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petercscherer

3/4 Scale Indian Hardtail

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Another bike build! In this case it's actually a rebuild of a 3/4 scale Indian Bobber that a friend of mine built about 15yrs ago. Based on a custom frame, it's powered by a 10ish HP Tecumseh single-cylinder, which sends power through a belt-driven Torque Converter. Lots of homemade parts and custom fabbed pieces on the bike make it pretty cool as is, but it is in need of some love and attention.

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The plans include:

Redoing the tank covers

Different paint on fenders and tank

Rework some wiring layout

Retrofy the engine to look even more vintage

Custom inner gas tank (you'll see in the pics below)

Increase the top speed to somewhere around 50-60mph

 

 

Here's after a little dis-assembly:

 

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You can see there the outside tank is really just a two piece cover that hides the inner plastic tank and wiring HQ. The plan is to replace this with a custom fabricated steel tank, and rebuild the tank cover(s) to be more structurally sound and prep them for the new paint color (still undecided on colors...)

 

 

The various Tank Cover bits laid out. The old green paint look way better in the photos than in person. There's splotches, drips, cracks, etc... that all need to addressed.

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More teardown:

 

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At this point, I can start doing some work on the drive system to try and wring some more speed out of it. I have no plans on changing the motor, so I need to work on gearing it up for better performance.

 

 

It's quite the sight driving up and down the road like this:

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Should be a fun project, not a whole lot of fabrication; mostly the little stuff like getting a working horn, charging system, brakes, clutch, and cosmetics. 

Inspiration when it was built was WW2 era bikes, so I'm going to stick with that for the re-do. Looking at Indian paint schemes right now. 

~Peter

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Well, I fixed the performance issue by changing carburetors. The stock carb was only meant for industrial and lawn-mower applications where it runs at a constant throttle, so things like Fuel Mixture don't matter too much at wide-open-throttle. I switched it over to a 22mm carb intended for Honda-style Pit Bikes, and it runs out much better. I'll have to change the throttle grips and such to run the different cable style, but they were bound to change anyways.

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That's about when the starter wiring decided to ground out on the exhaust pipe and fry the starter solenoid. So it was time to fix some shoddy wiring and replace the solenoid with a new one. Not a big deal and now it starts just fine.

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I swapped throttle cables in my XL70 Bobber so I could use the longer one on this bike. While my little XL70 can beat this thing from 0-30, the bigger bike pulls away at the top end and tops out at about 44mph at the moment.

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Looks like the next step is to identify all the wiring, and label it. Then extract it all so I can get a bare frame and work with new battery mounts, tank mounts, custom fuel tank, etc... 

 

~Peter

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Cool, cheap fun right there. :cool:

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Today was a long day, got some more things done on the to-do list. 

Started off by labeling and extracting all the wiring from the bike.

 

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Then I set to work on mocking up a larger and more practical gas tank:

 

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Then I spent 4hrs transferring that into metal:

 

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Haven't finished the front yet, still waiting on the filler assembly to arrive before I button it up. Holds water though!

 

 

I kept the  2 mounts in front and added a 3rd in the rear:

 

 

Rubber insulated too!

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Nice thing is that even with the tank covers installed, you can't see the tank like you used to:

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Bayonet-style filler will be made to work in this area:

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I still need to clearance the tank covers to fit over the feed petcock, and of course seal and paint it...

 

Tomorrow looks like it'll be spent on other projects, so no update until later in the week. 

 

~Peter

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Looks like you can remove the tin attached to the pull start cage and show off more of those fins. :cool: 

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Yeah, i actually discovered that this Tecumseh engine shares the side cover with much older Fairbanks 10hp, so I purchased a Fairbanks side cover which has a more vintage pull start, and I'll be cutting down the overall cover to show the head all the way around. I'm out of town until next Tuesday, but my brain is whizzing with ideas.

 

-Peter

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Alrighty, back from Florida and hitting this project at 100%!!!

 

New muffler is here:

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Flows with the frame very well and should be relatively quiet...

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Finished the gas tank fabrication. I didn't plan it this way, but it holds EXACTLY 1 gallon of fuel!!!!! LMAO...

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Not pretty, but once it's finished smoother and painted black it will be fine...

 

There's a few new things in the pic below. Firstly, I realized that there was lots of room on the upper left corner of the engine cover, so I drilled and mounted my new ignition switch there. Secondly, I installed the rear-brake switch, and also mocked up the new 13" wide Leather Solo Seat. 

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Oh, and I converted what used to be just the lead-acid battery box, to be able to hold a new Lithium Ion 4-cell battery, and all the wiring fuses and starter solenoid.

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Then, after getting the angle and spacing just right, tack welded the new seat mounts in place!

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My dad's about 185lbs and can comfortably bounce on the seat and not bottom out or hit the fender like the old one used to.

 

So yeah, here's where I'm at tonight:

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Tomorrow, I'll be getting that new muffler mounted, working on rear fender supports, and perhaps start on some further disassembly.

 

I have the wiring all planned out, it'll be cloth-wrapped old-school wires, hidden as much as possible, and as simple as we can. One note I'll make, the welds you see in the current pics will be cleaned up and finished out later, this is just to get everything assembled so we know it works and looks right. 

 

 

Thanks for stopping by!
~Peter

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I changed the name of this thread to reflect the new direction of the bike. I'm getting custom decals designed and scaled down to fit the small tanks on this bike based on the original Indian Motorcycle logo. 

In other news, I got the muffler mount made, and whipped up some rear fender braces:

 

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They're permanently welded to the frame, and will get painted Black to contrast with the body color. They're kind of an early-60's mod, but I think they'll be sweet on this WW2 era build as well...

