Wednesday, 28 January 2015

H1R front Wheel

I finally got this wheel together, its been a long time coming. Im feeling pretty good about it, the rims got some battle scars but they polished fairly my plan from the start wasnt to take the soul out of the bike. Next up is the rear, Rim is sanded and only needs a polish. but i do have to get some rear shoes made to finish it off.


  1. WOW this is gorgeous! How did I never notice this post before? Pure unadulterated wheel porn right there....

    Is it a true 270mm like I keep hearing? I only hope that you've taken extensive measurements, such that one might make a replica of the thing some day. Difficult without the master moulds & shrinkage factor etc. But perhaps something made from billet, with shrunk-in liners? If nothing else, some replica side-plates for a Yamaha 260mm, for use with any & all Kawasaki models....

    I've built a wheel more or less "inspired" by this one. For my teenage daughter's "KZ440LOL" project. (((Well, an unconscious inspiration which I didn't set out with this in mind but after I'd added the 1970 H1 gas tank it couldn't be denied!))) It's just the 200mm Suzuki 4LS, but that's what I was told would be a real pinch squeezing it into a 3.00x16" Borrani "rinforzatto"/Record drop-center shouldered rim. Since then, I've seen the Grimeca 230mm apparently laced to the Firestone chromed-steel 3.50x16" - unless of course it was an 18" or even some odd-ball 17" rim of which I'm unaware.... Either way, there's a Ducati square-case 900 built as homage to the Apollo, with white-walled BALLOON tires. (YUCK!) Well, I might not be envious of the huge fat tires, but I'm wishing I would've forced them to accept a 230mm version of this project. (Next time.) For the KZ440LOL's rubber, I'm going with 110/70-16 & 140/70-16 Maxi-Scooter tires. Low profile RADIALS available. NOW the trick's gonna be with finding a suitable bubble fairing, so as to emulate the beautiful H1R paint job. And of course, the plan had always been to swap out to a KH400 should the opportunity arise. Being that the whole front end would just swap straight over. Ah, but one advantage of the little KZ twin, beyond fuel economy, tractability, and semi-beginner-rider feasibility that is, would be the BELT-DRIVE, and I've scored a couple of complete sets in all NOS. It might not have all of the horses, but at least it'll be putting all that it can down to the tarmac.

    Anyway, I just wanted to say - here's ONE bike nut with a very serious wheel fetish! I've collected so many choice alloy rims for the wheel-swap on just these two bikes (KZ440LOL plus "CB900K0 Bol Bomber") that they're stacked up all the way to the ceiling! Enough rims for 3 full sets plus side-hack wheels on the KZ, and 6 or 7 unique and interesting pairings for the Honda, with say, 3.50x16" Super-Akront up front with 4.25x18" Akront rear - for that whole "Freddie Spencer Replica" vibe.

    I'm also carrying out some experiements with a "Faux-Leading-Shoe", analogous to what folks are doing these days with the CBX550F wire-spoke conversions. Only I'm working with the GL1500 "hub" over here. Will probably make the switch to the PC800 Pacific Coast front brake, and upgrade it's rotors from 276mm to 296mm using rear discs from USA-spec CB1100F - Though the GL1500 itself could be up-rated from 296mm to 316mm using GL1500SE rear discs, and there's the 43mm TRAC fork from ST1100-ABS which as it turns out has the dual 316mm rotors.

  2. (CONT.) I didn't think that size of front end existed, and as it turns out the very fork I was interested in had uprated rotors of it's own. The real trick though, will be in outfitting BOTH sides with the right-hand-side fork which has the TRAC mechanism. For a sort of NS500, early-NSR500 style works fork replica kinda thing. Would be tough to get those calipers just right, perhaps with some small applique glued to standard VF750F style calipers so as to emulate the mis-matched caliper pairs for anti-lock grabbing. (Sort of like a twin-trailing shoe if you will.) Either way, it's going to require at least the one side getting a custom one-off caliper-hanger. All the more difficult if one were to use sliding/floating calipers with pistons on the one side only. And with Comstar wheels in standard configuration, wire-spoke rims on MY version, these calipers would need to be either a floating caliper as such, or an opposed-piston caliper of a slim-line "flat-back" type - such as Performance Machine makes. Well how to make all of that AND have the appearance of the original NS500 brakes? Well if I were to fit PM brand calipers to my Honda, I suppose I'd want to disguise 'em with some type of cast resin shrouds in any case! So perhaps that's the best way forward.... Either way, it'll be a huge expensive project to upgrade the ordinary ST1100-ABS "half-TRAC" 43mm fork, to a dual-sided TRAC front end.

    Which, I suppose, leads me to my next QUESTION: Have you ever worked with any COMSTAR wheels? It's become somewhat popular to mix-&-match, re-built Comstar wheels with alternative rim and hub pairings. And I've now dug up some very interesting Akront "NERVI" rims, appropriate for just such a venture. Not to mention, approximately 50% lighter than the OEM D.I.D. brand rims! I've been hunting 'em down with the aim being to create either a decent pair in 2.50x18" & 3.50x18" for an RCB/RS1000 replica - OR a pair in 3.00x16" & 4.25x18" for say, a really tricked-out VF1000F Interceptor. Or rather, VF1100S Sabre slash VF1100C Magna I should say. Thus far I've found both FRONT rims, 2.50x18" & 3.00x16" (From Morini Excalibur!) Perhaps appropriate for a CB750C or CB900C I suppose. (Hardly inspiring the "race-bred" vibe we're after here!) The rear rims escape me aside from a solid billet 4.25x18" which I've been considering for a cut-down machine-shop project to create an appropriate rim for Comstar rebuilding. Depending on weight, of course. Perhaps a PM "Chicane" style rim would be more appropriate? If only the MORAD company would dig their old "NERVI" tooling out of mothballs....

    Well - I present the idea to YOU because I figure, being a real wheel fetishist like myself, you might be into a project such as these & other Composite wheels, such as Bimota, Technomagnesio, Grimeca, or Marvic etc - These and several other high-end wheel brands which used the Akront "NERVI" rims. It's food for thought.

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