The next race bike | Page 4 | GTAMotorcycle.com

The next race bike

Brian P

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I picked up the parts from US suppliers today (shipped to USAddressInc in Niagara Falls NY), and I picked up the bodywork (which is close to the last thing to go on the bike!) at Pro 6. I took a look at one part. The paint that Flexiglass did is beyond what a race bike needs!

The Woodcraft clip-on bars are taking annoyingly long to get, but even without that, there is lots that I can do. Now I just need to manufacture some time.

The general plan is to do all the electrical stuff, get the engine running, then do some tuning (hopefully before the weather gets cold), then suspension, then bodywork, then chain and sprockets, then tires.
 

GreyGhost

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How are you doing tuning? Have you built your own dyno yet? A motorcycle engine dyno seems like it would be reasonably simple as you could use the chain to transfer power in. Swapping sprockets could be used to alter the effective load to help compensate for the vast power range of various bikes.
 

Brian P

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I am going to temporarily install an air/fuel ratio gauge on the bike, and get Pro 6 to take it from there ... Having the flashed ECU in place should (hopefully) already be close to what it needs, but there's no way to know without trying it.
 

Brian P

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I opened up the boxes and installed several of the little odds and ends today.

The BMC air filter is a straight replacement of the (mildly dirty) stock one.

The air injection block-off plate is a simple bolt-on, and a cap for the fitting on the airbox that normally connects to the hose for the air injection. I taped over the electrical connector to protect it in case it ever needs to be hooked up again.

The side-stand elimination kit is simply a jumpered plug that takes the place of the side-stand connector. Yeah, lots of people just cut the wire and twist them together ... and then have issues with loose connections later, and doing it this way keeps the stock stuff intact in case it ever goes back to being a street bike. Getting to that plug requires removing the sprocket cover and coolant bottle (which means the bodywork has to be off, but it already is). While in there, I installed the oxygen sensor block-off plug that came with the Power Commander, since that connector is in the same bundle.

The clutch switch kit is another jumpered plug that replaces the left handlebar switches, which are otherwise all lighting and horn - not needed on a race bike, except the jumper for the clutch switch allows the bike to be started in gear.

The steering stop is a simple bolt-on that attaches where the horn normally goes, on the lower triple clamp. This is to improve clearance for clip-on handlebars. It reduces steering travel by about a third. Race bikes tend to have big turning circles - don't need much steer angle on track.

The Tightails upper fairing bracket replaces the stock one, eliminates the part of the bracket normally used for the headlight, and allows the instrument panel to be mounted deeper into the fairing, which improves clearance for clip-on handlebars. It's made of aluminum and weighs a fraction of what the stock one does. Easy replacement, although I had to dig up a couple of 8mm nuts, and I'm going to have to make something to hold my air/fuel gauge.

Next up: PowerCommander, the ignition switch delete kit (which will be modified to supply power to the air/fuel gauge), the keyless fuel filler cap, reinstall the fuel tank, then I'll test-fire it to confirm that the electrical system works ... then swap to the reflashed ECU and see what happens.
 

Trials

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...
The air injection block-off plate is a simple bolt-on, and a cap for the fitting on the airbox that normally connects to the hose for the air injection. ..
Just curious; I've had anti-pollution air 'injection' devices on car engines where they feed off a belt driven air pump, drives air back towards the exhaust valve, how does that work on a motorcycle if it feeds off an air box :/ which does not produce positive pressure?
 

Brian P

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It just uses the pulsations to suck in air through reed valves.
 
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Brian P

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I went into the PowerCommander, saved the map it came with, then zeroed it out because theoretically the race ECU should already be mapped for a full exhaust system and high-flow air filter; just to be safe I arbitrarily added some fuel and took out a couple degrees of ignition timing above 9,000 rpm. PowerCommander is installed, key-delete is installed and modified to supply power to the air/fuel gauge. The whole bike now turns on and off with the kill switch. The gas tank isn't installed yet so I can't test-fire it, but flipping the switch successfully powers up the dashboard, the PowerCommander, and the air/fuel gauge. I tidied up the wiring a bit (the stock bike still looks like the inside of a washing machine underneath the fairings and I've added more; only so much can be done).

The whole reasoning behind removing the need for an ignition key is so that there is one less thing that can go wrong or go missing at the track. (The endurance team that I work with had a lengthy pit stop once upon a time because the key broke in the fuel filler cap, then in the course of fixing that, the spare key broke in the fuel filler cap!) My FZR still starts and stops with the ignition key and it still has the stock keyed fuel filler cap, but the key is safety wired to the bike. It's a minor nuisance.

Next step: Install the keyless fuel filler, install the gas tank and test-fire the engine with the stock ECU.
After that: Swap out the stock ECU for the tuned one, and make sure the bike still works.
After that: Remove the upper triple clamp and physically remove the keyed ignition switch.
After that: Make a bracket to hold the air/fuel gauge.
After that: handlebars (Pro 6 indicates that they've finally come in), and rearsets.
After that: brake lines, including drilling bolts for safety wire.
After that: quickshifter.
After that: tuning.
After that: suspension, chain, sprockets, tires.
After that: bodywork.

But first, work for the next week to help pay for all this.
 

