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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Branded Nuts & Bolts

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Custom bobber seat egg springs. P450 a piece. We make 'em sunny side up.


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An old comrade on the road came over as I was about to leave. I just had to see this new horse: an 833 Harley Sportster. Except for the fact that the bike practically had its brand on every part, including the air caps on the tires, the Sportster doesn't really strike me as something special. It's branded, yes. That's one. What else? Red and shiny. Mmmm.. oh look, a cat.


Felt right at home hanging out over this scrapyard of well lined up used bike parts. There's always something old and new to see, and stories to learn from. The flow of colorful characters from simple folk to police to generals - the diverse species of cruisers, sportsbikes, china bikes and what-nots never fail to capture me as we talk about the good bits while under the clink clank of wrenches and mutilated carburetors.


For now this spot will remain to be sacred ground. You never know who might just ride up around the corner. This is GilLandia - THE famous melting pot of everything big on two wheels that you don't know about.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Shop Synthed

2 yakittyyaks
Photosynth is a potent mixture of two independent breakthroughs: the ability to reconstruct the scene or object from a bunch of flat photographs, and the technology to bring that experience to virtually anyone over the Internet.

Although I've been doing panoramic shots ever since I got blown away with the concept of a virtual 3d space made up of a collective of different pictures even at different resolutions. This I believe is the future of photo sharing. Might as well jump in and doodle something.

You need to download and install the measly 8MB installer. C'mon, don't be lazy. It's a blast I promise. After that keep clicking the arrows or click-drag inside the picture. Zoom in, zoom out. Heck click anything.



Learn about synthing here.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Boing Boing..

0 yakittyyaks
Compression springs for the upcoming springer design by WSC.
The tensions are for.. well.. the bender of course.


Friday, February 13, 2009

Bike Incontinence

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Some of us go to great lengths checking up everything and anything on our bikes before we roll out of the garage and into our everyday business, but there are some things that will just go wrong on its own. Bikes also suffer incontinence. On my way to a client meet a trike driver called my attention to look under the bike. Lo and behold, Brutus was pissing like a carriage-pulling-horse along old Binondo. I had to pull over to the side and called up Doctor Jay who explained to me why the sudden occurrence. I then called up my ever reliable towing service and buzzed Gil ahead to wait for it. I've had them service me in the most dire situations where the bike would just stubbornly sit there and refuse to start. What's more, since I've already went out of my way to meet a client, I just had them deliver the bike to Pablo's over at Domestic - just like that, so I can go on with my errand. A few minutes later while I was having my late lunch by 2PM I got a text message saying that the bike was already at the shop. Good one mates!

More on the shop progress sometime soon. Whenever.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Saturday Quickies

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After being the Sunday family driver I rode out to Gil's late in the afternoon. He just came from Silang, Cavite test driving a sports bike sold to him for just 100K. Sliding clutch problem but a fine bike none the less. It's always amusing to walk amidst all the laid out bikes and parts in his garage, which never seem to run out of spare engines. A veritable yard of potential project bikes is practically hidden here. Dunking forks into a full plate of spaghetti we rode out to catch the remaining light of day.

I always kick myself in the head for not bringing my camera on such small rides. It's when I get to behold the best picture worthy moments and instances that I would have loved to see over and over again. The setting sun was at its best for this month and we were riding towards it. Bliss.

Four stops around Mall of Asia's crossings and a blast along the seaside at the back and we breezed through on out towards the old Coastal mall where we checked out some awesome masks. I didn't know there were still people here, except for some pirated DVD stalls and Ukays this building is ready to be torn down. Practically dead. I took a walk along its greenish halls trying to find the restrooms which turns out to be textbook material. Slabs of plywood covering the urinals. The drive around it was all rocks and soil. MOA's presence killed this landmark. We left under a drizzling cloudy sky. Couldn't help but feel sorry for it, so I just stowed the experience inside. At least I got to visit, even before anything else.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Shop Notes :: 02.08

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Having done research on the subject I've concluded some major notes for myself:
  1. The GTAW process produces a aesthetically better if not the best looking weld beads compared to GMAW, which in one professional's opinion, tend to be brittle at some point and is associated with burn throughs.
  2. TIG weld beads lie flush or flows with the surface while MIG beads typically lay on top like a worm.
  3. TIG welding is the solution for more weld control and precision.
  4. Skill required for MIG is moderate, while TIG requires a higher degree.
To quote:
Gas tungsten arc welding, especially in tubing applications, helps overcome some of the drawbacks of GMAW. Instead of needing to maintain a consistent travel speed or risk incomplete fusion, GTAW lets you control the heat input with a foot or hand control in reaction to the changing dynamics of the molten weld pool. This gives you more control over the shape of the weld bead, penetration, and HAZ - or Heat Affected Zone.

