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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Although my Pelican cases and SW-Motech racks have served me well, and continue to serve me well, I am doing more gravel, dirt road riding. When using my Pelican luggage system, I can describe an "echo" effect of the potholes I ride over and through.

What I mean by that is, when the bike lands in a pothole, the suspension system absorbs the shock of the uneven terrain. Because the luggage is not welded to the frame, there is a little "looseness" to the system. Also, my gear inside the bags can slide up and down. So, when the bike abruptly drops into a hole, the suspension kicks in as it should. A split second later the luggage and gear follows the bike into the hole, giving the suspension system a "double whammy" affect, or an "echo" to the bounce. It's not much. But, I have ridden enough miles to notice it.

My last three trips I have done without the Pelican cases. I use two drybags for my gear that are cinched down across the rear section of my seat. A third drybag is bungied to the rack I made for my Pelican 1450 topcase. That drybag kept my Delorme, state-by-state Gazetteers dry. I didn't like the drybag for the map books, so I have since made a new map box for the gazetteers that is bolted underneath my Pelican top case, (you will see that in the pictures below).

The bike handles so much better without side cases. It is very responsive and I don't really notice that my gear is on the bike because, it is "centered" right where the extra weight of the gear should be; as if it were a passenger. When I want to, I can lean back against the drybags, using them as a back rest. I can even rest my butt on them when I am riding, standing up on the pegs.

What I miss about the Pelican cases is the margin of safety that they provide to me and my bike when I go down. With the dry bag setup, I have no protection other then the PIAA light cages I welded to my modified SW-Motech crash bars. I want some protection back aft.

So I decided to make a custom luggage rack. The width of it will be wide enough to protect my dry bags, map case and top case from a spill. It will also protect the rear blinkers, (these will be replaced with a new blinkers set more aft and outboard, along with a new taillight built into the luggage rack.). The rack will also be quite a bit longer then the OEM rack. There will be a "grab rail" welded to the aft end of the rack that will let me "muckle" on to it for a purchase to lift the rear end of the bike up. There will also be grab rails welded to the sides of the rack as well. Once this is completed, I will be cutting off the most of the rear fender.

The steel I am using has been recycled from the "bones" of discarded cafeteria tables from my local high school.



Here you can see the initial stages of fabrication. The side rail is clamped to the OEM rack, (I made the grab rail extensions this past Winter so that a passenger did not have to stretch so far to hold on.), with the aft end supported by a couple of camera tripods.



Both sides are fabbed up and tack welded. (You can also see the Pelican topcase and Delorme map box I have made.)



Welding the aft, cross piece in place.



Update: 06-28-09
I don't have a tubing bender. I am doing my best to work with what I have; cutting the shapes that I need that were factory bent from the cafeteria tables.

Here I am fitting a "side loop".


Side loop in position for tacking in place.


Side loop tacked in place.


The rack removed from the bike and clamped up in my vise for finish welding both side loops.


I don't own a tubing-notch-cutter, so I have had to fit the joints by hand with a grinder. Here is one of the cross members.


Welding the cross members.


Here is the rack for where I am stopping for today. Time to make dinner!


UPDATE: 06-29-09
After work today, I made a quick trip to Lowe's to purchase some material for my luggage rack.

Twelve steel rings to be welded to the rack for tie-down anchor points.


Before welding the rings to the rack, I decided to crush them a little in my vise making them oval shape.


Welding the rings to the rack.


I decided to mount a tail light bracket to the aft, bottom side of the rack. I am hoping to fit the OEM tail light into this bracket.....somehow.


Here's the rack as of this evening.


UPDATE: 06-30-09
I got a late start this evening after work. I did not get as far as I would have liked to. But, there are no plans for what I am doing. I am thinking it through as I go along; winging it, just like my trips.

Here I am using a holesaw to cut two, half circles out of two pieces of steel that will become my rear turn signal mounts. The half circles in the tops of the turn signal mounts will allow them to "nestle" up nicely against the steel tubing they are being welded to.


Here I am tack welding the turn signal mounts to the luggage rack.


I am finish welding the turn signal mounts to the rack. The luggage rack is upside down during this process.


This is what the signals will sort of look like. In the picture, I am using a front turn signal as a gauge. The rear turn signal's "foot" is flat, but the overall length is about the same. The luggage rack is upside down in this photo.


UPDATE: 07-01-09

This evening, I worked on fabricating the two forward anchor points for the luggage rack to attach to the bike.


Drilling the mounting holes in the anchor plates.


I moved the bike outside so that I could look at the rack and the bike, together. I temporarily set the rack, map case and top box on to the bike.


I am not sure that I like it, but I am going to see the project through to the end.


I moved the bike back inside and tack welded the rack to the anchor plates. Darn tricky without melting anything!


Once I had the anchor plates tacked to the rack, I removed the rack and finished welded the joints.


This is where I stopped for tonight.



UPDATE: 07-02-09
I had to put today's update in another post farther down in this thread. It is HERE.
 

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You need to be very careful welding to your frame, could warp the frame.
 

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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #6
You need to be very careful welding to your frame, could warp the frame.
Thanks. I am not welding to my frame. The rack will be bolted down to the same anchor points as the OEM rack is. I am in the process of fabricating up the rack and taking pictures of its "evolution".
 

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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #7
I was thinking..add a bubble and one more wheel...it could be a Messerschmidt..:)....
Well..........not adding a "bubble", but I will now have something to work with for mounting a tripod and camera to for overhead shots.

With the two side rails out to each side of the bike and the aft grab rail in place, that gives me a three-point-purchase to attach a tripod or other camera mount of my own making.

Possibly with a servo motor for 360 degree panning.

Maybe you are right? A turret with a camera for the "gun".

