall to the left and having the force punch through the case rather than taking it all to the frame...
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Old 04-20-2016, 04:36 PM   #111
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

I like your thinking Eric. Especially the part about a crash aftermath. Most people never think very far. My two favorites are a. the two spiked nuts on top of a springer that will puncture your skull in a crash and b. the dual rear petcocks at the end of a sportster tank. Even in a light crash you will slide forward on your seat into the back of the tank. Hello nut pain but not nearly as bad as one of the petcocks severing your femoral artery on your inside thigh......
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Old 04-20-2016, 04:53 PM   #112
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

What did you weld the belt guard with? And if you cut the groove in the bung like suggested above you could probably gas weld them with no filler. That is if you got a tight enough fit. Even if you need filler why not use steel instead of brass? In a pinch I use .045 solid mig wire with good results
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Old 04-20-2016, 05:15 PM   #113
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What did you weld the belt guard with? And if you cut the groove in the bung like suggested above you could probably gas weld them with no filler. That is if you got a tight enough fit. Even if you need filler why not use steel instead of brass? In a pinch I use .045 solid mig wire with good results
The belt guard was welded with a wee lil 100v MIG I've got as well. Don't think it can push enough amperage to weld anything "structural", I think it may be ultimately limited by the power available in my detached garage shop. I've never gotten much penetration with it, but I'm no master by far.

Thicker stuff I trust someone else's TIG or my torch. I should try my hand at gas welding it seems...
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Old 04-26-2016, 01:50 PM   #114
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

So. I took a TIG welding class yesterday (including AC aluminum welding)...

Shit. I am hooked.
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Old 04-26-2016, 01:54 PM   #115
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Looking forward to seeing some laid beads
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Old 04-26-2016, 10:55 PM   #116
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Looking good,
Brazing is surprisingly strong so don't sweat that too much.
As far as TIG goes you'll get hooked for sure. It's not an "art". It's a skill. And like any other skill practice makes perfect. A little time, patience and a few tips along the way and you will be pleased with what you can do!
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Old 04-29-2016, 07:32 AM   #117
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Looks good
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Old 07-20-2016, 03:17 PM   #118
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Ok, I'm back. And while I've been doing lots of little stuff I have an initial roadblock to address (need help with).

The setup:
-Panhead round swingarm (has zerk fitting, so '59+ I think if that matters)
-Mid star 16" wheel
-66-72 juice drum

AFAIK all these parts are stock, but they are all piecemealed together from different sources.

So I finally get the whole rear end put together today and notice that the tire is ~3/8" too far to the left. Very noticeable to the naked eye. I need to get a more precise measurement on the chainline, but that does look pretty good initially. I've looked at many a posts, especially the one from MOTher with this great pic (post #4 http://www.jockeyjournal.com/forum/s....php?t=89620):



I've got all the bits in all the right places according to this. I paid special attention to the "thick spacer on the inside of the axle plate, thinner spacer outside".

Here's the wheel on there lookin' good:

IMG_3693 by Eric Bott, on Flickr


Aaaaand the view from above:

IMG_3695 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

So I'd like to see what people think are my likely problems and options. My main though is just needing to re-dish the rim to the left, but before I go all commando with the spoke wrench I wanted to get a general temperature from the other people here.

Lemme know if this all makes sense...
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Old 07-20-2016, 09:03 PM   #119
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Manual says 1 1/32" for 1969 and back, and 1" for 1969 to 1972 as measured with a straight edge on the drum side of the hub to the side of the drop center on the rim.
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Old 07-20-2016, 10:46 PM   #120
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How does it feel spinning the wheel? Just the bearings moving or is there some drag? Don't forget to slack the shoes to get the load right on the bearings.
You are gonna want a larger area against the axle plate on the right side. I've had just the spacer like you have not give enough surface area against the axle plate on the swingarm or frame. It's actually moved some and worn a spot in the area and loosened the tension on the bearings, allowing the right side to move out of adjustment under accell and decell.
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Old 07-21-2016, 06:14 PM   #121
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Right now its all slung up with the chain to the tranny in neutral, and spinning it in the air there doesn't seem to be any more than the usual resistance via bearings, chain, and mainshaft...
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Old 07-21-2016, 11:15 PM   #122
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Ok good. Glad you sorted that. Truthfully I was sure you already did. Never hurts to ask. I've left simple things before as assumption and reminded by someone later to check and then the "ah ha!" moment. Where I realize..."ah ha"...I am an idiot, again.
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Old 07-30-2016, 11:43 AM   #123
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Bump? Can anyone else weigh in on the rear rim centering issue?
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Old 07-30-2016, 11:50 AM   #124
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

You have done a top job
You know what you have to do.
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Old 07-30-2016, 02:18 PM   #125
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You have done a top job
Thanks!

