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Discussion Starter #1
I picked up a 2000 VN800 about 2 weeks ago. I've started the bobber conversion. Doesn't looks like a lot has changed but another 2-3 weeks and it should have most of the changes done except paint.
So far i've installed new forward controls and lowered the bike 3 inches with the Scootworks kit.
 

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Looks good!

1. Where'd you order the kits in the last pic from?
2. Where'd you get the forward controls?
3. What handlebars are you gonna go with?

I've got an 05 VN800B, and am looking to do the Blue Collar Bobbers conversion, but wanna get rid of the floorboards and go with forward controls.

Thanks,

-John
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The parts are from all over but here where they cam from:
- Seat - Lowbrow Customs
- Seat Mount Kit - TC Brothers
- Forward Controls - eBay - POLISH BILLET ALUMINUM FORWARD CONTROLS KAWASAKI VULCAN 800 VN800 1995-2006 | eBay
- Lowering Link - Scootworks
- Side License plate mount w/Tail light - eBay
- Single Throttle cable housing w/ tube - Revzilla

As for handlebars I'm sticking with the current setup for now. I have a set of 12" bars from a Harley i'm thinking of swapping to later. I think thicker one inch bars will look better with the fat front tire and forks. I'll have to get risers, new controls, grips, and drill out the riser mount holes to accept 1/2 inch bolts.

I looked into the Blue Collar Bobber kit. In the end i opted for a custom kit. I didn't like how the BCB kit seat height. I want my seat springs mounted at frame height for a better side profile. I'll have to relocate a couple electrical items but that shouldn't be to bad. I'll post some pictures when i get into that part of the build. Dont get me wrong the BCB kit is a great but just not for me. Plus I have a welder so i can fabricate what I need.

On the electrical side I'm relocating all switches from the handlebars. I already relocated the starter button. I wont have turn signals so i removed the indicator light for my new starter button. See attached pic.
 

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Sweet!

I don't plan to remove the lights and stuff - still gotta have the bike street legal. I'll be re-running the electrical, hiding as much of it as I can.

-John
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'm lucky here. Street legal is a working Headlight & taillight (visible from 500 ft), one functioning brake, and a working horn.

Turn signals not required, got to remember the old school left and right hand signals... I've debated removing the front brake (yes i know it provides most of the stopping power) and making this a jockey shift but i think i'll leave that for later. Can't get to far ahead of myself.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So i was doing to fall cleaning in my garage and came across a some 1" Harley apes (14") and 1" risers off something, not sure who's bike they came off. I have a general rule if you leave parts in my garage over a week they become mine :)

So here's what i'm thinking. Standard mounting bolts for Harley risers are 1/2". I don't recall exactly what the 800's are but i'm sure they are smaller. I'm thinking about reaming out the existing bolt holes to mount the Harley risers and bars but i have a couple questions. Harley typically has rubber bushing in the triple tree to help reduce vibration.

Has anyone went to Harley risers and bars on a Vulcan 800/900?

Did you mount them using any rubber/polymer washer/bushing to help with the vibrations or just direct mount to the tree?

Hows the vibration through the bars?

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So i'm curious. I went into get the title taken care of here if good old Nebraska. Since the bike is from Iowa it requires an inspection before they can issue a Nebraska title. They went over the bike and tell me they can't do the inspection due to no Emission Label. I was a little confused since we don't have emission laws in Nebraska but i rolled with it. When I asked how do i fix this so it can be title? I was basically told that's you problem. After a little back and forth with some real world logic she said you might have to call the Manufacturer and have them send you a new one. With that I said ok, i'll follow up on that. First thing I did was call my local bike dealer, they never heard of such a thing before. I called Kawasaki and they said they couldn't re-issue an emission sticker since it has to have the VIN# on it. Sounded like I was F'd but I a persistent MF'r and I don't like stupid shit. I finally got Kawasaki to send me a certified letter head with the VIN#, model of the bike, and all the emission label info on it. I called the state DOT and after some back and forth again they agreed to take the letter since it has the VIN# on it. Really makes me wonder what they do about a custom bike built from scratch... Rant over... now i can finally start cutting and welding FINALLY...

