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I'm usually not a fan of the mono shock look but must admit your concept has caused me to rethink my former opinionated views. Concerning the exhaust hanger situation, look at the way Harley dose it. You could fab long, thin supports attached to the lower frame rails like Harley to test before doing anything else. Maybe try mounting the shock lower end as close to the rear tire as possible ( to minimize swing arm stress ) with the top of the shock forward at the same angle as the front frame down tubes.
 

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Discussion Starter #22 (Edited)
I'm usually not a fan of the mono shock look but must admit your concept has caused me to rethink my former opinionated views. Concerning the exhaust hanger situation, look at the way Harley dose it. You could fab long, thin supports attached to the lower frame rails like Harley to test before doing anything else. Maybe try mounting the shock lower end as close to the rear tire as possible ( to minimize swing arm stress ) with the top of the shock forward at the same angle as the front frame down tubes.
You know what? I can live with this:

751396


I'm very grateful for your post because it's made me have a rethink and sidestep some hang-ups I had about what I (thought I) wanted.

It's enough that the rear shock is parallel with the front downtubes. The angle makes it work whereas before I wanted to compact it as close to the spine as possible - but it works either way, looks-wise. I will do as you suggest and do it this way. I would have had to brace the swingarm anyway but this means I don't have to brace it as much. It will be much more unobtrusive this way and will do much to reduce the digressiveness of the geometry.

For me however, after mulling it over, the biggest bonus is that - while I will have to move the swingarm cross-brace rearwards - it frees up a TONNE of space for me to connect the bottom frame crossmember to the lower end of the spine, AND allow me to brace it laterally without having to worry about working around the top of the chain (the bottom of the chain remains the only problem child but it would have been an issue anyway). There is now a subtle clash with the spine angle, but I can fix this by incorporating a corrective shape in my spine bracing. Two, even three birds with one stone!

Since I always knew the 90n.m linear spring I have on the ohlins would never work everywhere in the travel (if at all) and that I'd have to visit a springmaker anyway (The damper assembly is all I'm really interested in for geometry purposes), doing it the way you suggested is definitely the way forward. You made me realise I got hung up on the notion of making the spring I have "somewhat" workable, i.e. because I'd need to overcome the stiffness of the spring, I figured I'd mount it as far forward to minimise spring movement as much as possible. But that would make it permanently flawed without a boatload of spring rate tuning. Your way makes everything easier and makes the bike better!

You're a champ! Thank you! <3
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Tomorrow I need to mock up the tank and seat subframe - the height at which I mount the upper eye will determine where the bottom eye goes. Another thing - having a shock mount close to the tyre gives me somewhere to mount a hugger if I decided I wanted one to keep schmutz away. Four birds!
 

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Interesting thread and strong move into the forum. I dig your writing style as well. Belated welcome.

Questions that you don't have to answer because they don't matter, but curiosity drives me a lot of the time.

Who's doing the fab from the CAD? You mentioned a bandsaw deficit so I thought I would ask.

Wiring? That is going to be actual fun but I am little weird like that.

Like, I am totally down with the vision and goals and am jamming on it. Having a few failed grand projects under my belt I thought I would ask to see what your thoughts are on execution of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Thanks for the welcome and the compliment!

I have to do the whole lot and will only outsource what I absolutely have to, like the paint job. I am biting the bullet today and buying a small bandsaw that should suffice for what I need to do. I'm also going to invest in a proper lift - it's necessary and my hack jobs so far will only bring frustration and kill my motivation.

As for wiring, I'm not skeert of the pixies. I have some electronics exposure and I start with what is a perfectly functional harness to begin with so it shouldn't be too hard. Right? "How hard can any of this be?" XD

I can relate to having failed projects under the belt! My most spectacular (aside from my marriage) was probably a Datsun 280ZX that I'd gotten as far as stripping down to a bare shell (I'd invested in a rotisserie and all that jazz). Life intervened - as it's wont to do - and I ended up giving the whole lot away to a young lad who used my failure as a springboard to success and who has turned it into a wonderful road-going restomod.

