November 30, 2004
Daniele's USD Forks,
and a new paintjob
(Click on each image to view the larger pic)
The latest addition to the TT FM-1e is a gold-anodised pair of USD forks. Daniele is a friend who made these forks and other specially made parts for the r/c bikes available through the internet. Daniele made all these parts using my original fork sliders, springs and lower axle clamp. He cut all the parts using some kind of precision laser-cut device, resulting in every small part being excellent even in the finest detail.
I also ordered his aluminum body posts, as can be seen in the photo above, left. As you can see there was also a fender brace, which is a much needed accessory to mount the fender on a USD fork.
Mounting the forks on the bike, was a snap, and BTW I cleaned and reoiled all ball bearings involved.
The front wheel axle needed a bit of filing, as you can see in the pic. I also had to measure carefully Pat's brakes' spacers, so that the wheel would be centered. In addition the fender brace took a bit of space in there, as well! After some trial fitting, and some easy filing everything went OK! No binding, the wheel rotates as free as a bird! Perfect!
The cables leading to the servo went in unobtrusively. For the right side I used a short cable, while on the left I used a long one. I also made sure that the cables moved inside the sleeves without any bind at all, and added pieces of soft springs cut off from pen springs, so there is some kind of return action and the pads will not stick to the discs.
After the brakes were connected and set up, I made some (bad and haste!) trimming to the front fender. At first I mounted it on with two cable ties, but they lent a "model" look, and certainly destroyed the "scale" look of the bike!
The fender brace did something good by coincidence: It "forced" the calipers closer to the wheel, also "forcing" the pads to touch the discs lightly. This almost eliminated the problem I had found with the bike leaned over: The discs would "derail" from the loose hexagon of the wheel and thus the bike would not start on its own, if it was stopped leaning against the crash bars! Now, the discs derail a lot LESS. After more testing, I may do the trick that my (real) bike mechanic suggested: file a small groove around the wheel hexagon and hold the discs with (real bike) piston circlips on the wheel!
Fortunately, the front fender barely touches the fairing when the front is compressed fully (pic on the right). After the bad looks of the cable ties holding the fender, I decided it was more prudent to hold the fender with bolts: M2x6mm and a suitable nut in the back, which was Loctited in place. Now it looks correct!
The triple clamps look like jewels (above left).
At last I made the (fake) exhausts, as per Shaun's (Scaulfi at rcgroups.com forum) instructions. They are held with double sided servo tape on the underside of the tail section! (above right).
The finished bike!
What bothers me now, is that the rear of the bike is sitting so high up. In the pic above it is loaded with battery pack, minus rider, but his weight would not compress the suspension at all.
John (Nuovaic at rcgroups.com forum) suggested I put some spacers inside the rear shock to reduce its travel. I have to do that...
I also did a couple of videos, in the confined space of my back yard, to happily show how the forks compress and the brakes DO brake. At the moment, I have not yet setup the rear brake but this will be done in the next couple of days. Remember, that in the videos the rear wheel is being braked only by the ESC. I also equipped the bike for that run with extra long crash bars, so that it would not lean a lot, and as you can see even after being stopped, it can start on its own, most of the times. It was a good test of slow speed handling as well, in which the bike did very well!
I hear you say why only static pics with the red fairings on, which vaguely (!) resembles the 2004 R1 colours, complete with dual undertail exhausts. Well, I 'm talking with a Greek motorcycle magazine about testing the TT alongside a real '04 R1, so it must stay in pristine condition for the photo shoot. Whenever this happens, be sure that you will learn first in the world!!!!!
Here is the link to the videos: http://www.steliosh.net/rcmoto/fm1e/brakes/video/