Stuck on a Sportster - help with pipes

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Stuck on a Sportster - help with pipes

Joined: May 23rd, 2010, 12:58 am

August 23rd, 2010, 7:29 pm #1

WIP pics of my modified Testors 1/9 1995 Sportster, with planned location of custom pipes. The kit is junk, the most ill-fitting PITA, especially junky for someone accustomed to Tamiya motorcycles, but the subject is near and dear to my heart. Basically, it was my attempt to build what I see as the quintessential motorcycle (which I'd normally consider the Bonneville, but I love V-twins) or how I'd modify another Sportster (had one, crashed). So I went ahead and did things like correct misalignment between the two frame halves. Mods include shortened forks, lengthened shocks and relocated lower rear shock mounts for a much more aggressive stance, cut down stock rear fender, no front, modified handlebar and headlight mounts, handlebar from styrene rod and cut-down triple clamps (to change the blocky things to look like elegant forgings). Screwed up the instrument decals so made some new ones in CAD. The seat and tank are shaped from basswood.








Indicators, footrests, cables and exhaust are what's left. I'm stuck because I'm dead set on a custom exhaust in the shape shown above, but I'm having trouble making one. Bending styrene rod without flattening or distorting it and bending heavy copper wire have been a PITA and I don't know of any 3/16" solder available to bend. I've thought of other things, too, like using skinnier wire and building up with putty or something, but that would be so kludgy. Anyone have any experience in this kind of thing?


Points to the first person to identify the air cleaner.

Jer
Last edited by Jer64SS on August 23rd, 2010, 7:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: October 1st, 2008, 9:08 pm

August 24th, 2010, 12:49 am #2

but one technique you could try is buying tubing to the diameter you want. Fill it with water and freeze it. While it's frozen, you can use a tube bender to bend it to the shapes you want without it crimping the tube.

Oh, and the air cleaner is the chrome piece sticking off the side of the motor.

Cameron

I don't rant; I complain logically
-My mom
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Joined: May 23rd, 2010, 12:58 am

August 24th, 2010, 1:44 am #3



The styrene rod doesn't like to be bent without heat, and doesn't do it all that well with heat. I think maybe I need to just suck it up and purchase a small tubing bender. I have some brass tube of the correct diameter and a bender would be the only way to properly bend it. Maybe something homemade.

Jer
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Joined: October 1st, 2008, 9:08 pm

August 24th, 2010, 2:12 am #4

about a product that was basically a styrene rod but it bent easily and stayed. It was called Plas-T-Rod but it's become difficult if not impossible to find. Apparently a company out of the Netherlands called Raboesch made a similar product that was imported to the US by Midwest Products. I've looked on both companies websites and haven't found anything promising yet. If you could find some of the rod, that would be perfect for what you are trying to do.

Cameron

I don't rant; I complain logically
-My mom
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Joined: May 23rd, 2010, 12:58 am

August 24th, 2010, 6:00 pm #5


Thanks. I think Plast-Struct had some of that but it was under 1/8". 1/4" would be tough - the outside of the bend would have to stretch so much. I have one pipe started with the copper wire. I may just struggle through that way. But never again!

Jer
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Joined: August 16th, 2006, 2:23 am

September 1st, 2010, 10:51 am #6

K S Metals makes a tubing bender kit.

http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wt ... LXR791&P=7
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Joined: January 1st, 2010, 12:04 am

September 3rd, 2010, 9:27 pm #7

WIP pics of my modified Testors 1/9 1995 Sportster, with planned location of custom pipes. The kit is junk, the most ill-fitting PITA, especially junky for someone accustomed to Tamiya motorcycles, but the subject is near and dear to my heart. Basically, it was my attempt to build what I see as the quintessential motorcycle (which I'd normally consider the Bonneville, but I love V-twins) or how I'd modify another Sportster (had one, crashed). So I went ahead and did things like correct misalignment between the two frame halves. Mods include shortened forks, lengthened shocks and relocated lower rear shock mounts for a much more aggressive stance, cut down stock rear fender, no front, modified handlebar and headlight mounts, handlebar from styrene rod and cut-down triple clamps (to change the blocky things to look like elegant forgings). Screwed up the instrument decals so made some new ones in CAD. The seat and tank are shaped from basswood.








Indicators, footrests, cables and exhaust are what's left. I'm stuck because I'm dead set on a custom exhaust in the shape shown above, but I'm having trouble making one. Bending styrene rod without flattening or distorting it and bending heavy copper wire have been a PITA and I don't know of any 3/16" solder available to bend. I've thought of other things, too, like using skinnier wire and building up with putty or something, but that would be so kludgy. Anyone have any experience in this kind of thing?


Points to the first person to identify the air cleaner.

Jer
.....you really only have to build the rear pipe....the configuration of the front pipe is stock...
build a bender and use brass rod....make the inward bend at cyl. exhaust LAST.if you have access to a stock set of pipes,just take photos showing off-sets from verticle....it'll all make sense....see it as a Plumbing configuration,not a mechanical problem.
The brass rod is fairly cheap,just keep practicing.
BTW....stock exhaust on Sporties is junk..bends are too radical,go-to a continuous curve (S-shaped)....have made several sets of custom pipes and have a small HP increase and slight head temp drop....didn't make it a racer,but is MUCH more efficient.
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Joined: May 23rd, 2010, 12:58 am

September 5th, 2010, 5:05 am #8


I do know what you mean about it being a plumbing problem. One of the things I tried was to make some pre-made bends in styrene then put sections together as if I had bought one of those generic kits for a full-size bike. And you're right about Sportster exhausts. My Sporty was an '03 883R with a 2-into-1 boat anchor.

Thanks again.

Jer

Anyone who is not completely terrified doesn't understand the problem.
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