If you're anything like me, you might relate to the need for constant intellectual novelty. Boredom and distraction are my biggest enemies if I'm honest. I always have 15 different books laying about in various stages of completion, I have a million small unfinished tasks about the house, and so on. My shelves are littered with the detritus of a dozen different hobbies. While I have a strong sense of duty and work ethic, I am usually scuppered by motivation - I am a perfectionist and often get caught in the "enemy of the good" trap - and find that, unless I absolutely HAVE to do what needs to be done right now, I tend follow my desire in the now and spend energy on what my heart and mind are dictating. I enjoy it more and do a better job of it. If something is a drag or I just don't feel like doing it at the moment, I tend to leave it unfinished or (worse) do a half-arsed job of it. Procrastination is the order of the tomorrow, as it were. One aspect of my personality is also that I have that "if you want it done right..." mentality - I have learned through bitter experience that leaving important things to others is a recipe for disappointment. Here's an example - a seat upper I had sown up by a "professional". I'd figured that because they had better equipment and more knowledge and experience than I do, the job would be a success. Needless to say it's only fit for the skip and it's very evident that it turned into a rush job as work progressed and the need to get it done outweighed any sense of pride in a job well done.

751433


751434


Would I have been able to do a better job of this? I daresay I would - for the simple fact that it's MINE and I have an emotional investment in it.

With the ZX, I think I bit off more than I could chew at the time (Chip Foose shows and the like have a habit of doing that to people and Craigslist yodels with joy as a result). With the Bonnie - well - I am very likely underestimating the task ahead - but it's a lot more manageable and the eye on the prize doesn't need to squint, if you know what I mean. I go into it with a clear head. It needs to be broken into separate tasks and each task Glasgow-kissed into submission. I will do the hard things first because I want to downhill and not let my personal flaws get in the way of a successful project.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Well, the place I wanted to buy the bandsaw from were out of bimetal blades in a finer pitch and only had 6tpi blades for woodwork, so I went with the next-best thing. Advantaged invert technical! I must have it! No demands from the Polish either, Goering would have been ecstatic.
751440


Somebody washed it in hot water. It's so tiny and cute - it's 17cm in width!

751441


On the bright side, my compressor should be able to keep up. It's rated for a maximum of 12mm d.o.c - it should make my life easier than not having anything else, but the amount of grinding I have to do now is plenty. Such is life, the next bigger bandsaw was unaffordable and I will have to make do with what I have.

The other purchase was this - supposedly rated for 700kg, but when I look at the level of sketch and sinositis, I can only shake my head.

751442


Who in the flying **** delivers this kind of work? The other one is straight? COME ON!
751443



I will need to give it a careful once over. It does not have locking pins - only three safety catches on the bottom rails. I'll have to see what can be done to void the warranty since I don't want to put my faith in either the ram or the safety catches. It will work though and is a big QoL improvement for me now.

My project for today is to make a better work table. My countertops are full of tools and bike parts, my bench is where I do cutting and grinding (so no bueno) and the other table I have is a cheap and flimsy plastic patio item with a warped top. No bueno.

ONWARDS!
 

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Wow,a band saw is pretty serious. I never found a piece on my Bonnie that couldn’t be fixed with a sawzall and an angle grinder with cutting and flap discs.. had access to the plasma cutters at work but never found a part that warranted the violence..lol
 

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Looks like your getting ready to open up a neighborhood moto bike repair and build shop ;)
it’s like Christmas every time a package shows up for the bike 🏍, I hope u r having fun!..... FTG
 

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Sorry, Miss, but I’m an old guy. Many of your pics aren’t showing me anything. I need context or scale or something to understand what I’m supposed to be looking at. A closeup picture of a bolt head doesn’t show me the broken window..please help me understand.
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Which pic are you referring to? The reverse miter-cut-that-shall-not-be-named?
 

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I'm sure all of you have seen Marlon's highly entertaining Bonneville 865 review, and are familiar with his phrase "Nanna's Panties Gold".

