Honda DAX plus-size - Guzzi Nuevo Falcone or Aermacchi Ala D'Oro engine???


Been Around the Block
I want to take an Aermacchi Ala D'Oro (Ooh ha-ha, my spell-check corrects "Aermacchi" as "EARACHE" ha-ha!) Or let's say, a Guzzi Nuevo Falcone - just the engine. And I want to make an "adult-sized replica" - of the HONDA DAX!!!

Picture it - I've got some rims I've made with Suzuki 4LS drum and KZ400 rear hub, both in 3.00x16" Borrani Record alloy rims - they're for Maxi-Scooter sized tires in 110/70-16 & 140/70-16, for the "KZ440LOL" for my teenaged Ex-Daughter's first "real bike" - Well, I've got a SPARE SET, 'cause I got carried away buying rims & hubs etc. But yeah - pair THAT with the Guzzi or Aermacchi horizontal single-cylinder engine - as a scaled up version of the 8" "Monkey" style scooter rims, and the 100mm front drum is now 200mm - I've got a 2LS version of the wheel too, 'cause she wants to do the side-car thing with the KZ440LOL - ANYWAY yeah, just picture the tires are the same sizes as Buell Blast owners use for an upgrade.

But now that you've got the core elements, you'd want to make a bigger version of the DAX frame in Carbon-Fibre, but with some core pieces of Aluminum put in for a skeleton etc, say a great big Aluminum BOTTLE in there for a built-in gas-tank. This way, you don't have to fixate on making the whole frame out of pressed-steel, and weld portions of it into a gas tank etc. Just make the skeleton strong enough to hold still and stay aligned, while you wrap it and wrap it and wrap it with more & more Carbon-Fibre cloth & resin, wrap it up in plastic & vacuum bag it, then unpack it and lay down more layers. If it's got a big enough gas tank bottle in the middle of it, and aluminum plates for all of the engine mount lugs & swing-arm pivots etc, then there's not that much room left for the Carbon-Fibre anyhow, and so wrapping it tight & packing it solid isn't gonna add THAT much weight to the whole package. The key being to give it maximum rigidity and to keep the Aluminum inserts mounted solidly enough that time & moisture & fuel & vibration etc isn't gonna shake things loose....

If at all possible, I'd wanna use the spare set of all-NOS belt-drive that I've got for the KZ440LOL too - and some type of similar sized swing-arm but in ALLOY would be nice, but if not I suppose the KZ440LOL swing-arm would suffice as well, 'cause you could hook up the pivot point such that the pivot and front drive sprocket were in the same orientation - one advantage of a completely custom frame I guess - THAT way, the belt-drive would behave as normal. The front pulley would need to be machined to suit the Aermacchi or Guzzi output shaft, but otherwise it'd be just fine.

Now - it's the rest of the bike which gives it even more DAX character - picture an USD fork from Ducati etc, 'cause the DAX has that funny lil' telescopic fork which for all intents and purposes is USD - or am I thinking of the MONKEY? Doesn't matter - THIS bike needs an USD fork, and I almost NEVER say that! A really low-down one though, possibly even lowered, modified, 'cause the fork crown is gonna be really low to the ground just for authenticity's sake - the frame needs to be totally horizontal from back to front, not an up-turned "neck" in the tank area, otherwise that'd look like a sort of "underbone" frame design.

So THEN - to make it truly "plus sized" and truly DAX styled - you'd need a Harley 1" thick handlebar, an APE-HANGER bar - 'Cause the steering pivot is gonna sit so low down, it's gonna be straight in front of the seat, you'll need the bars to come up a long way. All the better if the bars were welded into those lil' Honda CT70 clamps, with the knobs & everything, such that the bars could turn inward when it's parked up, to take up less space, to either hang off the back of a camper/trailer, or to wheel it through a doorway or hallway or whatever. If nothing else, let it just be for looks - Heck, it could even just be a couple of big Bakelite style knobs on top of the FORK adjusters. Then - you'd want the bars to be really clean, sans clamps etc, which is why it's really helpful to have a DRUM up front.

