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Everything posted by Stray

  1. Bit more progress, albeit minor. Got to measuring and designing the subframe. For the record, the stock subframe sits under the NSR250 fairing. I’m using this as a guide/template to measure the new one before fabricating parts. Was thinking about extending the seat to follow the tank crease at the knee - what do you think? Also thinking of following that seat line with the fairing so it’s one clean line, parallel with the frame. This part of the 5th gen always seemed untidy to me, like they had a plan but changed it. Again, what do you think? I’ve even been thinking of covering that lower triangle on the tank (under the green pen) in the same material as the seat for continuity. Here’s what the seat pan looks like in situ. Need to think about how I want to deal with the hole where the rider’s butt goes. Might just seal it with plastic plate. Also got me thinking more about why the NSR cowl/cover has all these holes. Turns out the two on the side (where the blue end of the pen sits) are for a passenger seat pan that slots in. Will have to weld those shut. But what about the NACA duct on top (where the pointy end of the pen is)? What purpose could that possibly serve other than to let rain into the battery box? It’s absurd! I was working late at night and couldn’t break out the angle grinder so cut the ends of the stock subframe off by hand with a hacksaw. No joke, it took over 30 minutes (with cutting oil!) and I was sweating like a galley slave at the end! Finally, if anyone wants to do this mod the stock subframe will fit if you cut the rear corners off like I did. You don’t have to even cut the Frankenstein bolt (I did but you don’t have to). Only a very small part of the stock subframe shows (where the yellow pen is pointing) if you kneel down low. You’d have to weld on tabs for the fairing and lights but that’s easy on steel. Interestingly, the NSR fairing mounts are a hot mess. If you look at a stock NSR MC21 subframe you’ll see what I mean. I’ll have to recreate that hot mess of welded tabs to make this work...wish me luck!
  2. Thanks mate. Can’t wait to see the finished product either but my God she’s taking her time! Just saw pictures of your RS850 - got to be one of the most beautiful motorcycles I’ve ever seen! Unfortunately I’m now committed to the MC21 seat and am measuring up subframe parts. But I’d still love to see your bike in the flesh. I’ll be racing in Mallory Park on the 8th if you fancy coming for a jaunt. The Triumph, Norton and EMRA boys will be there - should be a hoot! Free to watch if you come early enough before the racing starts. It’s an odd circuit and you can only access it by riding the wrong way round the track. So once the racing starts there’s no way in until the next break.
  3. I love the lean angle you can achieve on that RC45, BLS!
  4. Another minor bit of progress - initial trial fit of NSR 250 MC21 tail fairing (Chinese plastics) and cut down 5th gen seat. Still needs a great deal of sculpting for both seat and fairing, but it’s a cautious start. Now just need to settle on the rear fairing angle and build a subframe. Which one do you prefer? Slightly upward pointing tail: Or slightly lower pointing tail: The MC21 is a much smaller/narrower machine than a 5th gen and the tank is narrower too. The MC21 fairing sculpts inwards at the front and fouls against the 5th gen frame, making it impossible to line things up properly. So I cut the offending pieces off and straightened them with a heat gun, some old angle iron and a clamp. You can see where I cut them off in the previous picture; there’s a gaping hole just where the fairing meets the main frame. Below you can see the grey plastic piece sandwiched between two black angle iron pieces and a blue Irwin clamp. By the way, these Irwin clamps are amongst the most useful tools I’ve ever bought! Came out straight enough with minor ripples that will sand out. Can’t tell it was ever “sculpted” in the photo. The idea is to glue them back on (solvent welding) but if I was doing this again I’d just have bent them on the fairing without cutting them out. Now can somebody please tell me why the MC21 has a NACA duct on the rear fairing cover? What purpose does that serve other than to let rain water in? And one more thing: why does the 5th gen have a sculpted crease on the tank (where the seat meets the tank) and no fairing to go there? It seems like they initially planned to extend the rear fairing and cover that hole where the rear cylinder is visible but then changed their minds. Maybe to let hot air out and stop the rear cylinders overheating?