But, that will be next year.

B.
 

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Thanks. I am not welding to my frame. The rack will be bolted down to the same anchor points as the OEM rack is. I am in the process of fabricating up the rack and taking pictures of its "evolution".
Yep, I re read it, you are going to bolt it to the sub frame.
 

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Go for it

lookin good! It's amazing what kind of materials you can dig up with a little imagination!! you should get some carbon credits for "recycling". Here's a couple of pics of my brackets done with some electrical conduit and a gas welder and some scraps of aluminium.
 

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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #10
lookin good! It's amazing what kind of materials you can dig up with a little imagination!! you should get some carbon credits for "recycling". Here's a couple of pics of my brackets done with some electrical conduit and a gas welder and some scraps of aluminium.
Excellent job! I am new to all of this and just starting out. Teaching myself as I go along.
 

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Bending Iron....

Nice job.... I'v never tried to gas weld, it looks good!

I made a rack this spring and it made it through a 4600mi trip out west.... its hard to bend tubing so I went to flat stock and angle iron.... I made the bags, they also survived a slow fall in tall grass! I caught a rut!

Lots of good ideas keep us posted...
 

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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Update 07-02-09

I guess I am limited to only 33 images per post. I can no longer add updates to the original post, so I jumped to here.

UPDATE: 07-02-09

A lot of time was spent today figuring out how to wrap this project up. I would like to be done by sundown tomorrow night; the latest on Saturday.

I fabricated the aft rack supports and anchor points.


Welding the aft rack supports.


Tack welding the rack supports to the luggage rack.


After removing the rack from the bike, I finish welded the rack support to the bike.

Next I removed the rear fender assembly to see what I was up against in the wiring area. I am not very good with wiring.......


I cut in the OEM tail light into the aft end of the rack.


This is what it looks like in operation.


I did a couple of other things as well, but I have a long way to go! I will take some more photos of progress tomorrow.

The update for 07-03-09 is HERE.
 

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gas welds

i have never had the chance to gas weld , but i do weld with mig and in the old days lots of stick . i dont think the gas welds will hold up to off road rideing . just my guess . but im no expert . let us know how they stand up . if they fail you can slip some smaller tubeing [ or a piece of solid round stock] into the pipe and penitrate your weld into it
 

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I guess I am limited to only 33 images per post. I can no longer add updates to the original post, so I jumped to here.
it's better if you post updates in a new post anyway so we all get notified. if you update the original post nobody gets notified that you did. new post sends notification or at least shows that there are new unread posts in our subscribed threads. new posts for updates please. i would have missed everything after your first post if you hadn't mentioned you updating problem.

dig that taillight mod.
 

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i have never had the chance to gas weld , but i do weld with mig and in the old days lots of stick . i dont think the gas welds will hold up to off road rideing . just my guess . but im no expert . let us know how they stand up . if they fail you can slip some smaller tubeing [ or a piece of solid round stock] into the pipe and penitrate your weld into it
technically he's brazing. and no it's not nearly as strong as a welded joint. but hey, he's doing it and, as he said, learning in the process. if it holds, no harm. if it doesn't, he gets to get himself a mig welder and have this fun all over again and use the opportunity to tweak the design if needed. wish i wasn't so lazy.
 

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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #17
technically he's brazing. and no it's not nearly as strong as a welded joint. but hey, he's doing it and, as he said, learning in the process. if it holds, no harm. if it doesn't, he gets to get himself a mig welder and have this fun all over again and use the opportunity to tweak the design if needed. wish i wasn't so lazy.

I disagree.

A history of OXY-ACETYLENE WELDING AND CUTTING

The Oxy-Acetylene Processes Today Welding.
It is true that the electric welding processes have almost completely taken over the production welding field. For most welding applications, there’s an electric welding process which will turn out good welds faster than the oxy-acetylene torch. If that is true, why bother with oxy-acetylene welding at all? Why are at least 50,000 oxy- acetylene welding and cutting outfits sold every year in the U.S.? Some would say that the answer lies in the two words ”and cutting”. There’s some truth in that, but not the whole truth. A better answer is this one: That an oxy- acetylene outfit is more versatile, more readily portable, and far less expensive than any comparable electric welding outfit. With the oxy-acetylene torch, and an assortment of welding rods and fluxes which can be purchased almost anywhere in the country, you can weld just about everything, and do it well. You can put the outfit in the back of a truck, take it almost anywhere, and use it almost anywhere. You can weld, you can cut, you can do a variety of heating jobs. If you have such an outfit, you may use it more for cutting than for welding, but if you don’t use it for a lot of welding, you probably aren’t taking full advantage of its capabilities.
 

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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #18
Jeeebizzz, you could balance Keith Faulkner's cooler on that. ;)
I hear what you are saying, (and I will take it as a compliment!).

Most likely, I will end up with one of my Pelican 1550 sidecases "recommissioned" as a topcase. It will replace the current Pelican 1450 tocase and the mapbox I made for my Delorme gazzetteers.

The 1550 will hold all of the tools that I have in the 1450, and by adding a partition inside, I can also fit a campstove and messkit and a day or two supply of food. The Delorme maps will also fit on top of "everything" in the 1550 case just as they did when I used the Pelican as a sidecase.

The "side-loops" on the rack offer a little bit more protection then having nothing. They won't offer the same amount of protection that the Pelican 1550s did though. But, they will let me carry extra fuel.

Remember this?






It fits quite nicely on the side-loops.

Extra fuel = extra miles.

James Bay and maybe farther..........
 

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What Kinda Bike Is That?
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Discussion Starter #20
Yep, the pontoon bomb project. :biggrin5:
And I am usually out in front, right? Keep your faceshield down. :devil_29:
 
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