Author Topic: Aluminum swingarm quest  (Read 4632 times)

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Offline 85RZwade

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2020, 12:20:31 AM »
I looked a little further into buyee, the buyer service in Japan. As luck would have it, the author bought an XJR400 swingarm and his story is pretty funny:

http://visor.vision/part-9-swingarm-debacle-2-when-buying-cheap-isnt/

Maybe I should just buy a TIG welder. And a lathe. Vertical mill would be swell, and a bandsaw...
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Offline pdxjim

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2020, 02:42:29 AM »
Hmmm...

I have bought tons of parts off Yahoo Japan.  When you're a JDM fan, it's pretty much the only game in town.

I always went thru a private middleman.  The guy I used was Drew "Moriwakiman" Jonsen, a British guy living in Japan. 

I would tell him my max bid, he would bid on the item and usually win.  He would then arrange shipping to his place in JP, then send it on to me here in the states. 

He charged 10% of the purchase price as his fee, and charged actual cost shipping.  Due to the inexpensive cost of the parts and relatively modest shipping charges, it always felt like a good deal.

I believe he is still in biz, but it appears he's dealing with some health issues at  the mo, and may be on hold.  Beware, we are friends on FB and he is a (sometimes heavy) drinker and a loose AF cannon.  Solid tho and has never let me down.

I have no experience with buyee, jauce, or any of the other online middleman services.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/unobtanium

https://twitter.com/moriwakiman?lang=en

I have also had good luck buying JDM bits from Naiomi at https://miyabeeplus.co.jp

They are a breakers and bike exporter in Chiba.  Great English communication, and I have a good friend in Seattle who has bought multiple containers of JDM bikes from them with no issue.

lots of parts on the site, and if there is something specific you are after they can usually get it without too much struggle.

They have had a booth at Mid-Ohio the last few years and are working hard to bring JDM bikes and parts to stateside buyers

Hope this helps.

« Last Edit: September 02, 2020, 02:44:13 AM by pdxjim »
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Offline 85RZwade

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2020, 09:48:52 AM »
And there are many swingarms on eBay for less than $100...of course they're nearly all single-shock designs that would need the attention of the aforementioned TIG welder. This guy, however, knows that he has what some people want and has priced it accordingly:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Kx-125-250-Aluminum-Alloy-Swingarm-Custom-Cafe-Racer-Bobber-Street-Tracker/193539394281?hash=item2d0fd8cae9%3Ag%3AUnIAAOSwjZlb3Qts&LH_ItemCondition=4

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Offline m in sc

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2020, 10:20:48 AM »
or just get the motolana arm and be done with it. minimal mods needed instead of fussing with all that. or,t he ones listed in the fs section. Im all for modding and making stuff fit, but after a debacle i had with jmc 10+ years ago,  id just go the other way and try to go domestic if a direct fit is available.  :twocents:

Offline dusty350

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2020, 01:58:31 PM »
Metmachex, in the Uk, make some stunning swingarms, both standard fitment and bespoke to suit whatever you are building. Whenever I start a project now, I always budget for a Metmachex swingarm. Light, super strong, awesome looking too. Eccentric adjusters on these arms to suit Rgv wheel in an Lc;

20171015_161428 by dusty miller, on Flickr

Standard fitment Lc wheel, with straight pull chain adjustment;

20190325_163451 by dusty miller, on Flickr

Lc arm to take Rgv wheel with straight pull adjusters;

20190831_093607 by dusty miller, on Flickr

And the first Rd aircooled arm to take an Rgv wheel, with straight pull adjusters;

20200812_142049 by dusty miller, on Flickr

Great people to deal with - Garry and his partner Tamsyn. Garry has been welding swingarms since he left school, and is a top guy ;D

Dusty

Offline m in sc

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2020, 02:39:22 PM »
had one on my rz, the quality was  :nana:

Offline oxford

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2020, 02:48:55 PM »
And there are many swingarms on eBay for less than $100...of course they're nearly all single-shock

Problem I found with the single shock swingarms is length.  Most of them are long compared to what is on a vintage twin shock bike.  Mark had mentioned this above with the FZR arm.  A lot of them are not very easily modified to get the length down.  Unless you are looking for a project they are not worth it.

I played this game with a Kawi h1 and a Yamaha secaII swingarm.  I cut the arm to length and welded in custom eccentric adjusters.  Then cross bracing near the pivot had to be cut out and a new one put in because the tire was too close.  It was also getting a little close on the sides from the arm tapering in but it made it.  This was also a steel arm, not aluminum which made things a little easier.

On Edit, here is the link to that bike with the swingarm.  It looks like all the pictures are up but have the photobucket water mark.  Note, the swingarm pics are of version 1, version 2 was remade and was a little longer.  The cross brace didn’t have to come out but was modified.  You can see version 2 in the later pics.

http://kawi2strokes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=6302
« Last Edit: September 02, 2020, 02:56:46 PM by oxford »

Offline RDFL

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2020, 02:49:07 PM »
Metmachex, in the Uk, make some stunning swingarms, both standard fitment and bespoke to suit whatever you are building. Whenever I start a project now, I always budget for a Metmachex swingarm. Light, super strong, awesome looking too. Eccentric adjusters on these arms to suit Rgv wheel in an Lc;

20171015_161428 by dusty miller, on Flickr

Standard fitment Lc wheel, with straight pull chain adjustment;

20190325_163451 by dusty miller, on Flickr

Lc arm to take Rgv wheel with straight pull adjusters;

20190831_093607 by dusty miller, on Flickr

And the first Rd aircooled arm to take an Rgv wheel, with straight pull adjusters;

20200812_142049 by dusty miller, on Flickr

Great people to deal with - Garry and his partner Tamsyn. Garry has been welding swingarms since he left school, and is a top guy ;D

Dusty
Beautiful bikes, I have lusted after Meymachex arms for a long time.

