Track Bike Update 2017 - Part 1

  During the 2016 Track Season and the offseason, I decided I needed a few changes on the R6 Track Bike. These would let my feet drag less and my head more confident. So in the cold of January, I started some updates on the little Yamaha 600 to make it more track worthy and confidence inspiring. Vortex Rearsets and some Renthal Clip Ons was how it started. Ended up going with Woodcraft clip ons. And since it took me so much time to get all the extra parts I needed for this basic upgrade, I ended up doing a bunch of other things while I waited for parts. So many things I had to break this into (at least) two parts. Click here for Part 2

  Click for a Larger Image Here, the brake side Vortex RK616 rearsets are fitted up. The Vortex rearsets created several new opportunities, opportunities that didn't exist with the stock rearsets (or maybe with other competing aftermarket rearsets either). Just a couple of minor mods required to make these work on a track bike (for which they are designed - glad this isn't a street bike - I would have had three or four more opportunities). Lets see . . . master cylinder now too high for the fluid reservoir, no brake pedal return spring, brake line now too long, brake pedal contacts exhaust slip on, no provision for routing EXUP cables. And that's just the brake side.

  This is the stock reservoir bracket. When the reservoir is mounted, the exit is below the entrance for the master cylinder. So after wasting time and money looking for alternatives (different reservoirs, Tygon tube with a Honda cap, no brakes), I decided to fab a new bracket and relocate the reservoir higher. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image I couldn't find much around the garages to turn into a bracket, except some sheet metal from an old lawn mower deck and a couple 1/8" bars of aluminum. Somehow, I had to see how a 90 degree twisted bracket could come out of a flat bar. That would take something called "annealing" so I could bend the aluminum to shape. I started with a little piece of cardboard to figure out the bends. You can see the pattern in green in the botom center.

  I've cut a life size pattern out of more cardboard to see how it could fit up to the scooter frame. The pattern is in the middle. The doner aluminum is below. The ruler is above (as they typically are on an organization chart). Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Here is what's left of the aluminum after cutting away everything that didn't look like my pattern.

  I studied up on bending aluminum. Turns out it is pretty easy if it is annealed first. That means getting it hot enought to be like plastic. That means hitting the shape with a dirty (sooty) acetylene flame and then heating it with a clean flame until the soot disappears. Then I bent it to shape. I also drilled the mounting hole in the foreground and drilled and tapped a mounting hole for the reservoir in the upper right. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Next was getting a brake return spring. All the track experts claim they don't need no stinking return spring and, that if I was a man, I would just let it drag. But I'm too much of a punk. So I made the thing on the left out of a couple of stainless washers and a weedeater spool spring. I was very proud of my invention. I then discovered many others invented the same thing. In fact, Woodcraft sells a kit with a purpose made spring and retaining nut thing. So, being a sucker for spending money, I paid the $20 (to MotoMummy) for the purpose made kit (right).

  Here's everything discussed above put in place. No fluid in the reservoir yet. Also need some smaller hose clamps. Then, with bled brakes, I can see if the pedal still hits the stock slip on, which is installed here. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Now for the shift side for the Vortexes. It fit fairly well, but not perfect. Two things. One is the lever is much closer to the kickstand than the stock one. Second, there is a tiny grease fitting on the rod end / heim joint. I've never seen such a tiny fitting and have no idea how to get grease into it. I could take the kickstand off like a real racebike, but then I need a pit crew everywhere I want to stop.

  Now, for the replacement clip ons. I saw a YouTube video that showed an English guy crashing cause his left side clipon broke as he was entering a left hander. He had stock clipons. So that spooked me, thinking the OEM clipons could be weak, especially if a PO had crashed the bike. So I decided to get aftermarket clip ons. I choose Renthal since they had cool markings on the bars and the fork brackets. But first I had to take off the top triple clamp. Along with that comes the ignition switch. And of course I have to take every thing off the stock clip ons. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image This is where my Renthal problems began. See that little metal loop touching the knurled knob? That is a spring that keeps the knob from spinning which keeps the clutch cable adjustment constant. That little spring won't fit over the Renthal fork brackets if I were to put them on. I can remove the little 4mm screw holding the spring in, but then the clutch cable could come out of adjustment. So I am sending back the Renthals.

