Phantom Throwback 250 Frame
240 x 16 Rear Wheel
200 x 16 Front Wheel
Meanstreet Front Forks
93" Shovel w/ Evo Lower end
3" Open Tauer Machine
RPM Forward Controls
HHI hand controls
The First thing I like to do is get the engine sitting in the frame to stabilize it while I throw everything else on.
Next I get the front end on the bike along with the wheels, set the trans down and so on.
I like to put the tins roughly where they are going to end up so I can start seeing if a change needs to happen based on the appearance. Just because things sound good on paper doesn't mean they will look right.
This part of the bolt on goes fast because I don't worry about things like wheel spacers and what not.
Roughly 90 minutes into it, you are at a stage where you can tell what the end bike is going to look like.
Right off the bat, I notice that in order to keep the triple trees from hitting the tank, I have to slide the tank back so far that it conacts the "v" at the seat area. So much for 2" stretched backbone and a 2" stretched tank.
I shave the back of the gas tank off with a grinder until it sits correctly and then just TIG in some small patches.
It is at this stage that "mock-up" really begins.
I tack up the tank mounts exactly where I want the tank to sit making sure to measure every direction so the tank is square on the frame. Nothing worse than a tank that sits slightly cocked. The last thing is to check the mounts visually. Even if something measures correctly, it may not look quite right and how it looks ends up more important in the end.
Once the tabs are tacked, I pull the motor out and put it on the stand and TIG up the tabs.
Some guys like to TIG everything at once at the end, I like to simply finish each job before moving on to far ahead.
This frame is being powdercoated, so the welds need to not only be functional, they need to look good enough for the world to see. So... take your time and do it right.
The next thing I do is mount my kickstand. This would normally be an odd time to do that since the bike is not sitting on the floor, but I am familiar with my own frames and ride heights so I just get after it. I also have the same Hotmatch stand in a bolt-on that bolts to the forward controls so I bolt that one on and see how it matches up to the weld-on that I am about to install. Again, take your time, these welds are critical and can be seen on the finished bike.
Rear Brake tabs are on the agenda next. In order to get the tab into enough "meat" on the frame, you will most likely have to have a small spacer between your tab and caliper. If you can do it without the spacer, this is ideal and even if you have to use a spacer, it nees to be short because flex in the brake caliper is NOT an option.
I throw the inner primary only on to align my drivetrain and put the chain to the back wheel. I center the caliper over the sprocket and use a string running from the neck to the rear wheel to center the rear tire.
In this case, I am also planning to mount my tail light/plate bracket to the same brake tabs so I do a reverse tab on the bottom of the frame rail.
On the kickstand mount, I weld it all the way around
The on brake tabs, I allow enough room for the brake to be able to move forwards and backwards to allow for the final placement of the rear axle
I plan to use a self-contained Wire Plus Harness with the key switch built in so I create a mirror image of the back of the wire harness box and weld it behind the trans making sure that my starter, oil tank and rear fender all have breathing room around it.
I am rapidly approaching the end of the day, so I decide to knock out a simple project and get the 90 degree elbow done for the air cleaner. I want an air cleaner that turns up for no other reason then it sounds cool.
License plate bracket is next on the agenda. I just want something simple and I have picked out a light that says "stop" from V-Twin. I cut it out with the plasma cutter and shape it on the belt sander, bend it in the press, and then weld on the tubes that will give the bolts support. When welding round stock to flat plate, longer bolt tubes are a plus because it gives your more surface area for your welds making the whole set-up stronger.
Now this is strange. The uppor motor mount doesn't line up at all that I purchased specfically for this Shovel Head. This kind of shit happens a lot unfortunately and rather than sit there like you have been kicked in the nuts, it is better to go into problem solving mode. I simply cut the back off the motor mount and weld a new piece on that makes everything line up.
For all you guys that would start ordering new pieces, it has been my experience that you could order 5 different ones and be lucky if one works, so it is sometimes better to just modify the existing part you already paid for.
Pipes are next. These pipes were made by Dave at Detroit Brothers so they went on with no modifications. It was nice to bolt on a "custom" part and not have it need to be messed with for a change.
The Detroit Brothers have stored their bikes in our Tractor Trailers at shows so they took good care of us on the pipes.
The seat area was next. I wanted to go with a solo seat and chopper shox. After doing some research, I found out that Pure Kustoms springs were actually a little bit better set-up and they definately look cool. I don't have pictures of them here but I will at the end of the finaly assembly. I simply welded on the provided tabs from Rocky at Pure Kustoms.