Thursday, July 21, 2011

Sakura the Sake Rocket pt.2

Loving the electric Leg

First cracked open and while it's all in good shape it is definitely cruddy. Not shown was the fun involved in getting the planetary gear drive out of the end cap. That process involved grinding up a pair of old needle-nose pliers, some bleeding and fairly spicy language. I took the opportunity to add fresh grease and the whole assembly now spins very smoothly, noticeably better than before.
A dirty dirty girl (the very best kind) but even the commutator was in great shape along with the brushes, bearings and bushings. Good deal.

And what it looks like presently, with a little wrinkle black paint and nothing more than some brass tube slipped over the screws. It's amazing how much that fancied up a rather mundane piece. I've decided to replace the long screws with stainless hex right along with the engine screws and will likely turn some nicer decorative brass tubes to replace the straight stuff.

Building a seat V.1.0

A simple pattern drawn on some corrugated plastic sign material I had laying around. I cut it out and worked the two pieces such that it sat right as I wanted.


I'm a big fan of reusing materials when I can. It helps keep good stuff out of the landfills and saves some cabbage too. I wanted a seatbase that wasn't entirely flat and was preparing myself to form it from thicker material and shape it with a sureform. Then my 15 year old office chair died. It was fate I'm sure that forced the long forming crack in the base to finally let go at the opportune moment. Booyah, seat base.....

Cut, hack, chop, mangle, bleed, swear.....etc......

You can see here where the base wood has been pocketed to fit snugly onto the frame. A couple turned studs up front and a patch of industrial hook & loop (not the worthless shit that's on Grandad's bingo shoes) at the rear between the cutouts..

Here's the rough cut and formed pieces laid on the frame to give me an idea where I wanted to start forming and shaping.

At this point I got it shaped and decided not to fiberglass the base, after standing on it braced between a couple cinder blocks. Held my sizable self up just fine without a single protest. Instead I tried a product called KwikPoly with a little black dye added, it's extremely thin and soaks right into the wood making it pretty much invulnerable to fuel, water, oil or smashed bankers.

Pretty simple stuff here, trace, cut (bleed more)...etc...
A little forming by way of the palm sander
I added a cover of 3/8" open cell foam to smooth out the padding under the upholstery.

Oh yeah, here's the underside after I coated the whole thing in the kwikpoly. This has a really interesting...almost plastic feel now.

Which leaves us here.......the black 'race foam' that I used turns out to be not so nice on anything other than a...say it with me.....race seat. This bike isn't going racing and in the end after sitting on it briefly I've decided that it's just not comfortable. I run the exact same stuff on cafe seats and seat cowls on sport bikes but this just isn't working out. As well, while I dig the 'Brat Style' seats a lot I think this one needs something a bit more ass friendly. Plus, the mental image I had didn't turn out in practice. I'd intended to have the  padding and upholstery sweep out along side the rear fender with a small butt pad added to the fender itself. I've since decided that is stupid and whomever thought of it should be hit with a stick......if I could just figure out who that guy was. Don't tell me...I'll think of it eventually.
Moral of the seat building story....just because you put a shitload of time and effort into something doesn't mean it's going to end up at all worth while. I think I'll go have a beer and pout. And figure out a new seat.......

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