Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Oil Tank Mount

With everything on a bike being an exercise in 3-D packaging, the fastest and easiest way is to create a solid model of what you are trying to accomplish. I used my lunch over maybe 4 days, and this model was born. Makes life so much easier and the end result better.

 Chunks of scrap steel I found in the machine shop 'extras' bin.

Chunks of scrap mild steel turned into some sculpted, fishmouthed mounts.

OIl tank bungs, a pc of 1" diameter 6061, a drop saw and a bridgeport. 1 hour later I had these gems.
Measure twice, weld once.

Sides of mount tacked into place, and then a full bead laid across the top, with the oil tank in place. Tank removed here to add more welds to bottom mount.

End result, came out sweet. The model at the top of the page, shows a double shear seat mount. I am machining those out tonight.
Side view, more than enough clearance from the frame, starter, and trans, but still nicely packaged in the motorcycle. Looks like it was meant to go there.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Rear Caliper Tab

Rear brake caliper mount was machined 3 yrs ago or so. I finally got around to whippin' up the weld on mount, and anti rotate tab. After it came off the machine, a little bit of clearancing on the inside corner of the tab to get it to clear the caliper casting. As you can see from my fancy caliper model, I did not spend that much time trying to reverse engineer the 3-D shape of it. Bolted the tab to the caliper, swung it up into position and tacked it to the frame. It was easy and came out better looking that I thought it would. This is pretty big caliper and is so nicely tucked up into the frame.

Battery Box

 Battery box time. I started with a Twin Cam softail fitting, H-D battery. I already have a TC era softail, so I will have always have an extra battery for my bikes, Harley does make good batteries, and they are relatively cheap. I contemplated going with some kind of high tech, mini ion-lithium unit, but I don't feel like paying double for a battery that no one stocks. I want dependability and serviceability on this entire bike. 1/4" thick steel tabs to weld to the frame, 6061 aluminum everywhere else. 5/16-18 bolts and nylock nuts. Simple and bitchin at the same time. I machined the plates on the cnc bridgeport, all as a 2.5D part. Chad hooked me up on the lathe. Somewhat time consuming overall, but it could not fit better in the tight window.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Fender Struts

Fender struts machined from 304 Stainless, 3/16" Thick, 1.5" wide. It seemed too thick when I received the material in. But in proportion the thickness of the frame tubing (1.375") the 3/16" number, is just right. I made the left side .250" longer to go around the chain. Close examination down the page, will show how the left side of the frame kicks out more than the right, from the CL of the bike. This, like most frames, is set up to accommodate 1.5" wide drive belt. In hindsight, I should have made the left side only 1/8" longer. They ended up uneven on the rear fender. 95% of people won't notice, but I did right away. Hindsight is always 20/20.
Bought the mounting tabs from the Chassis Shop. Great website as all the tabs are laid with the dimensions. Pick what you need and go from there. I am using 5/16" fasteners at top and bottom. I used double shear mostly for aesthetics. This bike will mostly like never see a passenger,  and double shear always makes welding it on the bike easy. Here is the rear view on the bike. The fender was not anywhere near constant width from the top to bottom. The nature of the original fabrication. The middle sides were parallel to each other, the top and bottom flared out. The left rear top corner of the fender is the only area where a hammer and dolly could not get into back to straight. The corner where it goes from Radius to flat, was too far over left. I made a 6" or so cut down the middle of the corner, dolly'ed the split to move the corner over, then skip welded the cut back up. Hammer and dolly back flat, grind smooth. Now even top to bottom, no flaring. Tabs are tack welded on. Threw a .040" thick washer on the between the tabs to account for paint build up. The struts will be polished or satin sanded in finish. I will probably also put nylon washers between the struts and fender to help mitigate any painting chipping or cracking as everything flexes on the shitty Michigan Roads.
Right side view. 3rd times the charm with the chain clearance. I can always cut more off, but I can't stretch metal if I cut too much off. And to be honest, the 3rd time cut was still off. Being that is a spun fender, which was never stress relieved, I have welded on it, pounded on, ground on it and it wants to go back into flat sheets. The fender from the middle of the chains until the bottom, was tweaked. Multiple well placed taps with a wood dolly and a ball peen got fender away from bottom chain, smooth to the touch all along the cut and aesthetically even from the tire edge.
Laid each strut out have their CL be in line with the rear axle. And dead vertical with a digital protractor. Hard to see in this picture, but a little bit needs to be nipped off the corner of the fender to match the round profile of the strut. Rear caliper frame tab, battery box, oil tank, seat next, in that order.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Fender Up

Fender is coming together. Bungs are in place. Top, bottom and sides are cut. Looks like the side radius does not match the tire from the pictures. It is an optical illusion as the radius was traced with a jig that fit very snugly on the axle and had an equally tight hole to hold a sharpie. The radius of the fender looks better the closer you get to looking dead down the center of the axle. So I sat and stared at the lines before I cut them. Standing up, bending down, sitting down, in from the front side of the axle, a little behind the axle, measured it with a tape measure, a big set of calipers as I knew that I laid out the radius exactly 10" from the axle center and just couldn't figure out what the hell was going on. Then it came to me, every bike that you see in magazines and pictures, the bike is on the kickstand. So you are looking much closer to dead in the line with the axle than when it is on a fat jack and sitting straight up. I will look at it again tomorrow, but I am convinced it is right mathematically. But as I have come to learn, it is how it looks that matters, and that is how you really 'measure' it's fit.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Mock Up Full Bike

Lookin' good, I am diggin' the proportions and the feel of it. It is starting to look like the vision I have always had in my head. Chad helps me with certain stuff, like CNC lathe stuff, but I also wanted to include him to show the proportions of this bike. The bike overall, is 8'6" long. A big bike and much longer than a my H-D Softail. Chad is 5'9" and about 160 lbs, he is all kinds of stretched out sitting on the bike, but I look just right and it feels good. Not too small and I like my legs as close to 90 degrees as possible. When people ride with their front legs all stretched out, they can not make quick reactions to cars the pull out in front of you, or a deer or a bike eating pothole. Plus, that is not comfortable to me either.

Rear Fender

Fender work, you can see in the top pictures that the fender has a peak to it around the seam. Well this is much less than I started with. It sucked and looked like shit. I tried to pound it flat with a T-Dolly and body hammer, but it was so thin at the raised seam the the welds started cracking. It the fender was not shaped right and ground too much before I got it. I welded the entire inside, which also helped to suck in the sides a little. Now it is real close to being the finished left to right shape. I have some low spots on the seam and a few spots that need touch up welding fill. I am going to get the fender bolted to the bike before I finish the shape.

The grinding of the side shape ends and general work will move it around a little. So I will do all of the finish metalwork at the same time.