From what the spoke makers told me, (fought 'em for a year on following through on their response that my initial concept was not only feasible but very interesting & would be fun to build - only AFTER collecting the components did they back-pedal - But I kept after 'em!) COUGH - But yeah, from what they SAID at the time, I gather that my Borrani deep-drop-center rims were a hindrance in lacing up the 4LS hub. 'Cause I've since then seen (and downloaded) pics of BIGGER 4LS drums in similarly sized chromed-steel FIRESTONE rims -

So I've also got some alloy "Super-Akront" 3.50x16" rims - mine are both 40-spoke, one NOS un-drilled (for a front wheel on my "CB900K0 Bol Bomber", paired with 4.25x18" Akront) and one drilled for the CB750K/CB750F1/GL1000 rear hubs - But the only 40-spoke drum any bigger than an 8" would be the Fontana 250mm Magnesium 4LS - or I suppose that Mike Pender guy could be asked to whip up one of his replica Yamaha 260mm 4LS drums in 40-spoke. OTHERWISE, what I was really thinking of was a 230mm Ceriani or Grimeca etc replica 4LS drum - SO, I guess what would be needed is a 36-spoke version of the Super-Akront rims that I'm talking about - and then I suppose THAT could work with a bigger ie 230mm 4LS drum, 'cause it's basically a far prettier version of the Firestone rim, made from Aluminum. VERY light weight too.

Saw a very cool Ducati Bevel square-case 900SS done up as homage to the Apollo V4, and that's got the Grimeca 230mm in Firestone 3.50x16" - ideally, the rear wheel would then be 5.00x16" just like a Ducati TT2 Montjuich etc. Then again, maybe the belt-drive would be too wide for the fat rims, requiring some ridiculous off-set - I guess it depends on the chain-line off-set of the chosen power-plant, and whether or not one is a stickler for the belt-drive versus a cheaper & simpler CHAIN-drive. With it's resultant lower efficiency & hence lower rear-wheel horse-power, but then again greater flexibility in ratios? For only a couple of Kawasaki models which used the belt-drives in the first place, the KZ belts & pulleys come in a decent range of sizes.

(((KZ440LTD has options of 22-tooth & 24-tooth front pulleys, 60-tooth alloy or 65-tooth cast-Iron rear pulleys, and 1" wide 125 tooth or 1.25" x 126 tooth belts. IIRC - would have to dig 'em all out of the box. However, there are also 50-tooth rear pulleys from KZ305CSR/GPZ305 - a 67-tooth rear pulley from the KZ750LTD (which should fit the rear conical DISC-brake hub from KZ750B/KZ1000A if one wished to use the belt on a bigger more powerful bike - the key being that modern belts are a LOT stronger, and that Gates Industries is VERY likely to carry the same tooth profile among their hundreds of reproduction belts!) AND there's also the KZ454LTD!)))

(((The liquid-cooled successor to the KZ440LTD, which had a very strong box-section swing-arm which would be an awesome upgrade for the KZ440LTD if it weren't for the fact that it would only fit the 3.00x15" rear wheel, also a seven-spoke cast/mag wheel, Morris knock-off style just like other KZ's - Not such a bad thing, seeing as 15" diameter si a size where one can still get the Maxi-Scooter Radial tires in a DUAL-COMPOUND rear Michelin!!!)))

(((YES - the KZ454LTD liquid-cooled successor to the KZ440LTD - which ITSELF, & only itself, had one VERY very interesting looking rear pulley slash sprocket-carrier ("coupling assembly" in Kawasaki tech manual parlance!) which is just the toothed ring bolted to the circumference of this very WEIRD structure in cast alloy, which has me thinking I've gotta move ahead on the spare rear wheel in 36-spoke (the late model KZ400/KZ440B/KZ305CSR all had a smaller diameter drum hub in 36-spoke, with brake parts identical to the cast/mag wheel of the KZ440LTD etc - smaller but wider than the early KZ400 40-spoke. And I've got like ... FOUR spare 36-spoke rims in 3.00x16", from hunting down a 2nd-hand specimen appropriate for the Suzuki 4LS front hub - But I'm wondering whether that rear KZ454LTD carrier might fit the 40-spoke drum ANYWAY. Thing is, I dunno whether I want to use that wider version of the belt - It's probably even lighter than the Aluminum 60-tooth pulley with separate carrier & bolts etc, but I dunno yet whether I want to run the final version with a final-drive RATIO that's high for top-end speed, or the lower ratio for more torque. It will probably come down to highway tests before I decide on which of the two all-NOS belt-drive sets that I've bought.)))

