Friday, July 27, 2012

Diamond in the Rough

There it is. The classic UJM (Universal Japanese Motorcycle). This one is kind of a bitza. I got the frame because it had been in an accident that resulted in a bent neck. I machined up a new neck and if I remember correctly, I raked it a couple of degrees when I put it back straight. This was also the frame that I built the sidecar for so it still has the mounting lugs. The front forks are off a Suzuki GS 1000. They were fitted with air caps from the factory which was the latest technology at the time. Of course that was something like thirty years ago now. The engine was on a go-kart when I got it. Big go-kart with some cat tires on the back and aircraft wheels on the front. Scary. The rear swingarm is one that I fabbed up out of 4130 rectangular tubing.  I used to make a lot of extended swingarms for dragbikes but they didn't pivot. They used struts in the back. I still have a pair of struts that will fit this thing if I decide to go drag racing again.

Starting from front to rear: I need to get a new front master cylinder. I have a new chrome headlight. I need to tack the brackets on to mount that up. I bought some cutsey-wootsey little turn signals for both the front and rear. Need to figure out how I'm going to mount them on the front. The engine needs a going over. I've got a block from a 1000 with pistons, Allen head bolt kit and a gasket kit already. So valve job, go through the carbs and probably new clutch plates. I've got a spiffy Kosman clutch release mounting plate that I've managed to loose a couple of pieces for, so I need to make those up. I made up some aluminum side covers. They'll get fastened on with Dzus fasteners, so tack those on the frame. I have the mounting plates and fasteners. Make a seat mount, weld the rear turn signal brackets on (those are ready to go), weld the mounting brackets on the swingarm for the chain guard (those too are ready to go). Finish the muffler. New rear caliper, mounting plate and torque/stay rod. I've got  a new master cylinder with the brake pedal already attached. Sort the wiring and paint.

So it looks like there's a lot to do, and there is. Nothing I can't handle, however. I've got an engine stand that has a head specifically for that motor. My buddy that piddles with the little Italian bikes will grind the valves for me. As I stated in the last post,I'm looking at mostly labor and I should have the time to devote to it now. 

The old 900/1000s were fun bikes to ride. This one will have a flat bar and rearsets, and with the raked frame will sit nice and low. Compared to a lot of the new bikes, this thing seems small by comparison. My brother's Concours seemed huge when I sat on it and it was the 1000cc version, not the 1400. Part of that was probably the 7.5 gallon gas tank and all the plastic that surrounds everything. The wheelbase is probably close to the same with my 900 being stretched a little.

I'm ready to start on it. If I can devote a couple of hours per day on most days, it shouldn't take me that long. It's all about staying focused. It's been awhile since that's happened, however.


Surly said...

We should talk about this bike. I have some ideas.

Shop Teacher Bob said...

It's been a little while since we talked any way. I'd like to hear your ideas. Let me know when your free - I'll come up.