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Discussion Starter #1
Howdy, gonna start this thread to have somewhere to log progress that allows for a bit more interaction than instagram. The bike's still pretty new to me, but I'm the type who can't keep things stock (probably gave my parents a headache with how much I played around with my Civic), and I've already got plenty of ideas in mind.

Picked up the bike in mechanically great shape but with quite a bit of cosmetic damage, which puts me in a great place to start replacing things and patching things up. I don't have much mechanical experience, but I've got access to enough tools to tear the bike apart if I have to and I'm thinking this'll be a very fun learning process.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Just to kick it off, the two mods I've done so far:

Took off the cheap aftermarket front fairing, temporarily ziptied the original headlight in place until I can find a round headlight that works for me.



A custom tail tidy! Wanted the plate to sit a little closer to the tail, might replace the turn signals with something a little lower profile in the future. Cost me a few hours and a $5 steel sheet.

 

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Discussion Starter #3
Realized I could use this thread to ask questions without clogging up the rest of the forum, so I'll throw these out here in case anyone has any answers:

1) Is it possible to swap in one of those round ebay LED headlights (yes, you get what you pay for, this is more hypothetical)? I know you can't direct swap LED bulbs into the current halogen housing, but I can't seem to find anything about full assembly swaps. Mostly concerned about wiring and voltage/etc.

2) My exhaust pipes have a green tarnish and quite a bit of "pitting", can anyone recommend a good way to clean it up? Was thinking about sanding/polishing and maybe coating with something, but I'm not sure what routes I could go.

3) There's quite a bit of up and down play with the brake and clutch despite tightening down the screws/bolts. Is it likely just a worn pivot? I don't know if these are stock levers (they're adjustable), should I just replace them?
 

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I'll just address point 3, and let others help you with the others.
The stock levers are adjustable. Some up and down play should be fine. Mine have about 1/2 inch.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Picked up a set of weighted bar end mirrors, painted them black, and attached some cheap clip-ons. The weighty bar ends definitely help kill some vibration. Yet to test the mirrors, but I feel like they'll work well, especially with the weighted ends. Also removed the lower fairing and put the windscreen back on till I'm a bit more used to high speeds/wind.

Headlight, brackets, and turn signals from 4into1 on the way, and I'll finally be able to replace the mess that's currently on the bike.

I'll just address point 3, and let others help you with the others.
The stock levers are adjustable. Some up and down play should be fine. Mine have about 1/2 inch.
Appreciate the reply, mine have quite a bit more (around an inch of play maybe?), so I'll probably end up replacing them eventually, even though I've been riding fine with them. Brake lever's got a scuff from being dropped too, so might as well.

Also big thanks to @ZeroFret for both selling me the bar ends and the headlight recommendation lol
 

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Discussion Starter #7
How many miles did it take for your handles to get like that?

Curious of total miles
Handles? As in the lever play? I wouldn't know, they were like that when I got the bike, got it at around ~25k miles and I've only put on about ~100-150 miles. Was apparently dropped, don't know how much that would've affected it.
 

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How many miles did it take for your handles to get like that?

Curious of total miles
The levers will out live everything but the cockroaches, as long as you lube the pivot and don't drop the bike. :wink2:
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Headlight and turn signals finally came in and got installed. Taking everything off was easier than I expected, installing everything was little more difficult that expected.

Looks good and works well, even got the turn signal running light functionality back that the PO removed by replacing with a single filament bulb. However - the bulb on the left turn signal burned out, and whether it was my fault or not, it seems a bit shifty. Waiting on 4into1's response on the matter.

As for mounting gauges, I built a custom bracket to attach them to the triple clamp. Super bulky, pictures to come [now], but it's a good enough solution for now, don't feel like dropping a ton of money on new, smaller gauges quite yet. Temporary, even in the state it's in. Gonna shape and shine the bars to make them look pretty, considering 3d printing a custom bottom "cover" for the gauge housing so it's not as sketch-looking.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Two updates!
1) Started the process of wrapping the bike. Matte metallic black. Looks good, mostly done prep work, gonna get the actual wrapping done over the weekend when my girlfriend can help out.

Getting the front tire off was a pain in the ass, since it was an exercise in the gross misuse of tools. Wrapped the tiny plastic bit that goes over the taillight, and started the fender, and I can say: as a first timer, vinyl is harder to work with than I expected (which was already not easy)

2) My new speedometer came in from 4into1. Decided the stock gauges too much work to keep and still look acceptable. Mounted it using the existing hole where the bracket that holds the ignition cables goes. Keeps it lower compared to the triple clamp like I wanted, and I don't have to lengthen the speedo cable. All that's left is wiring, and hopefully that shouldn't be too hard.

Might pick up a new tach in the future, but given the trouble i've heard about with the wasted spark system and aftermarket tachs, i think i'll hold off for at least a little while.

Also, if anyone sees this and can chime in: Anyone running metal footpegs on their 500? Been considering switching for the look, was wondering if anyone had any experience with swapping the stock pegs.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Updating for posterity:

1) Got the speedo wired up properly, not too many issues. A few notes in case anyone is interested in getting the same speedo:
-Backlight and highbeam light wired up as expected
-Neutral light and oil light leads had to be swapped (positive to original ground and vice versa)
-All 4 signals will flash if you try to just wire up both turn signal lights straight to the single speedo turn signal indicator. You'll need diodes on the main lead to restrict electric flow up into the speedo and not back down into the opposite side signal wire. There are inline diodes for motorcycles, but I went and got a set of two 33W diodes from an electronics store for 98¢, and wired/soldered it up myself. Works fine, if not a bit sketch.
I tucked the excess wire into the headlight housing, so it all looks fairly clean.

