Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Inflation Is A MotherFucker

So trying to get ahead of the enormous learning curve building this flathead. I picked up a few books to go over. Lots of good hints and tips and things to look out for. First one is this little guy. I got about ten pages in and saw the money figures for motors and cores and started laughing. I went back and saw that this book was originally printed in 1981. WTF seriously and as I got farther it says shit like " Go ahead a buy the good oil, its only a dollar a qt." Well now that good oil is like 8-10 dollars a qt. so my 400 dollar block in 2014 money is worth like 1 billion dollars. Hilarious and terribly sad at the same time. It's new years eve and I hope all you folks out there got someone to kiss. Later. Last post of the year. Weird

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Mucking Around.....

 Well got one of those freak days where the weather was sweet. Almost 60 out so I jumped on the Shovel and made tracks. Haven't really posted any pics of it lately. Cut down the sissy bar to make the ass even weirder. 4 over tubes and some mini apes.  Went and rode my favorite loop and kinda forgot that there is a stretch of gravel right before you make it to the Highway. Well with snow still on the ground it was fucking nasty mucky filth. Was it worth it? Yes and when I got home the bike got a proper washing and cleaned up all the nooks and such. Feeling pretty lucky to get out today. Found a local machine shop to go through the Flathead block so that is good. Rebuilt my Steering box for the 51 and it is pulled all the way down to the frame rails right now. So much work to do but for now I am just doing everything that doesn't cost money. Just the bearings and seals for the steering were like a hundred dollars. FUCK. So Top 5 for this last Top 5 of the Year.
Top 5 Things Of 2013

Number 1 Riding To Sturgis and Hanging with Noot 
Number 2. Building my Swingarm bike.
Number 3, My boy getting all ate up over Star Wars.
Number 4. Converge-All that you love you leave behind
Number 5. Learned a ton of shit the hard way. The only way.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Cool Stuff....

So fucking cool when people just give me cool stuff because they know I am into bikes. So there is a old man that lives next door at the new house. His name is Leon and is a very cool old guy. He told me he used to have bikes back in his early 20's. Said he liked British bikes and rode a Matchless Apache. So I guess he dug up this original sales brochure from the last new bike he ever bought. He bought the last 1961 Matchless they had because the new 1962 models were hitting the show room. I will say that a Matchless is one of the only bikes I have never ridden. I would imagine they are a lot like a Triumph but there is something a little more classy about the Matchless. The company was firmly grounded in the racing and scramble scene so what happened to them? I may have to research this and report back. Still totally cool and I will hang it up in my shop.

My Yamaha ...

After I cleaned out the broken frame sections I welded them up proper. Filled in the frame to the downtube for added strength. Used a spray bomb black and its now good to go. Got it all wired and I am still waiting for my barrel to show up.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Exploding Hearts - Sleeping Aides And Razor Blades

Revillos - Motorbike Beat 1979 Live

Top 5 Saturday

 Been scrambling to get all this Christmas shit done so I can get back to work on bike stuff. The only thing even remotely awesome about this time of year is seeing the kiddos going ape shit crazy out of there minds about new toys. So this year my daughter wanted a guitar. She really is at the perfect age to try and learn some Ramones songs. So my 51 is almost all the way apart and I will get the cab off tomorrow. Full on frame off restoration I guess. Mother fucker it was terrible getting the cab bolts off and the god damn doors. Fuck those doors. Damn near gave up but thanks to the Mouse Milk I got the bolts off. So I had to pull the steering box apart to get the column out. I finally figured out why when it was really cold my steering froze up. There was a good cup of water in it. So the water would freeze or make a really nice slushy in my steering box. Fuck everything is worn out and rusted to hell in there. Ok so there that is what I have been up to. Top 5 Saturday. 
Top 5 Most Underrated Punk Bands( My Opinion)

Number 1. The Rezillos- One of the best records of the 70's hands down. The full length record Can't Stand The... is constantly getting played and is actually playing right now. They had a dual lead vocals thing going on with a boy and girl singers splitting it up. So fucking catchy and snotty at the same time. I will post  a song for you to check out.

Number 2. The Exploding Hearts- One of the all time greatest power pop bands of the last 100 years. Tragically right after there first record was released they were involved in a terrible crash that killer three of the members. Please take a minute and look up this band. There is some kind of teenage element to them which is endearing to me. 

