Chris Bradley's T500 based racing special - Part 2

"The continuing saga of Chris Bradley's successful attempt to build a T500 racer...with some fabulous shots of the finished product."

Date: Fri, 02 Jan 1998 13:07:31
From: chris bradley
Subject: latest project pics & Greetings
Happy New Year from the Motherland.
I have sent some more pictures which I hope will keep you tickled. Things aren't progressing too quickly, but even with a plastic bag on the fairing looks trick.

"Looking good! Chris

I always found it difficult to put a real TR500 fairing on a standard frame. The dimensions are all wrong and the engine, forks and bars get in the way. Is your fairing a TR fairing or is it designed to fit on the T500?"

Date: Fri, 09 Jan 1998 17:38:24
From: chris bradley

Yo Murray,

The fairing came from TGA racing and cost just under a 100 with the screen. Your right it is a bit of a neat fit but I think it will be ok. It's well made and I can recomend it. I will let you know if I have any problems.

Please don't tease me about the weather!

Freezin me bollocks off.....Chris.

Had a guy come over last night after a main gearbox shaft, the one which wears out if the oil is too low. He said he had tried all over the world and can't get them anywhere. Anyway, I said he could have the one from a daggy old gearbox I had. Just had to get it out himself. Blow me down if it wasn't absolutely pristine. The gears and bearings looked new. Oh well, wonder what it was worth?


Yo Muzz,

Know what you mean about the gears. Mine was gone on 5th also.

What I did was to press the gear off, machine the boss of the other side in a lathe and press it back on the other way. As the teeth are symetrical. Then for good measure as the surface interference is a lot less I had it tig welded back on on the inside. Me mates got the lathe and the press, and the welder charged me 5. Not bad for a recon gearshaft.

You know we have not seen any snow yet over where we live, its definately getting warmer. I expect it will be much hotter in W.A. next year.... Have a beer on me mate ! and stay cooooool


Les Trotter's old pipes

At 09:49 AM 29-11-97 +0000, you wrote:
Yo Muzza,

Now that I have some more pics of the project I thought you might like to see them.

Altogether the tank & seat with oil tank fitted seperately underneath came to 239 or A$480. The tank looks like a TR. but has cutaways to locate onto the standard tank mounts. This is just to prevent any forward movement. The whole thing sits down onto the frame with C.N.C. accuracy. I am pleased !

Last week I gave my heads to an ALU Welder to fill. Rob Greenhill has the techo to machine a squish head so the motor is still being worked on too. (can't wait to start building in earnest)


Date: Sun, 15 Mar 1998 00:56:50 +0000
From: chris bradley
Subject: In need of some bits !

Yo Muzza,
just thought I would keep you up to date on the o'l project. I just spent today stripping the frame properly and polishing the tubing ready for a coat of paint. I just had some 'top hats' welded in to take the coils just below the headstock. They match the ones I am using to mount my rearsets.

Swing arm is shortened but only by an inch as I can only get the back wheel so far forward due to the way the pipes fit neatly around me back tyre.

Tomorrow the frame gets painted and the first coat of white basecoat goes on the fairing. Still a bit of work left on the motor, gotta smooth the tops of me pistons and then measure the squish clearance, then get the barrels turned down to fit. After that Its down to assembly and make some rear set mounting brackets and I think I will make my own gear and brake levers. I think I will take a week from work when all the painting is done and get stuck into finishing the thing. It's gone on long enough has this. I wanna see the thing go.

I seem to be having a real job trying to track down some dust covers for me fork sliders Muz. You can't help me out here by any chance ? Suzuki don't make them any longer for GT500 forks and I am struggling to get some second hand.

Best Regards.........Chris

From: chris bradley
Reply-To: [email protected]
To: [email protected]
Subject: The End is Nigh

Yo Muzza,

Well Its starting to look like a racing bike. The construction work is completed now, just nuts and bolts missing. Every thing is Stainless including the wheel spindles and engine sump plugs and crankcase bolts, so it should stay pretty for a while.

The bike feels really light but I hav not had a chance to weigh it yet. Perhaps I can get it on two pairs of bathroom scales for a rough idea. As yet the bike is still totally dry.

I still need some carb jets and needles, and I am not happy with the throttle cable I have on, there are elbows on the cables just before the carbs, these would have been OK on a standard machine but as my carbs are much closer to the barrels it is putting some strain on the cables.

"Femsa ignition fitted, sourced back from Australia where it had graced one of my machines. Chris had to do a lot of work to tidy it up, make a lighter backing plate and repair the wiring. Looks good!"

I had to buggar about with the Femsa to get a spark on both plugs, anyone walking past my workshop that could understand swahili would have blushed. The wires are corroded right back to the resin so I had to break big lumps off it to get to good wire. Its OK though. Sort of thing you have to expect from something that old.

Anyway here are some snaps to look at, I will scan the proper shots in good time and let you know when it goes.

Hope you are all well down there, It must be cooling down now as its warming up here. Best Regards........Chris
5 April 1998

Thanks Chris,

To weigh your bike just put the bike on a stand and put the scales under the front wheel, and then do the same under the back wheel. Add them up..that way you can also work out the front/rear bias. It works, try it. One set of scales is all you need.

My modified road bike was about 148 kgs....lot less than the 182 kg road machine. the race bike I think was 135 kg...but we didn't run a light-weight crank at all. At that weight they chuck beaut wheelstands.

Your bike looks just great...I am so jealous, wish my looked half as good. I guess after a few seasons campaigning the shine goes of them.

Sorry to hear that the Femsa was a bugger, it is getting long in the tooth though. Make sure the timing is advanced enough.


Copyright reserved: M Barnard 1997

Part 3 of Chris' adventure

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