  5. I bet there was an air bubble trapped in that run. Air bubbles can cause poor cooling. Otherwise distilled water is a better coolant than “coolant”. The only reason we mix water with other stuff is to stop internal corrosion.
  6. Minor bit of progress, but an important step made this weekend: got rear brake bracket welded for 848 wheel/caliper conversion. The 848 brake torque arm is a cast & forged aluminium piece fixed with a 12mm lug in the swingarm. The 5th gen equivalent uses a bracket and a dogbone fixed with a 10mm bolt that’s about 47mm too far for the 848 bracket to reach (depending on how the eccentric is situated). I tried making various brackets and bolts but there isn’t enough clearance. So I extended the 848 bracket with a piece from another 848 bracket. Traced it on paper and drew out the design crudely in pencil. Then cut out the piece to add as a stencil and traced it on the donor part. After that, a tiresome couple hours of cutting, grinding, filing and shaping to make it match the profile of the other part for welding. It’s a thin piece of aluminium with lots of complex angles so had to make sure the welding gap was minimal. Then bevel the edges and get welding. Came out quite nice in the end with minimal distortion. Hope you like my plait welds! Not the prettiest job but it’ll hold. Maybe some paint to smarten it up... Few notes: the internet is so full of sh1t and misinformation it gets me every time. Every source I’ve read (including dedicated welding sites) say cast aluminium wants 4043 filler rod because of its ductility to avoid stress cracking as it cools. They also say 5356 is unsuitable for cast because it’s prone to cracking and difficult to work with. They also say to never mix the two rod types: if you apply one and then decide to apply another the first should be completely ground off first. Well, that’s all horse sh1t. I started with 4043 and it cracked before my eyes. So I tried the 5356 over the cracks and that went on a dream. So I went over the whole thing again with 5356 (no grinding) and used the side-to-side method to cover more area and deposit more rod volume. That’s why it looks like a plait. In short, it was EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE of what the welding forums were saying. So don’t believe what you read on the internet. Don’t even believe me! Get proper professional opinions and make up your own mind.
  7. Sorry Mike, I haven’t got that far yet. Still battling with subframes and bodywork. The injection system will be the last bit to get done. Still have electrics, new coolant system, suspension upgrades...and so on. Mightbe a while before I post an update but certainly will when the time comes.
  8. Jim, have you put spark leads on correct plugs? Many of us have got that wrong and engine won’t fire.
  9. Pics of the SP1 race tail as promised. Got the rear wheel and front fairings off so it’s hard to picture. Will need some trimming at the tank. Not really the period look but not bad. Any good? Compared to the previous ones?
  10. Thanks bmart! Do you mean the half-naked without the lower fairings? The one with a chin spoiler? Love the FJ, by the way. One of the greatest bikes ever made. Really solid air cooled engines!
  11. Thanks for your input, Dangeruss! It’s good to know you’re in this rabbit hole with me. Can’t wait to see yours with the SP2 tail. Please post ASAP!
  12. Hello All, Stumbled across this motorcycle journalist from Bennetts Insurance doing a test on single layer vs double layer motorcycle jeans. I sometimes wear motorcycle jeans when it’s hot so watched it. Turns out he’s got a 5th gen in the garage. Fantastic endorsement that his own bike is a VFR. Although it looks like he’s servicing it with what looks like supermarket oil... Spoiler: double layer jeans are better than single layer, regardless of safety rating. Wearing armour with the jeans is better still. Enjoy!
  13. One more thing: I’d been reading up on tyre pressures and heat for track days and when I came off each session I’d put my bare hand on the tyre to check temperature. Tyres were cold each time, even when I jumped off in the pit lane right after my fastest session. Dead cold. Tyre tech told me touring rubber is designed to warm up quick but stay quite cool in all weather as it deals with a wide range of conditions. Track rubber is designed for a much narrower temperature range and is designed to get really hot with speed. This is why track tyres are lethal when cold - they haven’t reached operating temperature until you’ve tortured them. Touring tyres are fine from the get go but tend to get slippery when worked hard in the heat. The gap between street and track rubber has narrowed greatly over the years though.
