Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade - Honda Motorcycles - FireBlades.org
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post #1 of 29 Old 01-24-2011, 7:02 PM Thread Starter
 
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Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

My re style project to my 1998 RRW Fireblade is underway. With much help from a couple of guys on the forum i have taken the plunge to get a VFR 800 SSA to fit. I have an engineer doing the machine work and for anyone interested have kept a photo log as i go along. Bike is basically stripped down to frame and engine with forks still in place at present. Swingarm is out and new donor arm and wheel has arrived from 98VFR 800. Both arms are off to the engineer to work his magic. For what little it has cost so far i thought i'd give it a go as it has been done.

My query for anyone reading is the front end. I have purchased a complete upside down front end from a 2002 954 which has again been done by others. My question is does the SP1/SP2 17" front wheel go straight in to the 954 forks and if not what modification is required and secondly do the 320mm rotors from the standard 954 rim (which i have obtained to help with fitting) fit the SP rim or will i need different rotors. Any help/advice will be very much appreciated.

I have had a couple of small repairs done to the otherwise lovely red/white and purple standard colour scheme as i want to retain this.

Once i have the rolling chasis back on the ground i intend to start work on the engine but enough for now.

Again any help/advice on the front end would be greatly appreciated, and if anyone has a wheel for sale or knows of one even better

Thanks again
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post #2 of 29 Old 02-14-2011, 8:39 AM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Hi, want to do same sssa conversion to my 98rrw, didn't think 800 arm would fit, what mods have you had to do, cheers, clive
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post #3 of 29 Old 02-15-2011, 5:24 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Clive,
It can be done. If you send me an email address i'll respond in more detail. Basically the 800 arm is too wide and needs the rear break side bearing housing machined down to fit the blade frame. Mine is being done at present. There is a guy that did it by simply cutting it down and filing it himself but he had to lose 1 of the 2 bearings on that side. I didn't feel that brave with a hacksaw and file!! A mate of mine is an engineer and he reckons it will be easy. What he takes from the outside of the bearing casing to make it fit the blade frame will be added back to the inside as this will not affect any dimensions of the arm. I am fitting new bearings and he has to make up a spacer to fit between the two VFR mountings to cover the spindle.

Apparently once this is done the arm will bolt straight up to the blade shock and linkage.

The 800 sprocket/chain set up is different to the 98 blade chain/sprocket so a bit of mix and match is required here but there is a place in Bristol that will do mix and match to make it work.

I am no expert mechanic but with info i have picked up from others on the site it gave me the confidence to have a go. I am also putting a 2002 upside down fork conversion in mine with a 17" SP1 front wheel.

When its done i will do a write up with photo's if anyone is interested but for now send me your email and i'll email back the stage photo's i have taken thus far.

I used to have blades in the 90's and at 6'4" the new generation sports bikes don't fit my body. I've got a K1200S for general use. I saw my blade on the internet, 1 owner from new with 9k miles on it. I paid next to nothing for it and so far all the bits, rear end incl wheel wheel and caliper all from the same VFR, SP1 front wheel and 2002 954 front end complete has cost me less than 1k.

There's loads of parts on ebay. I should have my SSA back within the week so should know how its gonna work. I've got some photo's of the guy's who did it himself so i know it does work once you make the arm the same width.

Hope this will help you (my email is [email protected]) if you want to get in touch. Best of luck.

Regards
Adrian
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post #4 of 29 Old 09-18-2011, 6:04 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Well for those interested attached are the pictures of my Blade re build.

Bike 1998 RRW with 9k miles.

Stripped to engine and frame

2002 954 upside down front end, stripped re built with K tech springs, re damped etc and anodised legs with powder coated fork bottoms complete with 17" SP1 front wheel, galfer waive discs and pads, Hel brake lines. Fully refurbished front callipers with stainless steel fixings

1998 VFR800 single sided swingarm machined to fit Blade frame including new bearing casing to house the 2 bearings on the adjuster side, rear wheel and calliper from the same bike. Fully refurbished SSA including all new stainless fixing bolts. Rear calliper refurbished and new stainless steel fixings. New galfer disc waiting to go on when i can be bothered to take the hub apart again.

Refurbished rear shock including total re build and re powder coating of spring.

New titanium rear sprocket, new front sprocket to match pitch of VFR 800 sprocket and new gold chain. All fixings replaced using stainless steel.

Removed rear seat and added solo seat cowl sprayed to match standard colour scheme but retain retro Blade look with opening storage compartment. New LED tail light with rear indicators mounted into ends if tail light. New 2005 model front indicators.

Polished Akrapovic headers mated to titanium Leo Vinci can (sounds lovely) As critical as i am of my own work not happy with the exhaust hanger, but hey someone else made it. Need to get something more bespoke if any one can help.

Engine cases extensively cleaned and polished using wire wool and solvol to bring back the original finish.

Gilles titanium rear sets.