  Plan is to go with Woodcraft clip ons. They have two piece fork clamps and are much lower profile where the bar goes into the clamp. Either way, I need to get the old ones off. So here is the bike with no top triple clamp. See the little tapped holes on the inside of the stock clip on clamps? That's where a bolt that comes from the top triple clamp feeds into the stock clip on. I guess that sets the stock angle. Not much in front of me when you take off the plastics. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image This is how you take off the ignition switch to prepare for a Woodcraft Keyswitch Elimination harness. After this, I had to go get the new parts - new clipons and the keyswitch eliminator.

  Its January 22, 2017 and its cold and wet outside. But my plant is doing well. While the track body has a nice soak, I warm up with the flame thrower. Sure is nice having that to replace breathable air with heat. Hmm . . . wonder if maybe that may have something to do with why this update seems to be so hard. Maybe its really a Kawasaki. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Here are the GB Racing case savers installed on the clutch and the rotor. Wonder what a rotor is? Doesn't matter. I'm warm.

  This is what the GB Racing covers look like as I take a little nap here under the scooter. Figure this is the angle the covers will hit the ground. I hear these things aren't quite as rugged as the Woodcraft or NCR covers. Those are actual replacements for the stock case covers. But I hear good things about these GBR covers. I'd like them to last at least one crash. One thing I hear about all these covers is how to get the bolts off once the asphalt sands them off - can't get a wrench on them. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Here is the Generator Cover on the left side. These things go on real easy. GB Racing even provides specific bolts for each hole, depending on length.

  Another shot of the left side, this time showing the Vortex rearsets and K&N oil filter. I heard that some racing organizations banned K&N filters since they apparently can leak from the tacked on 17mm hex head. My next filter will be a Hiflofiltro. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image So while I wait for the Woodcraft Clip Ons to arrive, I decided to invest more in Woodcraft. This is the special wire that prevents key loss from affecting your ability to enjoy the track day you just spent four hours driving, $50 for a cheap hotel, and $100 worth of diesel fuel to get to. It is much easier to do now that everything in the front is already off.

  This is what the magic Keyloss Prevention system looks like when installed on the left side. It goes around the front with the other wires in harness that simply connects to the tach and speedometer (now that the lights, horn, turn signals, and other wirey kinds of things are gone. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image January 28. Received the exchange Woodcraft clip ons. Fork clamps are much lower profile than the Renthals. Packed very nice. Also received some Woodcraft bar ends which are like junior frame sliders. First had to get the original end caps off, which took some soft jaw vice action. You can see the modified top triple tree at the top.

  Woodcraft clip ons with Renthal Grips on. Figured since I couldn't use the Renthal bars, I still needed to use something from Renthal so I could use the decal. I even used Renthal Grip Glue. I thought it would act like a lubricant that would allow the grips to slide on and then harden. It gave me about three seconds of slide time and then turned to glue. Then it was all Elbow Grease (get it???). Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Clip ons in final position. Getting the right angle was a bit of a challenge. This position was based on what felt good from the seat. They are a bit wider and a bit more forward than stock.

  Another shot from the front. To get them consistent, I used a metal rule resting on the fork clamps across the front of the fork tubes. Then I set a reference point where the rule touched the fork (the tangent). Then measured 11mm from that point to the clip on inside clamp seam. I set the clamps 40mm from the top of the fork tube (not the cap). For the tube length, I measured 30mm of tube sticking out of the inside of the clamp. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image .Left side. Here you see the reason for the Woodcrafts in the first place. The clutch adjustment screw and spring tang clears the bracket. You can see the wiring for the clutch switch. Apparently the ECU wants to know what's going on with the clutch.

  Left clip on. Lots going on here. Throttle with two cables, kill switch/starter, and front brake with its very stiff steel lines. Note the bar end slider. Toying with getting a motion pro throttle tube. But I think I really will get a new throttle cable. This is one of the reasons this had to be broken to Two Parts - Getting the throttle to work reasonably well in all this clutter. Click Here for Part 2. Click for a Larger Image

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