Saturday, 22 January 2011
In a slightly unusual turn of events, rather than not spending any time on the BMW, this week I've probably spent too much time on it. The net result of that rash expenditure of my life isn't wildly apparent to the casual observer though. For instance the fact that the ignition coil is now mounted will escape most people as it lives under the tank, and the tank spends most of it's time on the motorcycle. Though to be fair, most people would just assume that the coil had somewhere to mount and not give it a huge amount of thought.
The bracket I came up with was rather uninspired looking considering I spent most of a day thinking about how to make it. In the end I abandoned all manner of over complicated thoughts and settled for making the mount from a piece of 1/2" strap with a couple of sets in it. Though looking at it now, I of course have what seems like a brilliant idea for something different. Luckily, as you can see, I only tacked the bracket on. I made a mount for the horn too which was a simple "L" bracket that welded to one of the small diameter brace tubes. I obviously felt happier about that one as I fully welded it.
It's fairly obvious that those two brackets didn't alter the appearance of the motorcycle, but it wasn't going anywhere without an ignition coil, and it wasn't going anywhere legally without a horn that at least worked for as long as it takes to get an MOT. Aside from the coil and the horn, I need to find a home for a regulator, a rectifier, a fuse box, and probably a few relays. Before I find homes for them however, I need to find them.
While those components are still noticeable mainly by their absence, other parts of the motorcycle were definitely noticeable by their presence, the tail end of the two Allen bolts, and their nuts that provide the location for the front of the seat base were protruding in a fashion that implied the possibility of a truly cringe worthy injury, so I cut, drilled and threaded some 1/4" plate which I then welded to the base (the mounting hooks are adjustable, so the pins don't need to be) to provide a permanent fixing that would work under the upholstery, and remove the risk of deeply personal injury.
I also got around to removing the factory fitted front fuel tank mount and replacing it with one that positioned the front of the R80 tank where I felt it belonged. The presence of an R80 to compare notes with notwithstanding, then where I felt it had to go was all I had to go on.
With the tank provided with an almost complete set of mounting hardware (I'm undecided whether to attach the rear with hex or wing nuts) it seemed like an idea to turn my attention to the drop out frame rail. The counter bored recesses in the Suzuki Bandit splices fit the head of a 10mm Allen bolt admirably. Sadly the Euro standard 17mm AF 10mm x 1.5mm nut, doesn't want to fit into it. As a solution, I bought some stainless steel 10mm couplers or tube nuts. Popping them in the lathe and turning the hex off of one end so that it would drop into the recess in the splices and then shortening them and facing the end off didn't take stupidly long, and the nuts themselves were less than a fiver from the guys down the road at Avon Stainless Fasteners (0117 972 8560) .
Sunday, 16 January 2011
Another week gone by, and still nothing much has happened on the BMW. The usual "stuff I've got to do" stuff got done, though it has to be said that led to the realisation that both the trike and the GS550 are going to be eating in my time more than is usual over the next few months. Aside from that, on Friday I ended up arsing around with Tristan's Sportster, changing a brake line and making some bolt on mounts for a sprung solo seat.
Saturday, I did actually manage to stop off at MR Motorcycles and buy a coil for the BMW. I got a generic replacement twin lead coil intended for motorcycles with points. It's going to live up under the tank somewhere, along with the horn, the regulator/rectifier, and possibly some relays. I did get as far as looking at where it might live, but I'd told my cousin that I'd give him a hand replacing the broken front coil spring on his Fiat. We got the broken one done without too much trouble, but when it came to replacing the one on the other side, nothing wanted to come undone easily, and it got to the point where it was deemed better to soak everything in penetrating fluid, and leave it for a week or so. Trying to hammer recalitrant bolts free, under a wheel arch, in the dark, when the dealership is going to be closed and replacing anything you destroy isn't going to happen for at least 48 hours, isn't very wise I feel.
By the time that was all over and done with, I had an hour or so where I could probably have made a bracket for the coil and welded it to the frame, but I decided that I was too tired to give the job my full attention, so I left it.
Hopefully, the upcoming week will provide less in the way of distractions, and more in the way of progress.
Monday, 10 January 2011
I always find it hard to get back to work after Christmas, and this year has proved to be no exception. Rushing around to get things done in time to meet magazine deadlines is never very conducive to progress on the R65, and running out of gas for the MIG welder half way through making whatever it is I'm supposed to be doing didn't help.
Last year's Summer Holiday in Italy seems to have segued into the Christmas Holiday without anybody making any of the throttle twist grips I want for the bike, and I seem unable to remember to try Ringing Acewell when I have their telephone number to hand so I haven't managed to clear up my confusion about exactly which of the vast number of different speedos they make is best suited to my needs.
Hopefully, by the end of next week, some sort of calm will have descended and I'll have acquired a refill for the gas bottle so I can weld the brackets I need to make to the frame.