Offline rodneya

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #23 on: September 02, 2020, 02:51:15 PM »
had one on my rz, the quality was  :nana:

So is the price by the time you get it landed in North America.
Id love one of them.

Offline m in sc

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #24 on: September 02, 2020, 03:06:26 PM »
totally worth it. Sorry, they are really just awesome.

has anyone contacted billymack on his int he for sale section?

http://www.2strokeworld.net/forum/index.php?topic=2326.0

Offline pdxjim

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #25 on: September 02, 2020, 07:42:38 PM »
I still think seriously about a Metmachex arm for my LC.

Around $700 shipped from the UK, so really not that bad.
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Offline IR8D8R

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #26 on: September 04, 2020, 04:43:31 PM »
The Metmachex Engineering website says "As from 2017, Metmachex no longer makes swing arms". Which confused me...

Then there is metmachexswingarms.com which advertises swingarms. They are apparently a spinoff. ...sort of.

I surmised that the son of the company founder left to pursue other business: "Billet World" whose site has some outstanding bike porn https://www.billetworld.co.uk/. (I am not completely sure what products Billet World has to offer except maybe a complete RD LC with some re-engineered parts made from billet and machined billet aluminum parts on request. There is not really a product list).

...and then the Metmachex owner sold the swingarm IP to the current operator of the swingarm manufactory (ex-employees) who named the business Metmachex Swingarms and continued the line. That doesn't entirely explain the current status of Metmachex Engineering which retains the name. Does all that make any difference? Probably not. I just thought it was interesting.

 Straight-pull slotted chain adjuster RD 400 swingarm is $783.49 before shipping. All their arms are either 590 or 550 British pounds except the LC at 516.66 (excluding VAT). They make them for quite a few bikes but not the AC RD 350 (which was what I was looking for in the first place).
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Offline RDFL

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #27 on: September 04, 2020, 05:21:57 PM »

Offline bitzz

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #28 on: September 04, 2020, 05:28:42 PM »
I've known Denis Curtis of CMR Racing for many years. He's the guy that makes the frames for the "Team America" FJs and TZs.
I needed a swingarm for a TZ350G, that I of course wanted since I am making it, made to custom dimensions... but that's another story... and he convinced me to make it in 4130 chrome moly.
The Chrome moly is more elastic than aluminum. All swingarms bend/twist and the steel ones return to original shape faster than aluminum. All the cool kids are using chrome moly swingarms. 
In the end, he built the swingarm for me (in and out, including the design, took 3 months) and I am happy with it and the price. Nice piece: 1x2 rec tube, billet swing arm pivot, supplied taper bearings, BEAUTIFUL welding, takes up to a 150 tire, 1-1/2" longer than stock.
I am looking at building a RD-LC this winter and thinking about running a GSXR based shock... soooooo I need another custom swingarm
If there is any interest I could ask him to make some more

Offline dusty350

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Re: Aluminum swingarm quest
« Reply #29 on: September 05, 2020, 09:00:37 AM »
Regards Metmachex - a quick history. Bill Ryde was/is the owner and founder of Metmachex. He has a son - Dean Ryde, who worked with his Dad in the firm. They did general engineering work as well as Motorcycle swingarms. Dean is a great machinist, but most of the welding was done by employee Garry Gratton. Dean is quite a difficult person to deal with to be honest - I bought my first swingarm from him in 2015, and he was an arse when the spacers were wrong. Got sorted in the end. In 2017, Dean left to start his own business - Billet world, but his Dad wouldn't let him carry on with the swingarm side, instead selling that to Garry, and his missus, Tamsyn. As said, Garry has been welding since he left school and started with Bill. Garry and Tamsyn are a joy to deal with, and my hybrid 400 swingarm is just stunning. I took the frame up to Derby when I collected the swingarm, and Garry did some minor alterations whilst I was there. Couldn't be more friendly and helpful, and I doubt you will find a better made swingarm anywhere;

20200712_124039 by dusty miller, on Flickr

The cross section;

20200712_124524 by dusty miller, on Flickr

20200714_122516 by dusty miller, on Flickr

I took a plastic catch tank with me as I wanted something a bit nicer. He knocked these up for me;

20200718_152651 by dusty miller, on Flickr

And due to the wider Rgv wheel, and subsequently wider swingarm, we needed to extend the top shock mounts. He did these on his lathe and welded them onto the frame;

 20200712_112736 by dusty miller, on Flickr

20200712_121338 by dusty miller, on Flickr

20200714_122443 by dusty miller, on Flickr

Bill Ryde still runs Metmachex engineering, but the swingarm side is a separate entity.

Dusty ;D