26 December, 2011

Kawasaki Gas Tank Installed

Yes, I installed the gas tank on the Kawasaki pretty much the minute I got home:

25 December, 2011

Kawasaki Gas Tank: Boobs and Dragons

I'll make this brief, since the folk's computers are slower than creating stone tablets. I have a Kawasaki gas tank fully painted, courtesy Mr. A. As requested, boobs and dragons.

The proud artist:

Boobs, 6-shooter, spear, dragon:

Bushmaster indeed:

Absolutely terrific!

I can't wait to get this on the bike, get it running, and take it to the grocery store.

17 December, 2011

Trials Bike gets some Beef

I splurged last month, and got myself a Lifan 125cc engine for the Trials bike. There were too many hills and adventures the original 4hp 49cc pushrod motor just couldn't handle. So thanks to Tbolt, I had a new 125cc motor in two days. I forget the exact power numbers, but it was something like double the HP, and four times the tq, at lower rpm numbers.

I had to fab up a new exhaust, which I had been wanting to do anyways. I tucked it up high, and much closer to the frame:

It runs great. I can doddle along at nearly a dead stop in second gear at low rpm, and have more than enough oomph to lift the front tire up and over curbs with a slight blip of the throttle. No more 8,000rpm in first gear going up a gentle hill.

I still need to fit the skidplate and wire in an off switch.

11 December, 2011

"At least you have all your teeth"

I had a fantastic Saturday. And by fantastic, I mean not fantastic. My truck decided to not run yet again, and then later in the evening a tooth fell out. Yep, a tooth fell out. I should clarify: a tooth fell out of my mouth, not out of the non-running truck.

Roughly 10 years ago, I had a root canal. At my last cleaning a couple months ago, the x-rays showed the remaining bit of tooth under the crown was degrading, so I needed to decide whether I would get another crown, or get an implant. My tooth made that decision for me, by simply falling out. I was eating, and noticed something rolling around in my mouth:

You can even see the little posts that were made during the root canal process. The whole damn thing just came out. No bleeding, no pain, just a hole in my mouth. I'll likely need to get the rest of it cut out, then start the process of getting an implant.

Just in times for holiday grub!

05 December, 2011

Fuzzy lip

I'm still rocking the stache. got tired of the hulkster side pieces, and decided to treat Susan to a fuzzy upper lip. I'm due for a clean shave on the rest of my face though, to really accentuate it.

03 December, 2011

Kawasaki Screams to Life!!!

I had been trying to get the Kawasaki to run for the past couple evenings. I had spark, and I managed to fill up the carb full of fuel using half of an old filter as a funnel and a piece of fuel hose. It acted like it wanted to try, but wouldn't quite start.

Today I got serious after installing the new exhaust. With just enough choke and throttle, it almost started. So I fiddled with the timing a little, and advanced it a smidge. Roughly 1-degree based on the mark on the flywheel. As it happens, that is all it took, as it instantly fired up and ran.

I immediately grabbed Susan and the digital camera, and had her take this short video. This is only the second time it ran, so it is extra smokey.

After 30 seconds of running, most of the smoke cleared. I needed to adjust the idle speed up a bit, and it would idle without the choke, and take throttle very cleanly.

Getting a bike running for the first time is always exciting!

Kawasaki Exhaust Part Deuce

I decided to hack apart the stock exhaust and fashion myself a new one. I used the front half of the stocker, and built a new rear section using the calcs I put together for a proper expansion chamber size/shape. It went rather smoothly.

I even fashioned a little aluminum heat shield, and wrapped everything up in the leftover exhaust wrap from the BS-7 project.

As mounted:

24 November, 2011

Kawasaki Exhaust

I cleaned up the stock exhaust and mounted it up last night. It isn't my favorite look, as it seems to be about 6-8" too long. It has the expansion chamber shape built into it, then a muffler chamber at the back that also contained a spark arrestor. It isn't terrible, just not my favorite.

It does tuck up nicely to the frame, and even has a notch to clear the rear shock. So My leg has tons of clearance when sitting on the bike.

If I get lazy enough this weekend, I may sketch up a different design, with a fatty expansion chamber shape.

19 November, 2011

Kawasaki Wiring and Carb Rebuild

I brought the Bushmaster into the nice warm living room today for a bit of wiring work. As usual, I didn't have the original key, and part of the harness was missing. So I ended up re-wiring most of the bike. It was an extremely tight fit, but I got everything to fit inside my little wiring box (peanut can.) We had some Nascar on the TV to entertain us, and my country-mate Andrew Ranger got some air time:

Me running wires:

During my wiring, the mailman dropped off a pair of original 1973 circa carburetor rebuild kits for the Mikuni:

They were a whopping $5.95 each, so I bought a spare. I also received a package from Bike Bandit containing a new 428 chain (bigger than the 420 chains I usually have on hand) and a new NGK B8HS spark plug.

After all this work, I not only had spark at the plug, but I had a rear taillight and headlight that worked. I still need to run the wiring for the charging circuit, and find a place to hide the selenium rectifier, which needs to be grounded to the chassis.


16 November, 2011

Movember: Week 2

Drink it in:

12 November, 2011

Wasatch Evolution Amber Ale


4% abv

Another extremely good beer from Utah. Who would have thought? I'm surprised how much robust malt flavor and body they can cram into 4% abv. This is just delightful, from the malt filled aroma, to the smooth finish.

