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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Lucas Square 8 Headlight

I've been wanting a different headlight for my Sportster for a while.  The problem has been deciding on the style as I've been torn in a few different directions.

I scored a great deal on this light on eBay and am currently working on fabricating a mount and installing it.

It's a Lucas driving / fog light (it seems to have many names: LR8, SQ8, Square 8, Square8, etc.).  They were designed for cars, not motorcycles, and typically installed on high performance British and American sports cars.

The light does not have a high beam but does have a modern 12V halogen H3 55W bulb so it seems like it should be bright enough (I'll find out once I get the chance to take it for a test ride).  Since I won't have a high beam as a backup, I'll just plan to carry a spare bulb in my tool bag.

The bulb that came with it was dead so I had to replace it.  The light and housing is in rough shape too so it needs some TLC to bring it back some of its original look.  There's a small ding in the trim ring but I'm going to leave that alone.  The chrome has some corrosion, especially on the bottom but some polishing compound and my Dremel took care of most of it.  There is a crack in the bottom but it won't be noticeable when mounted.  I already applied some J.B. Weld to seal it and to hopefully keep it from getting worse.

Here is what it looked like on the inside.

Will this headlight be the one I stick with?  I don't know but I will give it a shot for a while.  I think it looks awesome but it needs to perform too.  My goal is to have it installed and working for First Thursday - only 48 hours away!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Dodging Storms and Racking Up Miles

I had a great day on the bike yesterday.  With my mom babysitting, my wife and I got out for a long ride on the Road King.  First stop was P.D. Pappy's in Stillwater.  The water is still really high and they had sandbags around the patio.

The Road King is 4th from the left:

I don't have pics from the rest of the ride but we crossed into Wisconsin, headed south to Diamond Bluff and stopped at Nauti Hawg for lunch (they have awesome burgers).  Continued south to Maiden Rock and had amazing pie at the Smiling Pelican.  We headed north and the sky looked dark.  I checked the weather on my phone and some serious storms were coming through.  We decided to ride under them and crossed back into Minnesota in Red Wing.  We continued west and dropped south to Welch.  We stopped for ice cream at the Trout Scream Cafe.  In Welch, the tornado siren went off.  It was so freakin' loud!  We jumped back on the bike and headed south the Vasa and west to Cannon Falls.  We decided to wait for the storm to pass and relaxed at the winery there (not a bad place to wait out a storm).  We bought a few bottles, stuffed them in the saddlebag, and headed north towards the twin cities.  We hit some rain but it wasn't too bad (maybe 10-15 minutes of rain).  We dried out by the time we got home.

Overall, it was a 200-mile adventure and a great day on the bike.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Fork Stem Nut Cover Installed

I finally found a small enough allen wrench for the set screw on the fork stem nut cover I bought a few months ago (see previous post here).  It turns out that I needed a 0.050" wrench, which I found at a local hobby store.  My other allen wrench and bit sets went down to 1/16" but that was too big.

Here is the fork stem nut without the cover:

I wasn't comfortable with relying on the tiny set screw to hold it in place by iteself so I decided to give it something to grip.  I put a small piece of tape on the side of the nut:

Then I put the cover on and tightened the set screw.  Then I removed the cover and saw where the set screw made a mark on the tape:


I took my drill and made a small indent on the side of the nut (not too deep):

That should give the set screw something to bite into and hold the cover on more securely.  Here's the cover installed (finally):

Unfortunately if you're interested in one, the person who made it hasn't had any up for sale on eBay since March.  I really like it and am glad I was able to get one.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Graffiti Series Part 8 - Sportster Color

Here are color versions of the photos I posted yesterday. Again, these were taken behind the Intermedia Arts building on Lyndale.  Sportster + Graffiti + Beautiful Evening + Good Camera = Great Pics.  I love the way these turned out.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Graffiti Series Part 7 - Sportster Black and Whites

The weather was great yesterday and I rode downtown that evening.  I got some more great shots of the Sportster behind the Intermedia Arts building on Lyndale.  They repainted the building since I was there last year.  Here are some black-and-whites.  Come back tomorrow for color versions.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Vintage Fun with Modern Apps

I've been playing with the Camera+ app on my iPhone.  I've taken a few photos and given them a very retro feel, which I think is pretty cool.  It's nothing new - you'll see similar stuff all over the web.  I added the text on my PC, not with the app.

Here are some pics of the Sportster at the drive-in:

Here's one with a different effect:

... and here's a shot of the Road King from the frigid 2011 Spring Flood Run:

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Drive-Ins and Dandelions

The weather is really crappy here this weekend but I got some fantastic shots of the Sportster at the old St.Croix Hilltop Drive-In (now drive-in church) in Houlton, WI when the weather was nice.  The sky was blue, the grass was green, and bright yellow dandelions were everywhere.  It made for some great pics.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Jacked Up Bike Night - May 2011

It's Third Thursday so that means it's bike night at Mad Jack's in Brooklyn Park.

As usual, they had part of the parking lot blocked off and free hot dogs & chips for anyone riding in.  I rode the Sportster (third from the right).

I also met a few guys, one of whom recognized my bike from this blog.  It's only happened a couple of times but I am always pleasantly surprised when someone recognizes my bike and says hi.

Here are some of the other bikes.  Donnie Smith was there and his bike is third from the left.

It's a little easier to spot in color (the orange one):

The parking lot got more full as time passed but, unfortunately, I couldn't stay long.
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