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Discussion Starter #1
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
 

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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....
 

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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 " .
 

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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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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!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
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.
 

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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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Discussion Starter #9
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
 

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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 ;)
 

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Sure wish you hadn't typed in blue. PITA to read. I make out about a weak head stock. They have a brace that if you remove and the welds crack its your fault. If you get a featherbed without one and you don't know about it you shouldn't have a featherbed. I have had a number of featherbeds over the years. The wideline I have now I have had since 1967 (its a '60). Its done everything from being a daily rider for about 10 years to road racing to its current guise of a record holding LSR machine. There are no cracks around the headstock. Why? Because it has never run without a brace. I stand by what I posted earlier. Bollocks.
 

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yep.... saw the xs fbed

ugly as a hatfull of rectums and looks just as out of place as a unit triumph twin does

room behind it for a ten pound ham..... bleh

maybe a sl70 installed vertically and snugged as close to the down tubes as possible will soon be deemed asthetically copasetic once a few people do it and somebody makes a kit/plates to make it happen
 

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Haven't seen it but can imagine it. And I really don't want to. The XS is too compact for a featherbed. Gotta go with HackAsaw on this.
 

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lsr and pounding one on the street are pretty far removed from each other


take them off road and flimsy flat stock strut or not.... they may not keep their heads

i did brace one of mine with a stout four inch backbone that serves well as an oil tank

check out frame basics per maybe tony bollocks foale


i dig them as much as anyone... but, i think i am reasonably objective about what they are and are not


how is the streamliner thing going? did you get the early bugs worked out?
 

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quote:Originally posted by HackAsaw... but, i think i am reasonably objective about what they are and are not....
Yes, you're the very picture of objective open mindedness! :D
 
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