Kawasaki Engine Install

I got the top end assembled on the Bushmaster engine, and then promptly tossed it in the chassis. It went surprisingly smoothly. Pics below:

I built the front fork brace last weekend, but never painted it. I should get by butt off the couch and get that done today, while the weather is dry.


Big Sky Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout


A nice stout, for a cool Saturday. This is a very smooth beer, somewhat lacking in stout characteristics, but very smooth. And despite the oatmeal, it feels a bit thin. Tasty though.

11 November, 2011

Port Brewing Midnight Expression Lager


A dark, super roasty lager with a thick head and strong body. Quite a surprise.

06 November, 2011

Kawasaki: Center Stand

In a strange twist, I ended up modifying a Honda center stand to work on the Bridgestone BS7 project. And on the Kawasaki, the Bridgestone center stand ended up being a good fit, given the reduced ride height of the Bushmaster. I had to make a new pivot plate, and use a shorter tension spring, but it all came together nicely:


05 November, 2011

Caldera Brewing Rose Petal Imperial Golden Ale


Yes indeed, it smells and tastes like rose petals! Which is much better than anticipated. I've had a neighbors lemon blossom ale, which was very tasty, and this reminded me of that. The base beer is decent, with a good balance of malt and hops. But the rose petal flavor dominates, without overpowering.

It Runs!!!! Bridgestone BS-7 Content Inside

I got my NOS piston, ring, and head gasket in the mail this morning from http://www.scramblercycle.com/. So of course I immediately had to get them fitted to the bike. I still wasn't having much luck getting it to start, so I pondered. The carb sits at quite an angle on this bike, so I thought I might need to raise the float level up a little. I ended up going a bit too far, as it leaked out the overflow tube. But at least I knew it had plenty of fuel.

So I gave it a kick:

It fired right up and idle on the choke. After a few seconds it came off the choke and revved clean. Hell yeah! I still need to fiddle with the float level, and then I can run it down the road.

04 November, 2011

Bridgestone BS/7 Pics

I dragged the Bridgestone to work today, so I could grab a few pictures at lunch. One of our old steam rooms had some nice lighting:

I actually found a new piston and rings from a supplier. I might get them in the mail today. If so, I could have a running BS-7 for the first time shortly!

02 November, 2011

Kawasaki Stuff

There haven't been a lot of updates on the Kawi, as I'm just taking care of little things as I go. Such as fitting the rear brake setup, front brake and clutch cable, and finishing up the rear fender assembly. I need to turn my attention to the engine, which I may get to this weekend. We'll see how lazy I get.

front control cables:

Rear fender:

I think I finally got the rear ride height sorted, so the rear tire doesn't rub anything with my fat ass on the bike:

27 October, 2011

35 again??!!?!?

Last night we celebrated my 37th birthday at Burgers and Brews, in downtown Chico. I enjoyed a Sierra Nevada Nitro Stout with a luscious bacon cheeseburger. The Mrs. enjoyed a chicken salad and a glass of vintage 2011 ice water. Mmmm, that was a good year.

I scored quite an assortment of loot from my folks and the in-laws, and of course Susan. This pretty much sums it up:

Beer, tools, candy, clothes, new lunch box, book on CD, and a new beard-beanie for those cold nightly walks.

Maui Brewing Mana Wheat


5.5% abv

A nice mild wheat with pineapple juice. A surprisingly good combination.

25 October, 2011

Dogfish Head Festina Peche


4.5% abv

A curious malt liquor with peach flavoring. Not terrible, but not fantastic. Sorta a peachy sourness to it. But not like a Kool-Aid, where it is so yummy you could drink glass after glass. I was fine with one glass.

21 October, 2011

Kawasaki: Tires/Wheels Mounted

Just a quick sneak preview. I was desperate to get the wheels and tires mounted, before we took the tank up to Oregon for Mr. A to work his magic. It will be the last day I have the tank on the bike until Christmas.

I got the wheels built last night, using the new spokes/nipples I got from Thailand. Amazingly, they arrived in 5 days, despite just using Thai parcel post. The wheel rims are new Warp 9 2.15x18, which are both wider and lighter than the original old crusty units. The tires are Shinko 244, in 3.5 and 4.1x18 size.

New headlight, old speedo rebuilt, and huge front meat:

More meat:

This is version 2 of my seat idea, and I like it. Just a nice simple black vinyl seat. I used some little push-pin style dudes that are meant to go on the bottom of furniture, to make it easier to slide them around. I wanted to give it a pleated look, but don't have the ability to sew through thicker vinyl. This may be my final design:

18 October, 2011

More Kawasaki Assembly

I got bit more assembly work done the past couple days. Tonight was a headlight, speedo,and a mock-up rear seat I'm not real satisfied with. I made another quick seat tonight with a different shape that looks better, but it still needs something to set it off. I'm thinking some upholstery buttons to give it a pleated look.

I threw on an 18" S90 front wheel and a 17" Trail 55 rear wheel just to give it something to roll around on for now. The new meats will be much bigger.

The front needs to be about 1/2" lower, and the rear of the tank needs to be about a 1/4" higher. the little rear fender is off a Yamaha GT80, cut down and re-shaped. I've thrown a little Cub 50 tailight on it for now, and made a simple little license plate bracket: