The Story of a Shovelhead Stroker Named: Bitch
A 1970's Style Stroker Shovelhead F Something...
Day One - Monday, October 21, 2019
Bitch arrives by trailer - A sad day
And I say a sad day, because this makes Brother Wolf's decision to quit riding official; the torch has been passed, and Bitch is now part of my stable. He looked back at her one last time, and in a loud stern voice said "Behave!", then turned and walked away. And Bitch of course - being Bitch - decided to follow that final instruction by catching on fire less than 20 minutes later...
...Did I happen to mention that the bike's name was...Bitch?
Okay... So it was just a small fire, and really more of a smoke show. Nevertheless it did require a good bit more investigation at a later date. So... It is therefore construed as worthy of mention ... Mainly because it makes the story more fun..
Saturday, October 26, 2019
Bitch as it happens, came with a veritable cornucopia of spare/extra parts that had been accumulated over the years in the process of trying to get her ass to start (13:1 compression ratios are like that..). So I set about the process of seeing if one of the previously declared dead solenoids could be coaxed back into life/service ... And this was a total failure. But it did cast a few dispersions on the starter clutch - which would later prove to be unwarranted - but replacements for both did get ordered.
The day ended rather early, as I was still in the process of recovering from Biketoberfest.
Saturday, November 2, 2019
Well, the starter clutch arrived...however the new solenoid did not. So I'm a bit stuck as to WTF I can actually do. An investigation inside the primary showed that the starter clutch was actually ok...just slightly hung on the ring gear ... Which of course was to be blamed on the ever so slightly dead as fuck solenoid.
So that was to be a bust ... On to the wiring.
The T-bars were dimpled for the late style switches and drilled for the early style switches, but the holes were not quite in the right place. They were however positioned perfectly to cut into half of the wires from the switch block.
I pulled the wiring out of the bars, elongated the hole a bit, and then sat down to brainstorm how the fuck I was going to get the wiring back through the T-bars...without having to disassemble the whole damn thing.
Kite string and a vacuum cleaner. Shove the string in the top hole, put the vacuum cleaners attachment hose on the bottom hole, and hold on to the string at the top...because it's going to be where you want it faster than you can blink.
Saturday, November 9, 2019
Solenoid arrives, solenoid works, and the starter's reduction gears are apparently El-Fuck-O'ed. E.g. Still no joy. I'm currently debating on trying to kick-start the bitch.
Film at 11:00: man has kneecap surgically removed from eye socket... Holy shit...what a fucking jackass!
Yepper... That's what's playing in my head ... But I'm still tempted to try it..
Saturday, November 16, 2019
Providence protects madmen and idiots - Kickstarting a stroker.
Well... I had to try. And much as I'd initially suspected...it didn't work ... At all. So the kicker is now hanging on the wall where it belongs ... To prevent some jackass from trying to use it again in the future.
But on the plus side, I didn't break anything. I was just very tired while pulling out the starter to find out what was broken.
That didn't take long... The splines on the starter shaft were stripped. So after rebuilding the drive gears out of the vast array of spare parts in the graveyard of starters Bitch had killed. A new one was ordered, and the project was put to bed for the weekend.
Saturday, November 23, 2019
Trust, but verify - Alright Bitch, that's enough foreplay.
So apparently, the generic equivalent - which I found out I was using - of a Spyke Hi-Torque starter do not quite adhere to the exacting tolerances of the non-generic (e.g. actual) Spyke starters. And this is why the previous starter shaft had ended up splineless...as the load was being transferred less than a third of as designed full engagement.
Shit... Don't want to do that again...as it apparently doesn't end well.
So after about an hour of taking measurements, I decided to cut off part of the end of the shaft and split the - lack of proper engagement - difference between the drive gear splines, and the starter clutch splines. This gave me a little over two thirds of full engagement for both ends of the equation...and hopefully enough to fly on.
It definitely worked in testing, as it finally bit down and tried to spin the engine ... But - of course - is keeping with the "theme" of the project. She didn't actually start ... Because the fucking (brand new) battery was dead. Not completely dead mind you, just dead enough - at 11.8v - to make nothing exciting happen. So on the battery charger it goes.
Yes an evening trip out to the garage did indeed finally result in her roaring to life. And I was - to be honest - quite literally jumping up-and-down like a god damn 5 year old at fucking Chucky-E-Cheese when she finally lit-off.. However the first official test ride was going to have to wait until tomorrow, because:
Sunday, November 24, 2019
Um... Is it normal for oil to puke out of the front exhaust pushrod tube?? I'm guessing not. But she had been sitting for two years, and has a high volume S&S oil pump ... So I'm guessing that this is just a very unique way of sumping ... And it was.
She did finally quit pissing everywhere after I loosened the cap on the oil tank for a bit.
But damn ... Way to freak a motherfucker out with surprises there...Bitch!
There was not enough room to open her up, but it was immediately quite clear that she wanted to go. Because anything off idle results in time to shift quicker than you can think 'Oh Shit, we be moving..'. Because we was moving, and she wasn't kidding. This bike is fast - scary fast ... The kind of fast that you treat with princess level respect. Because if you don't, you will very quickly end up with a tombstone on your forehead. This 'bitch' is a widowmaker if you ever get cocky and try to treat her like one ... Because the place she will put you in, will very quickly involve six feet of earth..
I do however, believe - at this point - that her breaking could use some enhancements.
Primarily, because my impulse control is basically...shit.
Saturday, November 30, 2019
I had a go at Bitch's three handed clutch, to see if I could address the creeping issue, and lighten things up a little while I was in there. Since slipping was not an issue at this point, I decided to try backing off a little on the Kenworth class spring kit that was in there by mixing two different spring kits. And since she has a five stud hub...half and half sounded like a good place to start. So she got reassembled with five of the red three handed springs, and five of the much lighter gold springs from another kit. I also backed off on the preload about 3 threads to allow for the much thicker aluminum pressure plate.
Now after that - and a little cable lube - I ended up with a lever pull that a normal human could handle without having to brace one foot against the fucking steering head. Which - of course - now begs the obvious question: would it now slip?
Saturday, December 1, 2019
Half choke and no touching the accelerator pump had Bitch roaring to life before I realized I forgot to hit the compression releases ... Oops! So I guess the battery is holding up ok...so far. But when I dropped her in gear, she still wanted to creep just a little. Neutral was - and still is - rather impossible to find. Shit... But - fuck it - she's running, so I might as well take a romp down the street to see if the clutch will hold under load.
On a shift, it still hit hard, but not violently. Snapping the throttle open about half way on a roll from 2k to 4k, had the beast lunging forward hard enough to feel like it was trying to leave the ground. There was no sign of clutch slippage...but the rear tire was getting vague as fuck about whether or not it had enough toenails to keep ahold of the planet we were fixin' to leave at the rate she was accelerating.
Fuck Me This Thing is Fast!!
Unfortunately, it was also covered in oil. So that will have to be addressed before any more shenanigans are attempted. Because even with the oil tank cap loose (test was accidental...) she is still trying to push oil out of the front exhaust pushrod tube ... Which is damn peculiar.
Saturday, December 14, 2019
Oil Leak Found!.
Okay... So after trying everything else first...it was time to take a look at the offending pushrod tube to see WTF was going on with it. And the problem became quite obvious rather quickly.
Notice where the upper pushrod tube isn't?
However, to her credit, Bitch had been wiggling the damn thing for about a month in an attempt to draw attention to the cause of the issue ... I just hadn't been paying enough attention to her "signals"..
Sunday, January 5, 2020
Huston... We're Fucked!
My trip to the Webster swap meet netted a pristine NOS Super Glide brake control assembly ... That unfortunately... Will. Not. Work. Because of the
of the 5-Speed in a 4-Speed case, with kicker transmission.
But it makes a nice wall hanging...
