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Discussion Starter #1
so here is the backstory: a local shop has a biker build off. last year was the first year. i ended up at the bike show last year, after the build off was over and thought i could do this. this past summer i found 2 nighthawk 250s. they were in rough shape but i knew i would be cutting them up so i took the plunge.

link to the build off page https://www.facebook.com/events/430826104270886/

Rules: You have 3 months (January 1st - March 31st) and
$1000 (Including the price of the bike) to build a custom motorcycle that can endure a 100 mile ride along side your competitors.
If you do this, you are eligible to be voted on at the Season Opener Bike Show on April 5th, 2020 for best build.

with what is going on right now the show has been postponed to a later date, but the build still went on. this is modeled after the dirtbag challenge in San Francisco.

i started with a 1995 that had been dropped multiple times. it probably served its life as someones starter bike. i bought them from a lady, that at the time had them stored outside. they both ran, which was shocking. the black one was in "better" shape so i figured i start with that one.

i was a little late on starting the challenge. i had got the flu, but when i did get the bike on the lift i was not long before i had it all torn apart.

to be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
part 2:

with only $1k and $250 spent on the purchase, amazon became my best friend.

the goal was to build a cafe racer style. i had built a bobber in the past and wanted something different. i ordered a bunch of parts and started with cutting the frame. i ended up with new sprokets, chain, fork seals, front tire, seat, turn signals, rear shocks, clip on bars, rear sets and grips. there was not room in the budget for a new tank so i had to fix the old one.

a week in to the build this was where i was at. i was going to leave the stock air box and battery box. but i couldn't design side covers that went with the design i was going for.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Part 3

i began on the exhaust with short mufflers welded to the old header pipes then wrapped. fabbed up a licence plate bracket, cut down the front fender, and tore out the battery and air boxes. i had some metal bent up to put the battery and electronics under the seat.

welded in the rear hoop and taillight bracket. i also made a plate to cover the risers on the triple tree that would also hold the choke. when i put on the clip ons the choke bracket was in the way. a pod filter replace the stock set up.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Part 4

next was carb tuning. i have got several size jets and it took awhile to get it right, i have a 120 main and 38 pilot with 2 shims on the needle. i had so much trouble with the needle sticking open in the main jet. which was giving me all kinds of problems. once i swapped out the needle spring everything worked so much better. the other issue was the air/mix screw was stuck. i got lucky when drilling it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Part 5:

i was coming down the home stretch with 25 days left in the build. the tank got painted after i don't know how many coats of body filler and hand sanding. i had help from my father and left over paint from a truck he was painting. it was either white or black. he did a great job painting.

then got a linkage kit for the rear sets and used the old pedals/shifter to make it work. wiring wasn't to bad, i didn't eliminate anything. i only had the taillight and turn signals to do.

i added a small wind deflector to try to hide the gauges up front. new wires/coils, spark plugs, and fluids and it was off for the shake down run.

i had to get used to the riding position coming from bobbers/cruisers, but it is sure fun to ride except on the highway. that is a story that will be in part 6.
 

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Interesting build. FWIW, if the exhaust hanger brackets aren't used, eventually the pipes will break the studs at the head.
 

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Discussion Starter #7

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Good deal. I mentioned it because lots of Rebels get shorty mufflers without support brackets.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
i agree. i see it all the time. not just on rebels/nighthawks
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Part 6:

after the shake down run. i figured out that the gearing is all wrong. so i swapped in a 15 tooth front sprocket to handle better highway speeds. after testing that set up for the last week i am probably going to swap the rear sprocket to 32 tooth.one other issue is the crankcase breather leaking oil. i need to figure out an alternative but the bike is done. we were supposed to ride 100 miles on saturday and the show was scheduled for sunday. neither happened but i have put more than a 100 miles on it so far so i know if can make it that far.

my only thing is decals. i am undecided if i should add some decals to the tank or leave is how it is
 

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Not half bad, it's nice having plenty of time to work on projects isn't it?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Not half bad, it's nice having plenty of time to work on projects isn't it?
i built this from Jan 1 until March 31. but i do agree i have more free time now so i am started on the blue nighthawk.
 
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