But taking control requires more coordination. You're doing four different things at once: holding your torch with your right or left hand, holding the filler metal in your opposite hand, using your foot control, and watching the joint and the weld pool. It is
extremely important to make sure your arms and elbows are braced yet relaxed (this is true with GMAW also, but especially with GTAW). Note that you want to establish the weld pool as quickly as possible. Dwelling too long in one spot increases the size of the HAZ, which is undesirable.


The only downside is that TIG welding necessitates a lot of practice to be able to develop that steady pulse and exchange between angle, heat distribution and feeding, while MIG just lets you zip right through whatever it is you're welding. Suffice to say, almost everyone who can keep a steady hand can, with little practice immediately lay down decent beads almost instantly. Which is why many beginners opt to choose this process over the tedious TIG counterpart.

It took a while for me to find the right beginning pulse, but still a lot more to keep it steady at that pace. Keeping the bead straight and clean is very difficult. I've done quite a heck of a lot of tests and am nearing depletion of my second tank used mainly for practice. Will experiment with Lathaniated (blue) tungsten this week, less of a hazard compared to the radioactive Thoriated (red) ones. Throwing in a couple of various sizes with the rod as well, particularly with 3/32.

One thing worth noting is that I should take notes when playing with my settings, as I do tend to lose everything when welding the next day. One day I'd be "oohhh, nice.." and the next I'd be "wtf foo?" (Old age? Nah..) So notes, notes, notes. Jot down settings for varying thickness and metals. Also, do test welds on pieces of the same material before moving on to the final pieces you'd be welding.

And lastly, destructive testing. There are a couple of ways to find out if you've created a nice sound weld - of which a large part relies mainly on hygiene (not you dummy, the metal's..) and how well you cleaned it prior to laying the beads down. Other than that, shielding the last bead as it cools to protect it from contamination. Let's see, anything else?

Personal notes. Not to be taken on a professional level. I just don't want to learn afterwards that sticking two pieces of tubes together does not equal to a good solid weld.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Midnight Fun

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After having a bout of migraine the whole day, I slowly did my overdue list of to-do's. I get weaker when I remain in bed, but I didn't risk working today and instead opted to be within reach of my comfort. It was already past 12MN that I finally recovered somewhat, which gave me ample time to get up and weld the spacers on to the die. The previous setup had the shaft bending to the enormous pressure generated by the 12-ton jack. I should have used tool instead of mild. Drat.. still, wanting to salvage what I already have I made two .825 inch spacers to accommodate that space in between the jack base and the die.

Didn't care much that it was well past midnight as my grinder whined away to reveal the bare metal underneath all that cover. This is to prepare it for a clean weld. Can't weld on paint. Can't weld on rust. Has to be clean. Using acetone for the tungsten and welding rod as well so as not to contaminate the weld. Using the shaft as guide to hold the spacers in place, I was cautious to warp the metal and made beads 90* apart and around. I figured if there was a part that would certainly budge here it would be the shaft. True enough. But again, having to make another would mean the bender only getting stronger for its use.

Here are the twins after. Two tube clamps - one shorter, which was the reject, and another longer. Although its a reject in this instance because it doesn't fit the .125" configuration. I could definitely use it for smaller tubes. Fits just right in the setup. A couple more things I need are the tension springs I called in for this morning. The email about the product line including the compression springs for the custom springers I was CAD-ing in the computer were supposed to be sent, but I didn't get any, which means more follow up calls tomorrow. Also found a supplier of stainless steel seamless tubes, not pipes, thankfully. I thought I was gonna be stuck with having to use schedule pipes in making the frames and forks. Worried about it being covered in soot and rust, as pipes do tend to get rusted. One small speck in the weld and the contamination would spread all over inside, and one day while doing the ziggies in Marilaque the neck of the frame snaps off.. you get the point.

For now the finished bender is clearly already visible in the horizon. What sets the shop apart is its idea of building bikes from the tool up. No hurries. Just following the right way of doing things.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Band Of Brothers

5 yakittyyaks
A consolidation of different riding clubs and riders with NOS.
Band of Brothers.
Established 2008.


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