Number 3. Off!- A true goldmine of all stars. Keith Morris is one of the last true punk purveyors. Been there from the start and is still fucking killing it. The music is in your face, fast, well written, and some how not cheesy. It does help to have probably the best backing band ever. 

Number 4. The Hangmen- Some how out of the ashes of Hair metal and heroin The Hangmen some how made it. There first record came out in the 80's and they even have BIG hair and terrible clothes on but the music is so FUCKING good that it is ok. I 'd say they have the swagger of the Dolls and the grit of The Clash almost. The vocals rule and the songs are really good. The cover does not do the music justice. So they burned out in the 80's and then like ten years later they got back together and have put out 5 killer records since. There last record was a EP and has been played hundreds of times if not thousands. 

Number 5. The Vibrators- Yeah yeah yeah the name is stupid but that does not mean they did not write some of the greatest songs ever. Last week I had the IPOD on shuffle and it played YEAH YEAH YEAH and I played it like 5 times. So great and with one really amazing record I don't know why others don't remember them. Most people have a really short attention span. I how ever live in this world of forgotten music and longing for more.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

So Much More.......

Getting out on your bike means so much more when you ride something you love. I most assured made the right decision by doing the swingarm swap. I am all gushy and in love with my Ironhead again. I am not joking when I say with every build I have done with this motor I learn so much more. One thing is for sure on days like this. Giving the chance to ride around my favorite backroads and just listen to the motor humming gives me hope and almost some kind of vindication. There was just me and my bike and a whole bunch of unanswered questions bouncing around in my head. I always stop at the airport and watch the planes take off right where these picture were taking. So neat to wonder where all those people are going and I hope as they take off they see me sitting on the blacktop next to my bike and wonder what the fuck I am doing there. Does it even matter? I do know that this is one perfect Sportster now and all others be damned. Put some proper miles on it and Friday it's supposed to snow. Argh. Here are a couple of things I have learned from this build.

Number 1. Leg Room and this seating position is awesome. No lower back pain. Jumped some pot holes. Sweet

Number 2. Motorcycles really do run better with the proper jets and an air filter that actually filters the air. Add in the 2 into 1 exhaust and I'm telling you this thing goes like stink.

Number 3.  To build a swingarm bike takes a little bit more time and a lot more foresight. It's all the stuff that you don't see that makes all the difference. No brackets, no side covers, no tabs, etc etc. Just putting the actual swingarm together with new bearings and races was a mind fuck.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Little Bunny Foo Foo

Blew the 51 apart today. Liquid Wrench and the Snap On impact got busy. 60 year old bolts need some persuading. I will get the motor and front end out this week and try and get my dropped axle ordered. I am gonna sell the 15 inch Astro's that were on it so if you are interested let me know. 400 bucks with lugnuts and tires included. Decided I am going to repaint the interior as well so I will gut the inside as I go. Fuck it right I am 40 years old and I want my truck to be done by next year. I mean done Done like I will just be driving it till I die.. We shall see I suppose.  Found this little guy this morning. Mr Fox ate his head Ish

This Shit Totally Happened..........

One handed kickstart and it starts on the first kick. Man I didn't think it was gonna start that easy but then again this bike has always started easy. The pipes I built sound killer and I got to ride it up and down the street. Love it.

Kinda Forgot.......

2010 John came out and shot some bike footage at the Anchor. I guess he lost all the footage except the stuff on this teaser. We had some fun running around the city. Johnny Chop still had the XS, Tony was on his CB750. Crack pipe was still orange, and I think Aaron was there and Matt from IA was there riding the shop bike. Coming up on 4 years ago.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Mx 175 Update

So now that I am a solid week into the Mx here is the list so far of shit that is fucked.

Barrel and piston are in the trash- Looks like it broke a ring, then shoved the ring up into the top end where it bounced around for a while till it found a nice spot to wedge itself against the cylinder wall. The piston was already at its third OS. They only make a 4th OS so the gouge on the cylinder wall would have to be bored about 20 over to get the valley out of it. So in the trash it went and I bought a good cylinder off ebay so hopefully it shows up this week.Will get rebored and a matching Wiseco piston.

Wiring- With my anti rats nest issue I pulled all 6 wires out and will fix all the connections. The wires that were exposed to the elements are all dry rotted and broken. I do not know if any of the actual components are gonna work. I have tried to find some troubleshooting electrical stuff but to no avail I decided to just order a manual. 