So... On to plan 'K':
A friend of mine had been looking at a 2003 Heritage Softail at Biketoberfest because he liked the floorboards that it had ... And he wanted to know if they could be retofit to his 1998 FXSTC. Now this project had been on the back burner, but since this handy new excuse had just dropped into my lap ... Hm... Okay, Fuck it ... Lets try that.
Some spelunking on eBay turned up a complete set of fire sale - literally, the listing said the bike had been on fire - controls for quite nicely under $100.00. Now as omens go - if you're into that kinda thing - that a huge flashing neon "sign" ... So I ordered the Mother Fuckers.
Sunday, January 12, 2020
Light at end of tunnel is a train, but it appears to be friendly..
Quite a bit of - like extensive - modification was required, but god damnit ... It fuckin' worked!
The shift angle is now properly awesome...so speed shifting - which I'm prone to - will now be possible, habitual, and probably mentioned in court... Assuming the tag is visible through the smoke coming off the rear tire.
However... The - current 2" dragpipes - exhaust do not work with the floorboards. But, the 1-3/4 dragpipes that I had taken off of Alice...do ... Whop dity, whop, dity whop hay ... Fuck I'm fucking hammered..
...And the girls are sharing outfits again.. But the kicker will have to go ... Because it just won't clear the new from Alice rear pipe ... Or any - the fuck - thing else I've tried to do so far. So... Since it isn't actually useful for starting "the Bitch..." - It's time for it to go. - Which also means that a Hydraulic clutch very well may be in Bitch's future.
So for those of you that have at least once been inebriated ... There is a tendency to pronounce the word sophisticated - in the aforementioned state - as So-piss-fuck-ated.... And that is exactly what we are going for on this particular project. Extremely maximum - over-the-top - brutal So-piss-fuckation.
...And I say this only because there is a rumor currently circulating about, that I may be Irish ... And I've been drinking..
Time passes ... Like a freaking week..
Ah, Yes...(speaking of bitches..). One other thing of note happened that day.
We adopted a new family menber from the Humane Society.
One of our friends brought her over for a "visit", and she's still here.
Saturday, January 25, 2020
Work has been too much like work...so now I'm behind
Well I kept forgetting to order the shit (because work...), so this weekend is/has been a bust. But thanks to my brothers propen$ity for saying 'just order it' ... the Bitch project is now moving forward towards her now FLHS style target. So as she becomes the ultimate - gray beard class - sleeper FLH, she will also be inheriting Alice's old (hand-me-down from Blue) night racing lighting kit. And that little (340 watt lighting) package is notorious for giving people a sunburn on a moonless midnight from a mile away.
Saturday, March 14, 2020
Daytona Bike Week 2020 vs. COVID-19
This T-Shirt appealed to my rather dark sense of humor.
Sunday, May 10, 2020
Life is a complicated thing at times..
Okay... So for a medley of reasons I won't go into Bitch has been in the shed for the last few months, and my garage has been virtually inaccessible. However, it is finally - at this point - back to being garage-able ...so if nothing else goes wrong I will finally be able to take another run at her next weekend. Starting with the transmission main shaft which has to be changed to remove the kickstarter, and complete the conversion to the early 80's (3 ball ramp) clutch release mechanism. At which point the exhaust will then - again... - finally fit..
The Bike Week swap meets were not nearly as fruitful as I'd hoped, so the FLH frontend conversion is going to take a bit longer to pull off trying to scrounge deals on parts from that era on eBay..
However, I do - so far - have a set of forks, a set of calipers, a main shaft, and a plan...
God knows it's probably a bad one ... But it's my fucking plan, and god Damnit I'm sticking to it!
Saturday, May 16, 2020
On Your Mark! Get Set! ...Fuck!
Bitch got liberated from the shed last night, is back in the garage, and it's Saturday - What could go wrong? Hm... Well... Let's see. I got a late start, I'm working with a last minute design change, and the bike's name is Bitch ... For a reason.
