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My Bobber Rebuild Thread
#1
My project will be posted here for this no doubt multi-year rebuild.

I'll start with a basic to do list:

To Do
Low down kit
Low down shocks → Chrome G-Suspension265 14-14
Wider rear tire
Cruiser type seat
Exhaust – Straight pipes
  Which header pipe? Does it have to be original?
Pod air filter (48mm)
Jet kit (2.2?)
Handlebars → Hurricane Flat Type 1 Chrome with Black Waffle Grips and Black Aluminum Bullet Bar Ends
Mirrors
Shock Sleeves → Kijima SR400/500 Front Fork Boots
Adapted rear fender
Side license bracket
Smaller LED signals – relocated
Smaller HiD headlight
Smaller single RPM gauge w/ digital speedometer (Do they exist?) → ACEWELL ACE-2802 Digital Speed/Tachometer
Box for the electricals

Tools I need to get
Torque wrench
Cradle to rest the bike on (I just used some bricks & 2x4's then I bough some engine stands)
Fine grit sand paper
Primer
Bondo
Masking tape
Paint
#2
Well, I finally got started on my rebuild.

I ordered some Low-down shocks for a little over $200. They are 10.5 inch (about 267mm) compared to the 325mm stock suspension length.  They are the shortest ones I could find that were getting good revues and were within budget. (Although I couldn't find any pics or people who had installed them on an SRV.)

G-Suspension offers two versions of this shock, the 265 and the 280.  The 265 gives a firmer ride on a harder suspension while the 280 if softer for comfort.  I want to drop the fender as low to the rear tire as I can, so I want a real firm ride.

While I'm waiting for the shocks to come in the mail, I jacked the bike up and put it on blocks.  The SRV250 stock exhaust makes this a real bitch since it curves under the engine, preventing you from jacking it up by the frame or the engine.  Though I don't have a center stand on my bike, there is what looks like a center stand mount, so I jacked it up there.  It was a balancing act to then lift the front and get some 2x4's under the frames on the side.  No problem on the right side of the bike, but on the left the exhaust comes just lower than the frame.  I ended up using the kickstand mounting point to hold most of the weight.  It looks like it should be okay and nothing that is bendable is under weight.  I can readjust when I take the exhaust off.

I then removed the seat, the rear carrier bar and fender.  I also tried out a scotch-pad drill attachment I bought to see how it would work for shining the aluminum and removing rust from the spokes.   It seems a little too hard and it scratched the surface a bit more than I liked.  It didn't do well at removing the paint that the previous owner put on the engine though.  (I'd like to punch the guy in the head!!)  It did alright on removing rust from the spokes though, so that's where I'll be using that.
#3
One of the (many) problems that I've found in my research before starting this project is that most of the parts used in bobber rebuilds are "one-offs."  No one seems interested in selling parts after the going through the trouble of designing them and having them built.

One of these problem parts is a saddle seat.  Though I've found one or two example of people using them on the Net, I can't find anyone selling kits or even a simple how to.  Well, we'll see if I can't take care of that here.

So, here are the measurements that I took yesterday (sorry – all in metric) and some relevant pics.
The width of the bolts on the seat support is 166mm. I think the SR400 is 180mm – or else I would use a mounting kit I found for it. I think I'm going to have to send some emails to some of the custom shops up north. (There are a few places in the prefecture that I can check out, but we'll have to see if they make custom parts.)
           
Anybody have any ideas out there, let me know!!
Edit: In the picture on the right, the bolt holding the tank down is actually 12mm, not 10 as shown.
#4
I was telling a guy at work today about my project and kind of explaining to him what I'm going to be doing and he asked me, "So, how much are you going to spend?"

You know, I hadn't really thought about it.  I know it's gonna take a lot of time and money, I just hadn't thought about how much.  (He's an investment guy, so I got the impression he was making a point about return on investment.  A bike is more than an investment for me.  It's more of a personal kinda thing.)

So, I decided to keep a list of things that I spend money on for this project.

Parts
Chrome G-Suspension265 14-14 Rear Shocks  ¥22,000
ACEWELL ACE-2802 Digital Speed/Tachometer ¥12,000
Front Fork Boots ¥3,000
Hurricane Flat Type 1 Handlebars ¥2,570
Black Aluminum Bullet Bar Ends ¥1,328
Black Waffle Grips ¥1,102

Tools
Buffer pad attachment for drill ¥614
Buffer Pad ¥717
Sanding attachment ¥666

Other
Paint remover ¥1,416
Buffing compound ¥717

Total to date: ¥46,130
#5
My new shocks came in last weekend while I was working on my bike, so I did a little comparison.  The pics aren't very good because the bike is on blocks in my shed, but you get an idea of the height difference it's going to give.

Here's a comparison of the shock length
   
Here's what the stock shocks looked like (with seat & rear fender removed)
   
Here are the new shocks (Don't know why the pics are getting rotated)
   

So you see how low it's going to drop the bike.  Can't wait to get this in the road!!
#6
I really want to replace the air filter chamber under the tank with some small pod filters.  I want to use the area for the electricals that have up to now been hidden in the headlight casing.  I realize this is going to massively increase air flow so of course I will re-jet.  I also plan on running a straight exhaust so overall airflow is really going to increase.