Grips came in this weekend and here a snapshot of the 16" bars.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well its been a bit since I was long online. Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving and has been safe decorating for Christmas. Finally has in town more than 2 days and able to put some work in on the bike. Spent most of the time stripping her down. Pulled the seat, tank, rear fender, headlight, old bars off. Drilled the top triple tree clamp so it will take 1/2" bolts for the new risers and bars. Cut down the rear portion of the battery box plastic so the new fender can be mounted without interference. Cut out the seat brace between the frame tubes and removed the front turn signals and upper for covers. Once I had that done my buddy and I kicked around ideas with my buddy about supporting the original battery box, where to relocate the battery to, mounting design for the seat hinge, and design/mounting of the plate to cover the electrical now hidden in the original battery box. Came up with a solid plan but the only thing i'm not sure about is the battery. We both agrees relocating it was best and easier to do than splicing alot of electrical wires. Question is has anyone relocated their battery to the right side (while sitting on the bike) cover??? Its pretty tight in there so I'm sure it will have to be a lithium battery. I have to make sure I have 200+ CCA's to match the stock battery.

If anyone has done this what brand of batter?? Whats the CCA's? How did it fit in the right side cover??

Please ignore the riser mounting bolts in the pics, they're not the right ones. My buddy wanted to see how the bars would look on the bike...
 

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Well its been a bit since I was long online. Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving and has been safe decorating for Christmas. Finally has in town more than 2 days and able to put some work in on the bike. Spent most of the time stripping her down. Pulled the seat, tank, rear fender, headlight, old bars off. Drilled the top triple tree clamp so it will take 1/2" bolts for the new risers and bars. Cut down the rear portion of the battery box plastic so the new fender can be mounted without interference. Cut out the seat brace between the frame tubes and removed the front turn signals and upper for covers. Once I had that done my buddy and I kicked around ideas with my buddy about supporting the original battery box, where to relocate the battery to, mounting design for the seat hinge, and design/mounting of the plate to cover the electrical now hidden in the original battery box. Came up with a solid plan but the only thing i'm not sure about is the battery. We both agrees relocating it was best and easier to do than splicing alot of electrical wires. Question is has anyone relocated their battery to the right side (while sitting on the bike) cover??? Its pretty tight in there so I'm sure it will have to be a lithium battery. I have to make sure I have 200+ CCA's to match the stock battery.

If anyone has done this what brand of batter?? Whats the CCA's? How did it fit in the right side cover??

Please ignore the riser mounting bolts in the pics, they're not the right ones. My buddy wanted to see how the bars would look on the bike...
Lookin' good so far!

I can't answer your battery questions, but have one of my own:

Can you give (or point me to) step-by-step instructions on how to remove the tank?

Did you empty the tank before pulling it off?

Thanks,

-John
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Lookin' good so far!

I can't answer your battery questions, but have one of my own:

Can you give (or point me to) step-by-step instructions on how to remove the tank?

Did you empty the tank before pulling it off?

Thanks,

-John

Tank has two retaining bolts, One under the front lip of the seat and another under the speedometer housing.

1. Remove seat
2. Loosen (do not remove) lower tank bolt.
3. Remove 3 small bolts hold the dash in place (triangle shaped piece - See picture)
4. Disconnect electrical connector to remove the dash piece
5. Remove speedo cable from the back of the speedometer - FYI- The cable isn't very long so you don't have a lot of extra room
6. Turn Petcock to RUN
7. Remove main gas line and vacuum house from petcock
8. Under the tank on the right side (while sitting on the bike) towards the front remove the breather hose from the tank.
9. With speedo housing removed you should see the upper mounting bolt between the tank near the frame.
10. Remove both bolts and keep the tank steady - It shouldn't fall off due to the way these tanks hug the frame but be CAREFUL anyways

Once the tank is removed be sure to set it on something elevated so you don't damage the petcock.