2) Attempted to wrap the bike, gave up after attempting to do the first side fairing. Probably possible, but the curves are tough, and it took me about 4 hours to do a garbage job on one fairing. Decided I'm much better at painting, not sure why i didn't decide to go with that in the first place. Oh well, $50 mistake.
 

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holy moly youve done so much congratz! so i dropped my bike and the upper fairing is busted. I decided to just streetfighter it so i bought:

- a new round headlight with directional turn signals in it already, mount for it, and housing coming for it
- bar end mirrors

The only problem i ahve is i dont want to drop a bunch of money on a new speedometer and the condition of my stock one is still good, is there any idea youd think of to keep the stock cluster while removing the metal stock frame that holds it up?

*im not very technical with these parts like you but i can learn from youtube
 

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Discussion Starter #13
holy moly youve done so much congratz! so i dropped my bike and the upper fairing is busted. I decided to just streetfighter it so i bought:

- a new round headlight with directional turn signals in it already, mount for it, and housing coming for it
- bar end mirrors

The only problem i ahve is i dont want to drop a bunch of money on a new speedometer and the condition of my stock one is still good, is there any idea youd think of to keep the stock cluster while removing the metal stock frame that holds it up?

*im not very technical with these parts like you but i can learn from youtube
Thanks! I used a couple of metal bars to make a bracket (you can kinda see what i had in an earlier post on this thread), but I personally decided it'd be too much work to keep my stock gauges in a way where I was okay with the look.

From the way I had it in the previous post, I would've bent the bars to lower the whole gauge cluster, then would've made a custom bottom cover to hide all the wires/etc. Decided it wasn't personally worth my time when I knew it'd ultimately be temporary. The speedo I bought was ~$70 shipped(imo worth it since it has all the lights too); I've heard some people recommend an old Kawasaki Vulcan speedo; and iirc 99% of old japanese bikes had the same speedo ratio so you could probably find any one you liked as long as the cable screwed on.

If you're set on keeping the stock gauges though, for cost and/or convenience, a custom bracket is the only reasonable suggestion I can come up with. Otherwise, you could try and hack up the whole cluster and make custom housings, but that's out of my ballpark (maybe if I had a spare cluster to tear apart). I recall seeing a post where someone had isolated and mounted their stock speedo in an interesting way, but unfortunately I can't seem to find it.

Either way, good luck with whatever you choose to do!
 

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Realized I could use this thread to ask questions without clogging up the rest of the forum, so I'll throw these out here in case anyone has any answers:

3) There's quite a bit of up and down play with the brake and clutch despite tightening down the screws/bolts. Is it likely just a worn pivot? I don't know if these are stock levers (they're adjustable), should I just replace them?
Well if you take the lever apart, I just did my brake side, The bolt only allows so much travel the pivot area seems to stop the nut.

I'm thinking a thin nylon washer on the top might eliminate vertical freeplay. My lower mileage one has less slop than my used but not damaged one.

Just some thoughts..
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Well if you take the lever apart, I just did my brake side, The bolt only allows so much travel the pivot area seems to stop the nut.

I'm thinking a thin nylon washer on the top might eliminate vertical freeplay. My lower mileage one has less slop than my used but not damaged one.

Just some thoughts..
Appreciate the info, will def check it out eventually. Haven't wanted to take apart my levers out of fear of being unable to put them back properly lol.

In other news, I've painted my fairings, now just need to paint the tank. Doesn't look too great up close, but from a distance it's pretty. Went with satin white instead of the matte black, 1) for visibility and 2) the satin white on the new Ducati Panigales is really something.

After painting the tank, will be repainting the front forks, radiator, and exhaust pipes. Then after that it's new slip-ons, probably. Also might reupholster the seat, depending on how the bike looks when it's all whited out.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Finally got around to painting the tank! The advantage of sharing this online is that none of you can take a close look at it to see how terrible the paint job actually is lmao.

I bought this bike as a learning experience though, and learned I have. Next time I spray anything I'm getting a proper setup, spraycans and a flimsy PVC/tarp spray booth cause nothing but issues.

Probably gonna let the paint cure for a day or two before I put it back on, and then I'll need to either buy new tank grips or reattach the ones I peeled off (more likely, since tank grips cost like $50 for some reason and my workplace is probably closed for the next month), because this bike really feels way better when my knees don't slip off the tank during hard acceleration. After that it's decals/logos.

Glad to get this thing in a closer-to-complete state, will probably be doing a lot of riding and enjoying the emptier roads (California's finally gone and shut down all non-essential businesses statewide).
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Mounted, tank grips applied. Not the greatest looking up close, but I'm happy with it.

The main vision is largely done, now it's just the details.

-A wash, since it got splashed with some dirty water when I rode it in the wet.
-Sand and spray the headers black
-Decals/logos
-New mufflers, either delkevic or stock if I can find one(I like the look of the delkevic, anyone know if it's too loud?)
-Want to add some gold accents, maybe have a few parts powdercoated. Especially to break up that huge mass of black around the engine.
-Repaint some stuff with chipped paint like the forks and radiator
-Considering replacing the grips and reupholstering the seat to brown, something leather-looking maybe.
-A new tach eventually, if/when I want to deal with the wiring.

Once I get a few hundred more miles under my belt I'll probably install some handling mods, currently eyeing FOG's fogbones; might buy them and hold off on the install until I'm totally comfortable with how the bike feels as is (particularly at low speeds).
 

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