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2002 HD Sportster Cafe build

  1. #1
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    2002 HD Sportster Cafe build


    At the end of October I purchased an in-progress 2002 HD Sportster Cafe build.

    http://www.nestreetriders.com/forum/...0-a-92783.html

    2002 HD Sportster Cafe build-img_20191002_093556-jpg

    At first look it seemed like a pretty easy job to finish off the build as only some wiring really needed to be completed. Figured I might be able to get it on the road before the start of winter for a quick shakedown.

    Taking it off the trailer, a few washers and nut fell out, hmm, maybe I'll take a quick look before trying to rush it out. Also, since the clip-on's were on top of the triple and the forks lowered to allow that, I had decided I wanted put the clip-on's below the top triple tree to free up more room for fork travel.

    I got the bike on the lift, which was a pain in the ass because the front exhaust pipe sticks ever so slightly below the frame. I had to pull the front exhaust off to get the frame to sit flush on the lift. Raised it up and pulled the front tire off. Went to pull the controls off and started by removing the cables/levers. Got my c-clip tool to pop the non-existent c-clip off the hinge bolt. The hinge bolt for both levers was not secured, hmmm. Well, at this point I decided I'm not going to get this bike out quickly and I am going to have to go through it with a fine tooth comb.

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  2. #2
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    Re: 2002 HD Sportster Cafe build

    Pulled the forks out and thought about upgrading the springs and putting in some intiminators. Decided that I want to get the bike moving first and then do upgrades. Trying to keep it low cost for the time being to see if it is something I even like at the end of the day. I did change the fork oil out while I was there. It was a bit dirty but not bad at all.

    I noticed as I was taking the forks off, the front end was a bit notchy and tight to turn so I decided to check the steering head bearings while the forks were out. Disassembled and cleaned the bearings and races up as they were in fine condition. It seems like the steering stem bolt had just been tightened down extra hard as the scratch marks and concave washer alluded to.

    2002 HD Sportster Cafe build-img_20191103_112133008-jpg2002 HD Sportster Cafe build-img_20191110_104533192-jpg

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  3. #3
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    Re: 2002 HD Sportster Cafe build

    Got the triples back on and forks installed and put the front wheel back on. As I always do I give the front wheel a spin to see that it spins freely and has no obvious friction. Well now I see a very noticeable dip as the tire is spinning. Rim has a nice bend in it like it has been curb hopped with. I put two an two together and realize the front end had probably been tightened down so tight due the the bend in the rim, lol. Probably thought the front end was loose, not realizing the tire had been damaged.

    https://youtu.be/HLTSlowK3LU


    So that is where I am at for now. I have mucked around with the rear taillight, but need to find a different one or an adapter because the LED light does not have separate running light and brake wires like the HD wiring has. Still need to figure out where I am going to hide the main headlight/signal harness on the front of the bike, but need to figure out a new headlight first. The current headlight position interferes with the clutch cable too much for my liking, so going to change it out. Also do have a pair of these Burly Brand shocks on order now. The 13" shocks just looked a bit too low for my liking and I think the black/red combo of these will look good.

    https://www.burlybrand.com/product/28/stiletto-shocks


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  4. #4
    Kosher Assassin Stoneman's Avatar
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    Re: 2002 HD Sportster Cafe build

    Nice, thanks for the updates! Will you be doing anything to raise the rear of it at all? As it sits now, it just looks....awkward?

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    Did you grit your teeth and try to look like Clint Fuckin' Eastwood?
    Or did you lisp it all hangfisted like a fuckin' flower?

  5. #5
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    Re: 2002 HD Sportster Cafe build

    Quote Originally Posted by Stoneman View Post
    Nice, thanks for the updates! Will you be doing anything to raise the rear of it at all? As it sits now, it just looks....awkward?
    Quote Originally Posted by PeaPod View Post
    Also do have a pair of these Burly Brand shocks on order now. The 13" shocks just looked a bit too low for my liking and I think the black/red combo of these will look good.

    https://www.burlybrand.com/product/28/stiletto-shocks

    Going with some 15" shocks and maybe a smaller front rim.

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  6. #6
    Kosher Assassin Stoneman's Avatar
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    Re: 2002 HD Sportster Cafe build

    Ahhhh...I didn't notice how much that would raise the rear.

    Keep them updates comin'!

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    Did you grit your teeth and try to look like Clint Fuckin' Eastwood?
    Or did you lisp it all hangfisted like a fuckin' flower?

  7. #7
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    Re: 2002 HD Sportster Cafe build

    Well, I'm not sure it's much of an update, but why does some american engineering suck so bad? H-D really needs to up their game in making things easier to access and dismantle, service, etc...

    Let's start with the frame jack issue. Admittedly, I realize now I am using a full size bike jack, and with the Sportster they expect you to use a smaller scissor style jack. I also see that I could have put some 2x4's between the frame and my jack to get enough clearance to not have needed to removed the front exhaust header.

    Next, I mentioned I had pulled the front end apart and in doing so had removed the headlight to do some cleaning. Got the front end back together and went to install the headlight, but nooo, can't do that when the forks are installed. The basket is too big to fit through the forks and the wiring does not have an easily accessible disconnect. Need to lift the gas tank off which is a chore in itself to get to the disconnect, so screw it, remove the wheel and fork and re-install.

    Oh and now let's put the clip-on's on. Wait, these are not Woodcraft clip-on's that someone had put some thought into and made split pieces to assemble without removing the forks. Nope, got to drop the forks out of the triples and install. So let's remove the front wheel and forks again! Hey at least I'm getting experience removing and reinstalling.

    So now I want to remove the rear wheel for inspection and grease the axle etc... Well I guess that must mean I need to remove the rear exhaust slip-on and header right? I mean why not? it just makes all the sense in the world to put the exhaust right in front of an 8" axle rod, duh!

    So anyway, I am learning the eccentricities of H-D Engineering and none too pleased with it having come from Japanese bikes where it seems a bit more thought goes into the packaging and future servicing of the bikes.

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