Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Shaping my custom tail

While cylinders were off at the shop getting bored, I started working on my tail end covers.

The end goal is a custom fiberglass rear end, frame coverish, seat mounting thingy. Whatever you want to call it, the rear bodywork. I'm starting by making a wood pattern, which I will layup fiberglass over to create my mold. I will then lay up a 2nd fiberglass piece using the mold so I get an exact replica of the wood. This is a very time consuming and tedious process. Kinda like everything custom I've been doing to this bike. I'm learning it all from scratch, and it's taking forever.
I glued a bunch of wood together, notched it out, cut it to length and fit it up on the bike. Here's the raw shape I started with:

Starting out it is obviously very square. I started figuring all the different angles and marking them out. The next step is to rough sand down to those angles using my angle grinder with an 60 grit disc. I'm making this all up as I go along and every time I go to cut, I'm deathly afraid of messing up because I would have to start from scratch all over again. Maybe that's an exaggeration. I can always fill in with bondo, but the less I do that the better.

As you can see, I've covered my workshop in a layer of wood dust. That's quite a change from the oil, metal filings and paint that's been in there to date. Wood is so much easier to work with than metal!! Wow.

V-Strom paint job

I bought my yellow 2008 DL650 because it was the right price, right seller and right timing. What wasn't right was the color. Yellow. I'm not a solid yellow bike kind of guy. I'm not a stock bike or stock paintjob kind of guy either for that matter.

So, with my new found painting skills, I busted a custom paint job on my daily commuter.
Check it:
Putting the side covers back on after they cured out.

Backing her out after reassembly (this is my front porch):

I couldn't remove ALL the yellow. Solid black is only so cool. I figured, I spend all my time on the freeway, so I worked with that theme and came up with the hazard stripes for that custom touch. Nobody likes the paint job but me. Oh well, f**k 'em. I don't ride this bike to pull girls, impress people, or go super fast, so who cares.

Paint used:
Hot Rod Flatz HRF 296 Black Chassis (Satin)
This is a 2-part urethane paint. Cures as hard as nails.

I had a bitch of a time getting it to spray right with my crappy gun. Not my best work, but from 5 feet away, you can't tell it's not professionally done.