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Old 11-25-2020, 05:03 PM   #31
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Incredible journey! Thanks for story & photos!
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Old 11-25-2020, 05:14 PM   #32
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Epic !
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Incredible journey! Thanks for story & photos!
Oh, we're just getting started... but glad you like the story so far.
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Old 11-25-2020, 10:27 PM   #33
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You said the snowmobile Ohlins were cheap. How cheap?
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Old 11-25-2020, 10:58 PM   #34
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Old 11-26-2020, 08:14 AM   #35
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You said the snowmobile Ohlins were cheap. How cheap?
There's a pair on eBay right now for $360. I've seen them go for closer to $300 for a pair.
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Old 11-26-2020, 09:24 AM   #36
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Master wizard fabricator that guy ^^^^^^^^

A little history on that blue frame just for fun. When I first started messing around with RZ350s I would look at CL once in a while to see if anything popped up. It was about a decade plus ago I saw an RZ350 track bike for sale in Sacramento, looked at the photos, and thought it was pretty cool, and then forgot about it.

A few years later a more in-depth CL search or a tip on a forum or something I found the same bike for sale in Seattle. The top end, crankshaft, and cases were massacred from a catastrophic failure (lean jetting). I contacted the dude and negotiated a price delivered to my house. Since the frame had no title I tend to dump those frames. I was after the FZR/FZ/Ohlins suspension and wheels to upgrade another bike. I think I still have those Spec2 expansion chambers in service.

Some years later that blue frame was handed off to Julian. Some years later Julian gave that frame to a friend of his in Santa Cruz (I think) for a project. Some years later Julian had that frame again. Then he born his DB Challenge bike in this thread.

Here it is being shipped to my house from Seattle.



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Old 11-26-2020, 11:38 AM   #37
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Oh, we're just getting started...


I studied your bike, at the dirt bag, quite a bit, but I focused mostly on the front, I have a new appreciation for the swing arm and sub frame. Good stuff.
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Old 11-28-2020, 03:52 PM   #38
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Master wizard fabricator that guy ^^^^^^^^

A little history on that blue frame just for fun.
Hey, be careful what you say... this IS a public forum

And thanks for the back-story on the blue frame. Thats more than I remembered.

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I studied your bike, at the dirt bag, quite a bit, but I focused mostly on the front, I have a new appreciation for the swing arm and sub frame. Good stuff.
Thanks
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Old 11-28-2020, 04:26 PM   #39
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Part 3: getting ready to build RZ350 frames

Now back from The One Show, I can focus on the real project, building RZ350 frames. With a little luck I might be able to coordinate the first prototype build with 2020 Dirtbag. Time will tell.

Along with the CAD modeling of the frame, I've also built a CAD model of the fixture that will be used to build the frames. I have 3 permanent frame fixtures and a dedicated swingarm fixture. Of the 3 frame fixtures, one is upright configuration. This is how most motorcycle frame fixtures are constructed, but for some reason I've never used it which is kinda odd. Then I've also got a fixture where the frames are oriented upside-down. I tend to use this fixture the most because it keeps everything close to the fixture bed and very rigid. It works great but requires everything to be 100% designed in advance. No figuring things out on the fly with this fixture. My third frame fixture is Ducati specific... but thats not this project.


CAD model of the fixture with riser blocks specific to the RZframe...

2020-04-05_17-02-50 by andbike, on Flickr


Raw material for the riser blocks...

20200527_190007 by andbike, on Flickr


Time to machine the riser blocks. This is where its nice having a real milling machine in the garage...

20200524_155545 by andbike, on Flickr

20200620_134810 by andbike, on Flickr

20200624_143233 by andbike, on Flickr


...and the fixture just about ready for building motorcycle frames...

20200630_130440 by andbike, on Flickr


Next up is making plywood patterns that will aid with holding and positioning of the bent tubing while trimming and notching to final fit. I make 1:1 drawings and have them printed at FedEx Office on their large scale printer. Then the paper cutouts are glued to plywood and the plywood trimmed to final shape. Last step is laminating a backing board to each pattern to help with clamping.


