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Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

This is a discussion on Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces within the Rebel forums, part of the Honda category; Wanted to continue from Snorey's "Windshield & T/S" thread so's not to go too far off-topic in that thread. Here's ...


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Old 04-25-2007   #1
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

Wanted to continue from Snorey's "Windshield & T/S" thread so's not to go too far off-topic in that thread.

Here's one link that might help with the visual: http://www.jpcycles.com/productgroup...All&page=1

Shown are the 5" & 6" trailer fenders & down below are the fender braces for mounting these (usually being mounted on rigid/hardtail sections & often by drilling a hole thru the plated area near the axle perches of the rigid/hardtail sections) You can also no doubt pull up many such items by typing in "fender brace" on a search engine.

What I was referring to in the other thread was mounting a flat fender while still retaining the shocks/free-riding swingarm. In that case, these fender braces in the link wouldn't work as the movement of the swingarm & the compression of the shocks wouldn't allow it. If you "hardtailed" the swingarm by installing solid struts, then you "might" be able to adapt an aftermarket fender brace to support the trailer fender, it'd be a matter of finding the right measurements & being able to install 'em on the swingarm.

BUT...if you look at the fender braces in the link, you'll get an idea of the basic shape of the brackets you'd have to make with 1/8" steel flat plate to support the trailer fender & with the trailer fender bracketed to the stock fender rails & keeping the shocks, the trailer fender would move in conjunction with the swingarm, same as the stock fender already does. The only difference when looking at the fender braces in the link is that your brackets wouldn't need the long "legs" to be mounted. It's be like cropping the aftermarket design to suit the length needed for a swingarm/shock application.
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Old 04-25-2007   #2
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

Gear Jammer wrote..."BUT...if you look at the fender braces in the link, you'll get an idea of the basic shape of the brackets you'd have to make with 1/8" steel flat plate to support the trailer fender & with the trailer fender bracketed to the stock fender rails & keeping the shocks, the trailer fender would move in conjunction with the swingarm, same as the stock fender already does. The only difference when looking at the fender braces in the link is that your brackets wouldn't need the long "legs" to be mounted. It's be like cropping the aftermarket design to suit the length needed for a swingarm/shock application."

Unless i'm looking at this all wrong GJ if using either a 5" or 6" fender it would not be wide enough to reach the stock fender rails, there would be to much of a gap between the rails & fender. When i took a measurement between the 2 rails on my 450 it measured 7 1/4".

I drew a sketch the best i could to show what i mean.

__________ Rail
__________ < hear's the gap i was talking about
_________| < 5" or 6" fender
___________< gap
Rail
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Old 04-26-2007   #3
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

Good info there, Chopper Rick, I was wondering what the actual distance was between the fender rails.

Two options:
a) They do sell wider trailer fenders, but you may have to check with a trailer supply yard to see what widths & what radius's they carry. A 6 1/2" or 7" wide w/15" or 16" radius would be closer obviously, but not necessarily required.
b) With 7 1/4" across, that leaves approx. a 5/8" space on either side of the fender (and depending on who made the trailer fender, a 6" may or may not actually be a slight bit wider when measuring the slight downward side edges of the fender, but realistically, as long as the fender width covered the width of the tire (or even left, for example, 1/4" of the tire exposed on either side, it could still work.

To allow for the excess width on either side: If you look at the first fender brace in the link & click on the actual pic, you'll get a better look at it. You've got the top w/2 holes drillled in it for mounting, then each side angles down slightly, then the legs run straight down. You could either extend the length of the angles to reach the inside of the fender rails & then form a right angle down on each end of the bracket for a straight mating surface when mounting to the fender rail. Or you make 2 right angle bends on the bracket (each side of course)...one right angle going outwards from immediately under the edge of the trailer fender so the bracket reaches the inside edge of the fender rail & then a 2nd right angle bend going downwards, again, for the straight mating surface for mounting to inside of fender rail. Please keep in mind that the straight edge of the bracket that would mount to inside of fender rail would want to be long enough to allow safe tire clearance (tho' it obviously wouldn't be as long as the legs in the aftermarket pic) These brackets would also be made keeping the moving swingarm & shocks in mind. If you also installed solid struts in place of the shocks, you could fab the brackets so the fender would be positioned where you wanted it as the solid struts would keep the fender stationary, with no up & down movement of the fender while riding.

Please don't get hung up on solid struts in place of shocks or keeping the shocks. You could do it either way:
a) Keep shocks, fab brackets to suit needed clearance during swingarm movement (if you installed solid struts later, you could either leave the brackets as is or alter them to allow the fender to set a bit lower if you preferred that)
b) Or you could install solid struts in place of shocks first & then fab your brackets to suit & be done with it all in one shot (solid struts installed, then fender brackets made)

Edit: A fender that covered the width of the tire may look cleaner, but it's really not mandatory. On the chopped Trumpet w/16" rear tire, the rear fender on mine doesn't completely cover the outside edges of the rear tire & it really doesn't look "wrong" & it hasn't been any problem, meaning no roostertails. The majority of the roostertail effect comes more from the center area of the rear tire, which would automatically be covered, as long as the LENGTH of the rear fender extended backwards over the curvature of the rear tire adequately.
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Old 04-27-2007   #4
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

Quick note on pricing...

You've seen the price of the trailer fenders in the link, but if you can find a trailer supply yard, the price should be considerably less & they're really the same fenders that are being used on many chops, LOL!