Its taken me 9 months. I am not a mechanic but i had an idea of what i wanted to achieve and stuck to it. I hope anyone looking will agree she looks in my opinion as Honda should have made them!!

Now that she looks the part maybe some engine work over the winter!

Let me know what you think!!











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post #5 of 29 Old 09-18-2011, 6:28 PM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

You know what I think about it Adrian, stunning matey!!
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post #6 of 29 Old 09-18-2011, 7:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Thanks mate, appreciate it. I am really chuffed with how its turned out!
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post #7 of 29 Old 09-19-2011, 10:59 AM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

its beautiful, everythings so clean, nice job mate! gold wheels set it off perfect
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post #8 of 29 Old 09-19-2011, 1:05 PM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

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Originally Posted by Humph View Post
I've got a K1200S for general use.
I had a ride on a K12S at the weekend, 100 miles or so of twisties and I quite liked it. BMW do design some nice bikes - it's just a shame that they don't seem to build them too well at the moment.
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post #9 of 29 Old 11-14-2011, 9:24 AM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Here you go-my bike is almost done!

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post #10 of 29 Old 11-17-2011, 7:35 AM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Too bad the exhaust doesn't go to the other side...

Both are nice bikes btw.
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post #11 of 29 Old 12-17-2011, 11:59 AM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Looks like it might have come out of the factory that way. Well done, neat conversion.
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post #12 of 29 Old 12-17-2011, 12:33 PM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

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Originally Posted by vfrman View Post
Too bad the exhaust doesn't go to the other side...
Of course, there's not room on the other side, but personally, I likked the look of dual exhaust tucked high under the tail-section like my '02 VFR. I think that would really finish an otherwise totally exquisitebike!

I think you did an excellent job on your conversion, and I love how you went thru and replaced all the bolts and bits with new before assembly.
That's a bike that I'm jealous of. Beautiful to look at, and I bet awesome to ride too! Good Job.

One last thing, your Galfer rotors are in phase. (Pretty sure from the enlarged photo of your front rim) Do you hear a wishwishwish coming from your front wheel when you're at low speeds? I did. You need to offset one from the other. So when you look thru from one side to the other, the holes and waves don't line up. Your braking will be more effective too.
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post #13 of 29 Old 12-18-2011, 7:38 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

Guys, thanks for the comments, i really appreciate it. Its taken me a year to finish but i'm really chuffed with it.

Its just been away to HM racing and had a new rear shock with ride height adjuster fitted and all the suspension tweaked. The exhaust was 1 thing i wasn't 100% about so i have had a new mid section made that tucks in and exits the can high level along by the tail unit. I've also got the original Akrapovic can that came with the headers that i've managed to clean up and put on a new sticker so i'm gonna give that a try as well. As soon as i get it back next week i'll post some pictures of the finished bike.

I've also had them set the engine up and was amazed at the power output for a standard engine. When i tookit in it was making 118hp at the rear wheel with just the full system. They've done the jet and filter kit and set it up on a rolling road and its making 126hp at the rear wheel for basically a standard engine. They've told me it will be like riding a different bike its making such good power so i'm really chuffed with that.

Interesting point about the rotors, yes it does make the noise you said at slow speed so i'll take the wheel off when it comes home next week and change them. So do you just move them slightly out of phase! How did you know to do that!!

You've probably also seen Lambchops is doing a ground up restoration. His is also going to look stunning. I'm just really glad that i went with the 800 arm and got it to fit properly as everyone told me on the site it couldn't be done. Now it seems as though several guys have took the plunge which is really great that these fantastic iconic bikes are still being tinkered with today.

I for one won't ever part with mine!!!
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post #14 of 29 Old 12-18-2011, 12:30 PM
 
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

@ The Rotors: I kinda figured that out myself cause I heard that wishwish noise soon after my conversion. Still, I wasn't sure about it, and didn't change it until SubSailor just happend to mention it when we were talking about brakes once. And to confirm it, just about 3 days ago I was cleaning up my garage, and I found the Galfer instructions. (on the floor under the toolbox ) They clearly state the 'offset' issue, and warn to offset one from the other. Somehow I missed that.
You won't have to take the wheel off. Unless you want to. You can just loosen one rotor, rotate it until it's out of phase, then put the six bolts back in. With blue Locktite and torqued to 14 ft.lbs. or 168 in.lbs. That's the spec for your RC51 front rim.
Again, I can't say enough what a stellar job you've done
Bravo!
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post #15 of 29 Old 12-18-2011, 9:16 PM
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Re: Upside down fork and SSA conversion to a 98 RRW Fireblade

humph,

Great looking bike.... lots of work... and a very satisfying result, I am guessing. I have extensively rebuilt, modified and "converted" my 94 also.... I guess some of us are born with the personality and gifting that needs to create things.....=)

One question: how did you find Gilles rearsets to fit our old Fireblades? I would love to have some, but don't know which model fits as it seems on the websites that none are for really old Fireblades....

Merry Christmas, Ron
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