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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I want to change my tail to more of a shorter and angle upward more with a point kinda and i was thinking of welding a custom subframe to fit a different fairing or using sheet metal. I have never welded or done anything like this before so i was wondering if anyone knows of a tutorial or guide for a 1995 CBR 900RR. Not sure what type of metal to use or how to go about it.
 

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Elbow Grease is Cheap
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Do you know any welders as friends that could help you? that's where I'd start. Unless you're some kind of freak, welding isn't something you can just do intuitively.....I've tried and still not very good.

And something structural like a subframe isn't a part you want to fail.
 

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GURU of da poo poo
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What qualifies a person to call them self a welder?
Usually someone who does it for money...but that doesn't mean you should trust someone's work just because they charge for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I don't know anyone who does it for money. Maybe I could watch some tutorial videos and do some practice welding first? Or is there a website that sells bolt ons for specific models?
 

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Elbow Grease is Cheap
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EDIT: just want to say, I AM NOT A WELDER!!!!! but have done alot of reading and this is just the tip of the iceberg. I've welded a couple of things for my bike, but nothing structural.

PROCEED WITH CAUTION!



You can watch alot of videos, but welding is an perhaps more so an art than it is a science. It takes practice and a lot of it.
If you really want to DIY:
Stick to carbon steel at first. Stainless is difficult and aluminum is VERY difficult.

Make sure you have the proper safety gear!!!!!!!!!! Harbor Freight has a good auto darkening helmet for about $50 or $60
Gloves, long sleeve shirt, and jeans are a must!

Go MIG/GMAW(these terms are explained in the links below)
Skip the flux core welder. Go for a gas welder. this will have a higher cost, but the results will be much better.
whatever you're welding, the Miller website has a suggested gas/voltage/wire gauge/wire feed settings.
http://www.millerwelds.com/resources/calculators/mig_solid_amperage_calculator.php
a good 110V machine will do what you need.
Stick to a NAME brand welder. there are about 5 or 6 reliable brands with parts/service support. That bargain welder might not be a bargain when it malfunctions and you can't find parts or someone willing to repair it.

a bunch of youtube vids.
There's a ton of info here.

http://www.customfighters.com/forums/showthread.php?t=27005


Before doing anything that you're going to be trusting with your life, plenty of practice and do some destruction tests to see how well your welds hold.

Learn about triangulation of structures and look at some pics of other homebrew subframes.

there are welding forums galore and there is a "heavy metal" forum here if you have any questions.
 

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I have to say that if you have this many questions about welding and a subframe then you should think twice about doing it yourself as your first welding project.

That being said, go with steel as D-Don mentioned. Not sure if your bike has a welded on aluminum subframe, but if it does you can weld aluminum tabs to the frame to bolt your subframe to. Over engineer your subframe. I would suggest you make it a solo seat as a passenger on the end of your home brew subframe is ridiculously dangerous unless you are an engineer and a certified welder.

Sheet metal is an option for skinning a tail. Fiberglass is another option. Using a tail from another bike is most common. I don't know of anybody that makes bolt on aftermarket subframes for bikes that accept other tails so it is going to be a labor of love.

Good luck and keep us updated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you guys for taking the time to explain everything! My subframe does bolt on and this is going to be my winter project. I will read through the guides and do alot of planing. I may just pay a shop to weld it for me because I wouldnt want it to snap off as im doing 70 on the freeway. I have been doing a few mods to my bike and I have been taking pics so I will start a build thread soon :) I love this site and Thank you again guys for taking the time out of your day to write such detailed replys. I truely appreciate it!

Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App
 

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I have to agree with the others. I have been employed as a welder but mostly I used a machine that did the welding for me. I did little manual welding but I did get the hang of it. Still I only weld steel. Aluminum is not easy. It offers no warning before your nice clean weld burns straight out the back of your part. It gets expensive to weld aluminum that way. In fact I only know a few people that do weld aluminum. Also molten aluminum doesn't bounce off human skin as steel does. It sticks, and when you go to brush if off it takes skin with it. If you attempt this for your first time I would say use steel. Use a thick gauge material too cause you will burn through thinner stuff. I have a 110v welder myself and I don't like it. It's no good for thin material. It likes to have a nice hot surface to weld and will burn right through anything thin no matter how hard I try to stop it. I think a first time welder could do it with a lot of caution taken but it would be a whole lot easier to pay someone to do it. Go to a muffler shop and ask someone there. They'll have someone who welds for sure. They could at least tell you where to go. That way you could use aluminum for a lighter subframe and a professional finish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have to agree with the others. I have been employed as a welder but mostly I used a machine that did the welding for me. I did little manual welding but I did get the hang of it. Still I only weld steel. Aluminum is not easy. It offers no warning before your nice clean weld burns straight out the back of your part. It gets expensive to weld aluminum that way. In fact I only know a few people that do weld aluminum. Also molten aluminum doesn't bounce off human skin as steel does. It sticks, and when you go to brush if off it takes skin with it. If you attempt this for your first time I would say use steel. Use a thick gauge material too cause you will burn through thinner stuff. I have a 110v welder myself and I don't like it. It's no good for thin material. It likes to have a nice hot surface to weld and will burn right through anything thin no matter how hard I try to stop it. I think a first time welder could do it with a lot of caution taken but it would be a whole lot easier to pay someone to do it. Go to a muffler shop and ask someone there. They'll have someone who welds for sure. They could at least tell you where to go. That way you could use aluminum for a lighter subframe and a professional finish.

Thanks man. That's not a bad idea. I will get a few quotes and go from there. Depending on the prices I may just let them do it.
 
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