Scampering back on point ... The late 80's 3 ball ramp clutch release requires a specific trap door, that I didn't have, because I couldn't find one for less than a kings ransom. And that left me with - only one... - option available, which was to use one of the early 80's arm and fork style clutch releases that were left over from other projects - Alice and Nightmare to be specific. Nightmare only had 10,000 miles on her when they came off, so her parts were still most shiny and fresh. And so the deal was struck...apparently with (guess what else didn't fit) fucking Beelzebub...
But I'm getting ahead of myself a bit.
Plan was to pull the clutch hub, top cover, shift drum and forks, so the tranny could be slid out in one piece for main shaft replacement. And plan that went fine right up until (step 2 if you're counting) I found myself compelled to ask the question: Who the fuck fucking welded the fucking clutch cable bracket to the fucking frame?!? ...fffffFuck!!!
Fuckity, fuckity, fuckity, fuck!
Sung rhythmically - like a nursery rhyme - it is much like a mantra for people with turrets.
So... Now my choices are:
Thankfully I was drinking at the time...so we went with plan 'B'. Because there was no way in hell I was going to pull the engine and take a chance on dropping it since I was working solo, on the floor, with a bad knee. But after stripping everything off the frame in the vicinity of the target area, and using a carefully selected rater well used (hint: smaller diameter) wheel, I got the bracket off without a nick.
Tranny out, main shaft out, main shaft in, installed in to "new" early 80's arm and fork trapdoor, tranny in, and primary drive installed. And... that concludes the only part of the program that actually went according to plan. Seriously...
The clutch cable bracket was going to be an issue yet again, because now I needed one. I could try ordering one, but I wasn't quite entirely sure that the angle was going to be right. Or I could try making one, but that was going to be an entirely different ordeal that involved equipment...that I didn't have readily available. Or I could try converting it to the early 80's style cable bracket. Or... Hay, did you notice I didn't mention welding the motherfucker to the frame as an option?
Tell Dock to fire up the DeLorean, we're headed for the early 80's!
The only complication at this point, was that Bitch did not have the correct top cover for this type of mounting. It was chrome, but it didn't have the necessary bolt holes in it, and it was too thin to drill, tap, and expect to stay put. But Alice on-the-other-hand, did have one...that she wasn't using, since she had been converted to the 2004 CVO hydraulic clutch release. Hm...
Hay, Alice! Any chance you'd mind if we chrome your tits?
Well...guess where the transmission breather isn't on an 81 e.g. She did...
Now I just gotta figure out how to - properly - vent her top cover on Bitch.
Adjuster fits fine after 2nd round of cutting.
Welcome to the 80's - Yikes!.
Saturday, May 23, 2020
All Aboard the Nope Train!
Hay... Ya know that one really critical part that has to go in first? Yeah ... It's not here yet.
And that's why I'm currently working on the website, instead of being out in the garage.
Sunday, May 23, 2020
Make Exhaust Fit - Now!
Now we get to ask ourselves, exactly how hard is it to get a 1/2' bar of steal hot enough to bend with a propane torch. Duh... (well...) Very ... Especially when your dumb ass has to do it 3 fucking times:
So... Sit there for half an hour+; bend/measure/test fit...repeat..:
Mount alignment is clean without being forced (and nothing hits).
But I did have to move the ignition wires to a higher routing path.
Pipes are parallel from the top, so they don't look wonky (like bad plastic tits).
And they're also aligned from the side, with nothing forced, and happy gaskets..
After reusing the starter brace from a Prestolite 5-Speed, as a battery
box bottom mount, I managed to find another place to add a skull.
And now... It's time for my nap (by Budweiser..).
Sunday, June 28, 2020
All Dressed up, and No Go!
This whole fiasco started, because some idiot (me...) wanted to have floorboards. And now that they're on there - and Bitch has been sitting for 6 months - she don't want to start. She is mad...and a mad bitch is not fun to deal with... Had the battery on the charger overnight, and got her to roll over and pop a few times ... But she just don't want to play nice at all. So I'm currently waiting for the battery to charge back up...again! Because she flattened that thing in about three tries at the button.
