Thursday, August 2, 2012

It's Starting to Happen

Forgot the link on this one
Since I've started working on the 900, Surly has put up some ideas at his blog as to how I should proceed on this project. He rode to Kentucky in the sidecar with me when he was a pup so he's been down the road with the old 900. He's got a much better artistic eye than I have, I certainly value his opinion and I've wanted to collaborate on a bike project with him for a long time. That being said, I'm not so sure this is going to be the one. He's leaning more toward the old Superbike days and I was thinking a little more drag racing/street fighter look. I did a lot of drag bike work on the 900/1000s back in the day. Raked a ton of frames, made all kinds of parts and repaired lots of aluminum bits. However, Cycle magazine ran a feature story way back when about the bike in the photo and if I could find a copy, I'd think seriously about building a replica.

It's the Racecrafters Superbike from 1977 with Reg Pridmore aboard. In 1978, the bike had Vetter splashed across the tank. There are plenty of pictures of that bike all over the Internet (check Surly's site) and the later Harry Klinzmann ridden ELR version as well. The magazine article showed all the frame modifications, the big bridge fork brace and all the other things that made the bike successful. Cycle magazine went out of business quite a few years back. They were incorporated into Cycle World if I remember correctly. They might have the article. Regardless, I started working on the thing yesterday and I made some decent progress.

Surly is voting gold wheels like on the Vetter edition. If that's the case, we need to see about the rest of the paint scheme. Bright red like a Hailwood Replica Ducati would look good. I'm a long way from paint but what I really need to decide is how deep I want to go with this project. Double brake discs and calipers on the front would set me back a pretty penny. As it is, I'm only looking at a master cylinder and a brake line. Bridge under the swingarm? A little more work and ,maybe a tubing purchase. If I do go all in with the Superbike look, it's gotta be there, though. Since I'm building a street bike, lights and turn signals rather than a number plate are in order. I'm planning on tacking on the rear turn signal brackets and starting on the headlight mount today. When I get all the bits that I already had made up tacked on, I'll post some photos and then we'll all take a look.

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