Removing gas: This can be done in a few different ways but this is how i've done it in the past.

1. Elevate the tank high enough you can get a 5 gallon+ bucket under the petcock and the tank is secured (and wont fall over)
2. Turn Petcock so PRI setting if available - this setting allows fuel to pass through the petcock without a vacuum like RUN/RES need.
This may be far enough if you only need to lighten the weight of the tank or are doing minor paint, etc...
if you really need ALL fuel drained go to step 3.

3. Roll tank on its right side (after going step 1 and 2) and remove the petcock from the bottom of the tank. Be careful not to damage the filter attached to the petcock inside the tank as you remove it. This will be about 2 inches or so inside the tank so be sure to pull it straight out.

If you can doing any welding or other tasks that could cause a fire rise the tank out and let it dry before applying heat.

NOTICE: I TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR INJURY OR DAMAGE IF YOU FOLLOW THESE INSTRUCTIONS. FOLLOW THESE AT YOU OWN DISCRETION.
 

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Tank has two retaining bolts, One under the front lip of the seat and another under the speedometer housing.

1. Remove seat
2. Loosen (do not remove) lower tank bolt.
3. Remove 3 small bolts hold the dash in place (triangle shaped piece - See picture)
4. Disconnect electrical connector to remove the dash piece
5. Remove speedo cable from the back of the speedometer - FYI- The cable isn't very long so you don't have a lot of extra room
6. Turn Petcock to RUN
7. Remove main gas line and vacuum house from petcock
8. Under the tank on the right side (while sitting on the bike) towards the front remove the breather hose from the tank.
9. With speedo housing removed you should see the upper mounting bolt between the tank near the frame.
10. Remove both bolts and keep the tank steady - It shouldn't fall off due to the way these tanks hug the frame but be CAREFUL anyways

Once the tank is removed be sure to set it on something elevated so you don't damage the petcock.

Removing gas: This can be done in a few different ways but this is how i've done it in the past.

1. Elevate the tank high enough you can get a 5 gallon+ bucket under the petcock and the tank is secured (and wont fall over)
2. Turn Petcock so PRI setting if available - this setting allows fuel to pass through the petcock without a vacuum like RUN/RES need.
This may be far enough if you only need to lighten the weight of the tank or are doing minor paint, etc...
if you really need ALL fuel drained go to step 3.

3. Roll tank on its right side (after going step 1 and 2) and remove the petcock from the bottom of the tank. Be careful not to damage the filter attached to the petcock inside the tank as you remove it. This will be about 2 inches or so inside the tank so be sure to pull it straight out.

If you can doing any welding or other tasks that could cause a fire rise the tank out and let it dry before applying heat.

NOTICE: I TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR INJURY OR DAMAGE IF YOU FOLLOW THESE INSTRUCTIONS. FOLLOW THESE AT YOU OWN DISCRETION.
Thanks so much! I have googled up, down, left and right looking for written instructions on this, to no avail!

When I do my bobber conversion, I plan to do paint (whether I do it or have pros do it has not yet been decided), and getting the tank off safely is the only question mark left.

Now to put 120 miles or so on the bike between now and then so I don't have to drain much gas ;)

-John
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Quick update today. Buddy got his welder setup. We got the new cross brace in place and welded the studs on for the springs. Picked up 2 inch grade 8 flange bolts for the handbar risers to those are fully mounted now.

The prep work included moving the starter solenoid, ECU box, and extra wire harness slack into the right side cover (the one with the lock on it). This freed up enough space in the battery box for the stock battery, fuse box and minimal wiring. I flipped the battery 180 degrees in the box so the posts are facing the front of the bike. The new seat pan was going to be close to making contact with the terminals if they faced the rear, flipping the battery gives about over an inch of clearance now. Since the terminals are forward i did have to drill holes in the front of the battery box to get the cables to the terminals. Suprisingly i Only had to run a new positive cable from the battery to the starter solenoid and extend a single 22G ground wire. For the front hinge mount we welded the hinge to the tongue of the gas tank, right above where the bottom tank bolt goes.