Quote:
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You know what you have to do.
You mean dish the rim over to center from where the hub sits now?
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Old 07-30-2016, 02:53 PM   #126
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

yea
unless you can do something with the sprocket?
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Old 09-10-2016, 02:42 PM   #127
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Back at it for another iteration.


First off, working on welding welding welding... got a TIG machine and am super stoked on the zen of TIG vs the manic spazziod explosion of (my shitty) MIG.

Working some stringer beads on sheet:
IMG_0092 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And melting aluminum:

IMG_0140 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Aluminum because a) I can (its a 200 amp AC/DC machine) and b) I have a nice Lowbrow Al fender I want to use.

I've stared at what feels like MILLIONS of pics of swinger fender setups. Many fall into one of two categories:

1) far too bulky for my tastes... Crazy Frank, Stockers, ones with lots of sidewall coverage, etc) and

2) Too lean/thin, swingarm mounted ones especially, trying to copy the look that is classic and killer on hardtails).

Finger Tight strikes a very good balance, but I also want it to be good enough for a pillion and/or luggage mount. Mr Boyle has explicitly stated his whole goal with Finger Tight is a day tripper (good for him tho, such an iconic bike).

So, my mission is make simply the best looking fender setup ever.
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Old 09-10-2016, 02:55 PM   #128
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So, on the fender topic... first I played with just the fender itself, getting the standoff just right on the tire by stacking layers of old yoga and camping pad on the tire and resting the fender on there.

Then cutting down the fender a bit more.

Then a bit more fiddling... and more snipping. Note that this is all relative to the rear tire at this point, once the bike is on the ground I can do final fitment after the suspensions settles, and I choose between the shorter 12" shocks or whatnot for the final ground clearance.

IMG_0104 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0110 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

To my eye, the "exit angle" of the fender is critical to the final look, as well as the amount of tire covered. For a pillion I'll need at least a little bit of flat section, so the fender goes to about 12-oclock. But should not curve exactly with the tire, it got to have the right "fling" off the tire line... I'm liking where this is ending up.

Then I played with card stock to work out the perfect amount of "beef" and volume for the rear end.

IMG_0117 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0119 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0121 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

After some snip and chin scratching... this is gonna look dope.

IMG_0124 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0126 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Time to get some alloy sheet on order... and practice al TIG over and over and over before I melt my nice fender.
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Old 09-13-2016, 08:42 PM   #129
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Hmmm.

I like the whole look there Eric.

How much clearance will you get fully compressed with a rider? With the suspension sagging it looks like alot, but I have a feeling when it's on the ground it will look different.
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Old 09-14-2016, 11:38 AM   #130
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How much clearance will you get fully compressed with a rider? With the suspension sagging it looks like alot, but I have a feeling when it's on the ground it will look different.
At this point I am deferring those questions. I am fitting up the fender relative to the tire as it sits, and will adjust when I get the bike on the ground.

I am ignoring the relationship of the fender with the frame, basically getting it to flow with the tire lines and the "volume" of the rear end in general. Once the bike is on the ground I can then get the mounting to the frame, tire clearance, and integration with the seat pan all figured out...

One crisis at a time
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Old 09-14-2016, 11:49 AM   #131
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I started mocking up the (mostly) final run for the rear exhaust section.

I went back and forth over and over again about collecting the two into once main header (like Caleb Owens' YangYang or Oliver Jones' BF7 mega-black shovelhead) or duals like Cox's Barracuda.

Honestly, the complexity of landing the rear pipe cleanly into the front was REALLY daunting and I took multiple failures at it, so went with the dual pipe route. Both would look killer IMHO.

I had to tweak the front pipe run to clear over the rear exit, but I finally got it poking out into space below it.

IMG_0154 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0153 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0151 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

To aid in fishing the rear section through and out the middle of the frame, I added in a slip fit section. This also decouples the final alignment of the two pie runs and will make it MUCH easier to make them dead parallel without putting lots of torque on almost-but-not-quite perfectly aligned pipes.

Mark a line with a super advanced line-o-widget
IMG_0163 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Cut some kerfs:
IMG_0165 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Make fit:
IMG_0167 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And get the exit angle perfect:
IMG_0166 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

At this point I'm going to save myself the embarrassment of showing my tack welds... I have LOTS to learn about TIG still. And will have to brush up on my burn through hole filling before this job is done...
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Old 09-14-2016, 11:52 AM   #132
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And the reveal... Pretty happy how these are shaping up.

