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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This thread is simply a series of pictures to help folks install an airbox removal kit. These are available from several dealers. I am using the British Customs kit, but the various different ones are very similar. In this thread I will also be going into the addition of an air fuel sensor in the header pipe for tuning purposes, and the manufacture of a custom tool box from sheet metal, that can be added to the ARK very easily. The first stage though, is the basic ARK process. You should make sure you have appropriate workshop manuals available. Basic mechanical aptitude and knowledge of hand tools / basic workshop practices is assumed – that and a willingness to just give it a go!

The fundamental process involves pulling out the airbox, which not only acts as a filter housing for incoming air, but also acts as part of the rear mudguard system, a battery box, and also holder for various other pieces of hardware, including relays, fusebox and rear brake fluid reservoir.

There is more than one way to perform this operation. Many advocate the removal of rear shocks, and dropping the swingarm significantly to gain access. Others have simply taken a sawzall to the airbox and cut it in half in order to remove it from the frame.

These are both completely valid methods, but I favoured the rear wheel removal approach.

Let us begin.

Put the bike on the centerstand if you have one, or on a bike jack.

First, remove the seat and gas tank. Removing the gas tank is not essential – but I favour the “get the expensive parts out of the way as much as possible” approach. This also exposes the chassis to lots of light. Also, remove the side panels.

Remove the battery.

This is what you have looking at the top of the bike:



Remove these four bolts at the top of the airbox:




Now look at the right hand side of the bike:



You must detach the brake fluid reservoir, the fusebox, and the little electrical jobbie. The brake fluid reservoir should be kept upright as far as possible. I found suspending it by a rubber band worked well.

 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Now move to the left side of the bike, where the snorkel (air intake) is.

This is what you have:



Remove the snorkel and air filter, pull the starter relay and lighting relays off the side of the airbox. Looks a bit like this now:



Before going any further, it is time to get some clearance at the back. Remove the rear wheel – refer to your workshop manual for this.

Now remove the rear fender (mudguard). First disconnect the wiring to the rear light, and remove the four bolts holding the fender on.



The fender now slides out easily.

Bike looks like this without the fender – yes I know the wheel is still in - you can do the fender removal / wheel removal in whichever order you wish.

 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
You should now undo the clamps that hold the inlet rubbers from the airbox to the carburetors, and ease the inlet rubbers off the carbs. Also, pull the crankcase breather hose off the airbox. It is a ½” rubber tube that runs to the lower front of the airbox.

Now – on each side of the airbox, there are a bunch of screws holding the side plates of the airbox onto the main part of the box. Go around one side (I used the air filter snorkel side) and remove all the screws, and pull the one side panel off.

This is a picture of a removed airbox – you can see the screws around the outer perimeter:



You will now be able to slide the bulk of the airbox out the rear end of the bike.

This is a picture looking through the back end of the bike, now that the airbox is out:



Now install a brace for the carburetors. The various commercial airbox removal kits come with these. This is where the one with the British Customs kit goes. It bolts in place on the frame as indicated by the blue arrow, and hooks under the carbs indicated by the red arrow:



Having done that, you can install your pod filters. I used K and Ns, and also put the silicone outerwears pre filters on them. This is not totally essential, but I like the idea of having the prefilter, and I have heard these can help in heavy rain. Haven’t proven it though.

Fitting the pods can be tricky – make sure you slide them on as far as they can go, and adjust the clamps so that when you tighten them they do not interfere with anything, and are as far over the carb inlet as possible, so that the clamp does not pinch the filter off of the carb. Give the filters a push and pull when on, so that you know they are secure.

 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Now the new metal battery box can go in. It bolts in place using the four upper bolt locations that the airbox used, and provides new locations for the various accessories (relays, fuse box, brake fluid reservoir). The pictures really do the best job of describing it, so here they are:

Brake fluid reservoir and fuse box:



Starter relay and lighting relay placement:



Rear view showing ARK in place (no rear wheel or fender)



I realize the air filters are not present in all these pictures – these were my dry fit test!

Now – at this point you can proceed to replace the rear wheel and fender, and rejet your carbs to suit (see many other threads on that subject - here's one showing the physical aspects - jetting needs to be chosen to match this mod and whatever pipes you are putting on of course):

http://www.triumphrat.net/twins-technical-talk/100851-dynojetting-for-n00bz.html#post1177161

Note that jetting was best done on the carbs prior to attaching battery box and pod filters, simply because the carbs are so accessible at that point!

Once that is done, fit other silencers if that is your thing, and then replace the gas tank and seat.

Do not forget to add a crankcase breather to the crankcase breather hose. The BC kit comes with a nice one, here it is:



This covers the basics of the airbox removal. In later posts I will look at:

Use of an air fuel gauge to fine tune the jetting (but I haven’t done it yet)

Fabrication of a storage box to make use of available space below the battery box of the ARK.

You can actually see the storage box in the above picture - got my pics a bit out of sequence!
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Storage Box and Extra Protection

One of the things you will notice when fitting the ARK is that there is a large space immediately underneath the battery, with nothing in it.

I have seen a couple of people make things to go there, and decided to fabricate a sheet metal box to add to the ARK.

I also decided, that being of English background, and having seen a psychiatrist, I would endeavour to block off some of the exposed sides from potential splashage. Riding in Mn, you never know when you’re going to get rained on.