 

Also got a new kickstand tacked in place:

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I'll remove the old kickstand tab and spring assembly when I tear the frame down for final finish and painting.

 

Decided on a paint color: Cranberry! I've been doing a lot of Burgandies and Maroons recently, so this is a different flare, and should look epic with those tank decals:

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That's just a primer coat to do some finish sanding on. I prefer to use the basecoat as a primer when I can so the color tones won't change too much.

 

Here, you can see how the rear fender braces work with the seat and exhaust:

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In other news, got the tank fully cleaned and have some sealant drying in it overnight. Once I verify final fitment, I can tear the remainder of the bike down and start finish welding and prepping for paint. I'm going to do the frame and such first, so I can have something to work on while the tank covers and fenders are curing and being polished.

 

~Peter

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I like the change. I work with a guy that has a 40 something Indian that mostly original. I always thought the old Indian has a little more style than the harleys

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Made some messy progress today. Wrapped up all the tack welding and fabrication. Decided to move on to disassembly and painting. 

Took the engine out and stripped it down for paint:

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First painted Semi-Gloss High Temp, and then the head is painted in Cast Aluminum High Temp:

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Also got the frame torn down to the bare minimum to roll it around, and started doing some finish welding and messing around:

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Here's the rear fender after a basecoat. Still needs to get sanded further and then finished, but I was hoping the color would show up. Sadly, my phone camera keeps turning the paint too Red. It's really a true Cranberry color with a lot of awesome Purple and Pink hues... I'll see about a different camera once it's all done...

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Here's the next big effort, large cracks in the filler on the right tank cover. I'm still sanding down trying to get through them, but it's gonna take some time.

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Tomorrow I'll be polishing out the Left side tank, and working on other paint stuff, nothing too complex.

 

~Peter

 

P.S. Photobucket screwed up their app and website last night, so getting these pics on here was a total pain in the rear... Can't wait for them to fix that problem.

 

 

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This project looks like so much fun!

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This project looks like so much fun!

Oh yeah, it's a blast. Already has all the hard stuff engineered and operation, so I'm just messing with cosmetic and ergonomic improvements! I've got a small delay until next week for some more parts, but I'm pretty confident it'll make my April 224th Deadline. :)

 

~Peter

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Very cool, and looks like a lot of fun!

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April 224th Deadline. :)

 

~Peter

Most of us would have just said November 11th, but not you. You rock that custom calendar you've come up.

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Didn't work on the bike too much today, but here's what I did get accomplished.

 

New foot pads! Vintage Ludwig Speed-King drum kick-pedals.

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Still working out mounting methods, but they'll be awesome all polished out!

 

 

Working on repairs to the cracks in the right side tank, and realized the fork tube rubs on it when turned full right, probably what caused the crack.

 

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Fenders are now fully painted and cleared. I'll do some finish sanding/polishing to remove the orange peel...

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Gas tank is fully sealed, looks awesome on the inside. Now after final fitment testing, it'll get painted in a nice Chassis Black.

 

 

Tomorrow is probably the day for full disassembly to a bare frame and I'll start media blasting and then finish welding all the tack-welded pieces. I can't wait to have everything all painted and going back together!

~Peter

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Haven't posted in a bit, but I've been busy. So here's some updates.

 

Got all the painted parts polished and mostly assembled. Here's the front fender:

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Back fender:

 

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Got the frame painted and positioned on the bench, I am going to do the wiring layout now, and then take it apart again before doing final assembly on the ground as a rolling chassis.

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Motor mocked in so I can design the new wiring harness

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I wrapped the exhaust system this week as well. Now just painting all the little parts, I'm still waiting on some final machine work on my Aluminum Foot Pads, then I can get those mounted and actual start piecing this together.

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I'll be working on wiring tomorrow and Thursday, I'll post some photos as I go. 

~Peter

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Big Update

 

Got the frame assembled on the bench first. Rear fender installed for wiring the brake light.

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Started laying out all the new wires. I eliminated a lot of redundant systems and have streamlined the layout of the loom.

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Got the frame down onto jackstands for stage 2 of assembly. Got the Speed King foot pads mounted after getting polished.

 

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Front fender and forks assembled finally! Lookin sharp!

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Installed the engine and exhaust system. 

 

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Tomorrow I'll get all the wiring installed and start doing a systems check. Also might get the fuel system installed. I'm waiting on the tank decals, those should be done tomorrow or next week. 

 

It's getting really close to being able to fire up!

~Peter

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Ok... now I want to see more of those sexy beasts in the background :D

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i like this thread  :thumbup:

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I'm glad to share the build with y'all. I got the bike fully wired up yesterday. No major issues, all the lights and ignition switch work, but I think my new starter button is garbage. Won't engage the starter motor. My brain is fried at the moment, so I'm taking the weekend off. Things look good for Monday though!

~Peter

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I got back at the wiring debacle today. Sourced the starter issue to a bad ground, fixed a bad headlight switch, and got the rear brake-light operational!

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All wired up, harness is tied into place, and everything works!

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Tomorrow I'll be testing the fuel system and making sure the tanks are good to go before applying the decals. Everything is looking good!

 

~Peter

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Here we go!

 

Indian Decals are installed and looking good!

 

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Here you can see the 1940's microphone that I converted into my new air-cleaner housing!

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It's getting really close to being done!!!

 

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Fuel system checked out fine, even started it up to set the idle and make sure the kill-switch works. Next up is installing the rear drive belt and chain, that and modify the brake pedal to work with the new pedal pads. So I'm shooting for having it running this weekend! :D

 

~Peter

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