Note: both pipes are sagging a bit and will be raised to clear the clutch release arm. In fact, I should pause the exhaust building for a bit and iterate on the drivetrain before I design myself into a corner...

And there are going to be laterally slash cut tips added to the ends too. For dramatic flair and minimization of soot on the rest of the bike...

IMG_0171 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0170 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0169 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 09-14-2016, 04:34 PM   #133
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I like it!

I will add this....File fit your joints for tigging and V butt them. That's what I did and I used a jig to hold the pipes together.

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Old 09-14-2016, 05:16 PM   #134
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Good call on that jig.

I keep bouncing back and forth between instantly burning through and not getting a good puddle.

More practice, more practice, practicing more, and trying smaller wire (down from 1/16") should be the ticket...
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Old 09-14-2016, 07:03 PM   #135
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Yup. Adjust heat til it puddles and only puddles. Back off to keep it so. I did mine with no filler. Probably should have used it to make it real pretty.



My first weld with a tig...
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Old 09-14-2016, 07:41 PM   #136
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Lookin' good there JAWS!

For now I am just postponing worrying about finish welding and getting my mockups/tacks all set while getting in bench time with the TIG on the side.
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Old 09-14-2016, 07:46 PM   #137
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It is so much fun, moving the puddle. I like to get it to strike the arc and then slowly add more juice til I can see the puddle form. Takes more gas and I'm still trying to figure out the best time to add filler. I played around with Tungsten size and filler rod size.....even use mig wire for really small stuff.
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Old 09-14-2016, 08:16 PM   #138
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even use mig wire for really small stuff.
Thats on the menu for tonight's practice. I don't have anything under 1/16 for filler, but do have some ~0.028 mig wire. May try to double up on those too and see what I get
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Old 01-07-2017, 08:58 PM   #139
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Still at it, though slow and deliberate.

Weld, cut, grind, stare, swear...

IMG_0395 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

You'll notice I got some tanks finally... though I'd been working on narrowing up my own 5-gal splits, Cody on here had a pre made set. Good quality and for a good price. I'll still work on my in the gaps, but its good to just have a solid set to work with and move forward.

IMG_0419 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

I had to do a little relieving around the heads, should be easy to patch up and all the cuts will basically be unseen under the tank, on the inside.

IMG_0413 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0416 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0414 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-07-2017, 08:58 PM   #140
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Glory shot from the underside:

IMG_0417 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-07-2017, 09:04 PM   #141
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Also made another big visual step in getting it looking like an actual motorcycle: Bars, grips, and throttle!



Easy and felt good. Got a pair of 30 deg drags for cheap on OldSTF. Narrowed them and shortened them to what you see here. Still playing with the angle of them, playing between "sad dog ear" forward bars and swept back drags. But I'm really liking how they play with the tanks.

IMG_0435 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0490 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0484 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0488 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 01-07-2017, 11:40 PM   #142
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

Drag bars on extended split risers and fat bob tanks take me back to 1969! Good job!
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Old 04-10-2017, 12:55 PM   #143
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So, I thought I'd batch up things in this thread and not update until I get some significant amount of work done on some component. Thus far the work on the bike has been a little bit of this and a lil bit o that, and just posting a stream of consciousness... maybe not the most fun for those watching at home.

But I got good end-2-end work done on the front wheel.

The original front (if you recall) is a 1968 Triumph TLS I scored off ebay. Well, I wanted to clean it up a bit more than it was, and the rim was all covered inside with what looks like tank sealer to stave off the rust. Well, I took the plunge and rebuilt the wheel.

This was satisfying to nip the spokes and shoot the across the shop out of the rim:
IMG_0554 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Made sure to take good notes as to the existing crossing pattern:
IMG_0555 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Scrap:
IMG_0556 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And got a nice fancy Excel rim and spoke kit from Buchanan's. I *think* I could have gotten away with a harley rim that would have fit the hamburger drum, but it was good peace of mind to have Buchanans dimple and drill it right, specially considering this is my first wheel and now I'll know that I should not expect much if any resistance to the lacing.
44632B6C-ACE8-4E11-B2D8-F9436EA83025 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And another big win, once the hub was out I was able to prime and paint it, doing a proper job:
IMG_0588 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0590 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

And also, in for a penny... got the braking surface trued at a friends shop:
IMG_0672 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0671 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 04-10-2017, 12:58 PM   #144
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Then got the final paint on and laced it all up... pretty

IMG_0756 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0757 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0760 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

She has yet to be fully trued and tensioned though...
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Old 04-10-2017, 01:09 PM   #145
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Another fun mini-project win:

Got the Bareknuckle Overbearing for my tranny. Pretty excited about it if it lives up to the hype (which thus far from other people's say so it does).

