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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Doodling..

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It Went As Fast As It Came

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I threw in more than 90% of what I got in my bonus into investing in my personal shop tools. A 2000W metal slicer, a drill press, some hand drills and air tools, bits and pieces of small but important measuring paraphernalias and a Fronius TransPocket 1500 TIG welder. This sucker is just as big as an AVR but packs a mean punch. Practicing on strips of steel angle bars, I often either burn through the metal or barely scratch the surface. It filler just rolls into a ball. It seemed really frustrating but I'm already here and I can only move forward. It took a while before I could lay out some decent beads. Persistence pays off. Now on to more practice.

Oh, and not to mention the big ass argon tank sitting in my garage corner. It really was a pain letting go of the money that I was supposed to splurge to treat the kids an out of the city experience but if I let this one pass now I'd have to wait till next year end again before I can start.

My first project consisted of my very own welding table. Made out of 40' angle bars, sans the table top - I'm P1,100 short. At least with this I already have the basic setup necessary to get going - even with a slow start. Next on the list are some square tubes for the final jig setup - and the bender. Then we rock and roll :)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Impending Farewell

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After almost two years of blissful memories with Mandelbrot it is time to let her go. I've already talked with my employer about this, and he approved. So long as its the same selling value, and cheaper only if I plan to finish the proposed four year stay with the company.

So I'll be starting from scratch again. Gonna make myself some custom apes, white walls, large front wheel - same as rear, and new pipes, new paint job perhaps.. darnit.. once you start its hard to stop. I just hope these two babies are still up till I get to sell mine.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

From Bad to Worse

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After I had a new set of pipes made by a fabricator it all the more sounded worse than before. Only after I had a set of smaller diameter pipes inserted did the sound (slightly) improve. Well I'd rather take this than what I had when I rolled out of his shop. It sounded like someone banging on a Nido can lid. Anyway, nuff said. I'd just operate on the pipes again once I get the TIG welding unit. Hopefully this weekend.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Confused

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Do you know the adage if it ain't broke don't fix it? I got a recall on what that means when I had MityMike fabricate a set of hellbent pipes for me just two days ago. I dragged Jay into accompanying me to where Mike's shop was in Tondo, which mind you, is a labyrinth if you're unfamiliar as I am with its jeepney routes. Anyway, I came back early Monday - as agreed - so he can start good for the set 5PM pickup that same day. So the plan was I drive the bike over, leave it there so he could work on it, commute back to work in Makati, work till 4PM, commute back to Tondo for the 5PM deadline. Or so I thought.

Everything was going as planned up till the 4PM part, but I texted ahead to let Mike know I was coming. He wasn't replying, so I assumed he was good as his word and I left for the pickup. I was already halfway in Divisoria when he replied and told me he wasn't finished with the polish and that I come back for it 11AM the next day.

That was nasty. First of all, I am a customer. Second, you don't keep customers by breaking your word. Jay was right. You shouldn't leave when you have work for Mike and wait for it instead of coming back for it. Chances are, it won't be done. I travelled a heckuva long way, tread through the infested streets of Divisoria, got lost in the roads while walking, transferred through 4 jeepneys - and when I got there, Mike was in relax mode. If it weren't for the fact that I wanted to ogle his Honda Shadow 1100 and was already fidgety to get my bike back, I wouldn't exert this much effort into pushing through with today's agreed meeting. In fairness, the pipes looked wicked, even in its unpolished state. So I thought, heck I'd just wrap it with thermals again. (Jay later reminded me our contact Jeff could polish it easy just the same - which saved me another horrific trip back to Tondo.) Anyway, to make a long story short the pipes sounded awful, because Mike didn't consider back pressure in the first place.

Took a chance to have Cocoy look at what he could do to aleviate my suffering. Hehe. No dice. An ass is an ass for me. Went home dejected. Baffles? Naaahh.. might as well slap on my old straight pipes.

