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Bikernet Project: Widowmaker Charity Build, Part 4

Final Assembly of the Star Scoot

By Jeffery Najar and Mike Allen
12/28/2015


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The painted roller.
The painted roller.

 
We are back at the Widowmaker Custom Design & Repair shop for final assembly of our bike. Everything has come back from paint, powder coat, etc. Now comes the patience part of our build, reassembly. At this point you need to have a plan of attack. Hopefully you took note of how you removed certain items so that your assembly is smooth without and scratches. Let us get started.

Engine ready for mounting.
Engine ready for mounting.

 
Item One: Where to start? I generally start by getting the bike back into a rolling state. But this can all hinge on your choice of engine. For Harleys and most v-twin engines this is the best approach. This is the way we approached our setup with the Yamaha Roadstar drivetrain. 
Frame taped and ready for the engine.
Frame taped and ready for the engine.

 
However, if you are working with an inline 4-cylinder metric engine you might want to come up with another approach. What I have done in the past is to lay the engine on the floor, on its side. Tape off the areas of your frame that will be near or possibly come in contact with the frame and lay your frame over the top of the engine, at which time you can install all your mounting hardware. This will make it easier to install the engine without damage to the painted surfaces; however it will make it more difficult to get the bike into a rolling state. 

Roller with engine.
Roller with engine.

 
One of the things people overlook is the proper set up of your fork bearing. I suggest going to the fork mfg. to get the proper bearing preload. However, a good rule of thumb is for your fall away to be 1 inch. Real easy to check. With your front end on bike and wheel installed and front of bike off the ground, simply move the front tire to a left turn position from center. From center to the point it starts to fall by itself without assistance should be 1 inch. Make sure you check left and right. Next is to tighten or loosen your triple tree stem bolt/nut until you get the desired results.

Hank and Jimmy checking the drivetrain fitment.
Hank and Jimmy checking the drivetrain fitment.


 
Item Two: Now is time for your driveline fitment. At this point I would suggest installing all the parts needed to complete your driveline. Start with your primary (if you are using an H-D unit). Alignment of your engine to transmission is critical. Once all is put together, chain/belt and brake install next.

 
One of the most common issues we see is improper wheel and brake caliper alignment. If your belt is not tracking true you will eat up belts. If you are using aftermarket calipers, it is critical that the caliper is centered over the rotor. You may have to shim your caliper to achieve this. If you don’t take the time to do this, the caliper and rotor can be damaged after a short period of time riding. Watch what brake fluid you use.. Know what the brake mfg. requirements are. Should be DOT 4 and DOT 5. In our case we were able to use all DOT 5 fluid.
 
Brake pedal in place.
Brake pedal in place.



Assembly of the internal throttle.
Assembly of the internal throttle.


 
Item Three: Now you’re ready to plumb the bike. Time to install your oil tank and remaining large items, such as your starter, headlight, etc. Plan ahead; you want your oil lines to be not only functional but appealing to the eye. Keep in mind that if you are using stainless steel braided hoses to make sure they are clear of any rubbing issues. A vibrating braided hose can become a saw on top of paint or aluminum. Do not put any fluids in your bike just yet; you may need to remove the tank for ease of wiring.
 
Routing the wires.
Routing the wires.



Routing wires.
Routing wires.


 
Item Four: Hands down, the largest area people struggle with is wiring. You can use a stock wiring harness, this works well if you are dealing with a metric bike as we did. However, be prepared to make modifications to the stock harness. I would suggest having a service manual for the brand of engine you are working with. This will make your life easier. If you are not and you’re planning on making your own harness, I would suggest owning a meter and have a clear understanding as how to use it.

I cannot stress enough to plan ahead.
 
Keep the wires organized.
Keep the wires organized.


The best way to handle this is by drawing up your own wiring schematic, making a list of all the items you are using. This will give you a visual to go by. In our case we used the stock wiring harness, with some modifications to make everything work. Then we added a great product, “Grip Ace.”

"Grip Ace" package.
"Grip Ace" package.



The “Grip Ace” makes for a super clean and simple install without the dopey look of stock switch housings. If you are not familiar with this product, visit them at www.gripace.com. This product allows you to have all of your bike functions literally at your fingertips of your left hand. The system is compiled of a four button key pad that is installed on your left hand grip and a slim line module that can easily hidden almost anywhere on your bike.
"Grip Ace" going into the wiring harness.
"Grip Ace" going into the wiring harness.



The wiring is super simple. Once your left hand grip is fitted with the key pad, run your preformed wire and plug through your bars and plug into the module. All of your bike functions are wired to the module. The unit comes with clean and clear wiring instructions and easy to follow schematics. On our bike, we chose to keep the system super clean and mounted our key pad to the inside tunnel of the gas tank. As for the rest of your wiring, test each circuit as you assemble it. Try not to rely on butt connectors, solder as many of your wire connections as possible and keep in mind the serviceability of the bike. Make sure that future removal of the headlight and rear fender can be done by unplugging the wiring rather than cutting it.
"Grip Ace" key pad ready to mount under left side of tank.
"Grip Ace" key pad ready to mount under left side of tank.



Item Five: Last pieces of the puzzle, installation of the tins. This can be the most rewarding part of the job, seeing your new bike in all its glory or it can be a bad day and a trip back to the painter. Make sure you take your time in this installation. Make good choices of hardware. I personally like to use rubber washers on painted surfaces so as not damage the paint with the installation of the mounting hardware. Once everything is hooked up, top off your fluids and add only enough fuel to get the bike running. I suggest this in case there is a an issue of a gas leak or oil leak that may require you to remove the tank. 

Tins on and ready to roll.
Tins on and ready to roll.



Once everything has checked out, get out and enjoy that first test ride. Make it short, come back, check everything over. Once all is good, pack up and enjoy your new ride.


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