Restoration decisions... - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 09:46 AM Thread Starter
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Restoration decisions...

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.

New rider/mechanic of '85 VN700 Vulcan. (25k miles)

Link to bike restoration blog:
http://trailofthewolf.blogspot.com/s...%20Restoration
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:48 AM
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carb rebuild and coasters

I went through 6 Sigma on ebay to get the parts for rebuilding my carbs after doing an earshave and changing out my exhaust. They built the kit to fix exactly what I have done to my bike as well as what altitude I was at on average. I have just also orders a set of coasters from them as well.

http://stores.ebay.com/6-Sigma-Racing?_rdc=1

'99 VN750
12998 miles - 2009
Completed:
Custom seat (steal tractor seat cut down to give more leg room), 10"X12" 1/8" steal plate Rack., 18" drivers back rest, custom Highway bar, coastering.

Future:
5 gal tank.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 12:13 PM
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Wolf, I was going to suggest going with a light/bright or hi-viz color to be more noticable on the street. I was pleased to see the cream colored sides on the tank, which is a step in the right direction IMHO. The white wall tires will give you more visibility to the sides too.

If you are going to install a large windshield, consider tinting the bottom part a bright color to make you more visible to the front. Good luck with the project. Hope it doesn`t take you a year to get her on the road.

Gordon

1991 VN 750 -"Cosmic Lady" or "Bad Girl"?
Purchased May 16, 2008
Approx.19,300km (12,000 miles)

H-D windshield
Relocated R/R
MF-AGM battery
Fiamm Freeway Blaster horns
F&S luggage rack and engine guard
Kury Offset Hiway pegs
July 13, 2016, Riding on the DARKSIDE now, Classic Radial 165/80-15


TOP TEN THINGS A NEW RIDER/OWNER SHOULD DO. Click on link.
https://www.vn750.com/forum/11-vn750-general-discussion/9127-top-ten-items-you-would-suggest-new-owner-do-his-new-ride.html
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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Thx for the info dagmar!! I'll add it to my list of suppliers!!

OlHoss..one of the reasons I like this rootbeer color is that it lights up to almost a flame orange when the sun or lights hit it at night. I didn't want to put it back to all black again. I do plan to put full size blinkers and I may do some reflective flame decals too or at least add some extra reflectors. No windshield though...at least unless I find I can't ride without it. I promise I will be all about safety when I ride...not skimping on that at all!

New rider/mechanic of '85 VN700 Vulcan. (25k miles)

Link to bike restoration blog:
http://trailofthewolf.blogspot.com/s...%20Restoration
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 08:02 PM
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Hey wolflvr I too am a mechanic for an 85 700, hope to be a driver before the end of the summer.

I'm restoring mine to stock, with the exception of ear shave which I'll only do if I can't get the right intake boots. My engine is wacked, starting with balance dampeners, I'll know more once I get it all out and torn down I guess. I'll need to get lots of good gaskets I guess, and I'll get my first crack at rebuilding carbs. I do plan to paint the engine covers with that brushed aluminum color. I have no use for a black engine. I'm sure there will be tons of electrical gremlins on my little gem too.

I know the color you're talking about. Honda made an Element SC with a color called Root Beet Metallic a couple years ago. Not as bright as the color you're talking about, but still a good looking color and on a Vulcan it will be very unique. In this part of TN, everyone rides a black, white, or silver bike.

1985 Vulcan 700 (VN700A1) - 18,960 miles - bought for $600 - was told it only needed carb idle screws and fuel lines to run correctly - it used to start

1983 Honda Nighthawk 750 (CB750SC) - 30,000 miles - 95% fully restored
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 08:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joshua View Post
Hey wolflvr I too am a mechanic for an 85 700, hope to be a driver before the end of the summer.
Hey Joshua, you are driver in your cage.
You become a RIDER on a motorcyle!!