This is what I started off with:

View attachment 751200

It looks good from some angles (the rear end view kinda "works" for me - but credit for this mostly goes to the megaphone cans and their penchant for flaring up and out to the sides). Mostly, however, I just find it to be dumpy and awkward-looking. The painted side covers, front mudguard, cheap-looking chrome rear shocks and seat curves just give it a mish-mash of angles and textures that create a messy, thrown-together feel. It doesn't evoke the least bit of retrophilia in me - it just looks old-fashioned. The delivery-bike-esque lamp assemblies, ugly dash, risers and what can only be charitably described as ape hangers, are the final nail in the coffin. Sure, I can change the seat, and change the shocks and put lower bars or clipons and what have you - but that'd always be a boob job on a pig, aesthetically speaking.

The mag wheels, on the other hand, can give it a 70s musclebike feel when viewed from the front - but in turn they let the rear view down and don't work in the least with that brobdingnagian awning hanging out the back. It is a motorcycle that doesn't know what it wants to be, but was shoved onto the roads by bean-counters who decided it must be all things to all people as much as possible, and positioned as a bread-and-butter model.

The bike rides fine for the most part. It is more than competent enough. Coming from an SV650S and a GSR600, dynamically it is horribly flawed by comparison, but for what it is, it is charming in its own way. The problem is, however, that I cannot rely on it looking like a million dollars in order for me to overlook its shortcomings. The buzzy engine (I'm an L-Twin gal, through and through), short highway gearing, uncomfortable seat, lack of QoL accoutrements like a fuel gauge or gear position indicator - and of course that horrific rear suspension - are all stick with no eye candy carrot. I had hoped it would be more comfortable than either the SV or the GSR on account of it being heavier, more wallowy and having high bars and bench seat - but both of those bikes put this one to shame. The SV in particular is all-day comfy and I miss it a lot.

You really can never get any sort of sense of long-term ownership by taking a test ride. I didn't even bother - I just wanted to have something to potter around on and get lost in my surroundings. The price was right, the mileage very low, I got a nice new lid and gloves thrown in for free, &c. However, the single biggest problem with this bike is that it was not my first bike. It forever lives in the shadow of the many great bikes I've ridden, some of which I've been fortunate enough to own. Those kinds of comparisons might be unfair, but if I consider what else I could have bought for similar money, I always afterwards had a generous dollop of buyer's remorse and felt a bit suckered by the promises the overall style and brand cachet made versus the reality that followed. When you think about, in the Bonnie's case, the statement that it makes a great first bike is actually kind of insulting because really this relies on you not knowing any better!

All of this yarn is by way of saying that the bike needs a major overhaul in the way it looks for me to not merely be kinda meh about it, but to love it. There is a diamond in in the rough underneath all that chintz, and that vision has brought me to this point.

My idea of cosmetic upgrades is not bolting on utterly pointless tat like a bloody brass stem nut - oh no, sir. It is this!

View attachment 751208

I will say it straight - I would own the hell out of this and polish it until my fingers bled, and would ride it with a song in my heart no matter how bad it was.

The aesthetic is to evoke the 30s without being overtly art-deco. This is also not a cafe racer - I want it to look like an elegant GT. And yes - that's a monoshock. And yes, I am going to do it. The keen-eyed among you might be reminded of PI Customs' Blue Arrow, which serves as a lot of inspiration and affirms what I've always wished the Bonnie to look like. However, I don't agree with some of his decisions (particularly his solution for bracing the frame and swingarm and that he is forced to ditch the silencers at the rear) and I believe there might be a more elegant and unobtrusive way these particular things can be executed without compromising safety and the torsional rigidity of the frame.

It is the only major engineering challenge ahead of me - everything else you see there is ball-parkably achievable. The wheelbase is the same, the forks are stock, the swingarm is unmoved and unlengthened, etc. Even the colour is similar. It is a collection of small changes that together absolutely transforms the whole bike and turns it into an objet d'art.

Most of this work lies within my technical abilities and available equipment without blowing the bank, a lot of it is unavoidably idealistic (the clutch actuator and cable arrangement on the left cover comes to mind - something that I only have the luxury of hiding in a virtual world as above), and a lot of it can only be solved by spending money - I have mag wheels for example and the switchgear housings are black plastic - not billet items. But - I am at the engineering stage now and the aesthetics must take a back seat to what lies ahead immediately. I have many, many problems to solve and hurdles to overcome, however, I will cross each of those bridges as I get to them and for the kind of person I am, that is all part of the journey.

