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Thread: What have I done...

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  1. #1
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    What have I done...

    Hello all,

    First post here as a new member, I just wanted to share my story and what YOU made me to do. Lot of information found from this community played a big role during my project. Thank you guys.

    I try to keep the story simple. Iīm writing this from Finland, so please be gentle with my language skills...

    It all started just over year ago. I let go my old friend, Honda VTR modified as streetfighter. She was all fun but I wanted something more. Something different.

    I work in aviation as a Mechanic, and also build and restore old aircrafts as a hobby. Warbirds, jets, etc... So when I had to choose my next bike project, it was all by the feel. My background and true love to air-cooled piston engines left me with only one bike. Buell.

    From the beginning it was clear that it will be a project. After a while, I found the one. And boy, she was something...

    b0.jpg

    She started her life in 2004 as a bright red XB12R. And after some rough years, I found her like this. Gee...

    With all my courage, I bought this one. Without even test ride (it was january and 5 feet of snow outside...)

  2. #2
    Senior Member Cooter's Avatar
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    Wow! I can only guess at your skill set from having such an awesome job I bet that bike is crazy cool in no time.

    I'd love it if you'd post pics in Gen Chat of the planes, who doesn't like old Warbirds?!

    Welcome to the board, and don't worry your language skills are much better than most Americans

  3. #3
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    So without any previous knowledge or experience on Buell or even HDīs, I found this... this.... THING... from my garage.

    b1.jpg

    Ok, the bike had Jardine exhaust, "Race-ECU", LSL upper tree and other small upgrades on her. But the look. My god. Subframe, tail and front fender were D.I.Y. And everything was painted flat black. With wall paint I think. And then was the headlight. Old Finnish army gas mask with two halogens inside... Got her stripped down the same evening, just to find this.

    b2.jpg

    Electrics were made from speaker wire. And with couple of knots that Jaques Custeau would be proud of...

  4. #4
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    After stripping all the electrics with a side-cutters, I got the frame out. Engine looked good. No leaks (!), no dents or anything abnormal. And she sounded all good before I started stripping. So the heart of the beast got just good cleaning, black paint and polished ribs.

    b3.jpg

    After couple of days I got her on her feet again. And started to improvise on her future appearance with the headlight first...

    b4.jpg

  5. #5
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    After cutting all the electrics, I found myself buried in deep sh.... But after long stare-contest with WDM I managed to build working system, using original parts and some new wire. It was REALLY tight, but I got it. Kind of...

    With just idea on my head and couple big sheets of aluminium in corner of my garage I began started with base of the "tank".

    b5.jpg

    With a lot smaller air filter, fuses and relays stuffed on the self-made base plate with ECU on top of everything, I planned with paper something like this to cover everything....

    b6.jpg

  6. #6
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    And it kind of worked! Ugly as hell, but it was to be just a prototype. Made some early plans with cardboard and wires, before ended up shaping aluminum. Desing of the seat came up actually with the original rear seat, placed backwards just after the frame. I think I had couple of too many beers that night...

    b7.jpg

    After sobering out, just cleaned the lines and made base of the seat. To be covered with something softer than aluminum...

    b8.jpg

    Took couple of days to cut and shape the air box. Learning the metal shaping is a long road, that I tried to cut short. And the parts looked like that... Just take your time, patience and A HELL LOT OF TRAINING MATERIAL, eventually you will get it. Kind of... And because I wanted to keep alive my aviation riveting skills, no welding was used.

    b9.jpg

  7. #7
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    So. With a big rush, called "early spring", the first prototype was rolled out. Unfinished, lot of untested ideas and uncertain condition of engine or electrics. Never a good idea, but you know what. In Finland three months of the year is cold. Rest of the year is just fu**ing cold. Keep that in mind when you look the "prototype." The few first warm days of pring were used to test riding, bike finished or not....

    b10.jpg

    b11.jpg

    This was the point, I knew I ****ed up. It just looked strange. And after just hundred miles or so, she protested...

    b12.jpg

    Walked her home after my "rush to finish the bike" backfired. Rear cylinder injector got shorted and that was it. She drowned when nozzle was left open and pump kept feeding...

    I just gave up. I didnīt want to touch her anymore. At least for the next couple of months... Summer went by and so came the fall, bike stayed in the garage...

  8. #8
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    But then came the day, when it just snapped. I think it had something to do with the beer again. I just couldnīt give it up. Not me. Not with that bike.

    So the evolution had begun. First of all, good plans. Make them. What are you doing, why and how. I had just one plan. Make it look like a Warbird, because it sounds like one.
    Get all the parts you need. Just get them, before you start. When you select your parts (or make them), stick with your plan.
    After these two, just donīt take shortcuts. Just donīt. Study if you have to (here YOU people trained me even not knowing it...)

    b13.jpg
    Airbox cover got new desing, now with proper wooden buck.

    b14.jpg
    Frame got new paint, polishing and aluminum side covers.

    b15.jpg
    Swingarm got polished, so as front fork. New design of side scoop was introduced...

    b16.jpg
    After all the parts were made, bought, introduced to each other and teached to behave in one group...

  9. #9
    Senior Member Cooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 34nineteen View Post
    Since you said it could be returned to its original state... are the "holes" in the frame just graphics?
    Quote Originally Posted by AluB View Post
    b14.jpg
    Frame got new paint, polishing and aluminum side covers.

    YOU ARE WRONG!!!!











    Sorry AluB, this is going to be a forum joke for awhile....
    Last edited by Cooter; 04-25-2020 at 01:01 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cooter View Post
    YOU ARE WRONG!!!!











    Sorry AluB, this is going to be a forum joke for awhile....
    Holy hell thats funny!

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