Part of the redesign started in 2012 was to get rid of this modified Triumph Tiger front panel. I thought it looked great when I first finished it, but now it seems to look too much like the old Avon fairings that the police and AA used on their BSAs, available today on eBay for 99p. Replacing it with an off-the-shelf supermoto/streetfighter fairing would look silly – just a cop-out. I tried a traditional round headlight as originally intended, but it looked a bit boring. It would also mean having to make a decent-looking mount for the instruments and fix up a fly screen for a bit of wind protection.
By late 2015, in the interests of getting the bike back on the road as soon as possible, I decided to stick with the Triumph fairing. This would conveniently hide and protect the original instruments which I want to retain – mileage of 71k is to be proud of! Having lopped off the panel’s side bulges to slim it down, the brackets I’d originally made to hold the lights in and mount the fairing were lost. Here it’s just taped in place:
New brackets to connect the panel with the Suzuki GSXR lights were made from 3mm aluminium and held in place with filler as before. The brackets had holes drilled for the filler to ooze through and secure them. Tidying and painting yet to be done:
The fairing looked better when closer to the forks and lower down than before – this meant the clock housing would have to be cut down to remove the projecting mounting points (and make it look less like a car dashboard).
More home-made 3mm aluminium brackets bolted to the fork clamps now hold the fairing on. It needed another pair of brackets at the bottom of the fairing to steady it (not yet fitted in this picture). The untidy sides of the cut-down clock housing can be seen, needing some sort of disguise – yet to be devised.
The removal for the clock housing mounting points meant it needed a mounting plate, which could bolt to the existing tapped holes in the top yoke. I cut this from more 3mm aluminium, with holes for the speedo drive and clock lights, then carefully bent it round a curved former – in the wrong direction. Having hammered it flat again, I could not quite replicate the nice curves I’d got the first time, but it does the job, and won’t be visible normally. I just hope the re-bending has not weakened the metal too much.
The original warning light unit was too large to fit between the clocks and the modified fairing, so I decided to try LEDs – 10mm diameter 12 volt units that light up in various colours. The panel is made from 2mm polystyrene sheet, glued together with MEK solvent. Two brackets bent up from scrap steel are glued to the sides with Araldite. These locate it on the front of the clock housing using the screws that retain the perspex cover. I found it best to drill the 10mm holes for the LEDs slightly under-size and finish them with a file, to ensure they lined up neatly. Strips of copper-surfaced printed circuit board (PCB) connect up the common leads (3 needed to go to negative, 4 to positive, just to make matters more interesting). The non-common leads are soldered to a strip of PCB with the copper coating cut through to separate them. The wires cut from the from the old warning lights could then be soldered to the appropriate bits of PCB without putting any strain on the LED leads.
The LEDs were held in place quite well by their leads, but a few blobs of Araldite added after this picture made them more secure. Once I’m happy with the unit I will probably box it in to give it a bit more protection. They appear very bright in the relative gloom of the garage, and may need some smoked perspex over them.
The speedometer is installed to check that the speedo drive cable run is clear. It will have to come out again to finally bolt the housing in place, with M5 bolts through the base of the housing and the bracket. There is a slight crack in the perspex cover at the bottom of the rev counter aperture. There used to be two small lugs on the back of the cover and housing with screws holding them together. I used these to attach the housing to the top yoke in the previous incarnation, causing the crack – a regrettable bodge!
Painting will have to wait for warmer, drier, weather.