I intend this thread to be my official build thread and I hope I can rely on both the seasoned and the opinionated among you to guide me and help keep me motivated.

Thanks for looking!
Rhianne
I'm sure all of you have seen Marlon's highly entertaining Bonneville 865 review, and are familiar with his phrase "Nanna's Panties Gold".

This is what I started off with:

View attachment 751200

It looks good from some angles (the rear end view kinda "works" for me - but credit for this mostly goes to the megaphone cans and their penchant for flaring up and out to the sides). Mostly, however, I just find it to be dumpy and awkward-looking. The painted side covers, front mudguard, cheap-looking chrome rear shocks and seat curves just give it a mish-mash of angles and textures that create a messy, thrown-together feel. It doesn't evoke the least bit of retrophilia in me - it just looks old-fashioned. The delivery-bike-esque lamp assemblies, ugly dash, risers and what can only be charitably described as ape hangers, are the final nail in the coffin. Sure, I can change the seat, and change the shocks and put lower bars or clipons and what have you - but that'd always be a boob job on a pig, aesthetically speaking.

The mag wheels, on the other hand, can give it a 70s musclebike feel when viewed from the front - but in turn they let the rear view down and don't work in the least with that brobdingnagian awning hanging out the back. It is a motorcycle that doesn't know what it wants to be, but was shoved onto the roads by bean-counters who decided it must be all things to all people as much as possible, and positioned as a bread-and-butter model.

The bike rides fine for the most part. It is more than competent enough. Coming from an SV650S and a GSR600, dynamically it is horribly flawed by comparison, but for what it is, it is charming in its own way. The problem is, however, that I cannot rely on it looking like a million dollars in order for me to overlook its shortcomings. The buzzy engine (I'm an L-Twin gal, through and through), short highway gearing, uncomfortable seat, lack of QoL accoutrements like a fuel gauge or gear position indicator - and of course that horrific rear suspension - are all stick with no eye candy carrot. I had hoped it would be more comfortable than either the SV or the GSR on account of it being heavier, more wallowy and having high bars and bench seat - but both of those bikes put this one to shame. The SV in particular is all-day comfy and I miss it a lot.

You really can never get any sort of sense of long-term ownership by taking a test ride. I didn't even bother - I just wanted to have something to potter around on and get lost in my surroundings. The price was right, the mileage very low, I got a nice new lid and gloves thrown in for free, &c. However, the single biggest problem with this bike is that it was not my first bike. It forever lives in the shadow of the many great bikes I've ridden, some of which I've been fortunate enough to own. Those kinds of comparisons might be unfair, but if I consider what else I could have bought for similar money, I always afterwards had a generous dollop of buyer's remorse and felt a bit suckered by the promises the overall style and brand cachet made versus the reality that followed. When you think about, in the Bonnie's case, the statement that it makes a great first bike is actually kind of insulting because really this relies on you not knowing any better!

All of this yarn is by way of saying that the bike needs a major overhaul in the way it looks for me to not merely be kinda meh about it, but to love it. There is a diamond in in the rough underneath all that chintz, and that vision has brought me to this point.

My idea of cosmetic upgrades is not bolting on utterly pointless tat like a bloody brass stem nut - oh no, sir. It is this!

View attachment 751208

I will say it straight - I would own the hell out of this and polish it until my fingers bled, and would ride it with a song in my heart no matter how bad it was.

The aesthetic is to evoke the 30s without being overtly art-deco. This is also not a cafe racer - I want it to look like an elegant GT. And yes - that's a monoshock. And yes, I am going to do it. The keen-eyed among you might be reminded of PI Customs' Blue Arrow, which serves as a lot of inspiration and affirms what I've always wished the Bonnie to look like. However, I don't agree with some of his decisions (particularly his solution for bracing the frame and swingarm and that he is forced to ditch the silencers at the rear) and I believe there might be a more elegant and unobtrusive way these particular things can be executed without compromising safety and the torsional rigidity of the frame.

