Mak's step-by-step guide to building an un-original, but still fun, cafe bike

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
Step 1: Familiar to all builders of AR15's, model trains, gaming computers, and furniture, step 1 is accidentally finding a leftover part and wondering what you can do with it.

Step 2: Make a cursory glance at facebook/craigslist/etc, find a wreck/beater/pos/abandonment/etc and strike up a deal with the owner before thinking too heavily on the matter.

Step 3: Build your missus a new set of raised planters she's been asking for since August, a new flower bed in front because she deserves something pretty, and also a chicken coop because she thinks she wants chickens and even though you've been saying "no" for years you can't go buy eggs right now and you can't live without eggs so whatever.

*NOTE: Step 3 can be omitted assuming you do not have a "missus", are the "missus", have that kind of relationship, have that kind of relationship, are are generally not concerned with the feelings of others but it should be noted that this path has greater opportunity to unpleasant discourse as events progress.

Step 4: Acquire bike...





Step 5: Remember four hours after taking delivery of the bike that you should ALWAYS run the vin at www.nicb.org/vincheck BEFORE BUYING THE BIKE.

...to be continued...
 

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
Those are complicated I've seen what some you guys post here for builds and stuff I don't think ya'll could hack it
 

teazer

Over 1,000 Posts
DTT BOTM WINNER
Thank goodness we have a true master to show us the way. :rolleyes:

All joshing aside, show us what you've done. There have to be new ideas around that we hadn't thought about or new ways to do things.
 

teazer

Over 1,000 Posts
DTT BOTM WINNER
Gotta have clown shoes and faux patina and a sk8 seat to be truly original.
 

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
I'm afraid I don't understand teh clown shoes thing...but I would like to if anyone wants to fill me in

Step 6: See if it'll even run...

Right off the bat, both spark plugs were out...and who knows how long they've been out. The threads in the holes were filthy and the tops of the pistons were covered in rubbish and grime. Also both boots are broken so I had to make some boots I had laying around work. I will be looking for new wires, boots, and plugs at the very least.

Right off the bat the engine wouldn't turn over. It would reach the top of a stroke and stop. I dropped some 8w oil into both spark holes and jumped the terminals...then put it in gear and rolled it back...five or six times before it freed up and went round and round.

Then I went to the ignition...no key included but I remember the magic wires from my last CX. I made the jumps and everything lights up but no starter. So I got back to jumping the terminals. I have huge bright blue spark straight away! Put the old plugs back in, dump some gas into the throttles...and, well...


(if that link doesn't work give it a few minutes...it was still uploading when I hit the post button)

I did go back and check out the start solenoid and it was shot...had 12v down there with the switch but no action even after I hit it with a wrench like six times. So I replaced it with one I had off some chinese thing and now the button works again.

Tomorrow I'm going to pull the carbs off and see if there's anything I can do with them. I put fuel in the bowls but it wasn't feeding it. Then I'll check out the cooling system. And then it's time to start cutting!

I didn't get very many pictures...mostly just the broken plug :/

 

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
Step 7: Strip it down and start cutting the extra bits off! And obviously I needed to test fit my new forks. Bearings to mount it properly should be here on Monday.







This is the shock I'm planning on using. It's a CBR954RR shock. I measured travel at the braced section of the arm to be roughly 2" full sweep and the 954RR Showa has roughly 2.4" of travel. I also have a stock spring (14.9kg/mm) as well as a couple of aftermarket springs of lighter and heavier weights. There's also a LOT of aftermarket options for springs and even shocks themselves. Also it's one of only two eye-eye shocks I had on hand, with the other being an R6 variant that was just too long.

 

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
Okay some more pictures...I've been asked a few times if I really know what I'm doing here...and the answer is "of course not!" But I thought I would make it a point to EXPLAIN why I went with this shock, in this location, at this angle,etc and so forth. Everyone who's gone and done something like this seems to want to keep all their math and details a secret which leads me to two conclusions:

1. They made it up to look the way they wanted because the bike was meant to be looked at, not used...a theory often supported by the ties on these things.

~or~

2. They don't want to give away their hard earned work.

Honestly I'm not offended by #2, and I don't care enough about #1 one to be concerned with it. I'm going to try and make it a part of this build to explain how I'm doing the single shock, how it's working, what should be done different, what changes I make, and so on.

So before I went to my pile of shocks I measured travel of the rear from my desired ride height up to the extreme of the swingarm could muster. At the brace in the arm there was just under 2.25" of swing...it was close to 54mm.

I've got a large collection of rear shocks and strokes anywhere between 40mm and 90mm. I wanted an eye-to-eye shock for ease of mounting...I don't want to have to press a bearing/bushing into the arm to make it work. That left me with the CBR954RR shock and a 2007 YZF-R6 shock. The R6 shock is sprung at 10.8kg/mm and has a 67mm stroke. The 954RR shock is spring at 14.8kg/mm and has a 57mm stroke.

I went with the 954 shock because it was almost exactly the right stroke and is already designed to work with a considerably heavier spring. What's more is that the linkage on the R6 is pretty long and the bike has a slightly shorter travel...which means the stroke on it is going to slower. The 954 shock was part of a short arm system that's already designed to be under high stress and moved rapidly (shorter stroke). It just made sense to me to use the 954 shock (from my collection of old used stock shocks). I'm sure there are better options out there.

Now as said earlier the spring is a bit soft, but there are plenty of options out there for replacement springs. I pulled the shock to maximum compression (minus maybe 2mm...the next tooth on the winch was hiting the bump stop).







This gives me just over 7" total wheel travel in the back...which I believe should be sufficient...but it is still quite a bit shy of the mechanical limit of the arm. Means even if I completely bottom out the shock I'll still have a little room to keep things from breaking.

If my math is right I believe that what I need back there is a 16kg/mm spring. I'm going to wait until I have the tank and everything else in place and then measure for the appropriate spring.
 

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
eBay tank sits a little higher than I thought it would, but I think it looks okay. Will bring the seat down a little. Once I get the forks squared away I'll be able to adjust the rear mount to get the trail where I need it to be, then I can start sorting out mounts for the tank and seat.

 

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
Got the R6 forks sorted out and set the bike at the rake/trail I'm wanting. Closer to the final stance. Need a stiffer string!

 

makenzie71

Been Around the Block
Started on the subframe today. It's not pretty but when I do these projects I really like to reuse as much as I can. Would have been easier if I'd just bought a loop but this'll do the job.



Also my new exhaust showed up today :D

 

SONICJK

Reminds me of...me No, I'm sure of it. I hate him
Looking good so far.
There's nothing original under the sun, butild what you like and ride it and all will be well with the world!

"Clown Shoes" refers to the vintage replica firestone/coker tires. They have a reputation for being truly awful as a motorcycle tire, but people still love to use them because they look cool.
 

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