Much as I hate to think about it, I may just have to lower her compression a bit to get her to behave well enough to be reliably street-able. Because at this point, she would rather melt the solinoid than roll over and start. And nobody wants to be the guy that comes home from a run...on a trailer.
Sunday, June 28, 2020
Hail Mary @ 3:30pm
Using a wee bit of force, by turning up the charger ... I finally got her to pop off. But the fun part stopped there. Because the solenoid "stuck" (read instantly welded...), and had to be smacked with a plastic hammer to disengage it ... and - after trying to drop her in gear - the creeping issue returned worse than a bald guy in a white van with "Free Candy" on the side. So something decided to 'settle in' to the (very...) wrong place.
Fuckity fuckity ... see above wise crack about turrets - la la la...Shit!
I got stuff coming in for Trixie this week, so Bitch is now going to have to wait for a bit ... Because Trixie is my primary transport and I gotta keep her tight to be able to get to work, so I can afford the rest of these seemingly insane fucking shenanigans.
I swear this bike really was named far too well. But somewhere between Archimedes' lever and a big fucking hammer...I will tame this god damn shrew one way or the fucking other!
Sunday, July 5, 2020
This went wrong, that went wrong, if I put them together will it go right?
So since one of the - shall remain nameless - vendors I ordered parts for Trixie from on eBay was "kind enough" to royally drop the ball and put that project a week behind (idiot..). I had some spare - 3 day weekend - time to take yet another run at Bitch.. I re-readjusted the clutch to a point that basically should not have worked - something is obviously awry here - and shuffled the controls around on the handlebar a bit to get the clutch to release as far as possible to prevent the creeping issue.
It worked...kind of. It worked well enough to let me take her around the block and finally find out if the 2003 foot controls were going to work out as well as I'd hoped ... And they did.
Breaking is fine, and speed shifting is breathtakingly easy. It also results in the bike lunging forward in a most delightfully violent fashion that makes you want to giggle and shit yourself at the same time.
Friday, December 25, 2020
Santa Says Dig Out Your Happy Face - It's Play Time!!!
So since much of my project funding has been tied up with/by the Crypto Currency market, things have been at a standstill for a while now. However, Santa has managed to make things in the garage merry just now with a quite dandy little spike in the value of BitCoin ... Hence...we about to go on a shopping spree that will quite likely put Bitch back on the road for Prime Time!
Sunday, January 17, 2021
We when Shopping - And got Stuff!
I've always liked to build things by feel; just start working, and let the thing tell you what it wants to be. And I have approached the Bitch Project, in just that fashion. So towards that end, I have on occasion purchased a few things that ultimately - or immediately... - didn't work out. Like the 16" front wheel I picked up a week ago...that now just ain't gonna happen. But that's okay. Because I'm letting things fall into place as the Bitch Project builds itself.
I have been searching for fenders for months. My intention was to go with the standard 70's FLH fenders, for the typical classic FLH look ... But that just ain't gonna happen. Because when a deal on a new rear fender managed to drop in my lap, it was for one of the - really - early (like 40's) style fenders. Now the matching front for this set I had fallen in love with awhile back, but didn't want to use, because it was only for a 19" front wheel ... Which ironically, is a trendy size to use these days. So...
Yes, the rear fender was described as having "Some light surface rust" ... Ha! Okay... But for the price, I just could not pass it up. And God Damn It! They are a sexy looking pair. So Imma get me some Naval Jelly and skim coat, to resurrect that bitch, for this bitch, because it is gonna look - Straight Up - bitchin' with that set of fenders, all in black, with the (also) retro headlight housings ... And my gray haired old ass smoking some yuppie cunt on an M8, because they didn't realize that antique tractors know how to fuck!
Sunday, February 7, 2021
Much Going on, But No Time to Type!
So far my attempt at getting her to blend in with the rest of the Adams Family's garage appears to be going quite well I think. The bags will need painted (obviously...), but I got a sweetheart deal on them off eBay.
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