My friends, happy to tell you that I'll have my hands very full for a while. The first production batch of 7 Musket engine casting sets is here. Picked them up from the foundry this weekend. Your encouragement and support through this long drawn out project have made it possible to...finally get down to business! Will be trying out some interesting ideas to present riders with a range of options.
Thanks very much.
God, what a day it was! Don't go by this dryish looking pic, this came much later!
Headed out to Mid Ohio around 8:30 am Saturday for the 70 mile ride with buddies Mike and Al.
GOT HAMMERED the entire way by the most furious monsoon rain-rape I've ever experienced. And this is from the crazy kid who used to rush out into thunderstorms on his bicycle, got soaked and smacked and kept doing it.
All my friends awaiting the ever-delayed Monsoon in India, I'm sorry, but it made a detour through Columbus!
*Everything was wet*.
Wetter than a deep sea fish taking a shower in the Marianna Trench.
Wetter than a tiny drop amongst the billions that cascade down the Niagara Falls.
The soul was soaked!
The bo###cks were akin to a pair of poached eggs (pardon the expression).
The water seeped through my skin and diluted my blood till it was a weak pinkish lemonade.
Teeth began to chatter and the previous day had been a sweaty 95!
BUT, the important thing is that the ol'girl made it *without* a hiccup. Not a cough, not a sneeze, just powered through with gusto through the endless wall of water. And this is with points ignition!
Everyday, the mutual trust and affection between us grows and is flowering into a long term commitment
Good afternoon gentlemen!
Mid Ohio Vintage Days, the biggest vintage bike event in the USA is coming up soon, July 19,20,21, less than two weeks away!
Planning to ride the 998 down one of the days.
Anyone among you coming to the event and would like to meet up, do shoot me a message!
And now, a quick update on all progress so far.
First and foremost, I have an appointment.
Wednesday. July 17th. 6:00 am.
At the foundry.
The very first production batch will be poured.
Shooting for around 7 complete sets to be cast that same day if possible. That's 21 separate castings, three per set. It's going to be a long hot day, hence the early start.
And then the machining begins.
Quite honestly, this is very stressful but in a good way.
The 998 has been running GREAT!
Have been riding it to work every morning, taking freeway rides after work, getting close to a 1500 miles, feels well broken in, idles, revs and goes willingly.
And, the best part? After being parked at work all day, *not a drop of oil* under the motor! I know! Something must be wrong!
*Purely for entertainment*, at some point of time soon, I'm going to try and get some rough 0-60 numbers with the phone's GPS speedo. These things are known for being pretty accurate.
The acceleration numbers might not be too bad, in spite of the modest state of tune and output of the stock 500 because it's quite a light machine.
It weighs in at 428lbs.
This is with the stock cast iron cylinders.
Alloy ones will probably shave around 10-15 lbs, rough guess, don't have weight for an alloy jug.
2x1 pipes with a single muffler will further cut about 5-10lbs.
And then, we're really close to a sub-400 lb 1000cc twin!
This is the same weight range as a 70s Triumph Bonny 750.
About 160 lbs lighter than a Sportster.
And that's why this thing feels nippy in spite of the modest, low compression, stock state of tune of the std. Bullet 500.
I shudder at the thought of a DOUBLE FIREBALL set up with this weight range.
Rest assured that this MAD bike will be equipped with disk brakes, a *very robust clutch* and perhaps even a different front end.
Thanks very much!
Hi guys. Visiting family in India, relaxing, trying to not think about bikes. Will catch up with email enquiries soon. Thanks and Happy Holi!
Greetings! Grabbed a freak 48deg. afternoon to shoot this, thanks to two great friends. Nope, no time to get into proper riding gear- greasy shop clothes it is :-) Warmed up on 35mph local roads before a stretch on the freeway. Did the classic 'speed up, slow down' break-in technique to help the rings bed-in quicker, it's running great. Turn up the volume, boost the bass and enjoy, it sounds a lot meatier than the camera picked up :-)
After a mid-winter marathon, the fire is in the frame. Tried to give this one it's own character compared to the first one which was rather a smooth and mellow tourer. This one is more along the lines of stripped down to bare bones. The 'pipe and muffler on both sides' caused quite a bit of agony particularly as the curved downtube left limited room between the front wheel and itself for the front pipe to cross over. The classically beautiful symmetrical exhaust of machines such as the 1939 Triumph Speed Twin is very dear to many and was a worthy cause to strive for, in spite of the
challenge posed by this V twin as opposed to an inherently symmetrical parallel twin. The slim rear mudguard is actually a stock front one. Custom stays were made to mount it to the swingarm which allow it to hug the tire closely and move with it over bumps. The custom downtube was curved to allow room for the front cylinder without increasing the wheelbase too much- only 2.5", which brings it to 56.5", only 1" more than a Vincent.
The left-shifting gearbox was converted to right side shift by fabricating a custom gearshift lever and a simple linkage, avoiding replacement of the inner and outer covers and shift mechanisms.
The clutch has also been beefed up to handle the extra power and didn't exhibit signs of slippage.
It was taken for a brief yet *truly exhilarating* ride - she goes, solid punchy torque available right from idle. Tying up random loose ends while it's still below freezing and snowed up. Wiring, re-routing cables, new tank emblems done this weekend, couple of other things next and then waiting for warm weather.
Do check out more pics in the GALLERY page.
Once again, THANK you for your support!