But I learned a whole lot about the business - of keeping customers. Right now the least of my problems is the sound of my pipes - but in consolidating all my contacts so I can finally gather all the tools I need to setup shop. Tomorrow I have a meeting with a welding supplier, next week I'll be talking with a machinist to commission my pipe and tube bender, then a drill press and lastly a lathe machine - which is the second biggest investment in my itinerary.

All in all, I only had enough time to smile as Jay went out of his way to visit me and assess for himself what the heck was wrong with the new pipes, which frankly I was ready to throw away. Tools on hand are the basic ones: a grinder, a hand drill, trouble lights, some minor tools here and there.. at least we're moving :)

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Red Eyes

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Got this hot number from Jay for factory price. Ain't it a beaut?

Friday is fast approaching and I still couldn't find a decent source for a good TIG welder machine. Forget the Miller types, they're way off price. I asked it falls somewhere between $5000 to $6000. Although I did get a contact for springs, with what I'm planning for a custom made springer fork. That's good enough for me. I'll be shopping for tools over at 168 in Divisoria come weekend. My itinerary consists of having a tube bender machined for me, a lathe, an AC stick welder, a frame jig, and some drill press and a couple of other tools on the side.

Only problem now is the place I'm gonna stick these junk in. The place I have right now gets flooded when it rains.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Sick Again..

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Poor Mandelbrot once again had to be hauled off to sick bay, this time due a snapped throttle cable - barely a month after suffering from a snapped clutch cable head. This time it was three inches from the nub. Guess it was that old huh? Looks like its still the original cable. After I got home I went about inspecting it and found another break in the line at the other end, it was an accident waiting to happen but I thank God for safely guiding me to where the crew from old PMATC came to my rescue. Good thing for these road insurance companies, and they come extremely cheap too. It's like having your own standby trailer in case anything goes awry.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Have TIG, Will Set Up Shop..

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As a tribute to my father I'm setting up my shop in his name: WillieStreet Choppers due anytime this December. I'm going to purchase my very own TIG welding unit, hopefully a Miller :) and a couple of custom made machineries to aid in chores such as tube bending. An English wheel would be an addition and a lathe. I don't really know how to use any of these. But I always tend to be the best at whatever I put my hands on. This will be hard but possible. I grew away from my father when he was still based in Japan and it was only a few years back that he made his home here, eventually selling his house and lot - the only thing he was left with - by my grandparents. Perhaps this is my way of bridging that gap and earning me back those years I never got to know my father.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Check That Bob Seat

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Cicero was cool for letting me borrow his seat just to mock-up my set. That's Patrick's fender right there. But the bobber sight gave the bike a whole new different look from the getting-to-be-boring setup that I originally got.. and a lot of funky ideas along with it.

The handlebars look hella bad ass. As in really bad ass. I had to mock it up to see ofr myself if it would work and by golly I think it just might.

Now to crank out the specs and its off to the welder.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

The Long Hiatus

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Barely two training days since start of tournament practice I could say my cardio's still peaking at 75%. The new guns can finish the grueling 3 hour sessions with no breathing space in between while I on the other hand have to skip at the most the whole of the sparring part - comprised of 8 5minute full power rolls on the mat.



I still haven't decided yet if I'm going to push through with competing this coming December. By reason of work schedule of course. If I want to compete, I have to commit attending 7pm classes three times a week - which is what's really holding me back. That would only suck if I had everything planned for the day and come training hour I can't make it because of some troubleshooting at work. The constant 4AM sleeping habit is really throwing off my breathing.. heck..

What I do know, God willing, is that I would train at least Tuesday and Thursday, just to make up for the year I lost in training.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

New Links

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Jay took me to meet this simple guy who makes fiberglass molds for different clients, one of them being Easyriders in Japan - and now he makes molds for NOS and WSC. Simple but talented. It turns out he was the originator of the helmet mold that I bought for P3,500. He makes the same brand for just P1,500. Ain't that a bummer. Can't believe I got suckered into paying more than double. Ahh.. the price of ignorance.