Plywood patterns ready to go...

20200721_155615 by andbike, on Flickr


Around this time I've finished the last details in the CAD model and send of files for CNC machining, laser cutting and NC mandrel tube bending. CNC parts will be coming from China; laser cutting from Reno NV; and tube bending is done locally in Fremont. The tube bending is quoted with the longest lead time of 6 weeks. Fingers crossed that I don't see the DBC "GO" announcement before the tubes arrive. Stay tuned!

to be continued...

Last edited by Frame Maker; 11-28-2020 at 04:30 PM..
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Old 11-28-2020, 04:41 PM   #40
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Old 11-28-2020, 05:54 PM   #41
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But no, I'm not wearing a bikini.


Cool stuff.

The show stuff must be fun for ya.
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Old 12-13-2020, 04:40 PM   #42
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Part 4: building the prototype frame (DBC version)

Getting back to the story, the first batch of laser cut parts arrived on time. Then the bent tubing for the main frame rails was ready a week early. DBC still had not been announced. So this meant that I would have everything ready and just waiting for the magic word from Dirtbag HQ.

20200721_160014 by andbike, on Flickr



On August 24 we got the "GO"!

DBC GO by andbike, on Flickr

First order of business would be to build the swingarms... yes, swingarms plural. Since this goal of this project is to develop duplicate frames with multiple set-up options, I decided to build 2 sets of prototype frames and swingarms with one set being built up and ridden for Dirtbag.

I start with machining the bits that will become the eccentric cups. Since these are similar on the swingarm and on the frame, I decide to build both the swingam and frame cups at same time.

The cups begin with threaded bungs that are cupped on one side. These are then welded to short section of tube. In one photo you can see a small plate that is used to hold the bungs at proper spacing during welding. The welded assemblies are then cut with a slitting saw. Then last step is to true the faces. Because the welds will be right at the edge of the large tubing, I intentionally start with the tubing a little long and then face to correct length at the last step.

20200830_143252 by andbike, on Flickr

20200830_180148 by andbike, on Flickr

20200901_143528 by andbike, on Flickr

20200901_143304 by andbike, on Flickr



Oh look, also made some swingarm pivot tubes

20200902_111610 by andbike, on Flickr



Next is to begin bending some tubing for the swingarm hoop and the legs. Then the tubing all gets notched ("fish mouthed"). I use the plywood fixture to help hold the bent tubing in place. Other tubes are just clamped and positioned using an angle gauge. Once I have a set-up in place its easy to duplicate the cuts. I also make an extra part from each process that can be used for reference later.

20200902_130810 by andbike, on Flickr

20200903_115435 by andbike, on Flickr

20200902_181308 by andbike, on Flickr

20200903_175442 by andbike, on Flickr

20200904_183834 by andbike, on Flickr


Around this time, a little package arrives from China. It feels like Christmas!

20200911_165247 by andbike, on Flickr

20200912_115242 by andbike, on Flickr

To be continued...
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Old 12-13-2020, 04:51 PM   #43
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Cool stuff.

The show stuff must be fun for ya.
Thanks Budman!

By show, I assume you're referring to the One Show in Portland. Yes, its a lot of fun, but also a lot of work to prepare and many hours of driving. The first three times I went I had a mini van that I could get a bike into and keep it out of the weather. These past two times I no longer had the comfort of a van, so I built plywood boxes onto the back of my daughter's truck that would keep the bikes clean and dry. So lots of prep work getting those ready. Once in Portland I stay with a good friend. Clive is a super cool guy and very much into custom bikes so we always have a good time.
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Old 12-15-2020, 07:29 AM   #44
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this is some cool staff!
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Old 12-15-2020, 06:48 PM   #45
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You make it seem so easy. I'll just go make a few swingarms...
looking forward to the next update.
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