I started off by making a card space model to dry fit to the ARK.:



This is a flimsy and poor looking affair, but from this I was able to cut out the sheet metal parts I needed to make the box. Drawings of the sheet metal parts will be forthcoming in following weeks. This really is a straightforward piece of kit to make.

The main part of the storage box was formed out of 2 pieces of aluminum, and then riveted together:



I then supplemented this with a couple of “wings” also folded from aluminum, which cover the sides of the ARK:



 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I also added a little chain sling bracket, to minimize the amount of chain gunge flung all over the fuse box and other components. The bracket that holds the fuse box was cut off the bottom of the ARK, bent, and reattached to the side of the ARK.

Similarly, the brackets that hold the relays to the underside of the ARK battery box were cut off, and moved to the front of the battery box. After dry fitting and riveting the whole lot together, it looks like this:







And after judicious application of black paint:

 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
With all the extra wings and brackets on it, this ARK now has to be installed from the rear – it won’t drop in from above. In fact, the chain guard had to come out too, but the extra wings and brackets really fill the back in, and should protect the electrics from crud and road grime a lot better.

Side view on the bike, showing open storage compartment:



Once the ARK was back in place, I also added a couple of heavy duty rubber flaps. These were cut out of some cheap rubber truck mudflaps from the auto store, and again simply riveted to the rear of the whole assembly:



You can see that between these rubber flaps and the metal sideguards, there is a lot better splash protection for the electrics.

Another side view with the storage compartment lid in place:



The lid simply slides in place – it cannot really fall off, it has to be removed with a bit of effort.

Once the side covers are on, you can hardly see it.

 

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Nice job Prop!!

Another excellent pictorial guide.
Certainly a boon for those who are contemplating going down the same road.
Well done!

Now looking forward to your A/F Gauge installation!!


V.
 

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Nice "how to" prop.

The only thing I would like to add, is how important it is to make sure everything is as tidy as it can be around the pods. I have noticed on my AFR logger that the more free space around the pods the better they flow. I know that may sound obvious, but anything that is close or touching the pods reduces flow, try to get 1/2" to an 1" minimum of space around them. Do what you can to achieve this, it's worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Good point pieman, in fact a lot of people use the oval shaped K and N filters, or foam uni filters for that very reason. In fact, if you think you are going to do even more serious performance enhancements later on, it is recommended that you go straight to the oval style or uni filters, so that you have as much airflow later on as possible. Sticking with the simple airbox removal though, these should be OK.
 

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Nice write-up.

Do you think it would be possible to take a dremel to the airbox and remove the aft end (mudguard portion) and attach it to the BC battery box? I've seen several pictures of fabricated solutions, but can the OEM solution be modified to work?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I don't see why not - that's rather a good idea actually.

The top bend of the ARK matches the rear of the airbox - should be possible to cut the rear of the airbox off to fill in those gaps, and the plastic will be a lot more durable for the wet weather and road crud than my little aluminum flaps.
 

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Well done mate!
She crying for those 39's now!
Didn't need the carb brace on my 35's.
Now I need to add shocks and that Corbin makes me K&K look fugly.
I'd buy one if I knew I'd like it.
How is it two up w/ arm candy? Any complaints?
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
I haven't tried the Corbin two up, but it suits my own butt very well indeed. I have got to believe that it is better two up becuase there is a lot more and better padding for the pillion - but I don't know for sure I'm afraid.

My Bonnie is for me and me alone - I only use the passenger seat to strap gear on to! :D

Flaco - I think you have billet intakes right? They are strong enough to support the carbs on their own maybe? I think the stock rubbers need a little help.
 

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Has removing the airbox changed the engine sound at all? Louder, deeper etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Yes - a bit deeper. I changed pipes at the same time though, so it's difficult to separate the difference out. Throttle response is way way way better.
 

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:welldone: Excellent piece of fabrication, Prop.; especially the tool box! You aught to put the design on the market; or at least post it on the sticky. You might consider a bungee or spring of some sort to hold the tool box lid more securely; the vibration may loosen it up over time.---James.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thankyou - I appreciate the positive feedback. I have to remeasure some of the sheet metal parts, as during the fabrication process they changed a bit from the original concept, once I have done that I will upload drawings and add them to the sticky for anyone to use if they want to.

A bungee is a good idea - maybe a simple rubber strap made from an old inner tube or something like that to hold the lid on.
 

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Excellent article, I have been thinking of doing this mod. As I intend to do a bit of Touring do you think removing the air box would cause problems in the heavy rain ( I know it can rain a lot where you are) or do you think ripping the inards out of the airbox a safer solution?.
Once again thanks for instructions
Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I have read lots of posts by people without the airbox, who have ridden in heavy rain, and have only heard of very few problems, which tended to end up being something else, so I'm not worried about it.

As extra precaution, I have used the silicone outerwears covers. My buddy races snowmobiles on lakes (yeah really) and all those racers swear by the outerwears covers, so that's good enough for me.

The advantage of gutting the airbox instead of buying an airbox kit is a good cash saving - definitely worth considering. The airbox is very well designed from a mudguard standpoint, and does a good job protecting everything.

I also go touring on my bike - and I guess I'm not worried about it, so it's pretty much a matter of whichever approach you like most.

EDIT: I have not proven the oputerwears yet - that's just info I have. I'll report back once I get caught in a downpour!
 
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