The Geek Biker

Rambles of a geek that rides a bike

Tag Archives: thumper

The evolution of a custom bike

Not too long ago I bought as an old (’99) VN800 cruiser with the idea to chop and change it a bit into a bobber. It was a good looking bike to start off with but it had seen better days with some sea air rust.

Here is a before:

So I started the build with some minor changes including the rear fender, seat, bars and mirrors.
The interim would result in something along these lines:

The old bike stayed this way until a bit of a head clash with the NSW authorities at which point it was reverted to stock state.

After saving enough spare cash, which included robbing two bottle stores and grabbing at least three old ladies purses, I took the bike to Evolution Motorsports to finish it up to close to legal. And here be the results:



Thumper has been re-re-converted


Thumper has  been re-re-converted.

A while ago I converted Thumper to a bobber. A bobber, described in Wikipedia, is a custom motorcycle that usually has had the front fender removed, the rear fender “bobbed” or made smaller, and all superfluous parts removed to make it lighter. I on the other hand did not remove the front fender but did strip the bike of the stock rear fender and seat, added a custom fender, spring seat and some custom lights, including Cadillac style indicators.

This however did not last long. Some where in all the posts there is an over dramatised story of how I couldn’t get the bike “pink slipped” and had to convert Thumper back to its stock form, excluding the exhausts and the bars. It was a sad day indeed.

But after ordering more parts, including an extra rear fender, a better looking tail light and receiving the bobber styled front fender as a gift from the old lady, I decided it was time to re-re-convert the bike. So this weekend I spent a few hours down in the garage getting Thumper all bobbed out and here are the results…for now.

And the wires:

What is left to do. Well the idea is simple. Get the bike to a professional to extend the rear fender with the extra fender and get it painted. Also to get the front fender painted and maybe the tank.

Me vs The Spider’s Web

Every morning on my way to the car this happens. I’m going to find those little buggers.

Thumper’s Metali-bling and Saddlebags

Recalling the last posts about Thumper, he had a bit of a set back. I was on my way to make him a proper bobber. Until Aus-RTA  put a massive STOP sign in front of my plans.

Yep, they still think the bobber fender is too short. Which resulted in me spending a weekend refitting the stock fender and seat and ended up breaking the engine-exhaust bolt.

A trip to the shops and lots of $$$ later, Thumper was fixed, roaring and registered. So I had to rethink my Thumper strategy. There is still a lot left to do on the bike.

  1. Replace the rusty horn
  2. Replace the stock front fender with custom one (this should be fine with RTA regulations)
  3. Remove some other rusty bits
But that is all crappy work. So I thought I’d do something that shows some style and will keep the old lady happy. Add some bling:
General front view:
And then some Metali-bling:
Metallica Scary Guy:

Thumper is back and badder than ever!

Yep, Thumper is back!

Roaring through the streets of Sydney all fixed up and registered.

What was wrong….where to start. As stated in Thumper’s set back, I managed to break off the exhaust mounting on the engine block. So what started out as a $26 rego inspection turned out to a full repair, service and inspection. Here’s the list of issues:

  1. Exhaust stub broken and almost impossible to remove (3 hours)
  2. Major service (3 hours)
  3. Fix break lever switch
  4. Fix side stand switch
  5. Fix side stand (apparently the previous owner thought it smart to weld a broken piece in place)
  6. Pass inspection
  7. Register bike for 2012
One week later and I was able to cruise the streets again. Thumper’s rear fender has been reverted to a double seater and stock fender for inspection purposes, but since I already have 9/13 demerit points on my license, I might keep it this way for a while.
So what is next for Thumper?
I still have a Front fender to replace (all conforming to Australian standards this time) and then I’ll take a look at the bike’s seat. Might get a lower one…pretty expensive though.
Might be getting one of these:
And off course Mr Skellington will have to be put back on his thrown.

Thumper’s setback

This weekend was not Thumper’s best.

Setback 1:

I took thumper in its current bobber state to get inspected for rego purposes. When I got to the Car inspection centre in Eastgate Shopping centre car park, the guy came out immediately….

He looked at the bike once and said, what can I do for you? So I responded, well I would like to get my bike inspected for rego please. (yes, I even said please…)

“Not going to touch this bike mate…”…????….”The back fender should be all the way down and the plate should be at a downward angle. I’m giving you a heads up, you will get a defect notice by police. I’m not even sure how you have this bike on the road”


So I rode off.

Now I know what he was talking about. In fact, this was always an issue I thought might come up. So I went home pretty negative.

I spent a few hours the Saturday to replace the stock rear fender, seat, lights etc. Undoing all the hard work I put in over a few weekends.