IMG_0569 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

But... its much bigger than the standard tranny nut. Didnt think about that AND I just bought a std sprocket nut tool for my bike.

2 1/4"
IMG_0571 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

So. Its custom sprocket tool making time! Here's the standard tool (left), then a cheap 2 1/4" socket with a HF impact socket stacked on it. The 2 1/4" incher is a 3/4" drive, which is a large enough hole that the main shaft slips right through it, and the HF socket is long enough to take up the extra length + converts it to 1/2" drive. It all just works with no lathe or mods necessary (beside welding)

IMG_0761 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Prep and chamfer the surfaces:

IMG_0764 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

Then affix and weld!

IMG_0771 by Eric Bott, on Flickr

IMG_0770 by Eric Bott, on Flickr
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Old 04-11-2017, 09:29 AM   #146
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

looking good, did you figure out a brake stay yet?
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Old 04-14-2017, 01:23 PM   #147
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looking good, did you figure out a brake stay yet?
Thanks. Ive got it spec'd out in my head, bracing a tab off of the lower disc mount and axle spacer... but really need to do things like actually get the spacers measured up and cut before anything becomes a reality.
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Old 04-14-2017, 10:24 PM   #148
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

I like that handle bar and riser set up a lot! Nice choice
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Old 04-22-2017, 11:26 PM   #149
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I like that handle bar and riser set up a lot! Nice choice
Thanks, me too. I'm getting far enough along in the build to start to let its style speak to me...
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Old 04-23-2017, 12:14 PM   #150
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

What do you still need parts wise?
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Old 04-23-2017, 03:01 PM   #151
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What do you still need parts wise?
Fundamentally not too much as far as off the shelf parts are concerned... I need brake lines/cabes, some wiring

Most all lies in custom or fab parts, I need:
-Figure out shifting linkage (still quite unknown)
-Fab exhaust mounts, finish weld exhaust
-Fab axle spacers for the front
-Make front brake anchor
-Finish off the fender/seat cowl combo
-Make the seat and seat pan
-Finish the tanks (button up the clearance notches I made and relocate the petcock bung)
-Finish the foot controls and pegs (including the front pulley guard)
-Finish electricals (mount front and rear lights, wire it all up, install light switches)
-Dish the rear wheel
-Tension/true the front wheel, mount the tire

.... Then its time for a mechanical once-over... then learn how to ride hand-shift

So yeah. Still a project
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Old 04-23-2017, 07:13 PM   #152
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Foot clutching is easy if you position your foot so it can be in the same arc as the pedal. Think old time gas pedal in a truck or like the "moon foot" style pedals fronthe 70's. Heel needs to be at the same pivot point as the clutch pedal.

On the lee style pedal I have, I use the arm and pedal as a whole. My foot isnt on the peg trying to move the pedal nor am I lifting my leg to operate it. Im simply rolling it on by the movement of my foot only. Pivoting at my ankle.

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Old 04-23-2017, 09:57 PM   #153
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Sweet, thanks for those foot clutchin' nuggets.

For now I have it set up with a rocker clutch and, mainly because of the positioning of the left-side pipes, will be attempting some sort of VL-style tank shifter setup.
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Old 04-23-2017, 10:29 PM   #154
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Remember foot clutch release isnt a race.
It wont be scond nature right off the start.

However the easier it is to manage the faster it becomes second nature.
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Old 04-24-2017, 03:34 PM   #155
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Oh yeah, question on foot shifting...

Especially with the rocker clutch, do people typically disengage the clutch (With the foot) for every shift past first? Or just rev-match the gears and (gently) bang them up/down?

With my lower HP bikes (like a DRZ-400) this was always pretty easy to do and convenient , but this is my first vintage ride...
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Old 04-24-2017, 09:23 PM   #156
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

I always use the clutch and I always blip the throttle with the clutch in on the down shift as I shift.
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Old 04-25-2017, 06:59 AM   #157
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Default Re: Zodiac: The Envy of Seattle

I sure wish I had the tools and skills you are showing.

Great job!
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Old 04-25-2017, 11:38 AM   #158
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A little shift linkage inspiration...

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