It is the only major engineering challenge ahead of me - everything else you see there is ball-parkably achievable. The wheelbase is the same, the forks are stock, the swingarm is unmoved and unlengthened, etc. Even the colour is similar. It is a collection of small changes that together absolutely transforms the whole bike and turns it into an objet d'art.

Most of this work lies within my technical abilities and available equipment without blowing the bank, a lot of it is unavoidably idealistic (the clutch actuator and cable arrangement on the left cover comes to mind - something that I only have the luxury of hiding in a virtual world as above), and a lot of it can only be solved by spending money - I have mag wheels for example and the switchgear housings are black plastic - not billet items. But - I am at the engineering stage now and the aesthetics must take a back seat to what lies ahead immediately. I have many, many problems to solve and hurdles to overcome, however, I will cross each of those bridges as I get to them and for the kind of person I am, that is all part of the journey.

I intend this thread to be my official build thread and I hope I can rely on both the seasoned and the opinionated among you to guide me and help keep me motivated.

Thanks for looking!
Rhianne
I gotta say.. it’s pretty sweet!
 

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Opinionated response here.
First, congratulations are in order, the proposed finished bike would be an impressive effort on your part. And yep, it would definitely be most unique almost anywhere you would ride it. The monoshock particularly gives it a rather distinctive and unique look.

One of three relatively minor considerations might be to give some consideration to a bit more comfortable handlebar height. Yeah, the low bars give a good artist rendering look, but, practicality has some value too.
Also, the 'gold' color is definitely good looking, however, perhaps some other subtle custom and lighter color may give the bike a bit more distinctive pizzazz.

And some creative tank badges (not necessarily Triumph) might make an interesting statement.

That's two cents worth of opinionated response. If and when you do it, as you indicate, keep us appraised of your progress including challenges, if any. Good luck !
Well clip-ons/ low bars work and are comfortable enough with the right seat. I recently went through this with my bobber, not wanting to give up on the low bars I spent the five hundred on a Corbin seat. It's all day comfort.
 

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I'm sure all of you have seen Marlon's highly entertaining Bonneville 865 review, and are familiar with his phrase "Nanna's Panties Gold".

This is what I started off with:

View attachment 751200

It looks good from some angles (the rear end view kinda "works" for me - but credit for this mostly goes to the megaphone cans and their penchant for flaring up and out to the sides). Mostly, however, I just find it to be dumpy and awkward-looking. The painted side covers, front mudguard, cheap-looking chrome rear shocks and seat curves just give it a mish-mash of angles and textures that create a messy, thrown-together feel. It doesn't evoke the least bit of retrophilia in me - it just looks old-fashioned. The delivery-bike-esque lamp assemblies, ugly dash, risers and what can only be charitably described as ape hangers, are the final nail in the coffin. Sure, I can change the seat, and change the shocks and put lower bars or clipons and what have you - but that'd always be a boob job on a pig, aesthetically speaking.

The mag wheels, on the other hand, can give it a 70s musclebike feel when viewed from the front - but in turn they let the rear view down and don't work in the least with that brobdingnagian awning hanging out the back. It is a motorcycle that doesn't know what it wants to be, but was shoved onto the roads by bean-counters who decided it must be all things to all people as much as possible, and positioned as a bread-and-butter model.

The bike rides fine for the most part. It is more than competent enough. Coming from an SV650S and a GSR600, dynamically it is horribly flawed by comparison, but for what it is, it is charming in its own way. The problem is, however, that I cannot rely on it looking like a million dollars in order for me to overlook its shortcomings. The buzzy engine (I'm an L-Twin gal, through and through), short highway gearing, uncomfortable seat, lack of QoL accoutrements like a fuel gauge or gear position indicator - and of course that horrific rear suspension - are all stick with no eye candy carrot. I had hoped it would be more comfortable than either the SV or the GSR on account of it being heavier, more wallowy and having high bars and bench seat - but both of those bikes put this one to shame. The SV in particular is all-day comfy and I miss it a lot.

