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Discussion Starter #1
Is there any alternative to the abomination that is the tach and speedo for my old girl? When I finally put the M's on, I have a feeling the whole bike will look a little awkward because of the soft, high, big gauges..

I also talked to a guy about painting the tank and fenders, and he said 1500. Anybody know a reputable painter who needs the work and would do it via mail for less?

FYI: Mikunis, Boyer ignition/coils. M bars. Two up fast back seat. All yet to be installed. She's in pieces! And I want to get the wheels painted black, and the tank/fenders a deep silver. I'll probably catch **** from the purists..


All other pointers, suggestions, and recommendations would be appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Damn, they look good, man. I'm not a fan of them in their entirety, but I could live with them if they look that clean. Do you have a write up you could send my way?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
And another thing I'm way stoked about is that the original owner had taken off the mufflers and couldn't find them before I came to pick it up. You have any hot ideas about pipes for it, mcqueen?
 

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Hey man,

Lowering the gauges is easy. First, you'll need to ditch the stock headlight ears for some aftermarket ones. This will let you lower the height of the headlight.

Then, take a look at how your gauge cluster mounts into the top yoke. Look at it and all I'm about to type will become apparent.

You'll need some aluminum/steel flat stock about 1" wide. I chose aluminum because that's what my local hardware store had and it's easy to cut with a dull hacksaw. Make yourself two identical brackets about 2" long (exact measurements depend on how low you want to mount them). Drill holes at each end of these brackets in the amount you want to lower (I think I did 1.5").

You'll need a couple bolts (1/4-28, I think, fine thread) and two nuts to match. Bring the stock bolts with you and get the same thread pitch. Length for the new ones was 1.25" or 1.5" You'll need two .5" spacers. I used two 3/8 nuts. So now you put the new bolts through the brackets, then the spacers, then hand-tight into the top yoke. Then using the stock bolts, mount the gauge cluster to the holes on the brackets and spin the new nuts on. Align it all and tighten it all down.

This sounds vague and ghetto, but once you look at your bike, you'll understand exactly what I'm talking about.

For pipes, I like the Dunstall replica (Emgo) megaphones I have on there. Flow well. Nice sound. And despite what people may say, the quality is good. I've had the pipes for years with no blemishes, chrome flaking, or anything.

Of course, the bike is yours to do with what you see fit. But let me plead with you for a minute: It's a 7'70s bike. That's OK. Putting cocktail shakers and other non-period bits on it to make it look older never works out well.
 

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Be sure to check out clubmanracing.com

Lots of cafe bits there.

Also, should you be tempted by the "retro side panels," to get rid of the stock airbox and side covers, be aware that the head on the '79 has parallel intake ports. You won't be able to use the old-school pancake filters. You'll have to go with stubby velocity stacks or something else. You'll also need to mount the rectifier and RITA box elsewhere on the bike. Nothing major...just things to keep in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Don't you have to shim the Emgo megaphones?

And how much of a pain in the ass was getting spokes on your T140D? Brave soul.
 

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I came across a set of spokes rims -- complete with rotors, brake systems, speedo drive, and near-new Avon SuperVenoms -- off of a '77. The front rim bolts right up, no problemo. The rear necessitates you find a swingarm off of a late-'70s model.

Problem is, with the mags, the rear brake caliper mounts on top on a long torsion arm. With the spokes, it mounts from underneath. There's a triangular tab on the bottom of the spoke-friendly swingarm to which the brake torsion bar mounts. (If you can see a "spoke" swingarm, and can weld, you could probably modify your current swingarm.) Also, the speedo drive (Smiths) mounts on the RH side with spokes, LH (Veglia) side with mags.

A good, used swingarm shouldn't cost more than $40. Get one and make your life easier. And get a COMPLETE set of wheels if you can, or at the very least, get the complete rear brake caliper assembly. And check the ratio of the speedo gearbox. I remember having to buy a new Smiths one with the same ratio as the Veglia unit.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Do you have any pictures of the headlight, lowering bracket offhand? I was also wondering where you scooped those fork gaitors from.
 

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Heres my 77 with M bars....they dont sit as low as clip ons or clubmans but they are kinds far forward.The gauges dont stick up as much in comparison.

 

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re

Cant you get the paint and go to an auto $199.95 specials? Earl Shives type? I've seen a few 1 color jobs from them places that look real nice.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for the consideration, but I'd rather hand my work off to someone on a one on one basis. But, I think I have two good options, and one just off this site. I'm good on that. Purists are going to scoff at the straight silver and black hubs though, I can see it now.

I'll clean up the bike this Friday and post some pictures of where I'm at. I have a loooong way to go.
 

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SOME purists might scoff. not me. But then again, I'm not a pigeon-hole purist either.

People can be piling on to a multicolored chopper made from a dirt bike, and I'll find the good points on the bike and leave my opinion off-line.

Everyone knows I'm an originality buff and a restorer, but I like a well-done custom as well as the next person. I've done a few for clients, and as I'm contemplating the loss of originality, the transformation starts to grow on me to the point where the bike fires up for the first time. After that, it's all over, I love it.
 

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Do you have any pictures of the headlight, lowering bracket offhand? I was also wondering where you scooped those fork gaitors from.

The gaitors are the Norton-style for T140s. You can get them through any Brit shop.

Headlight brackets are pretty common. You can get something esoteric (like period-correct units) or go for something universal such as:



or



or



I have the last ones on my bike...the Tomesselli-types. Install a set of these and you can move the headlight up and down to your heart's content. Just make sure you don't set it so low that the headlight hits your front fender when the forks fully compress. :D
 

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The painting price totally depends on how nice you want it. A local autobody shop would be fine for most and be $300-500 for a really nice job. (Have your tank pressure tested first to check for leaks - only 5-10 lbs should do it.)

Be cautious if going with a high-end painter. I did end up paying $1500 which I thought was embarassingly high for mine and I would not recommend this guy to anyone. It started out at a reasonable $500. 1 1/2 years and a ton of BS later suddenly it was $1500 plus another used tank. At that point I just wanted my stuff back and was too beat down from all the excuses. It was SUPER nice though but never again! Do some research and know your painter before jumping in.
 

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The gaitors are the Norton-style for T140s. You can get them through any Brit shop.

Headlight brackets are pretty common. You can get something esoteric (like period-correct units) or go for something universal such as:

I bought one of this style bracket (solid aluminum) and am pretty happy with it. It does give a bit of flexibility in terms of headlight placement and doesn't look glaringly un-original. What I'd add, though, is that sources that deal in vintage Yamaha aftermarket parts might offer additional options at lower prices (usually for exactly the same parts)-- the XS650 is basically a Brit bike knock-off, so many of the parts are quite interchangeable.
 
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