Next steps:
Secure the ECU box and solenoid in the side cover
Finish seat pan mounts to cover battery and wiring
Mount the new tail light with license plate bracket
Install new black Clutch and front brake hand controls
New Dunlap white wall tires
Mount rear fender
Send the fender, tank, and pan to paint.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
While i'm sitting here at work I decided to mock up a paint job. I'd like some opinions or other ideas even. I want to keep is simple, black and white. I'm not sure which one I want to be the primary color at this point so take a look and see what you think.
 

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While i'm sitting here at work I decided to mock up a paint job. I'd like some opinions or other ideas even. I want to keep is simple, black and white. I'm not sure which one I want to be the primary color at this point so take a look and see what you think.
Funny, I was contemplating this the other day myself... still haven't picked a paint color!

I would go white over black, just to be different. (I would think more people would have white as the accent color)

Current colors considered for my bike: Vaquero Pearl White over Blue Jean Metallic (Ford), with a tan seat.

-John
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Funny, I was contemplating this the other day myself... still haven't picked a paint color!

I would go white over black, just to be different. (I would think more people would have white as the accent color)

Current colors considered for my bike: Vaquero Pearl White over Blue Jean Metallic (Ford), with a tan seat.

-John

Personally I love pearl white but i couldn't make it work with the seat i picked up on this bike. I also really like the flat off white/light tan paint as well.
I think your paint choice will look great! I hope you're going to have it done professionally since its a pearl and metallic (unless you paint for a living). It takes some refined skill to get those styles done right. If you do it yourself just take your time.
 

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Personally I love pearl white but i couldn't make it work with the seat i picked up on this bike. I also really like the flat off white/light tan paint as well.
I think your paint choice will look great! I hope you're going to have it done professionally since its a pearl and metallic (unless you paint for a living). It takes some refined skill to get those styles done right. If you do it yourself just take your time.
Ha!

I saw a thread on here last week where a guy painted his own bike an orange metallic color - from rattle cans! It looks fantastic, but I doubt I could do that well. I plan to have it professionally painted, unless they want a huge sum of money to do it... in which case I'll have to rethink the color scheme.

-John
 

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Discussion Starter #19
No new pictures yet sorry everyone.

I dropped off the wheels and white walls to get mounted. Should have those back in a day or two. I got the new (used) drag exhaust in the mail Saturday. I'll be stopping at the parts shop today for exhaust gaskets. Once the tires are done I'll get those back on the bike with the new exhaust and snap a couple pictures. Hopefully it ain't zero degrees out so i can get a couple good pics in front of the garage.

I also lined out my electrical wiring for the electric start button, front brake switch, and headlight hi/lo. That will be the next task after mounting wheels, exhaust, and rear fender. Still kicking around ideas about paint. If anyone has some thought post a sketch (Black and White colors only).

Hope everyone had a good new year...
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Time for another update for the crew.

Spend most of last weekend going through the wiring hardness and diagram. For those just now reading. I removed the turn signals (front and back), turn signal switch, turn signal indicator light, horn, and engine kill switch. I relocated the electric start button and headlight hi/lo toggle. Most of that was pretty straight forward and successful on the first shot. When i rewired the rear taillight I ran into an two issues. One was a blown fuse that had me dumbfounded till i checked it. The other was that i had wired the new taillight backward. It was full power (like when you hit the brakes) all the time. Not sure if I read the diagram wrong or just reversed the wires but a quick change there and she was lighting up as expected. At this point the bike is mechanically functional (AKA safe for the road). Last two big ticket items before paint are the rear fender and the pan under the seat to cover the battery. I have a couple links bellow for videos. Enjoy and be safe everyone!

Early Work - https://youtu.be/mZ8O1a9a5Dc

Exhaust - https://youtu.be/no5ZWSLBv3s
 
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