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Club Cafe' Cafe Racers; the Thruxton and other custom cafe styled bikes.

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Old 07-24-2007, 04:06 PM   #1 (permalink)
JG
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Ohlins front fork completed.

I finally finished the installation of my Ohlins fork a few weeks ago. I had posted a few pictures of the bike in another thread over a month ago when it was not quite done yet. Before the website switchover, I had almost finished an album full of photos of different aftermarket parts and many parts I made for this front end. Those old pictures are still floating in cyberspace, but are not as accessible as they used to be, so I am building a new album, which I will add more pictures to later. Click here to check it out, if you like.

I finished making a front rotor spacer, finally got the front brake rotor and speedometer sensor installed, and was able to take the bike up to top speed. Everything feels good at all speeds, and there seem to be no handling quirks. I have put about 700-800 miles on the bike since finishing the project. One minor drawback: with both the instruments and mirrors so low, when looking straight ahead, all I can see is the very top of the headlight. I have to look down slightly to bring mirrors or speedometers into view. Even when attempting to view them with peripheral vision, they are blocked by the front portion of my full face helmet. Each speedometer unit can independently display speed, trip, riding time, RPM, or odometer. The wheel circumference can be set to within 1 mm, so after calibrating at 90 mph using a GPS on a nice straight stretch of road, my speed is now displayed very accurately. I decided to keep the stock warning lights and put holes in the top clamp to accommodate them, but I replaced the stock bulbs with white 6-LED bulbs. I used the same rather large fork offset that the stock triple clamps had, which kept the steering geometry the same as stock and gave more room to fit the instruments into the top clamp. The top clamp is also a complete self-contained instrument panel. The wiring is contained below the top clamp by an attached wiring compartment I machined from a block of solid ABS. Disconnecting one connector in the headlight shell and two quick-release Lemo connectors for the speedometer sensor and the control switches will free the whole top clamp assembly. The top surface of the upper triple clamp is about 1/2 inch lower than on the stock setup. I built a downward step into the top clamp to compensate for the slightly shorter-than-stock Ohlins fork legs, and to additionally provide extra room to lower the fork legs when I eventually put a 17" wheel on the front. The handlebars ended up somewhere around 2" lower than on the stock setup, due to both the design of the top clamp and the fact that the new clip-on bars have no rise built into them. I have the bars angled down 8, which is as low as they go. The center of the front wheel has been slightly bored out to fit a larger bearing spacer. The stock bearings have been replaced with 22mm bearings. The front wheel now rides on a 22mm RC51 front axle. The stock wheel spacers and speedometer drive have been replaced with aluminum spacers. I designed all the spacers to fit the stock dust seals on the front wheel. I made some fork guards from ABS to keep rocks and bugs off of the inner fork tubes. Overall, I made about 27 individual parts for this conversion, and modified several more. The most labor-intensive pieces were the triple clamps, which took me almost 40 hours each to make (I took my time to avoid mistakes).

Here is the fork on the bike:




Here are the upper and lower triple clamps:


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Last edited by JG; 07-24-2007 at 08:02 PM.
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Old 07-24-2007, 05:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Thumbs up

Nice work JG!
Did you do all this on a manual mill?

Detail like that makes me wish I had an NC......

I just got a brand new digital for my Bridgeport J head, so maybe that will get me fired up for some projects.



Absolutely creative & VERY personalized.
I f-ing dig it.
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Old 07-24-2007, 05:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by tham View Post
Nice work JG!
Did you do all this on a manual mill?

Detail like that makes me wish I had an NC......

I just got a brand new digital for my Bridgeport J head, so maybe that will get me fired up for some projects.



Absolutely creative & VERY personalized.
I f-ing dig it.
Thanks Tham. Yes, it is all done on a manual mill. It does have a digital readout (it belongs to my company). When I remember back to before we had the digital readout on that old mill, I shudder. Counting backlash on the hand dials, even carefully, would never come close to the accuracy the digital readout can get, and you were constantly doing math in your head. And if you miscounted turns, you might drill a hole off by .200 inch. I really wish I had access to a CNC. Right now, as far as milling curved shapes are concerned, I am limited to what can be done with a rotary table. Not to mention the huge amount of time I would save having a computer cut the stuff out for me. Actually, I really enjoy turning the cranks on the manual mill. But for this project, it became a little too much of good thing, and I found myself in the shop all the time this spring, sometimes when I really didn't feel like it, just so I could get the bike on the road for summer. I had underestimated the amount of work and started buckling down too late into the winter. I missed riding the whole month of May and some of June. Now that the bike can be ridden, I am taking my time on a new project - adapting some aluminum aftermarket rearsets that were made for a Suzuki. Here is a picture of the lower clamp about halfway though the work:

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Old 07-24-2007, 06:09 PM   #4 (permalink)
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GOOD LORD what sweet setup. Your bike looks like a bad dog with the ears laid back ready to jump up and tear someone's face off. Jealous, oh so jealous!
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Old 07-24-2007, 06:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I can only dream...

I can only dream of having such skills - awesome job and beautiful bike.

I have to rely on other peoples' aftermarket parts
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Old 07-24-2007, 06:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Looks pretty amazing. Nice work on the clamps. They look really good.

Have any close ups of the gauges and idiot lights?
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Old 07-24-2007, 06:56 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Awsome work I love it, what would you say was the total cost?
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Old 07-24-2007, 06:59 PM   #8 (permalink)
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That looks AWESOME,J.
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Old 07-24-2007, 07:03 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Fecking -A.....
That is alot of work you did then.
The finish is awesome BTW.

lots of prep & setups for a piece like that....very impressive.
(I assumed you did it on manual because of the shape "economizing" I guess would be a good term......These pieces are all business no B u l l s h i t.)


My old heidenhain digital took a big dump a couple of weeks ago ...it was the first time I had actually used the dials on my Bridgeport for over 15 years...pretty fun.....buuuuut.....Ive already picked up a brand new Accu Rite DRO for $800..

I get too sick of milling parts for my products......that I hardly want to touch the mill or lathe after work.


Your gas cap was the one of the things that made me decide to knock out a couple of things here and there for my bike.

(I do little things here & there for my scooter restorations & for my friends on occasion.)

I love seeing things like this.
Once again...bravo!
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Old 07-24-2007, 07:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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My god that gauge setup is unnecessarily cool!!!

I shudder to ask you what kind of time you have invested in it.
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