Thursday, 6 October 2011

The build in pieces

I thought it probably a good idea to put some pics up of 
how I got to the final look of the Cafe 5.

It took a total of 5 weeks of non stop work and creating to end up with the final 
product and I'm really pleased with how it's all come out in the end.

One thing is for sure . . . It's been a MASSIVE learning curve!

Got the bike home and it was an "interesting" ride. I thought the riding position
was quite uncomfortable so i was pretty pleased I'd be totally changing it!


Minus the pipes . . .

Take away some wheels . . .

The thing I love about the sun is you can work on your bike OUTSIDE!
Trouble is getting it In without wheel . . . Hulk had to do an appearance!

My wife is a wonderful and patient lady!! She put up with this mess for 5 weeks!!!!

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Shaw Speed & Custom - A little help from my friends

2 wheels, 2 forks, 2 hubs, yokes and  foot controls.

All strapped on the bike and taken down to Shaw Speed and Custom to have them painted.

Happy Days!
Can't wait to get it all back and on the bike.

Monday, 22 August 2011

The Stripping Lady

I picked up the XL883L on sunday and was really nervous for some reason.
It's been a long time since I've bought a bike privately and I guess
with all the horror stories you hear about people getting their cash nicked and beaten
to a pulp it's no surprise that the butterflies were wurring!

We arrived just outside Basingstoke and were greated by a very friendly
seller and his soon to be wife.

He showed me the bike and it's in very good condition!

To be honest I could probably just clean it and resell it and I'd make a tidy profit,
but that's not just the aim of these little adventures.

So I paid the man and off I went on the quick little 2 hour trip home.
The bike in it's current state is VERY uncomfortable.
Because it's the low version the seat has almost no padding so you really do feel
EVERY bump and pothole in the road. The buckhorn style bars don't help either.
It forces you into a very small operating area and because of the low seat the footpegs
seem to be 6 inches out of sync.

So gettting the bike home and stripping it down was a pleasure.
Knowing that the bike is going to be given a total makeover as well as
making it more comfortable gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside! :)

I spent 2 hours in the sun yesterday taking off the following bits:

Front Fender
Wing mirrors
Air Cleaner
Rear double seat

I also found the FUELPAK which I thought I was going to have to buy.

I'll be stipping the wheels and sending them off to be powdercoated along with
a few other bits and pieces.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

######## - The new project begins

Now that the dust has settled on the Tracker 88 build it's time to get back
in the workshop and start on the ########.

The lucky donor bike is a 2008 XL883L.

Monday, 15 August 2011

TRACKER 88 - 1st Place at Warrs Custom Night

Thursday, 25 July
Ace Cafe / Warrs Harley Night

I only heard about the event because a friend of mine (Steve Skaar) had mentioned that
there was a Harley night at the Ace Cafe on Thursday evening.  I don't normally go to many
events but I hadn't been to the Ace in ages and as the weather looked particularly amazing I
decided to hop on the Tracker 88 and go down.

Before arriving I decided to check what time the event started and realised that it was a
WARRS Harley night and there would be a prize for the Best HD Customised Harley.
I thought - 'hmmmm . . . now THAT would be cool if the first bike that
JAPMotorcycles built won a prize' - but that wasn't my objective for going
as I never thought I'd even place!

I arrived and to my absolute joy, standing in the retro 50's Ace Cafe were Neil Sparks and the
lovely Karla Dunnett. We were all pretty early so we sat down and watched all the bikes
slowly roll in. I explained to them that tonight was a competition for the best custom Harley.
We joked and said WE had No chance!! :)
Custom bike after custom bike rolled into the Ace Cafe and Nosh (Neil Sparks . . . I'll explain later!!)
and I put together our list of winners which changed by the minute!

Steve Skaar and Chaz arrived a little into the night and we all had a good gander at the bikes.
I also enjoyed a fantastic Cuban Cigar from my quickly depleting stocks!!  The night drew to a close
and we all said our goodbyes and as I headed back to my bike there was a yellow Post-It note
on my tank saying:

"Please come and see us at the Warrs Van"

As I walked over to the van I slowly started to realise that I had possibly won a place in
the competition. As I was walking to my left I saw a fimiliar face walking towards the van too.
It was only NOSH!!!

As I approached the van Rob Warr was standing there.
He looked at me strangley as I said:

"I had this Post-It note on my bike"

"Which one is yours?" he said.

"It's the TRACKER 88!"

"We love that bike . . . You've come FIRST!!
I didn't know that was YOUR bike!"

At first I was totally shocked and speechless . . . I didn't expect my bike to win
anything at all so it was a fantastic surprise to learn that I'd placed and actually WON!!

And, not only that, NOSH had come 2nd!!!

What a great ending to a fab night!!

Thanks to WARRS and the Ace Cafe!!!!
I look forward to spending my £250 voucher on some tasty parts!!

Pictures Supplied by Charlie Stockwell from Warrs Harley Davidson.