TSC_113

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Brian, after my stupid mistake Saturday afternoon I recommend some engine case covers. I didn't have them and put a hole in the clutch cover from a simple lowside. That meant the bike was done for the weekend.

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mbroyda

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subscribed.

considering getting LWT race bike for next year, so will be following this
 

Brian P

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I have today off after a business trip, so I knocked a couple things off the list. Ignition switch is removed. (The security screws holding it from the bottom have to be drilled out, and what's left of the bolts had a remarkable amount of loctite holding them in.) Gas tank is back on, and, we have a runner. It needs tuning ... but it runs!
 

Brian P

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Well. The actual plan for today was to do the brakes on my car. I ordered the parts online before this week's business trip, and they haven't shown up yet. Might as well knock a couple more things off the list.

- Front and rear castle nuts for the axles, and I drilled both axles to allow a cotter pin to be installed. Reminder to self: when the front end goes back together, put the axle through in the other direction so that the safety wire will have someplace to go to. The nut needs to be on the right side of the bike - same side as the brake caliper.
- I installed the keyless fuel cap, which is actually quite a nice piece.

It is starting to look like a race bike with the bodywork off.

Up next (probably next weekend) - Handlebars, footpeg brackets, and brake lines.
 

TSC_113

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Watch the torque settings on those axle bolts there really low. I made that mistake ruined some front bearings. also if you run the rear through the other way it makes it easier to hold the brake caliper in place when reinstalling the rear wheel

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raginduck

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Question for those racing the smaller bikes..
Where does the ktm 390 fit in the racing classes? Does it compete in the same classes as the R3, ninja4, etc..?
How does it measure up against the others?
 

TSC_113

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Question for those racing the smaller bikes..
Where does the ktm 390 fit in the racing classes? Does it compete in the same classes as the R3, ninja4, etc..?
How does it measure up against the others?
It would compete in the same classes. The only person who raced one this year that i know of was Pat Barnes and he only did a couple of the support races at Grand Bend and Mosport. He was top 10 both times. In Moto America the KTM factory bike won the championship. But that was a big budget operation.
 

HERBXX

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Hi Brian , What Gas cap did you use? .. I was sort of looking for one for my FJR , for a project .
 

Brian P

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The one I used is specific to the R3. It has a spring loaded cam thingey inside it to secure it closed, and it has proper gaskets unlike the older threaded caps that tended to leak (both leak fuel out, and leak water in).
 

Brian P

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Question for those racing the smaller bikes..
Where does the ktm 390 fit in the racing classes? Does it compete in the same classes as the R3, ninja4, etc..?
How does it measure up against the others?
Same classes. Very comparable in terms of performance to the R3; the Ninja 400 is still the fastest of the bunch stock-for-stock. I looked at the RC when they first came out; I love the look of both the Duke and the RC. Stock suspension is way soft, but having to rework the suspension is standard fare on a race bike anyhow. The exhaust header passes right next to the shock, and I'm told from a couple of SOAR folks that ran one in an endurance race that it cooks the shock after a while. (Not a problem for shorter races) On the RC the handlebar holder is one piece with the upper triple clamp ... non-adjustable, and if you crash it and break the handlebar holder, you just broke the upper triple clamp because it's the same piece. Reliability was my big worry.

I just finished (and won) the last race on my FZR. Tonight's chore is to prepare it for long-term storage. It will be parked in my workshop, ready to race, needing only to put fuel in it. Twenty-three years of memories flooded past on that checkered-flag lap.
 

Brian P

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I finally have the Woodcraft handlebars. I started mocking up the rearsets last night. Shortly I'll be able to sort out the riding position.

Aaaaand I have a big box that says "Ohlins" on it in the van right now. I've got some work to do.
 

Brian P

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Well, well. Something was bound to go wrong. The long awaited Woodcraft clip-on handlebars ... are the wrong ones. Well, sort of. If a random person walks into a random shop and wants to order Woodcraft clip-on handlebars for an R3, they're the ones you are going to get ("R3 Specific" set back a bit to allow clearance to the fairing and instrument cluster at full steering angle). But I've done the modifications to allow the normal Woodcraft 41mm 1.5" rise clip-ons to be used (which position the bars further forward - and I'm tall, I need the room).

It was still a good day. I got done my day job early, finished up the installation of the CFM rearset footpegs on both sides, and I swapped in the "race spec" ECU and confirmed that the engine starts and runs.

The CFM rearsets provide only limited adjustment, but based on a test-sit, they are where they need to be. I may have to raise the seat up a bit for legroom, at the moment I'm thinking to just use longer bolts for the seat and shove washers underneath where the seat bolts down.

It is now confirmed that the quickshifter sensor needs to be the "pull" type. I need to order that.

Even without the handlebars, there's still plenty to do:
Rear brake line
Rear reservoir delete kit (turns out with the rearsets installed, the new position of the rear master cylinder kinks the hose, so it's a good thing I ordered this)
Install Ohlins shock
Disassemble forks and install Ohlins internals
Make a bracket for my air/fuel gauge
Install the stiffer shift detent spring (requires disassembling the clutch)
Install the engine guards ... no point doing that until that infernal little detent spring is installed
 
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