There's also the possibility of finding a used trailer fender, either on eBay or locally. (Personally, I won't pay more than $10 per used trailer fender locally).
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Old 04-28-2007   #5
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

Hey GJ, thanks for the JPcycles link. They also sell a pair of hardtail struts. You think these would fit on a 450 reb without doing any mods to either the bike or struts?

http://www.jpcycles.com/productgroup...All&page=1

Chopper Rick
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Old 04-28-2007   #6
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

They might work & they "might" need modification, the most likely "possible" modification being dependent on whether or not they'd fit in the bottom shock mount "cradle" on the swingarm without being ground down narrow enough to fit. If the bottom end had to be ground, I'd also want to grind the top end the same amount to keep them running symetrically straight for safety reasons. The 1/2" holes probaby wouldn't present a problem, but you would have to find bushings to fit that the mounting hardware would go thru snugly.

Points to keep in mind:
These are nice looking struts, but they are pricey.
The shortest struts in the link being 11", where as if you swapped out the 450 Rebel shocks for shocks from a 250 Rebel, the 250 Rebel shocks are 10 1/2" & the swap-out is absolutely a DIRECT swap-out, no mods needed at all. I've done the swap-out & it lowers the rear so significantly that people comment on how "low" the bike sits. Plus, with the 250 Rebel shocks on there, there's been absolutely no handling compromise.

Not trying to change your mind here, Chopper Rick, if you're intent on solid struts, that's your call & it can obviously be done. If I were doing a BTTW Rebel bobber, I'd go with struts like on the red & black one & those are obviously even lower than the 10 1/2" stock 250 Rebel shocks.

Here's my theory, and again, not to change your mind, but to offer you food for thought as well as to allow you options to consider.

If I had the $$$, I'd pay a good welder to make a true hardtail section, but that's not a cheap proposition. Since I'm content with simply having lowered (slammed) the rear-end, the choice would have been solid struts made to whatever length was desired or to go with the shorter 250 Rebel shocks which required no modification. By doing solid struts, what would I have gained ? Yes, a lowered rear section & a "hardtailed" 450. But with solid struts, I'd also lose a fair amount of handling, especially when cornering or riding thru twisties. I opted for the shorter shocks for ease of swap-out, it attained the lowering desired & it allowed me to retain normal handling.

Another consideration of plus vs. minus: Solid struts would keep whatever fender choice from bottoming out. With lower shocks, bottoming out is a concern, but I've been content to go with the lower shocks & I haven't used this Reb for carrying a passenger, which would increase the possibility of bottoming out. It's a matter of what trade-offs are you willing to accept & what your absolute desired choices are for the aesthetic you seek to attain.

Getting back to your original question, if you asked me what I'd do personally ? I wouldn't spend that kind of $$$ for aftermarket struts that "might" require modifiying anyways. I'd fab my own at a much cheaper cost as it isn't that difficult. But as always, it really comes down to what YOU want.
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Old 04-29-2007   #7
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

Hmmmm....after thinking it over after posting, this might be worth a shot. The 11" struts at J&P are pricey, but they're only 1/2" longer than 250 Rebel shocks, which would still be a significant lowering. Plus, used 250 Rebel shocks can actually cost more on eBay than these J&P struts. If you don't mind paying the bread & IF they don't require any mods other than finding/installing bushings top & bottom, they might be a good option for what you're wanting to do.

Maybe you can measure the width of the lower shock where it sits in the lower shock mount cradle & then E-mail J&P & ask 'em what the width of the struts top & bottom are. If they're the same width, it might be worth going for.

(Another side note here: If you have any indie bike shops in your area, you might be able to find used trailer fenders or used 250 Rebel shocks for a very reasonable price. Just something to keep in mind for future reference, as any respectable indie shop would have a boneyard where they stash tons of used parts)
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Old 04-30-2007   #8
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

All good points GJ, thanks for taking the time to post that. What i most likely will do is remove the stock fender & go with the skirted fender that i've already bobbed & just attach it to the stock rails. I've already done a mock up of it & it looks pretty cool. So you can get an idea of what i'm talking about here's a link that shows exactly the way my came out.

http://www.lickscycles.com/catalog/p...oducts_id=1091

Chopper Rick
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Old 05-01-2007   #9
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

O.K., Brother, you've been holding out on us! ROTFLMAO!!! Teasing with ya :wink:

I see absolutely nothing wrong with the look of the bobbed skirted fender & it certainly would fit with a bobber aesthetic. It really looks SWEET!

That would be an immediate styling change & one that's more in line with your goals. Once you've got it mounted, you'll be able to see if there's enough clearance to slam the rear even lower by either using struts or by using 250 Rebel shocks. Again, not trying to steer you in any direction other than the one you prefer to go, but please keep in mind that the original bobbers weren't all hardtails by any means. MANY of 'em ran shocks, so either stock shocks or lower shocks would still be within the realm of classic bobber styling.

Another side note while I'm thinking of it: If you eventually decide to lower it, you'll find that the distance between the final drive sprocket & the countershaft sprocket will be reduced, which will loosen the final drive chain tension. No biggie, just have to re-adjust the final drive chain tension is all. I found this out when I lowered mine. Looked down at the chain & said "Hmmm....the chain seems loose", LMAO!
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Old 05-02-2007   #10
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Default Chopper Rick...Trailer Fenders & Braces

Gear Jammer wrote..."Another side note while I'm thinking of it: If you eventually decide to lower it, you'll find that the distance between the final drive sprocket & the countershaft sprocket will be reduced, which will loosen the final drive chain tension. No biggie, just have to re-adjust the final drive chain tension is all. I found this out when I lowered mine. Looked down at the chain & said "Hmmm....the chain seems loose", LMAO!"

I'm glad you mentioned that, that never crossed my mind, good point to remember.

Chopper Rick
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