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featherbed frames

This is a discussion on featherbed frames within the General forums, part of the Caferacer.net Forums category; What makes the featherbed frame desireable enough to be replicated? And a desireable frame for guys to build the Harley engined bikes into? Is it ...

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  1. #1
    Senior Member raven's Avatar
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    featherbed frames

    What makes the featherbed frame desireable enough to be replicated? And a desireable frame for guys to build the Harley engined bikes into? Is it just the considerable vintage sex appeal or does this style of frame handle well? Is it a very flexible frame in terms of adapting engines and such to?

    Thanks
    Bike:
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    My collar may be a little frayed, and maybe I need a shoeshine. But nobody\'s got a mortgage on my soul. I own it. Free and clear. -Phil Lovecraft

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    Senior Member HackAsaw's Avatar
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    the wideline is pretty miserable asthetically and egonomically even if it not also suffering from a few serious design flaws and weaknesses the much more useful slimlines also suffer....


    yet those who 'replicate' them do so faithfully including those horrific flaws to what is very close to a perfect antique technology frame

    quite bizarre and candidly.. their design doesnt lend itself to most vtwin adaptarions

    yes they will go, but, can you easily service them once home? have to pull engine to r&r oil pump? guess which areas break if not seriously beefed up and the bike used vigorously....
    Accidental inventor of the worlds fastest wearing rocker arms and other edible engine parts! Try my yummy blue cheese camshafts!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Wanker's Avatar
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    Featherbeds for the time were great compared to what was out there and at the time in the UK I guess there was an abundance of them . Why replicate them ? Even the flaws ? Simple . People want them and with certain things like a featherbed the flaws " add character " .
    If they call a sheep a ram.
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  5. #4
    Senior Member Saml01's Avatar
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    They were light weight, and handled well for the era.

    I have seen replica frames today weigh in at 30lbs.

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    Senior Member Hoofhearted's Avatar
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    Tell all those guys that were lapping the Island at over 100 about the "flaws". The McCandless brothers designed one of the best handling frames ever. If a BSA C15 frame handled as well we'd all have Triumphs them. If youwant to go all out contact Nicco Bakker at Bakker Frambou in Holland. He'll build you a featherbed in titanium. Bring a fat wallet. 15,000 euros a pop. The featherbed will accept most engines. The only engine that looks crap in them is the unit Triumph. Too short. Apart from all that they are the best looking frames ever. Fill the hole with a Manx and you have the perfect motorcycle. There is a perfect word for those who talk about the featherbed in terms of flaws, defects, etc. Bollocks!
    Don\'t cry because its over. Smile because it happened

  7. #6
    Senior Member raven's Avatar
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    thanks I figured there were issues with them. I have a line on an XS twin and was considering a bitsa based on that + a featherbed style frame but i dunno.
    Bike:
    Buell X1
    Honda S90 (box of parts)
    Honda CB750C (runs)
    The Others (mostly rolling wounded)

    My collar may be a little frayed, and maybe I need a shoeshine. But nobody\'s got a mortgage on my soul. I own it. Free and clear. -Phil Lovecraft

  8. #7
    Senior Member Geeto67's Avatar
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    the xs650 motorcycle is an excellent bike in its own right. One of the reasons people put triumph motors in f-bed frames was the triumph was slightly less fragile than the norton motor, had slightly less vibration (though still a lot), and was easier and cheaper to get parts for. They really were not a performance upgrade. The xs650 engine is much much better than the triumph engines but the chassis is also much better than the triumph chassis in stock form.

    The other problem you are going to face is a featherbed chassis is expensive to get a good one with all the right pieces, and probably more than you will spend on an xs donor. Plus the norton chassis bits are not cheap either: roadholder forks and conical hubs are a fortune these days. not to mention the bodywork. and the fact that there are tons of self righteous motorcycle pricks (like me) who will bludgeon you if you try to do things on the cheap without talent and end up ruining a perfectly good frame.

    halfway down this page is a series of pics of an xs650 in an Fbed, looks...um...ok:

    http://www.650motorcycles.com/MikesImages.html
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  9. #8
    Senior Member Geeto67's Avatar
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    here is a post on another forum just in case you thought this was an easy breezy straightforward thing:

    http://farnorth.chopperweb.net/forum...threadid=26477
    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.
    - Samuel Beckett
    A tool is just an opportunity with a handle
    - Kevin Kelly

  10. #9
    Senior Member raven's Avatar
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    I figured it would be a PITA. And now that i have seen pics im not really feeling it. It looks kind of lost in there. The technical challenge is there and interesting but it just isnt pleasing to look at. Plus I dont have a line on an entire XS, just the engine and electrics.

    What i am digging is that blown NSU twin further down the page :-D
    Bike:
    Buell X1
    Honda S90 (box of parts)
    Honda CB750C (runs)
    The Others (mostly rolling wounded)

    My collar may be a little frayed, and maybe I need a shoeshine. But nobody\'s got a mortgage on my soul. I own it. Free and clear. -Phil Lovecraft

  11. #10
    Senior Member HackAsaw's Avatar
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    quote:Originally posted by Hoofhearted

    Tell all those guys that were lapping the Island at over 100 about the "flaws".

    ok, they have notoriously weak headstocks and there exists zero rational reasons to not add a simple backbone to brace them.... then the rear engine/trans mount tabs are incorrectly fitted perpendicular to the tube's tangent and doing so results in a weaker setup than if done correctly.... which would result in a rational method of fitting/installing an actually useful non-silent bloc puny swing arm.... the front tabs are also in error


    The McCandless brothers designed one of the best handling frames ever.

    well let's not get emotional and then irrational about this.... one of the best during it's day, ok. one of the best ever? well everyone knows these are not traingulated space age trellis frame or box perimeter units... most any modern common production zipper bike does indeed have far better frames... wheels... brakes.. components.. etc

    If a BSA C15 frame handled as well we'd all have Triumphs them. If youwant to go all out contact Nicco Bakker at Bakker Frambou in Holland. He'll build you a featherbed in titanium. Bring a fat wallet. 15,000 euros a pop. The featherbed will accept most engines. The only engine that looks crap in them is the unit Triumph. Too short.

    agreed although there a many other engines which also look silly in a fbed due to their lacking 20 plus inches fore to aft... I'd think an xs would indeed look silly/lost/swallowed in one although the typ 15 is rather short and I'd redrum for one to stuff in one of my own fbeds


    Apart from all that they are the best looking frames ever. Fill the hole with a Manx and you have the perfect motorcycle. There is a perfect word for those who talk about the featherbed in terms of flaws, defects, etc. Bollocks!

    really? Rational, realistic, honest, 'not in denial' and pragmatic seem more accurate and fair to me.... I have three fbeds... how many do you have?

    btw... they all have hd vtwins in them... the best engines ever.... fastest and most reliable too


    Accidental inventor of the worlds fastest wearing rocker arms and other edible engine parts! Try my yummy blue cheese camshafts!

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