(((Though I'd keep 'em BOTH, if I get a 2nd running engine - ideally a rebuilt KZ400 with 440cc barrels & head, so that it could be kick-start only with battery eliminator etc, 'cause the KZ440 engine has no kicker for some stupid reason. ARGH - could shed a TON of weight with a kicker only - no starter gear & chain or spragg clutch, no battery, no starter, etc etc. Then I'd build the one as a bike with the low-profile radial tires, and the 2nd one could be like the KID herself said: "SIDE-CAR!!!!" with the T500 Titan 2LS drum in a 3rd wheel, a low racing type flat-deck with MAYBE a remove-able bucket (she only wants it for her DAWG) and the square-profile side-car type vintage racing TIRES that are suitable for the 3-wheeler....)))

But yeah, maybe the great big wide 3.50x16" front & 5.00x16"-to-5.50x16" rear rims just MIGHT be a bit ridiculous. Though, don't count 'em out from building a much bigger bike & using the same rubber as the Duck TT2 or Yamaha FJ1100 - I've also got some 40-spoke Super-Moto rims, albeit drilled for the tiny lil' Harley rear hub, in 4.25x17" & 5.00x17", which would spell out a fantastic pairing with the 3.00x16" or 3.50x16" rims up front, respectively. I've got a 40-spoke version of each - two in 3.50x16" but one's Super-Akront & the other one's the later, regular, flat-cross-section "AKRONT" type, both drilled for the CB750/GL1000 rear hub, which are both/all superfluous to my current 16" wheel projects....

((('cause the NOS 3.50x16" Super-Akront" is pairing up with one of the two 4.25x18" Akront, again one drilled for Harley rear hub & one Honda rear hub - for a nice fat 16/18 rim-set for use on my "CB900K0 Bol Bomber", then later to be used on a VF1100C/VF1100S Magna/Sabre based homage to the "CZ Type 860" Czechoslovakian Grand Prix racer from the '60s - nearest rival to Hailwood on the RC-181 & Agostini on the MV Agusta triple and/or four - I REALLY wanna build that V-four next, which is why I'm not even gonna BOTHER hunting down the Guzzi/Aermacchi engine - and choose to speak of it here to YOU, instead!!!)))

Ergo, maybe the 3.00x16" & 3.50x16" pairing from my original design, for which the tires are totally appropriate for a 350cc-500cc machine of this speed & weight etc. My only concern being that on anything faster/racier than the KZ440LTD, I'd much rather have a better 4LS drum than the Suzuki 200mm....

It would need some ridiculously huge & comfy SEAT, very plush & cushy so your butt just sinks into it. And the lights and signals & pegs etc would all look better if they were built over-sized. To take the whole over-sized DAX concept as far as possible.

But the net effect of it all is that between the solid lump Carbon-Fibre super-rigid FRAME, and the USD fork, and the 16" rims & radial tires, & the belt-drive - okay maybe the ape-hanger bars don't fit into this particular argument so maybe you'd swap 'em out for a Renthal over-thick Superbike bar or something? But yeah - all in all, this would represent a VERY capable chassis for either of these engines!

I've gotta weigh up these rims & tires, they might be a bit heavy - but they've got good rolling inertia 'cause they're smaller diameter, and the radial tires represent less rolling resistance - It's all very compact with good "mass centralization" - It wouldn't JUST be the "Clown Shoes" thing, it could wind up being a decent competition-spec machine!

Yeah - I've just gotta get my hands on an old Guzzi Falcone or Aermacchi engine, or a MOTOBI if needs be - Anything on the order of 250cc's would be an acceptable start. But 500cc's is far far better. Like more than a mere Sachs "Madass" here, I want this to be truly highway capable. Not for scooting around town, a commuter. But a track weapon, for "chasing the dragon's tail" etc.

It would be nice if it's all "period correct" - and my lil' GRRRL'Z "KZ440LOL" actually IS - but this thing's not about that - the USD fork is the main thing. If that's done differently, perhaps a leading-link fork from a CZ or a Honda CA77 or thereabouts, it could be a retro-fried period-correct BITSA special. But to me, it's more about the LOOK.

I guess it boils down to whether you'd want to take it into AHRMA racing or not. One could use skinnier 16" rims if they're restricted, though IMHO they shouldn't be - if they were on vintage Choppers and the like, going as far back as the mid-'60s, then they SHOULD be admissible. Shouldn't require balloon tires either, as the vintage 18" WM3 rims now have new tech racing rubber that effectively fits a tire suitable for a WM5 rim - Ergo, the 16" "Chopper" rims should get to use their OWN "cheater rubber" - 'Cause they're available in Bias-Ply too, not only radial tires. IMHO - it shouldn't be a problem - it's not about whether they DID build it back then, it's that they COULD HAVE built it!