Gordon

1991 VN 750 -"Cosmic Lady" or "Bad Girl"?
Purchased May 16, 2008
Approx.19,300km (12,000 miles)

H-D windshield
Relocated R/R
MF-AGM battery
Fiamm Freeway Blaster horns
F&S luggage rack and engine guard
Kury Offset Hiway pegs
July 13, 2016, Riding on the DARKSIDE now, Classic Radial 165/80-15


TOP TEN THINGS A NEW RIDER/OWNER SHOULD DO. Click on link.
https://www.vn750.com/forum/showthread.php?t=9127
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 09:39 PM Thread Starter
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Cool Joshua!! I hope to head over to your side of the state on my bike for sure when it's up and running!! You've got lots of awesome roads to ride on!!

Hopefully you're engine will be like mine was and just need new dampers. Also don't forget to replace the shift rod in the very bottom of the crankcase. It's a known factory defect.

As to my engine coloring...I plan to keep the crankcase, bevel gear and driveshaft the original black..but will add some stainless bolts to it. For the cylinders, inside of the rims(where it's stock black), and the radiator grate(the radiator frame cover will be rootbeer), I plan to paint them VHT Burnt Copper. I'll leave the edges of the fins and all the bolts aluminum and polish the valve covers. The Burnt Copper will be very unique and it just friggin' pops with the Rootbeer! There will be a tremendous amount of detail in the engine. Carbs will be their natural color.

My electrical system as it stands right now is severely mutilated. It's been hacked into and lots of bad taping and who knows what else. I will be completely rebuilding and rewiring all necessary parts of it and then recovering it with the chrome wrap covers.

There's definitely a couple of car models that use the rootbeer color, but the HOK candy rootbeer takes it to a whole other level. If you look at all the pics in the link I posted above you can see how many color shifts it does in different lighting.

I figure I'm 50 yrs old. I'm only ever gonna own one bike at this point in my life, so I'm trickin' this one out to be everything I've ever wanted in a bike. I'm having a blast doing it all too!!

Good luck on yours and we'll keep in touch and can compare notes!! Also make sure you watch Roach's videos too before you start your teardown. There's important info and tools you'll need.

New rider/mechanic of '85 VN700 Vulcan. (25k miles)

Link to bike restoration blog:
http://trailofthewolf.blogspot.com/s...%20Restoration
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:40 PM
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The HoK root beer reminds me of an old Ford color called Mystic they used on Mustangs in the mid to late 90's.

Yeah, definitely keep up to date, and I subscribed to Roach's posts on youtube.

Wondering now if I could gunmetal with satin silver inserts on the tank sides with satin silver striping on the fenders.

Again, these things are a LONG way off for me, LOL.

1985 Vulcan 700 (VN700A1) - 18,960 miles - bought for $600 - was told it only needed carb idle screws and fuel lines to run correctly - it used to start

1983 Honda Nighthawk 750 (CB750SC) - 30,000 miles - 95% fully restored
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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yeah that was a wicked color! I was originally gonna rattlecan it with the Duplicolor Mirage paint...but then I saw the rootbeer bike on tv..and knew that was gonna be the color!

Don't worry about making a decision yet..just keep letting your mind wander and think of the possibilities..when it's right..you'll know it!! I know as I was doing my tear down..I would kind of look at each part as I took it off and make a mental note of whether I liked it as it is, or if I wanted to change the color or modify it. I also tried to "paint" the bike in my head to see how it would look...balancing the color elements and the chrome.

I love the gunmetal/silver idea though...that would look tough!! Give it sort of an industrial look!

New rider/mechanic of '85 VN700 Vulcan. (25k miles)

Link to bike restoration blog:
http://trailofthewolf.blogspot.com/s...%20Restoration
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-04-2011, 03:02 PM Thread Starter
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Made the 2hr trip to Jackson, TN to go to Harbor Freight. Got lots of tools and supplies I needed. Torque wrenches, telescoping gauges, valve lapper, cylinder hone, paint gun supplies(gun set is coming from auto paint supplier), electrical testers, gasket scrapers, sandpaper in various grits, etc. I will be starting into the sanding stage tomorrow. First up is the battery box! Will have before and after shots of most stages of the process. From such humble beginnings will emerge an awesome classic cruiser with a new life and soul!

New rider/mechanic of '85 VN700 Vulcan. (25k miles)

Link to bike restoration blog:
http://trailofthewolf.blogspot.com/s...%20Restoration
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