Setback 2:

Since I knew the guy at the inspection centre will look for something if I just came back the following week, I thought I’d address any other issues he might have. The last being the loud pipes on the bike….fine…

So the Sunday afternoon I backed the bike back under the spot light and started taking the exhaust system off…nice…first pipe came off easy and I replaced it with a stock pipe. Had to do a bit of a custom job on the fitting as I didn’t have the original nut to go with the bolt, but it was fitted and fastened. The second pipe started ok, un screwed the bottom bolts and started on the stubs that fixed the exhaust system to the engine block. First one unlocked and I undid it about 2mm. The next one was hard…I tried to turn it, didn’t budge. Then added a bit of leverage and it started going, but didn’t loosen up. This all pointed to bolt threads…After about 7mm…snap….hex nut snapped off taking a good chunk of the bolt/stub with it….I sat there looking at the broken stub…no words…

So this morning I phoned up Action motorcycles in the CBD…nope, they don’t work on Kawasaki motorcycles. Same guys that told me last time they didn’t work on Triumphs. (starting to wonder if they work on any bikes). Next stop, phoned Sydney City Motorcycles and they said they can take a look at the bike. If they are able to fix it, I’ll also be getting a major service (get all kinks fixed up) and rego inspection.

This is going to end up costing me a lot more than the originally estimated $26 for inspection.

Mr Skellington, the story behind the skeleton

I got a question from someone called Churchy:

So where did Mr Skellington come from? Just realised He glows in the dark

The story behind Mr Skellington as I replied to him

Yip. He glows in the dark as well.

I was looking for a skull or two to stick to  the front and/or rear fender of Thumper. But they all looked a bit …well …plain.

Then I saw Mr Skellington (Named after Mr Skellington from Nightmare before Christmas, see image below)

All alone and no one picking him. All the skeletons around him. He doesn’t look scary and all the other skeletons had scythes and shit. Not shit as in the object, but as in stuff…accessories. I first walked passed. But had to turn back. He pulled those Skeleton eyes and I just couldn’t resist.

First thought I’d spread him over the fender so it looks like he holds on for dear life, then I remembered he is a skelleton and had no life. Also there might be too much vibration on the front fender and “easy removable” double sided tape might not do the job. There was also no proper place to cable tie his hands to the forks (Again as if to hold on). The one other issue was his reaper rags. I def didn’t want that to get caught up in the spokse or break disks.

So I sat back down, had a whiskey and pondered. Then I decided to chain (read cable tie) him to the handlebar raisers. Now he doesn’t hold on for dear life, he watches over the road!

As a Tribute to Mr Skellington (the original)

P.S. A lot of thought goes into small bike decorations…unbelievable.

Dear Bondi Crackhead

… please shut the fuck up!

For the record, this is not Crackhead McDopehead. Nope, this is some random crackhead at bondi.

Here is the scenario setup. I met up with a few guys from work at Cafe Bondi. Since the sun was out, I thought I’d take Tumper and Mr Skelington for a ride. When I got there, I saw them taking their seats at the table at the corner of the cafe. Great, since that is close to the road and I can park my bike right next to us. Just as I got off my bike, Mr Crackhead yelled out from a few seats away: “Oi mate! Mate! What’s going to happen when that car pushes your bike straight over?!?”.

To give you a better idea of the layout I assembled a map from paper mache.

Back to the story…my response to Crackhead yelling at me from a few tables away:

“Well I’ll give that person a smack if they push my bike over!”

So Mr Crackhead sat back and said witha arms outstretched, “well I warned you mate! I warned you, it will not be on my head!”. “Thanks for your concern” was my response.

Now usually I would go and move my bike if someone had a problem where I parked it. But since I sat right next to it, I thought I’d move it when the time is right or if the need is there.

After I ordered my coffee and started chatting away, I heard a glass fall and break and incometh Mr Crackhead. “Mate, mate! Come take a look, come take a look…” Not sure why he repeated everything he said…I stood up “Fine, not like I have anything better to do”.

He ushered me to the the space between Car 3 and Car 2 (see diagram). “Look at all this space mate!” Then he moved to the space between Car 2 and Car 1 “Now mate, mate, you can see that there is no fucking space here mate. So when this car reverse, he will push your bike right over mate.”. Now I know that you shouldn’t argue with a crackhead, I mean, look at Crackhead McDopehead’s arguements. “Well that won’t be good” I said.

“Exactly mate! So mate, just move your bike to the grass over there mate.”. So I asked him if he was the owner of this wonderful vehicle. “No mate, not mine mate”. So….erm…wtf….

“Right…I’ll move it..” and got interrupted “That is a good idea mate! Just move it to the grass” “…later, I’ll move my bike later.”

“So I sat down again.”

A while and a few jokes later, the owner of Car 2 arrived with the family owning Car 1. And I thought, fine, I’ll have to move my bike. But no, they left together. No reversing required.

“It’s OK mate, mate, you’re all good Champ!”. “Thanks, was wondering about that…”

You would not believe what happened next. Two cars pulled in and another bike between them. So here we go again. But no! His attention was still on me.

“Look mate! A second one mate! Look!”

This biker wasn’t the pleasant fellow that I am. Nope. all patched up and no hear. He took off the vest and his shirt read “If you can read this, the bitch fell off”.

“Mate you shouldn’t stop there!”. The biker glared at him and walk off.

Later the crackhead stumbled passed. “I’m an Aries mate…you know what they say about Aries mate, they can be pushy and determined mate. Cheer mate…”



Thumper Halloween upgrade

Thought it is time to give Thumper a Halloween upgrade. A new grill and a friend to keep it company.

The grill cover…

And his friend, Mr Skelington