Question is, will that be too much of an increase?  Could it screw up my compression (or something)?  I don't know...

Anyway, here's what I'm looking at under the tank:
       

With it removed:
       

Just the box section is 11.5cm high from the top of the carb
it's 16.5cm long and 11cm wide

The carb intakes are 47mm 49mm wide with 23mm 24mm between intakes.

Some guys just put a pod filter on the air filter chamber and remove only the airbox.  I assume that would maintain the proper air flow dynamics while increasing the flow.

I'm gonna have to talk to some mechanics for this one....
#7
(02-03-2015, 10:26 PM)Chief_Mechanic Wrote: I really want to replace the air filter chamber under the tank with some small pod filters...

I'm gonna have to talk to some mechanics for this one....

And that's what I did.  I got a hold of my nephew in the States and he said that although it is do-able I'd have to be careful not to burn out my exhaust valves.

If the exhaust doesn't offer enough back pressure, then it would flow too much air and along with reduced power, there would be the risk of burning out the exhaust valves.

So, I'll go with a pod on the air filter chamber intake.  That'll be the cheaper option anyway.  I will also see if I can't add a bit of baffle to whatever slip-on I decide on - as long as it doesn't kill the sound too much.

Edit: The intake pipe on the air filter chamber is 67mm outside diameter. We'll have to see if I can find something that big or if I need to mod an inner pipe to use as a connector. I also worry about water getting kicked up the from back tire onto the filter and may have to figure our some kind of a "fender" to put on the frame under the back of the seat, down to the swingarm.
#8
Last time I was in the garage, I found myself kind of running around headless.  There are so many things that need to be done I wasn't sure what to do next.  Anyway, here's what I did:

Day 1:
Put the bike up on blocks
Remove seat & rear fender

Day 2:
Pulled off the tank
Removed the airbox, storage box, rear shocks, and chain guard
Removed the headlight and took the gauges off the brackets
Removed the front tire and the bar ends
Removed the exhaust rear pipes and the front header
Measured the carbs
I wanted to test the paint remover I got so I removed the front sprocket cover and stripped it
Then I wanted to see how hard it will be to polish the engine so I remove the cylinder head covers from the rear cylinder and worked on getting a shine out of them.
   
It's gonna take a lot of elbow grease as they are in pretty bad shape.
I've decided I'd rather do that than paint the engine black though.  I want to go for a black and chrome look - so I'll paint the frame and tank black then shine the shit out of everything I can.

What to do next? (Not necessarily in order.)
Strip the paint off then polish and paint the engine
Shine the forks outer tubes and paint them black, install fork boots
Remove and paint the swing arm (Still just primer, but I'm getting there!)
Polish the wheels
Check the front and rear bearings
Remove old handlebars and install the new ones w/ new grips and bar ends
Rewire the gauge cluster for the new speedometer and fab a place to hide the wiring under the tank.
Install new headlight - (Still haven't ordered one yet)
Fab a small rear "fender" to keep water off the pod filter and the battery box
Fab a battery box and rearrange the electrical components to fit into it
Paint the frame
Find the right exhaust slip-ons, then fab the front pipes, tape them and apply sealer
Install the pod air filter on the air filter chamber (probably need to mod a pipe to mount it on)
Install new spark plugs and a jet kit
Get a saddle seat and fab a bracket for it
Replace the front and rear brake pads
Strip the paint from the tank, apply primer and then paint (decide on color and/or design)

Damn, that's a long list... and I'm sure I'm forgetting a thing or two....Undecided
Oh well, I thought this was going to be a long term project.
#9
Well, I finally got a little more done.

I used a wire brush on a drill to shine up the cylinder head covers.  I had been working on them with sandpaper and it was just taking forever and scratching them up here and there, so I gave it a try.  I was worried that it may scratch them up, but they actually look really good.  I wasn't able to get between the radiator fins though, so I'm going to have to figure something out for that.  If I can't shine those areas as well, I'll just paint them black then shine the outer edges and tops.

I also finally got the right size socket to remove the swing-arm - it's a 22mm.  Of course I haven't had the time to remove it yet, but I need to get the primer and paint anyway.

Basically, I've been overwhelmed with work and any time I have had on the weekend has been used cutting the weeds (grass) now that spring is here.  I have gotten a few good rides in on my Kawasaki though, so it has been a pretty good riding season so far.

I'll post pics as soon as I get em.
#10
Well, it's been a while but I finally got a little more done.

I pulled off the swingarm, chain, and backsteps.  I still haven't found a good paint for them, but did find some primer that looks like it should work.  I'll strip and primer them once the weather gets better (which doesn't look like anytime soon.)

Then I started to pull the gear off the handlebars.  That's when I ran into a problem.  One of the screws on the left switch assembly won't break loose and it's damn close to completely stripping. (See pic) I don't know what to do but I sure as hell don't want to drill it.

Any advice?


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