No Such Thing As A Typical Day

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We often wake up and go straight about our business, without minding why we're still alive today. There is no seeking of purpose, no consciousness that everyday should have its purpose. I often wonder what good is there doing what I do. One day I'll look back at my life and pretty much see nothing worth citing.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Found a Beast

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"650 custom, morton's 7 degree tripple trees, 21" front rim, 18" x 5.5" rear rim, SS custom cycles rear fender, Jesse James diablo front fender, paint by Joe Kinnikin, harley risers with drag bar, j-slammed, fork mod, pro one grips, custom hypercharger cover, Cobra II headlight, mean cycles curved side mount license plate, Ignition key mod, Hard Krome strippers, AIS removed and plugged, Kury Hypercharger, Stainless steel cables, homemade seat, Kury magnum mirrors, Kury Boomerang frame covers, Show Chrome neck covers, Yamaha chrome side covers, Kury wide style chrome levers, Kury silver bullets on front and rear, Mapam forward controls, polished lower forks. All work done in my garage ... Helpful people and free modifications at www.650ccnd.com.. 127.5 jets, needle jets clip on forth notch 3.5 turns on pm screws."

Everything Gray

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Been tinkering the whole day getting my ADAM back into tip-top shape after a long hiatus from his crashing incident. I manage to find the old forum where I collected pictures of Dragstars from Europe. Finally found one I liked. Fatter front wheels, lower seats, higher apes and we're good to go :)


Since I didn't have a good shot of the other side I just noticed it was missing the tranny covers. Hmm.. but the fairings blend well into the rear fender and compliments the white walls. Plus, I love Gray.. hehe..

Saturday, October 06, 2007

The Three Weeks That Were..

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Since my Adam crashed a few weeks back I've been struggling to force myself to sleep a bit early than usual as I was used to staying up late till morning to do research and stuff - more like stuff - heee.. Anyway, a project looming over our heads since July finally reared its ugly head as September drew to a close. Dodge came over to me and showed me a couple of boards that included numerous full CG shots of a chase scene that was supposed to be the high part of the first episode.

The worst part is over and I've been busy scanning some forums regarding a rival show that aired at the same time ours did. I didn't imagine people would involve themselves, much less post their reactions and engage in heated ramblings.

We hoped to have pushed the ante a bit further with this, I'm pretty sure the industry took notice. Everyone's silent about it. I'll see if I can upload the vid over at youtube.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

So that's what I look like

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I look skinny. Other than that, the rear fender has to go. Hmm. The front fender needs to extend backwards. Looks low enough. That's good. Oh and, one and a half inch 21 inch apehangers! Dang!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Cannibalized

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Cicero finally got the guts to cut off his rear end (fender that is,) one lasy Sunday afternoon in an enclosed private condo subdivision - thanks for all the noise Jay - and it came out Da Funk. Nice and low, well the springs haven't been installed yet, and the white walls now stand out. What I'd really love to see is Cicero riding this through wet roads. Harhar!

This is Jay before he cut the wheel in half..

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Missing sweaty men

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I miss Jiujitsu training and watching a compilation DVD of UFC fights only made it worse. Gotta clear my schedule and muster up the courage to show my face on the mat again. Enough procrastination..

Monday, March 05, 2007

Boulevard ride

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My very first ride outside the Metro, with the Boulevard Boyz, was both an adventure (however short) and a lasting one. The road going to Tagaytay never seemed to stop going up and up and colder and colder. So much so that my engine stalled at one point.

Leaving Manila past 9PM and arriving around 11 to a very cozy rest house owned by Rene Architect. Dining on peanuts, boy bawang, sausages and fried rice. The atmosphere was one for the books. Slept around 2AM since I was up for two days straight from work.


It was a cooooooold cold morning amidst the wide open pineapple plantation. Prior to our ride back to Manila.

Photo shoot

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Took this one evening after borrowing a digicam from a good friend. Come to think of it, I'm probably one of the few individuals who go through life without really taking time to frame things in pictures.

I've seen so many beautiful things, both in nature and in people. It would be good to be able to come back to those moments and view them again.

Hmm.. new investment looming ahead..

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