Tuesday, September 9, 2014

WInter Farkles

Over the weekend in addition to "participating" in the Ural National Rally, I did a little more work on the rig getting it ready for winter. Some positive, some negative. First the positive. I added a tiny Kuryakyn LED voltmeter. The Ural really doesn't have anything resembling a dashboard so I stuck it above the speedometer with double sided tape with the wiring running through a small hole into the headlight bucket. After that, it was simple to tap into a switched circuit. I used the one for the tail lights. The voltmeter is just a series of colored LEDs with the number of LEDs (and color) corresponding to battery voltage. As long as you see at least one green LED then things are doing fine. I know that at 800W the Ural has a decent charging system especially when compared to the stock (280W) or even upgraded (450W) system on the Beemer.

The second positive addition was a small aluminum "dashboard" installed on the now unneeded friction damper knob. The knob and attached threaded rod was replaced with a length of all-thread with a coupler on top where the knob used to be. I then made a small, 4"x2", aluminum plate that I fastened to the coupler with a stainless allen head screw. The idea was not mine but came from a post on the SovietSteeds forum. The original poster went really fancy and powdercoated the pieces but mine is the low dollar version with the aluminum cut with a sawzall. Good enough for now. The need for this small "dash" brings up my failed installation.

I had ordered some heated grips for ⅞" bars from Amazon instead of the ones sold by Ural Northwest due to what I felt was an exorbitant shipping charge of $43. Especially when compared to "free shipping" from Amazon. I removed the original foam and chrome plated plastic grips with a knife and dry fitted the new grips and tested them to make sure they both worked. The left hand grip was really loose on the bar and the right hand grip was extremely tight barely fitting over the throttle tube. I used the supplied glue to install the left grip and left it to dry hoping that the glue would "fill the gap". I then put a tiny bit of glue about ⅓ of the way from the throttle housing and the end of the throttle tube. After lining up the grip, I pushed it on and with much effort, it went on just past the glue then stopped with about another 1¼" to go. I then brought out the rubber mallet and tapped it into place. The control unit was installed onto the new aluminum dashboard. But in the process of tapping the right hand grip the plastic within the grip broke. I now have one working and one broken heated grip. Not a good situation.

Heated Grips from the UralNW website

This morning, I bit the bullet and ordered a replacement throttle tube from Holopaw Ural and heated grips from Ural Northwest. I got a pleasant surprise in my email when Ural Northwest sent a $35 refund for a net shipping charge of $8. Very reasonable. I guess I'll be ordering from them again. Their explanation was that shipping on their online site is based solely on dollar value of the items and not on the size or weight. Or maybe it's because I complained in a note attached to the order.

One last thing, when looking at the bike, it seemed like it was leaning too much away from the sidecar. I had checked the lean earlier using an inclinometer held against what I saw was the only vertical location on the bike. The frame just in front of the rear wheel. I checked it again using the raised edge of the rear wheel hub (averaging measurements taken on both sides of the hub) and the lean was closer to 4° or over double what would be "normal". I shortened both upper struts by about 5 threads and after reinstalling, lean was about 1½°. The rig is noticeably less tippy on right turns and no change in steering.

13 comments:

redlegsrides said...

Re the dashboard, will you have enough clearance to lift the tank up to pull it back when removing it for servicing what's underneath? I like the idea, just have some reservations re clearances.

As to the heated grips, they're wonderful things in Winter....beware the glue coming loose though and the grips rotating on you. In the case of the left grip, my oxford grip would rotate and block the clutch lever....making me think something was wrong there when it was just the extension portion of the grip blocking the lever! On the throttle grip, when it rotates, it makes it difficult to get a good acceleration feel since the sucker is moving around the throttle tube....made me think I was getting a smoked clutch when on Rollins Pass Rd and it was nothing but a loose heated grip! Doh.

Learning to Golf said...

I like your small dash idea. I think all glue on grips are likely to come loose as I had to stop in at Home Depot in Golden, CO coming home from Sturgis and get some glue to reattach my grips. I hate when a project doesn't go quite like I think it should and broken parts are the worst. Hopefully the new parts will work out better.

Dar said...

Wow you've been busy! Warm hands are a definite must dealing with the temps you do. Are you studding the tires?

RichardM said...

The little dashboard is only held on with one allen head screw so if it is in the way, I'll simply remove it. I'm hoping the ones sold by UralNW actually fit better than the ones from Amazon. ChrisL from EverydayRiding had posted back in 2010 the heated grip installation on his Ural and he used epoxy to fasten the grips. The glue on the left hand grip has already broken loose on its first use. Since I already ordered a replacement, I thinking of putting the old foam grip back on with some of the leftover glue.

RichardM said...

The glue must not be very heat resistant if it liquifies when the grips are actually used. The heated grips on my Beemer are elements inside of the handlebars so they take a long time to heat up and don't work very well. Heating up the grip itself should work better.

I also hate it when a project doesn't go smoothly. With this one, I had to destroy the original right had grip to even test fit the new one. The left one is almost still intact.

RichardM said...

Not too busy, just messing around in the garage.

I already have three new Heidenau K37 Snowtex tires waiting in the wings. I figure that I won't put them on until after 9/15, the local date when studded tires can be legally be used. I won't actually put the studs in until I need them and I have enough for all three tires.

RichardM said...

The picture makes the mini dash look really close to the tank. In reality, there is over 2" from the edge of the mini dash to the top of the tank and it doesn't even extend past the edge of the head bearing.

Bob and Sharon said...

Richard on the lean of the bike is this something that reciently happened? It must have had that lean when you first got it or am I missing something?

RichardM said...

This is the way I got it. This explains the really worn tire that was the pusher. All the wear was on one side of the tire. It is on the sidecar now.

I just didn't notice the excessive lean and when I tried to measure it, I used the frame which, apparently, wasn't vertical.

Trobairitz said...

It sounds as though you have been busy puttering away. Bummer you were left with one heated grip though. At least you have more coming. Maybe these will go on easier and fit better.

Nice voltmeter. I think Brad put one on the Tiger but the colors used to flash too often and was annoying. The charging systems on those 955s is not the greatest,

RichardM said...

Puttering seems to be what I do best these days. I'm hoping that the new ones fit better though I suspect that it would've been a pain to remove the broken grip. That's why I just ordered a new RH grip. They don't sell the throttle tube separately.

This one flashes when the bike is first started but after that the reading never really changes. That's good if the voltage is that stable.

Bob and Sharon said...

lol find a level piece of anything is hard to find at times. When I first put my outfit together it was two inches toe out, talk about tire wear, wow. Glad you found the problem

RichardM said...

On the Beemer, I used the rear disc brake rotors. The magnetic inclinometer stuck to it making it easy to check the lean angle.