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"Well, as through the world I've rambled, I've seen lots of funny men. Some rob you with a sixgun, some with a fountain pen. As through this world you ramble, as through this world you roam You'll never see an outlaw drive a family from its home..." -Woody Guthrie

Monday, December 12, 2011

Modding The Rifle Superbike Fairing, Part 4

I've got to give it to the folks at Rifle Fairings: When it comes to motorcycles fairings, the team formerly known as Windjammer know fairings as well as anyone. Their fairings are everything I expected and more. That said, Rifle, like every other manufacturer of aftermarket universal motorcycle parts, is forced to design parts that work on lots of different kinds and styles of motorcycles ridden by lots of different kinds and styles of riders. Could Rifle have made me exactly the fairing I want? Sure. Could I afford it? No way. That's why I decided to start with their fairing and modify it to fit myself, my motorcycle and my style of riding.

When I first began Modding The Rifle Superbike Fairing I knew some of my modifications simply wouldn't work. When that happened I reverted back to stock. Others worked but not as well as I'd hoped. When that happened I tried again and again and...

Like the filling of the turn signal notches on either side of my fairing from Part 2. Gluing in pieces of ABS plastic and filling with ABS glue (a solution made from ABS solids soaked in solvents) worked quite well. But top coating and filling with a thin coat of Bondo body filler was a mistake. Apparently Bondo (Polyester) does not bond well with ABS. So it's back to filling with ABS glue. I think one last rough sanding is in order before I can switch to finer papers and start priming and painting. Did you know that some tattoo inks are made from ABS plastics?

The windshield extension works like a charm and is still low enough I can look over the top. That's good because the whistling caused by the modifications in Part 3 were driving me insane.And the venting I did in Part 1 has eliminated fogging altogether. In case you're interested, the extension is made from the headlight cover that came with the fairing when new.

Should you ever decide to drill a hole in a motorcycle windshield be sure to do so on a warm day as to not risk cracking the windshield. Now I get to learn how to repair a crack in clear polycarbonate.

The lowers I made serve two purposes. The first is to keep my feet warm and the second is to keep the engine cooled without getting a blast of hot air in my face. I made several pairs before I got the angles right but alas I made it work and work well. They still need sanding and painting but here's the front view.

There's plenty of room between them for the huge oil cooler I'm building to change the primary engine cooling from air to oil. I'm thinking I might attach some sort of pouch to the back. Here's the view from the rear.

If you know these bikes then you'll also notice I also relocated the horn so that it would no longer block airflow to the head of the engine.

And finally, I like getting my tools out of the saddlebags and into this leather toolbag but as this was the only way I can mount it I'm not sure if it will remain. It could be I'll attach the toolbag to the trailer hitch when it is finished or perhaps I'll design flatter side-covers and attach bags to both sides.

In Part 5 we'll look at some ideas I have for warmer winter riding. After all, if you only ride in July then you're hardly a biker.