You really can never get any sort of sense of long-term ownership by taking a test ride. I didn't even bother - I just wanted to have something to potter around on and get lost in my surroundings. The price was right, the mileage very low, I got a nice new lid and gloves thrown in for free, &c. However, the single biggest problem with this bike is that it was not my first bike. It forever lives in the shadow of the many great bikes I've ridden, some of which I've been fortunate enough to own. Those kinds of comparisons might be unfair, but if I consider what else I could have bought for similar money, I always afterwards had a generous dollop of buyer's remorse and felt a bit suckered by the promises the overall style and brand cachet made versus the reality that followed. When you think about, in the Bonnie's case, the statement that it makes a great first bike is actually kind of insulting because really this relies on you not knowing any better!

All of this yarn is by way of saying that the bike needs a major overhaul in the way it looks for me to not merely be kinda meh about it, but to love it. There is a diamond in in the rough underneath all that chintz, and that vision has brought me to this point.

My idea of cosmetic upgrades is not bolting on utterly pointless tat like a bloody brass stem nut - oh no, sir. It is this!

View attachment 751208

I will say it straight - I would own the hell out of this and polish it until my fingers bled, and would ride it with a song in my heart no matter how bad it was.

The aesthetic is to evoke the 30s without being overtly art-deco. This is also not a cafe racer - I want it to look like an elegant GT. And yes - that's a monoshock. And yes, I am going to do it. The keen-eyed among you might be reminded of PI Customs' Blue Arrow, which serves as a lot of inspiration and affirms what I've always wished the Bonnie to look like. However, I don't agree with some of his decisions (particularly his solution for bracing the frame and swingarm and that he is forced to ditch the silencers at the rear) and I believe there might be a more elegant and unobtrusive way these particular things can be executed without compromising safety and the torsional rigidity of the frame.

It is the only major engineering challenge ahead of me - everything else you see there is ball-parkably achievable. The wheelbase is the same, the forks are stock, the swingarm is unmoved and unlengthened, etc. Even the colour is similar. It is a collection of small changes that together absolutely transforms the whole bike and turns it into an objet d'art.

Most of this work lies within my technical abilities and available equipment without blowing the bank, a lot of it is unavoidably idealistic (the clutch actuator and cable arrangement on the left cover comes to mind - something that I only have the luxury of hiding in a virtual world as above), and a lot of it can only be solved by spending money - I have mag wheels for example and the switchgear housings are black plastic - not billet items. But - I am at the engineering stage now and the aesthetics must take a back seat to what lies ahead immediately. I have many, many problems to solve and hurdles to overcome, however, I will cross each of those bridges as I get to them and for the kind of person I am, that is all part of the journey.

I intend this thread to be my official build thread and I hope I can rely on both the seasoned and the opinionated among you to guide me and help keep me motivated.

Thanks for looking!
Rhianne
I'm sure all of you have seen Marlon's highly entertaining Bonneville 865 review, and are familiar with his phrase "Nanna's Panties Gold".

This is what I started off with:

View attachment 751200

It looks good from some angles (the rear end view kinda "works" for me - but credit for this mostly goes to the megaphone cans and their penchant for flaring up and out to the sides). Mostly, however, I just find it to be dumpy and awkward-looking. The painted side covers, front mudguard, cheap-looking chrome rear shocks and seat curves just give it a mish-mash of angles and textures that create a messy, thrown-together feel. It doesn't evoke the least bit of retrophilia in me - it just looks old-fashioned. The delivery-bike-esque lamp assemblies, ugly dash, risers and what can only be charitably described as ape hangers, are the final nail in the coffin. Sure, I can change the seat, and change the shocks and put lower bars or clipons and what have you - but that'd always be a boob job on a pig, aesthetically speaking.

The mag wheels, on the other hand, can give it a 70s musclebike feel when viewed from the front - but in turn they let the rear view down and don't work in the least with that brobdingnagian awning hanging out the back. It is a motorcycle that doesn't know what it wants to be, but was shoved onto the roads by bean-counters who decided it must be all things to all people as much as possible, and positioned as a bread-and-butter model.