Frame Broken- Yeah after inspecting all the broken and sheered off bolts I found the frame section where the shock runs through the frame is broken or cracked in 4 spots. Shit someone was seriously thrashing on my bike. So I cleaned out all the cracks and prepped it so I can weld them up this week. I went over every single inch of that frame so it should be solid after the fixes.

Cables- Every single cable is rusty and crusty. If I have to I will buy new ones but for now I just did a super lube and adjust on all of them. I had a Motion Pro throttle and I bought two new levers and perches. Seem to be working better so I am sure the first time I get 5 miles from home all three will break and leave me stranded. I will remember this post and curse.

Kicker splines- All the kick arm splines are damn near sheered off. I bet that when the piston locked up some brilliant POS tried to free it up by kicking the shit out of it. After awhile the splines gave out. So I sat with a triangle file and did my best to clean up the sheered off splines and give the OK ones a little more of a peak. I did drill out the small metric threads and tapped it with a 5/16 course thread. I used a Stainless allen head and got that fucker so tight that there is no way it can slip now. 

Clutch Slippage- Pulled off the side cover to inspect why the clutch was not disengaging. Yes once again I saw the handy work of a monkey with a large pair of clusterfuck. Where the nut was supposed to be that holds the adjuster on the clutch basket, there was something that kinda resembled a nut but was round and on really crooked. At one point in the bikes life it had a Phillips head in the middle of the shaft that lets you adjust the run out of the clutch pressure plate. The little nut locks it down so when you put the cove back on it stays where you want it. FUCK. Out came the Dremel. I cut a nice slot on the end so I could at least hold it with a flat head. Took the clutch out and ran a Die over the adjuster so I could put a new not round nut on the adjuster. After some tinkering it is better then new and the clutch works. Go Figure.

TO BE CONTINUED....................

Monday, December 9, 2013

Complete Control......

Got the day off and decided to clean up my hardware drawers first. Every few months I make a run and buy a few handfuls of Stainless nuts, bolts, and washers. 99% of the time it is all I use while building a bike. I tend to just buy one size and as I go just cut them down to the exact size I need. After you do this  for awhile I can literally in my head know almost every nut and bolt I will need. So I dumped the entire drawer out and just went through the whole fucking thing. Made some notes about what I need to restock up on. I have ten drawers like this one so I hate when they get like a bomb went off in them. I have all my Grade 5 and 8 in another drawer. I will say until you know and understand hardware and the correct usage of it you will be lost. Get a cheap drill/thread gauge so if you run into a weird bolt pattern all you have to do is hold it up and then put it where it belongs. Complete Control.

Sunday, December 8, 2013


Went and watched this movie last night. Crazy good and was really funny. One of my all time favorite bands since the first time I heard them. Lots of good live scenes and the interviews are super interesting. Bill Stevenson has got to be the punk rock equal of Brian Wilson or something. I woke up to Clean sheets stuck in my head.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Crack Pipe 8.0 In the Books

So here it is all done. So pissed off it is 1 degree outside so I can't go ride it. I sat and finished all the detail stuff this morning and hooked up the lights and such. Mounted the tank and ran the fuel line. I went over every single nut and bolt to make sure it was all tight and now I suppose I will cover it with a sheet till the weather warms up. Tried to take some detail pics of stuff I built or manhandled. The seat mount is killer and pushes the nose of the seat up 2 inches so the back doesn't puncture my tailbone. Exhaust was welded then cleaned up and painted . I decided to leave the cocktail shaker chrome in case I switch it out. So happy how the tail loop turned out. I really haven't seen any other late model Ironheads done this way say I had to just forge a trail so to speak. Bought a new rotor and rebuild my Tiawanese Ultima caliper for now. As soon as I find a decent used Performance Machine caliper I will put that on. For now all the bling on the rear is fine by me. Ended up narrowing the bars again this morning taking off another two inches out of the middle. Some times hiding weld spots gets tricky. I did not want the bottom bends wider then the top tree. Details. Haifley Brothers Bates seat looks perfect and that is the same P-pad that has been on at least ten bikes now. Made a little support bracket to help try and keep the carb from wiggle jiggling off with the bug eye aircleaner on it. Seriously way heavier then the little screen I had on it. I think I love using brass. Brass aircleaner, the kicker, washers everywhere, etc etc. Details! Made the taillight bracket that fits on the backside of the trans. For now I will leave it but I think it will be hard to see while riding so I may have to move it out a couple of inches. I do not want to make it easier to be ran over.  Once again I have to thank Michael at the Flying Weasel Paint Shack. Without this Wassell tank this bike would have never been done. Hobbits Rule. On to the MX 175

Make It Or Break It........