So yeah. SOMEBODY ought to build this thing!!! Ha-ha. If YOU'VE followed me this whole way 'round, don't feel the least compunction about ripping off this idea! I'm FULL of 'em! Ha-ha. No really though - I just want to SEE a bike like this get built.

There's something called the ZEITGEIST phenomenon, right? All sorts of people are thinking up the same ideas as me. "Great Minds Think Alike" as they say. There's that guy who built the Enfield V-twin - Turns out he also built a V-twin from a Honda SS90, an idea which I described in detail all OVER the bike forums going back probably ten good years ago (& bad ones too ha-ha) It's not like I think that a mechanical & engineering & fabricating GENIUS like that guy was actually READING my silly forum posts. It's just that the time was right to BUILD just such a bike - that the NEED for just such a bike was SOOOO OBVIOUS - that there are probably all sorts of other people sitting around thinking about it even NOW - who just like me up until about a month ago, haven't yet HEARD about the real-world flesh-&-blood specimen of V-twin 100cc Honda SS90 - One way to tell that he hadn't read MY suggestions? He used the original push-rod 50cc Honda motors, whereas I was talking about the Chinese LIFAN knock-off motors with 140cc-150cc top end!!!! 'Cause much as a 100cc V-twin SS90 is something the world has waited since even before the original Honda CUB motor for - maybe since the big bang even - What the world is still waiting for is the 300cc-350cc version of which!!! Ha-ha.

Oh - another good example: Back in winter 2003 or spring 2004, I posted my idea to - Not only that somebody should make a café racer from a DOHC CB750 - and was called all sorts of homophobic epithets - But ALSO about my big idea for converting Comstar hubs to wire-spoke using bolt-up flange plates. Sound familiar?

It's not that the idea was "ripped off" - it's the ZEITGEIST thing - where concepts can and WILL come to fruition, when the environmental factors all come together just right.

There MIGHT be some actual results from all of my feverish typing though - I also wrote letters to Ikon 1000 yelling at 'em about making their Elsinore boots in women's sizes (for my lil' GRRRL) and to Borrani telling 'em to re-make their 3.00x16" Record rims (back when they'd only just started making their new run of automotive rims) and I wrote to Honda telling 'em they needed to put wire-spoke rims on their CB1100 - two years before they did - I also mentioned they should do so with their VFR1200F - just last year they did exactly that.

So NOW I've decided since then, to hassle the Morad rims people, to try & get 'em to take their Akront "NERVI" tooling out of moth-balls, so we can all have such awesome rims for re-building COMSTAR wheels in custom widths & diameters. I hope that YOU, TOO, will join in on that letter-writing campaign???

Yeah, of course it's all just wishful thinking, to suggest that babbling and writing long-winded e-mails would make stuff like that HAPPEN.

(Though sometimes it DOES work that way: Several years ago I filled out a customer appreciation form at my local library, which they later told me was used as a center-piece of their annual report and helped to win them a bunch of extra grant funding - So they gave me a free library card, which was awesome 'cause I was so friggin' BROKE at the time I couldn't afford one.)

NO - What I'm thinking is, that with enough time & patience, the ZEITGEIST PHENOMENON will kick in - Fans of cheesy self-help literature call it "the power of positive thinking" or "the power of intention" ha-ha. But yeah, I think that if I wait long enough SOMEBODY is gonna build just this sort of bike.

'Cause of and when it DOES happen - and it will - I'm gonna download a ton of pics of it and totally get my rocks off on it. Ah, but I won't regret not being able to RIDE the thing. I'll have MY finished projects to ride. Eventually. And until I lose a good 100lbs, nothing short of my 985cc DOHC-4 is gonna do the trick. Not just in my own pleasure centers, I mean in the physical world - in the sense of moving my fat ass from a dead stop. Ha-ha. And if I GAIN any weight, I'm gonna have to take a serious look at either the VF1100C/VF1100S-based "Honda CZ860 Sand-Cast", or the "DLF-1200" or "DLF-1500" Goldwing project - (big-bore homage/replica of the Swiss DLF-1000 Endurance Racer) - Maybe even something MORE ridiculous? And well, for the SMALL bike shitz & gigglz, for a while there I wanted to fix up my old '82 C70 Passport. But then the Kid grew older, and I got her & her Mama some scooters when she turned 14, so the project got bumped back & bumped back - I was midway through my DOHC CB750F café & the KZ440LOL when the house burned down in 2013, so back to the drawing board - But yeah, the 900 & 440 projects have created a huge pile of spares & bargain parts I couldn't let go - such that I'm already getting stuff together for the DOHC CB750K/CB750C ultra-lightweight single-seater for when the Kid outgrows her KZ440LOL, and I'm planning my OWN additional next-size-UP project - let's just say I've bought enough awesome alloy wire-spoke rims for the next SIX projects ha-ha. And being on disability, I've got a LOT of time on my hands.

