So bike/engine is torn down. I've spent the last few days going over parts spreadsheets and calculating costs and such. It looks like at this point, it will cost between $1000-1500 to completely restore and customize the bike. At that point I will have a very reliable and shiny new ride and I will know every nut, bolt and part on the bike. Considering that I got the bike for free, I don't think that's a bad deal!
The extent of my customizing will probably entail earshave, coasters, maintenance-free battery, shaving the seat, XLX-type handlebars, whitewall tires and of course a new custom paint job!! I kinda think in old-school terms..think Indian motorcycle...but I like the styling and attributes of the japanese cruiser too...shaft drive, instrument panel, etc.
I plan to start work on the frame first, then wheels, forks, brakes, electrical, instruments,radiator and finally the engine. I'm doing it last so everything else is done and ready, when I put the engine back in and button it up..it should be ready to ride. I didn't want a brand new rebuilt engine to sit for a year before cranking it.
My biggest decision though has been figuring out what color to paint the bike. Originally I was just gonna rattlecan it in black again..but the more time I spend on the bike, the more I want it to have a decent paint job that will not only protect it better, but really make it a true custom and something I can be proud to ride for years to come.
Awhile back I was watching Biker Buildoff and saw a bike by Cole Foster that I just drooled over. He didn't win that build off, but the color stuck in my head. You can see the bike here: http://www.salinasboys.com/projects/loser.htm
I searched around and found out that it's HOK Candy Rootbeer with an Orion Silver Metallic base. Not sure yet whether I'll add the cream on the sides, but it's possible. I also have a wolf tribal design that I really want on the top of the tank, so I might do that in cream. Bear in mind, I have no experience at all in spray gun painting, much less in urethanes, but I've done a ton of research into the safety issues and the cost of the setup to do it right and safely. This whole paint project will add about $300 to the cost, but I think in the end I'll have something I can really be proud of. Plus I can use my new found skills to then repaint my ol' 1985 Silverado which badly needs a paint job too...LOL!
Anyway...that's my plan so far...of course it's always subject to change. I'm also debating whether to start a section on my blog to chronicle this whole process.