Top 5 Saturday. The Parts you put on your bike do make a difference. There are the obvious things like motor and frame but for me it is all about the small details. I especially love hand made one off pieces that were well thought out and executed nicely. I have never been a "It Has To Be Perfect" kinda guy but I do try and get parts I build done to the best of my ability. I need to know they are not going to fail while on my bike and to date  have never had a single piece I have built on my customers bikes or mine fail on the road. So with that here is my Top 5 list of parts that can make or break your build.

Number 1. Handlebars and controls. Granted I am not talking about stock bikes. Handlebars are supposed to do a job, which is one thing to be comfortable and the other is to look good. True I have in the past made the look good first then the later. I do not like any kind of bars with weird angles, bends or steps in them. There is no faster way to find out if the owner is a asshat then if he has a set of 1 1/2 super bent radius z bars with fangs on the ends. WTF Simple will always be better. Lately I have been running the same risers 10" up with some narrowed drag bars. It puts my hands right in front of me and since I ride one handed 90% of the time it is comfy. I put some 10 inch mini apes on the Crack pipe and narrowed them almost 4 inches last night. So far they feel and look good. 

Number 2. Exhausted. Another part that has a very important job. They are supposed to remove the gases from your motor first and do it properly. Second of course is looks and third is sound. Most of you have never thought about what a tuned exhaust system is really meant to do. Your motor needs some back pressure to help make it run more proficient. These guys that run drag pipes with no baffles are actually robbing them selves of horsepower. those drag pipes are or were designed for DRAG RACING. That is they were meant to be run at wide fucking open for 10 seconds or so. You would also have a carb set up for that exact application. WIDE FUCKING OPEN. For my Crack Pipe this time I built a 2 into 1 set up that is tuned to with in 1/4 inch. Meaning the front pipe and rear pipe are almost exactly the same. Tuned. Each cylinder will have the same back pressure and hence should actually make a little bit more power. Again with exhaust the simpler the better. I always try and have three mounts and I always make sure I can actually pick my bike up by the exhaust. Never had a single problem since using this technique. I think when I had the crack pipe in version 2 I only had two mounts and the front pipe would fall off the front head and after a couple of times of that I added a third mount. No more issues.

Number 3. Seating situation. I will be the first to admit that chopper seats SUCK. They look good first then just suck after that. They are terrible and if I had any sense I would ride a stock bike with a GIANT CUSHY ASS PILLOW. But to no avail I have good taste and I suffer for style. What you still do have to do is mount the fucking things correctly. Springs should be tight on the seat and the frame. A lot of people use those bung things with a cotter pin. They suck and after a while your springs will collapse. As for you seat pivot go ahead a buy a nice one from Fab Kevin or Biltwell. All the others look like shit or are so flimsy they will break in the worst possible situation ever.

Number 4. No Rats Rest. This goes for your wiring. Single handed most important thing most people don't even think about. It makes your lights work, bike run, bike charge, etc etc. The best wiring job you can do is one that no one will notice. I like looking at a bike and not see any wiring. You ,may have a few hanging out and for those I always use cloth wire. Looks good and works great. 

Number 5. Rubber Side Down. Anyone in the now knows that tires are all about preference. I love Avon MKII tires and Speedmasters. They work great and look good. I have also ran Firestones and Dunlops. All great tires. Granted I ride choppers and am not slaying curves. The tires you choose need to add to the look of your bike not take away from it. Nothing erks me more then seeing a cool bike then noticing they put some fucked up CHENG SHIN 30 dollar tire on there bike. Come on and go the little extra mile and put good tires on your bike.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Thinking about summer.....

Well the winter is upon us like a blanket of death. I still fucking hate the cold weather. Not gonna lie but if it isn't 50 degrees or warmer I'm not riding. Yes I have and if I had to I would but being miserable on your bike is not my intention. So just like every year I keep myself busy with projects and busy work. Ie swingarm build, dirtbikes, truck etc etc. But this last year was filled with good riding and I miss it already. Boo to winter Boo! I just remembered a post from a month ago that said I wasn't going to do anything to my bikes this winter. Yeah Right!