Post by 90GTVert on Feb 14, 2010 21:26:26 GMT -5
Making A Frame Brace And Solid Motor Mount
While walking through a local unclaimed freight store, I stumbled upon a door handle set. So what, right? This door handle set happened to be 1" solid aluminum and only selling for $6.99. Hmmmm. I bet that may work for building a frame brace. I had an idea similar to the swing-out bars on some automotive roll cages.
I went to Lowe's and picked up 2 feet of 1" I.D. black steel gas pipe for $2.37/ft. Not bad for steel pipe with 0.125" walls. Less than half of a foot would have actually done this job.
After some test fitting, I cut a couple of inches of pipe off. Then I used a grinder to notch the pipe to mate with the frame of the scooter and drilled a hole straight through thr pipe.
I cut another section of pipe and then cut it in half to make a cup. I notched and drilled this piece as well.
I cut the aluminum door handle to fit what I had in mind.
Then I positioned everything and made a couple of tack welds to hold the steel parts in place.
I pulled the rest of my body panels off and finished welding. Then I put the bar in place and marked it so I could drill it. (The pic of the cut bar earlier actaully shows it drilled already.)
I had another idea in mind that required stripping the scoot down. Since it was already missing the body I decided to do it now. I had to remove the engine first.
Here is the old motor mount. It has rubber bushings that allow it to flex and twist. Flexing and twisting is wasting energy.
Here is a close-up of a rubber bushing in the mount.
I went to the hardware store and picked up 4 washers that fit as shown. I believe they were 18mm washers.
I welded the washers to the inside of the bushings as well as the motor mount and painted the mount.
I bolted the engine mount to the frame and then welded any seams that I could see to be 100% sure the engine mount is solid and then painted.
Then the motor went back in.
I bolted the floorboard back on so I could test fit the leg shield and do some measuring. I used a hole saw to make a 2" hole in the appropriate location and re-mounted the leg shield.
I bolted the bar in at both ends.
I didn't notch this panel. That's there stock.
I got the panels back on...
I still have plenty of room to get the the manual choke or whatever I need to do.
Since there was concern about the access panel, I took a few minutes to make it work just for the benefit of anyone that wants to use it.
Here's the panel.
Remove the lock from the panel by taking out the clip, locking arm, and then removing the nut. If you plan to use the lock again, be very careful with this step. There are small brass parts and springs that willfall out.
Measure, mark, and cut the panel around the frame reinforcement. It's always easier to work in small steps if you want a tight fit. I used a bench grinder to cut away a rectangular section and then rounded the top a little with a Dremel. It took about 2 minutes total.
There are lots of options for attaching the panel at this point. I quit here because I'm not using the panel myself and I didn't have some of the materials necessary for different methods of attachment.
The easiest way to keep the panel in place would be hook and loop tape. You could simply cut and apply a bit to the lip below the bar in this pic and the sides, and then to the corresponding area on the back of the access panel.
Another option would be to use screws and tinnerman clips on the lip mentioned above. You could also drill 2 holes and use the existing screws that attach the floorboard to the under-seat trim.
Another option may be to use the lock on one side or the other to retain the panel.
Instead of cutting a groove to clear the bar, you could drill a hole so you could slide the cover onto the bar before it was installed. If you used the right rubber grommet it could be a tight enough fit around the bar to hold itself in place.
There are lots of options, those are just a few.
The brace is awesome. It is suprising just how much you can feel the added stiffness. I never realised how much flex you feel when cornering until after adding the frame brace and noticing the difference. It feels solid when I apply the front brake hard. That is one area that I did notice frame flex before, and it's gone as far as I can tell. I know some folks are hardcore about weight removal, but it is worth the 5lbs or so of added weight. I'm very pleased with it and plan to do it again for my other scoot at some point.
The solid motor mount sucks. I was under the impression that the other bushings on the engine would absorb plenty of vibration. Wrong! I'm really wishing I didn't go the extra mile and weld it to the frame. I have a bad habit of going a little crazy lol. At some RPM it will rattle your teeth, at other RPM it can pretty much numb your feet. It helped a little in making the scooter feel more responsive, not much. It is in no way worth it for a scoot you plan to drive much. If you wanna go to the track with it, maybe. Very shortly after making the solid motor mount I started having problems. It's been less than 50 miles and I have already broken of 1 fairing mounting tab and 1 brake light housing mounting tab. The taillight/brake light bulb rattles all the way out of it's socket. Think about the consequences before planning on a solid mount. If you want to try it out, don't weld it into the frame. That way you can replace it with a stock mount later if you are unhappy or weld it in later.