The bike rides fine for the most part. It is more than competent enough. Coming from an SV650S and a GSR600, dynamically it is horribly flawed by comparison, but for what it is, it is charming in its own way. The problem is, however, that I cannot rely on it looking like a million dollars in order for me to overlook its shortcomings. The buzzy engine (I'm an L-Twin gal, through and through), short highway gearing, uncomfortable seat, lack of QoL accoutrements like a fuel gauge or gear position indicator - and of course that horrific rear suspension - are all stick with no eye candy carrot. I had hoped it would be more comfortable than either the SV or the GSR on account of it being heavier, more wallowy and having high bars and bench seat - but both of those bikes put this one to shame. The SV in particular is all-day comfy and I miss it a lot.

You really can never get any sort of sense of long-term ownership by taking a test ride. I didn't even bother - I just wanted to have something to potter around on and get lost in my surroundings. The price was right, the mileage very low, I got a nice new lid and gloves thrown in for free, &c. However, the single biggest problem with this bike is that it was not my first bike. It forever lives in the shadow of the many great bikes I've ridden, some of which I've been fortunate enough to own. Those kinds of comparisons might be unfair, but if I consider what else I could have bought for similar money, I always afterwards had a generous dollop of buyer's remorse and felt a bit suckered by the promises the overall style and brand cachet made versus the reality that followed. When you think about, in the Bonnie's case, the statement that it makes a great first bike is actually kind of insulting because really this relies on you not knowing any better!

All of this yarn is by way of saying that the bike needs a major overhaul in the way it looks for me to not merely be kinda meh about it, but to love it. There is a diamond in in the rough underneath all that chintz, and that vision has brought me to this point.

My idea of cosmetic upgrades is not bolting on utterly pointless tat like a bloody brass stem nut - oh no, sir. It is this!

View attachment 751208

I will say it straight - I would own the hell out of this and polish it until my fingers bled, and would ride it with a song in my heart no matter how bad it was.

The aesthetic is to evoke the 30s without being overtly art-deco. This is also not a cafe racer - I want it to look like an elegant GT. And yes - that's a monoshock. And yes, I am going to do it. The keen-eyed among you might be reminded of PI Customs' Blue Arrow, which serves as a lot of inspiration and affirms what I've always wished the Bonnie to look like. However, I don't agree with some of his decisions (particularly his solution for bracing the frame and swingarm and that he is forced to ditch the silencers at the rear) and I believe there might be a more elegant and unobtrusive way these particular things can be executed without compromising safety and the torsional rigidity of the frame.

It is the only major engineering challenge ahead of me - everything else you see there is ball-parkably achievable. The wheelbase is the same, the forks are stock, the swingarm is unmoved and unlengthened, etc. Even the colour is similar. It is a collection of small changes that together absolutely transforms the whole bike and turns it into an objet d'art.

Most of this work lies within my technical abilities and available equipment without blowing the bank, a lot of it is unavoidably idealistic (the clutch actuator and cable arrangement on the left cover comes to mind - something that I only have the luxury of hiding in a virtual world as above), and a lot of it can only be solved by spending money - I have mag wheels for example and the switchgear housings are black plastic - not billet items. But - I am at the engineering stage now and the aesthetics must take a back seat to what lies ahead immediately. I have many, many problems to solve and hurdles to overcome, however, I will cross each of those bridges as I get to them and for the kind of person I am, that is all part of the journey.

I intend this thread to be my official build thread and I hope I can rely on both the seasoned and the opinionated among you to guide me and help keep me motivated.

Thanks for looking!
Rhianne
Looking forward to progress reports and pictures.
 

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Discussion Starter #40
You forgot the old saying...
Measure twice, cut once.
Well, practice makes perfect. It's a nice miter joint anyway. You can always build something else using that piece.
I have no idea what happened here. I marked it up square, flipped it over to confirm where the angle must go, made a short diagonal mark, flipped it over to confirm, went over to the vise, used my set square to extend the line, cut. When I got back to the project - it was just.... COMPLETELY WRONG.

My ***-o-meter is still smoking.
 
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