The Van Van - '73 Suzuki RV125 "tracker"

adventurco

Nick Ol' Eye
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Re: The Van Van - '73 Suzuki RV125 "tracker"

HURCO550 said:
Gonna be at barber?

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The race is on my man. I’ll be wiring it up at Kiley’s


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Hurco550

Keep er' Between the ditches
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Re: The Van Van - '73 Suzuki RV125 "tracker"

advCo said:
The race is on my man. I’ll be wiring it up at Kiley’s


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have Kayla drive and you can work on it on the trailer lol

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adventurco

Nick Ol' Eye
DTT BOTM WINNER
Re: The Van Van - '73 Suzuki RV125 "tracker"

cbrianroll said:
Oops didn't finish my sentence...what brand of tires are those?
SunF. Some Chinese company that makes weird size ATV tires, apparently. They came from Amazon or eBay, cant remember which. I did a swap on the front wheel, so I am running 2 rear rims & same size tires front and back. I'll do a post on the swap later.
 

sealedwithakay

New Member
Re: The Van Van - '73 Suzuki RV125 "tracker"

HURCO550 said:
have Kayla drive and you can work on it on the trailer lol

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Nononono don’t throw out suggestions like that. Lol


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adventurco

Nick Ol' Eye
DTT BOTM WINNER
Re: The Van Van - '73 Suzuki RV125 "tracker"

I can see it now, wiring it up in the back of the truck going 70 on I-20 West.

Leaving Friday AM. Let’s see how far I can get.

Current state:


Had to place an order from the printer on Monday, so I took some measurements and drew these up. Hopefully they fit well enough.



And they have a hot date with these guys tomorrow




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Rustyhama

Member
Re: The Van Van - '73 Suzuki RV125 "tracker"

advCo said:
I finally took down the awful wallpaper on the wall behind the bench, so I can get some pics. Here's update on the progress. Got the tanks cleaned and installed. Engine is 75% back together. Rings were really worn so I have a 0.50 over piston and ring set coming in. Need to purge the oil lines and get them bolted back up, as well as reinstall the magneto and flywheel.

Getting ready to start on the fenders/plastics and wheels. Hope to have this thing rolling by the end of the month.



Also, this is too cool not to post. An old pic of Zeppelin on motorcycles, John Bonham center rocking a Van Van.




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Oh man that's freakin' awesome. I was about to comment that my Grandpa had one of those when I was a kid, we called it 'the fat tyre Suzuki'. Then that picture of Bonzo on one, what a classic, I've been a huge zeppelin fan since I was a teen. No moto for JP Jones though!

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adventurco

Nick Ol' Eye
DTT BOTM WINNER
We're at about 97%

Went through a bunch of rigamaroll with the wiring harness, got the wrong ignition switch from eBay seller (correct one is on the way) and a subharness from a fellow from Australia. Hopefully in the next month or so I will have this thing all buttoned up.
 

adventurco

Nick Ol' Eye
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I've been slacking on the updates for this thread, but progress is being made. I'm going to add a few things in out of order to catch the thread up to where I'm at currently. So here goes.

The front fender is plastic, and the PO had it mounted without using the correct rubber shock mounts which resulted in a stress crack on the front portion. Their solution had been to sloppily rivet an aluminum plate as a brace to keep from further cracking.
I said "nay!" to this method, and proceeded to drill out the rivets and remove the plate.

After talking to irk for a while, I decided to go with West System's G/Flex epoxy system, which is a thickened 2 part resin + hardener system that is designed to have some flexibility when fully cured, making it perfect for plastic repairs. This stuff works absolutely fantastic.



First step was to channel out around the crack so I could get a decent bit of epoxy in there for the repair. I used a grinding wheel on the dremel tool while holding both sides of the fender secure. I kept it about 1/4"-3/16" wide so the epoxy wouldn't sag too much. The method to achieve best adhesion to plastic is to sand the surface with 80 grit sandpaper, clean, then flame polish with a propane torch. I cleaned with acetone after sanding (obviously, wait until the acetone is evaporated before you put a flame on it ::) ) and for the flame polish, you just want to barely touch the surface with the flame. It will go from a rough, dull surface to a nice shiny finish.



Before I epoxied the gap up, I cut a few strips of 6oz fiberglass cloth. I didn't take any photos of it, but before I filled the crack in, I wet out the strip on the back side so I would have some backing for the epoxy. I also added a 1.5" wide x 10" cloth strip going from front to back to add some rigidity to the fender. I used some scrap metal to prop the front half of the fender up ;D



After a 24 hour cure I sanded the excess down. Not bad and quite strong. My helper approves.



After a little bit of filler, a couple rounds of primer and wetsanding I got the fender and repair looking pretty darn good. I shot it with farm implement paint, installed the decals, then went back and cleared over it a couple weeks later. The orange peel on the clear is pretty bad, but I'm going to leave it as is for now - I may go back and cut and buff it later.



Once all that was done, I installed the correct rubber shock mounts and spacers to hopefully prevent any further damage in the future.
 

adventurco

Nick Ol' Eye
DTT BOTM WINNER
Next on the list was the rear fender. This bike had been pretty abused and the steel rear fender took some of those hits. It was creased in a couple spots and cracked, the worst is pictured below. This is after some sanding and a bit of work to straighten it with a hammer and dolly.



Once I got the two sides of the crack lined up, I hit it with the MIG and then ground it down to be fairly pretty.



A few rounds of filler and wetsanding later I was happy with the results. I had some fisheye on the first coat of paint as a result of some rushed prep work, so I ended up taking it back to primer again and repainting it. The decals I made up ended up working pretty well. I created the wide band at the bottom as a U-shaped piece, and the smaller stripes on the sides as separate pieces. I ended up getting the decals installed and having to do some precision trimming with an xacto to get the 3 pieces to blend perfectly. There is about 1/32" of overlap that you can see if you look REAL close ;) . Again the orange peel on the clearcoat sucks, but I'm not going to worry about it for now.

 

adventurco

Nick Ol' Eye
DTT BOTM WINNER
Last on the bodywork list was the two side plastics. They were in good condition except each one had one of the mounting points broken off as you can see in the "before" pics:





I set out to make the repairs using the same method as I did on the front fender. It was a bit tricky as I had nothing to use as a base. I ended up making a "mold" of sorts out of some cardboard coated with packing tape. I used 4-5 layers of 6oz fiberglass cloth, orienting the weave in alternating directions to improve the strength. I wet everything out with a thick coat of epoxy, being sure that each layer of glass was wet before adding the next. The fiberglass wraps up and inside of the plastic so it had some meat to grab onto.

After some filing, sanding and drilling the mounting holes, here's what it looks like. There's not a great before picture of this panel, but the entire tab was broken off. The new tab is comprised entirely of G/Flex and fiberglass cloth. I'm confident it will be much stronger than the original.



Here are the repaired areas after finishing and installed.





And here they are all painted up with decals added, and mounted with new rubber grommets and stainless allen bolts. I shot some epoxy black on the "125" emblem and used a paint pen for the numbers.







8)
 

trek97

Active Member
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Wow she’s really lookin super. How did you treat the engine? It looks great too. I’ve been mulling over thoughts on Rachel’s 400 engine finish. Also, that green is really nice, I will see what she thinks of that for the tank.
 
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