  14. Ducnut, that filter looks nasty!
  15. One thing about Avon tyres: the tyre tech told me they need bigger weights to balance because they’re not as precisely manufactured as the bigger brands. If you’re one of those bikers who doesn’t use wheel weights then you may want to steer clear of Avon.
  16. Gotta love a tyre thread - let’s get stuck in! Agree with Mohawk and others who say any modern tyre will be just fine. Tyre tech has come a loooong way in the past decade and we live in a golden age! Having said that, a pair costs about the same whatever you buy so may as well get the biggest bang for your buck. Here’s my very amateur opinion: I HATED the Dunlop 207 and consider them lethal. Then I tried the Dunlop Roadsmart and they were a revelation. Best tyre I’d ever had. When the Dunlop’s were toast I tried the Metzeler Z8 - best tyre I’d ever had again. Even better than the Roadsmarts but it could have been psychological as I was going from a used tyre to a new one. Still love the Metzelers though: wet or dry they stick like glue. Both tyres have seen commuting, weekend scratching with the boys and track days. I was astonished how well these touring tyres could handle race conditions! Here’s the Metzeler Z8 after a session at Donnington Park last month in the Middle group. My XJR kept up with modern litre bikes running quickshifters, slipper clutches, tyre warmers and slicks. On touring rubber that’s old and squared off!!!! Of course both tyres have limitations and on really hot days the rears both gave me a little skid on track. Just enough to pucker up my bum hole! But it shows how far tyres have come that touring rubber can mix it with slicks. Had a chat with the tyre tech on track at Mallory Park (4 weeks ago - what a brilliant track!) who said I should try Bridgestone S22 next as loads of club racers use them. Apparently they take a bit longer to warm up than touring rubber but stick like sh!t to a blanket in the fast bits. I’ve no experience (or affiliation) but might give them a go. Although the Metzeler 01 and M9 are also very tempting... Also the Michelin Road Pilot 6 and Power...and Dunlop Qualifier...and...and...
  17. So folks, have I gone crazy? Do you like any of the below or am I barking mad? You’ve got to try imagine it properly fitted and painted, which I’ll agree is difficult. For any new visitors, this is 5th gen that I’m building into a retro road racer. It’s remit will be fast road use, touring and track days. Going for the 80’s endurance racer vibe. VF400 front cowl with VFR400 tail (NC24 or something?) Standard VFR800 seat with VFR400 rear cowl just for silhouette. Suzuki GS550 tail (I liked the ducktail little wings!) CBR600 2016 seat (not sure it works with the classic styling of the other bits but it’s SO light!) A cafe racer hump I had on the shelf just for giggles and ideas. Maybe a bigger one would work but I think it needs to be a boxy tail from the 80’s instead of a hump from the 60’s... Now the VFR800 standard seat on its own. Imagine a tail fairing that made up the pillion seat section and ended where the seat does. That’s a good 5 inches shorter than the original fairing and quite slim. I think it looks good (ignore the 5th gen side fairing for now). Trying out a half-naked look with headlight fairing and chin spoiler (I think it’s off a half-naked VF400). No side fairings. Got an SP1 race tail to try tomorrow but it’s HUGE and might spoil the look. Will post pic ASAP. I’m desperate to try an NSR250 (MC21) and NC35 (VFR400) Seat but can’t keep buying fairings as money’s tight and I’ve got a whole bunch already. Also, a VF1000 or VF750 seat might be nice to try. If anyone in the Midlands (England) has any I could borrow that would really help. Let me know what you think! Stray
  18. Quick update: - 929 injectors are a drop in (thanks Mohawk) - 954 injectors fit in 929 throttle bodies but wiring is all wrong Verdict = 929 injectors for the win!
  19. Have you ever seen a thing more terrifying? Took me all day to get the loom out. Bet it’ll take me a week of swearing to get it back in... Left myself some notes on positioning with masking tape but they’re nothing close to comprehensive. God, I hate wiring! Also, the loom weighs a tonne. Got speaking to a guy who built his bike with a Motogadget Blue unit - this replaces all your wiring (except the ECU) with a tiny little gizmo that controls everything (lights, ignition, sensors etc). If it was guaranteed to work on the 5th gen I’d buy one but Motogadget can’t confirm. They did say it won’t work for HISS models though.