Even so, I don't expect that I'll have the time or the $$$ to carry out my plan for a replica of Bill Ivy's 350cc CZ V-four two-stroke - "gestated" from the seed of a Honda MVX250F V-3 too-smoke. Heck all it needs is a wire-spoke wheel swap and a re-paint, maybe a different fairing - and it'd be done. However, from what I've heard, their engines can be somewhat finicky. Which means it'll require the sensibilities of a too-smoke specialist. Sure would be nice to figure out some different pistons and barrels, heads etc - to make a big-bore version of the thing - or even an air-cooled version of it? Pretty far fetched, given that the MVX250F has a different con-rod in the middle piston. For SOME reason. Something to do with balancing the thing? I'm not sure. But it sure is different! What's cool is it's already got a single-sided version of the CBX550F "Faux-Leading-Shoe" internal disc DRUM style hub. Which would make for a very interesting wire-spoke conversion of it's OWN, or benefit from a swap to the double-sided version with an entire fork-swap from the bigger model. Then again, I've got a spare center hub from the KZ440LOL's Suzuki GT750J 4LS drum - and all hardware like cams & linkages etc needed to complete the brake, except for the side-plates themselves. So I'm looking at copies of the things, simple rectangular blocks with five or six holes drilled into 'em, with thin semi-circular plates completing the full circle coverage. Definitely cheaper than purchasing bare plates from spares. Might as well sell it all off & score a 230mm 2XSLS from Benelli 650, or even a 220mm 2LS from a Guzzi - 'Cause the 200mm diameter is pretty measly for a drum of any type, pretty pedestrian performance especially for the weight. So yeah, I could definitely see using a 220mm Guzzi drum up front on the Bill Ivy "CZ-V250F" special. Either way, the point is - I seriously doubt I'd ever get a chance at it. Somebody ELSE would have to make this decision.

One project I'm DEFINITELY gonna follow through on, is the bigger "Faux-Leading-Shoe" fake drum hub, from GL1500 front hub with either 296mm stock or better still the GL1500SE 316mm rear discs on it, with DIY replacement shrouds to change the whole look to a more retro-fried 4LS drum style. AND a smaller version with (ONLY) 276mm discs (ala GL1000, CB900F, CB750F, etc) from a PC800 Pacific Coast front hub, with those sexy cross-drilled aftermarket replacement discs for VF750S etc - covered under shrouds of course, but still very cool discs for a project such as this. I want the fake drum for my "Bol Bomber" appellation of my CB900K0 - the CB900F Bol D'Or based homage to the '65 CB450K0 Black Bomber, with polished sides on the CB1100R gas tank, super fat alloy wire-spoke rims, and ideally - the 43mm TRAC fork that I wanna whip up from two right-hand legs from the '96+ ST1100-ABS model, which itself has 296mm rotors as stock so both my current brakes AND the GL1500 stock rotor version of the Faux-Leading-Shoe drum would work just fine. This is the set-up I want on not only my current 985cc DOHC-4 project, but the VF-based CZ replica project, AND the Goldwing endurance racer thing. it's the max limit fork diameter for AHRMA racing from this period, and it's TRAC anti-dive so it's sooo period-correct for these late '70s early '80s Honda projects. The only fork I'd rather have would be a works NSR500 version which is also another 43mm TRAC fork - with 296mm rotors and 310mm rotors in other versions - IIRC there were, just like the AMA Superbike series "CB750F" from AHM, some 310mm & some 330mm rotors on certain versions. I want to get all of that works-spec TECH right, chassis wise - but I want the retro-fried aesthetics of the '60s & '70s Honda stuff....

BUT - One can't have it ALL. 'Cause at the rate I'M going, I'll have another three or maybe four bike projects in me.

SO - if I manage dream up anything else, I've just gotta BLAB about it. In the hopes that YOU - reading through DoTheTon searching for ideas for your own next project, will build it FOR me.



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