Scary! And on Halloween too…

I have a friend who went and bought a Craigslist special…  You know the one – “XS650, Rat Rod Black, Harley Hardtail runs great won’t charge a battery” or something along those lines in the ad…

I have seen some awful work come through here in the last few weeks…  Just plain awful, but this one was “Running and Riding” and it’s amazing it didn’t just fall apart loading it on the truck…

What it looked like when it was purchased…

Now, I’m not attacking the purchaser – this is his first bike build, and he didn’t know what to look for..  But once the bike came to the shop, I knew we were gonna have to hack that hardtail off completely and start all over…  So we stripped the bike completely down to nothing and had a good look at it.

Lower Frame Rail – Butt Welded, no sleeve/slug and not the finest of welding either..

One of my favorite parts…  The tubes meeting the OEM backbone (notice the cracked tubing, nothing was actually attached here)

 

Pretty rough huh…  I know I feel safe on a motorcycle when it has a frame full of holes, and this guy must have agreed.  I’ve seen less holes on a sheet of target paper at the shooting range.

 

These holes are all the way through, BOTH tubes on the frame, not just 1 side…

 

And just in case riding a Holy Terror or Hardtail Holes isn’t scary enough of a thrill, lets go ahead and add some quality welding into the formula to completely round out the build…

 

Say farwell to this tail section, there is just too much bad work to even try to save it…

I counted 31 holes in the tubing of this hardtail section…  Someone needed to step away from the drill…

Into the scrap pile where it belongs…

The owner opted for a New TC Bros Hardtail section, so we tossed the frame into the jig and made that happen.  A fresh start for a bike that should have never seen the road in it’s previous state…

Now this isn’t to rant on Backyard Builders, I actually want to see more backyard/kitchen/shed builds coming out of the woodwork this winter…  Not everything needs to be done in a professional shop, just make sure it’s done properly and if in doubt, find a friend to help…  I’m hoping his will educate some of you folks on what to look for, and what simply isn’t acceptable…
And you’d have thought that just 1 terrible frame was enough for this week, but I actually got to see 3 terrible frames come through the doors this week…
This thing, what a MESS it was…
Rear wheel was off center by at least 1″, and the mess of welding/bondo/”fixes” and such were just unbearable… Note, there is no backbone behind the engine either…  I bet this thing rode like a wet noodle going down the road…  And yes, this was at one point a riding/running motorcycle in this state.
We pulled the motor, and I’ve never in my life seen so much All-Thread and washers holding an engine into a chassis…  Not a single properly graded bolt, and at least 1lb of washers were stacked into this thing…
Ultimately, the frame was deemed a complete waste, so it met it’s fate in the scrap pile as well…

I mentioned 3 Frames right?  Well, the last frame is from a fairly famous bike, and let’s just say I’m not going there…  But if you drop into the shop sometime, I’ll be glad to show you what to look for and what isn’t acceptable in person…

Until next time folks, have fun and make cool stuff…  Just make SAFE cool stuff

Hugh

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