  20. Mohawk, I’m very glad you chimed in with all that info. Advice from you is well thought-through, deeply researched and proven/first hand. I’m in your debt! Cogswell, thanks for the info on starter valves. I love the choke lever on my ‘98 and loads of people on here hate their wax units. So I think I’ll take Mohawk’s info and throw some CBR 4-hole units in to avoid the hassle of switching to wax units and such. There’s a good enough gain from 4 holes to keep me happy. Got ‘98 and ‘00 (with wax unit) throttle bodies on the bench. Also got 5th & 6th gen air boxes. Have been messing about with trumpet lengths and configurations recently following Mohawk’s work from a few years ago so it’s been fun. Air boxes are so oily on VFRs... Many thanks for you help, chaps!
  21. Oh, and I forgot to say the Honda S2000 guys are using the Blackbird injectors for their built car engines. Aaaaand, it turns out the Hyabusa injectors are exactly the same size and are also being used in built S2000 cars. Blackbird and Hyabusa injectors are apparently the same size but flow differently (I don’t know the numbers). Soooo, if Blackbird injectors fit the VFR then so do Hyabusa. Come on folks - give us some info!
  22. Hello All, Looking to pick the brains of those who know more than me about 5th gen VFR800 injectors - what can I upgrade my single-hole OEMs with? Got the whole bike torn down for a massive project and thought I’d upgrade injectors while there. Just because. Nothing wrong with the stock 5th gen units but injector technology has improved since the early pioneering days of fuel injection. Here’s what I know and read about: 1. 5th gen injectors are same as early Honda CRV cars and have a single hole 2. 6th gen have 12 holes and same as early CBR1k (I think?) 3. Mohawk is running early Fireblade injectors (4 hole?) on his 5th gen (would love to know more about this, mate!) 4. Someone in this forum is running CBR1k injectors on their 5th gen 5. Rangerscott fitted 6th gen throttle bodies to his 5th gen and reports better MPG 7. MPG has improved quite a lot from 5-6-8th gen 8. Some early Honda CRV guys are running Blackbird injectors in their built cars but having to boost pressure (read about this a long time ago...) I’d love to be told there’s “X” injector with 12 holes that slots right into the 5th gen throttle bodies but doubt it’s that simple. What would you do in my shoes if you had the bike apart and the time to mess about with this? Would love to be able to use 8th gen (or 6th gen) units but don’t know what needs modifying to fit. Don’t mind hackzing at things to make them work. Open to all options and opinions. I could just leave it alone but kind of set on upgrading. Best, Stray
  23. RC30 front fairings - £100 for quick sale (shipping extra if needed) Hello All, Got some RC30 front fairings sitting in the loft for ages - might as well go to someone who will do them justice. They were made by Harris Racing in fibreglass and have never been mounted - brand new. Come with DZUS fasteners and fit is beautiful (as you’d expect from Harris). Headlight holes are 114mm (4.5in) so it’s the prettier version! I was going to build an RC30 replica from my 5th gen but have ended up going another way. There are examples of RC30 replicas built from VFR750s and I can confirm it fit nicely against my 5th gen if you lower the bars to be like clipons. Caveat: I had my side-mount radiators off when I fit it up against the 5th gen but “believe” the OEM rads can be incorporated. Based in Nottingham, England, if anyone is interested. Ideally collection but can ship if that’s a problem. Best, Stray
  24. PM received and responded - thank you! Your work on this is nothing short of amazing, SF. You boys pulled off the impossible and others have tried for decades - respect! I wanted an 8th gen system so bad I could taste it but personal circumstances changed right as I was about to get one. Luckily things have improved somewhat but JUST too late to get on the last production run. Turns out quite a few people who bought these didn’t fit them and have had changes in circumstances of their own. I’ll pick up one of these and save waiting for the next run.
  25. Anyone got one of these headers they want to shift? Ideally the 8th gen version for front-facing rad but I’ll consider any. Based in England and happy to import if it’s not extortionate. Please PM! Best, Stray
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