Sunday, February 24, 2013

Cooling Overkill?

For those of you who have been following the blog for some time, you recall that last season I was able to make a significant impact on the overheating problem of the 650 by installing an oil cooler.  At time the process tested my patience, as with a lot of custom applications, there were no part numbers readily available.  I pretty much had to go about it on my own, albeit with some advice from Alex Hutchinson in the UK.  With the fitment of the larger R6 rad, the cooling should also be a lesser concern, but I didn't want to walk away from the oil cooler mod as even if the engine was running cooler overall, the benefits of a slight increase in oil capacity and the possibility of the oil itself maintaining an optimal temperature cannot be ignored.
With this in mind I went about trying to find a different oil cooler design than version 1, and once again, Ducati parts seemed to fit the bill.

The cooler lines still run off an adapter plate which will fit behind the oil filter.  The cooler itself is temporarily mounted underneath the R6 rad, using a long 1/4" bolt for now; a proper m6 solution is in the works.  I also snagged some aluminum screen material from Dad in order to protect the oil cooler itself.  The cooler is from a ducati 999/749 series of bikes, so the adapter fittings for version 1 still work.  I did test the forks under full compression, and they "just" miss the cooler (and the rad for that matter).  And the cooler itself is mounted asymmetrically, as the lines need to clear the exhaust pipes.  Form follows function, remember!

You can also see that the bellypan is finished.  Looks pretty good, in my opinion.  It would be neat to make the whole thing out of real carbon fibre... maybe a winter project for next year??  Or perhaps give it an industrial look and make it out of polished aluminum?  Or maybe leave the bloody thing alone and move on!  It will be interesting to see how well the vinyl graphics hold up, located where it is, and subject to abuse.

It was a bit difficult fitting all of the sponsor decals I have on the bellypan... a very good problem to have!
You can also see the hollow rear swingarm axle, to go along with the hollow rear wheel axle.  I might even switch that one out for an alloy 675 triumph item -- this is a steel one from a Honda vtr1000!

I was also able to come up with a better rad hose solution for the lower rad-engine connection.  This was the first mock-up, and while it worked, it had 3 (count 'em, 3!) 90 degree turns in a very small package.  Someone told me once that every 90 degree bend was equivalent to 3 feet of hose.  Yikes!

This piece is from a silicone hose kit from a RMZ250.  Hours of internet searching allowed me to realize this kit had the "perfect" part.  Luckily I got it cheap, used on eBay.  A slight dogleg right plus 1 90 degree bend makes for a far smoother and more direct connection.

The bike as it sits right now.  My friends at Speigler modified the rear brake line to work with the thumb brake assembly, so that is good to go, just needs to be bled (like the front).  Still patiently awaiting warmer weather to mount the tires onto the Carrozzeria wheels... then it is add fluids, and fire it up.  Hopefully the used and modified rad doesn't leak, the oil cooler is intact, and... everything runs as it should!

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