Valk Build/Mod Thread: Closer And Closer

Area for discussion of the Honda Valkyrie

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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: This Might Be Dumb...

#151

Post by Lucien Harpress »

I finally got all the internal parts for my shocks, and while I'm still waiting on the outers to be powdercoated, I can at least get the inner tubes as done as possible.

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I'm re-using the dust boots, but the seals and bushings are all new. I don't feel bad about reusing the dust boots because- ..well, hear me out.

So the Valkyrie has inverted forks. I guess they make sense for "reasons", I don't know, whatever. All I know is that is makes changing the fork color harder than usual, and it takes the part of the fork that needs to stay in good shape to keep the fork sealed up, and puts in closer to the road. Now, Honda anticipated this and did what the did with every other unsightly part of the Valkyrie- they put a chrome cover over it. I was tempted to keep these, but noticed they were starting to pit and rust surprisingly quickly.

Sooooooo I went a different direction. :-D

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Yeah, I'm running fork boots on inverted forks. Is is a good idea? Bad idea? Who knows! It's the wild west out here. And I'm going to see if I can make it work.

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I guess I won't know for SURE until I get the front end back together, but I look forward to finding out.
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: This Might Be Dumb...

#152

Post by Lucien Harpress »

I think I've got the rear end locked down. It turns out my brake light is not original, but a rather low-quality copy. Lots of plastic replacing metal, that sort of thing. In any case, it should work well enough, but the light output was a bit anemic. Not surprising, considering the "reflector" was just... the inside painted silver. So I decided to help things a bit with some polished aluminum.

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It ain't perfect, but it's MUCH better than what I had. The running light is actually now a touch brighter than some of my other (stock) bikes, and there's always the option of an LED upgrade later. I still have to bolt the assembly back on the fender and run one wire down to the brake light, but progress is progress.
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: This Might Be Dumb...

#153

Post by Whiskerfish »

That should make a substantial difference. Looks good.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: This Might Be Dumb...

#154

Post by Lucien Harpress »

While waiting on the front forks, I did a bit of futzing with gauge ideas. The whole instrument panel is still kinda nebulous, very much still in the brainstorm phase. I don't know why, but somewhere along the line I got the idea to go both minimal and.... not. Essentially, replace the twin gauges with just one main speedometer, then fill in everything else (tachometer, fuel gauge, volt meter, water temp maybe?) with mini-gauges kinda scattered all over the place. And keeping in the sorta-retro aesthetic, I managed to snag a reproduction GL1000 speedo for a great price (thanks Lowrider Bud!).

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I still gotta figure out where I'm going to stick the other gauges exactly (I guess technically I don't need a tachometer even, but I DO want one), but.... I kinda like this is a place to start.

In any case, powdercoater is going to try to get the fork legs done by the end of the week. Stay tuned.
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: This Might Be Dumb...

#155

Post by Lucien Harpress »

Hey, look at this: Progress!

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I FINALLY got my uppers back from the powdercoater, and.... yeah, this is good. I definitely prefer this to the stock aluminum. This is just a mockup to straighten and tighten the upper triple tree clamp- I need to clean out all the crap from the inside, then rebuild both forks, but I am EXCITED.
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: This Might Be Dumb...

#156

Post by Lucien Harpress »

So the left shock is 100% together. I'm waiting on the Yamabond to dry on the bottom allen bolt on the right fork, then I can get THAT one together relatively quickly. A quick mock-up later, and I'm quite happy.

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The only thing I have a SMALL amount of concern about is the front fender- the gaiters pretty well line up exactly with the front fender sides, and while it will fit no problem, I'm worried about the rubber gradually wearing the paint away. It may, it may not, but part of me wants to run some kind of protection here. Plastic sheet, film, something. Or just leave it alone and see if it's even necessary.

Still, I'm ready to get the front end back together.
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: Front End Coming Together

#157

Post by Lucien Harpress »

Ignore the missing headlight and gauges, and the front end is back together. And you know what? I think I love it.

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My only complaint is that the gaiters compress a bit farther than I was anticipating with full load. However, it's not enough to prevent full fork travel, and I'm surprised I found the right size anyway for the upper and lower tubes, so I'll take it. I've got plans to dress them up with some nice chrome clamps, and perhaps replace the rear shocks to match a bit better, but that's for the future.

I'm also REALLY liking the lines with the lack of/pared down gauges. I don't plan on diving into that (and the headlight) until winter, but it's nice to get a sense of what it's going to look like.

Until then? I'll put together the last couple things, then be happy I have SOMETHING to ride.
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: Front End Coming Together

#158

Post by Lucien Harpress »

Got the bike back together and took it for a spin, and the front end didn't fall off. So I'll call it a win.

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I've already said I love the black forks, but the more I look at them, the more I'm surprised they weren't a stock option. The aluminum just... doesn't fit as nicely. Oh well. It almost makes the headlight and gauges look better (although I still plan on changing those). Overall, it's a good place to keep it until this winter.

The only downside? The more I black things out, the less and less I'm liking the brown saddlebags. They're okay, but they seem to fit visually less every time I do something. I'm exploring options to change them, but I'm not sure yet. It's currently (theme-wise) somewhere in between the removable Samsonite luggage-type bags some Goldwings had, and the tiny tool-kit sized rear boxes you see on Brough Superiors.

Like I said, I'm still workshopping. :lol:
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: Front End Coming Together

#159

Post by Old Fogey »

Great job! The fork gaitors look OEM in my view. Every bike I've had I've put gaitors on - they save the chrome and the seals.

As for the saddle bags, is there no recolouring options available that would work? I'm sure some of the custom upholstery guys could come up with something.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: Front End Coming Together

#160

Post by Lucien Harpress »

Leather dye is a thing (from my 30 seconds of Google research), and while I've never dyed saddlebags before, what's learning one more skill?

Thing is though, the way my mind works is now my bike is edging closer to my final vision, I'm starting to fundamentally reassess what I want in saddlebags completely. Hard bags? Canvas bags? Black? Heck, something crazy like red or white?

Tough telling. I'll probably use what I have for a while, but I'm willing to change my mind on anything for the slightest of reasons.
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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Lucien Harpress
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Re: Valk Build/Mod Thread: Closer And Closer

#161

Post by Lucien Harpress »

After nearly getting cut off and ran into twice in the span of a couple blocks the other day, I figured it was a sign to actually get my horn situation taken care of- namely, that I don't have any. I had previously purchased a set a while back, but unfortunately they were a bit too large to fit nicely anywhere on the bike (despite sounding quite nice). A trip to Amazon later, and I snagged a replacement that, while not sounding as great, are at least equally loud, and fit on the bike much better.

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As for the location? I LOVE the older British bikes' propensity to put their accessories in the strangest of positions (gauges, horns, etc.), and the "horn right behind the footpegs" is one of my favorites. I see why it's not the "best" place to put them, but it's too unique of a opportunity to pass up. As a benefit, there's already a mounting hole normally used for the stock rear bags right there, so I didn't even have to fab anything up.

I still need to wire them (which won't be hard), and speaking of bags I managed to figure those out as well (hopefully). But those will have to wait for next time...
1997 Valkyrie- Light Cutomization, but Too Busy Riding
1980 KZ1300- Bike's Haunted
1976 GL1000 (Yellow)- It Runs (Poorly) and Doesn't Leak (Mostly)
1974 Velosolex 3800- Better Than Walking
1972 CB750- Broke the Chain And Ate the Motor
1969 CT90- The Most Fun You Can Have on 90ccs.
1965 CA77 Dream- Needs a Full Teardown, but Complete

All advice I give is only valid until an expert corrects me.
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