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View Full Version : First hardtail build. I need some Paughco frame clarification.



kayakguy
06-13-2017, 9:29 AM
First, let me say hello as a first time poster...so, hello. I have a '74 XLCH that is being 100% rebuilt. It was in piss poor shape and not a worthy restoration candidate so I feel obligated to build my first chopper. Be forewarned that I am an inexperienced idiot who is just jumping in over his head. That's the best way, right?


Second, I think I know what I have but I need some confirmation of what I suspect. It is a Paughco S120. The problem is they don't list it on the site. Just the S120 with some letters behind them denoting various attributes. From what I can tell mine is a 30 degree 0 up and 0 out frame with a chopper neck. Tire width of 130 or less for use with a drum brake. Some of that is from Paughco when I called them. But she didn't have much info other than the chopper neck and it was for a Sportster. I think this thing has fat bob mounts which I will not be using. At least I assume that is what the threaded piece on the top of the frame is.


I hope my guesses are correct as I intend for this to be narrow as god meant for choppers to be. The Certificate of Origin says "SPORT 57-76 CHOP 0 x 30"


Now, you are probably wondering what dumb son of a bitch would buy something when he wasn't even positive what it was? Well, the answer is me. I picked this up for $250 and the dude has no tabs welded on or anything. Just a terrible rattle can paint job. He was obviously a pro.

I kicked around the idea of a springer but I think I will stick with telescopic forks for now. I have to rebuild them anyway so any guesses as to what length tubes I need? I know someone has done this setup before. I will be sticking with the stock 19' wheels.

The fender and sissy bar are going away.

Thanks for any insight.

77388

Dougtheinternetannoyance123
06-13-2017, 12:48 PM
I have a similar but different issue. I picked up a EVO Paughco rolling chassis for a Sporty at a good price. It has the rake I want and style I like but the problem is mine sits way too low. I need to re-engineer it so it has some ground clearance which is probably going to involve a jig and replacing the rear axle plates (Speed bumps, gopher mounds and anything more than a 2x4 is too tall and would high center)

But you might want to start here: http://www.chopperhandbook.com/

Read all the pages...I have some of the old chopper builders guides, See if you can find the Sportster chopper guide, some of the AEE chop guides and the Jammer chopper handbook vols 1-3.

The Jammer one also has some cool tech in it for mocking up,

Allegedly some of the Jammer book is uploaded here,, but I cant get the images to load right
https://www.hdforums.com/how-tos/slideshows/12-cool-things-learned-from-the-1977-jammers-handbook-437091

kayakguy
06-13-2017, 12:55 PM
What size wheels are you using Doug?

Dougtheinternetannoyance123
06-13-2017, 2:10 PM
When I bought the roller it had Sporty mag wheels on it and extended forks. The wheels are stockish evo mags and 19 in front and 16 in back. Old school 16" tires (not sure how availible they are, and they ride like shit old bias plys) but you could get a very tall 16" tire back in the day. I like modern tires so not really considering that as an option.

I need to pull that roller out of storage and do some mockups and a 18" in the back MIGHT help,, but truth is it doesnt add that much height if past experience is any indication. I plan to take some pix and ask for fab guys input before i go to far on it, but I have heard something about some of these frames sitting way too low.
But Mockup and playing around with forks, wheels and parts is the only true measurement. Theres a lot of discussion and some impressive computer skills on some other forums regarding neck rakes, frame heights etc,, but at the end of the day you gotta do some mocking up and get measurements before speculating.

Im old,, and the way we always did a build was minimum a 4x4 block of wood under the frame as a minimum,, but I usually went for 5-6inches. This leaves you enough room for leaning way over in a corner and not high siding because your pipes, pegs or frame rubbed. Same with entry in & out of parking lots. Dont want to get rearended by a SUV because I cant pull off the Blvd at a normal rate without high centering on a lip of a parking lot entrance.

Fast & agile,, its deathrace 2017 out there with people on their crackberries while doing their makeup while handing out happy meals to Hunter & Ashley in the back seat of their Escalade. Ive already been a hood ornament already for a speeding drunk girl who was texting. I was lucky to survive that one and dont wish to repeat that experience.

Dougtheinternetannoyance123
06-13-2017, 2:26 PM
To answer directly YOUR questions (Not always about me) Your frame looks like a stock-ish rake. Do you have access to a Angle finder? (Harbor freight has them on sale all the time) Spend some time on those websites I linked to, and get some measurements.

If you like,, I have a variety of Sportster front ends Ironhead (2 styles/types) and Evo narrow glides (86, 88, 92, 98 and 2000) and happy to supply measurements of fork lengths. That should help get started. Ideally for best handling you WANT the bottom of the frame rails level with the ground, Lotsa people who dont care or more likely dont understand will run an extended front end with the frame high up and they handle like shit. (Known as frame flop). Theres many ways to do it so a bike handles well and looks good.

Springers and Girders look cool but they ride like shit. The best ones have a shock absorber, but if looks are more important than function,,, a Springer or Girder totally look cool. I have abunch of Springers if you want pictures but not for sale,,, they are assigned to projects. (They all are very long and old school style)

Here is what I know about Ironhead frames. You CAN run a evo sporty motor in a Ironhead frame but some fab work required. Early Ironheads are different but around 1980 or so, they made some changes. When they went Evo, they made a few more but there was a lot of cross over from the Ironheads so,, a late Ironhead can swap a lot of parts with a evo from 86 to 92, But earlier Ironheads is a lot more work and I think height is one of the issues and a Evo motor in a early IH frame is gonna be tight, very tight around the rockerboxs and heads. The top mounts too.

Thats a nice looking frame and can make a sweet bobber. Anything is possible its all down to fab and wrenching.
Here is another site that while not very active anymore is chock full of some really good tech material & educational..

See: http://www.choppercompendium.com/ccforum/index.php

farmall
06-13-2017, 3:36 PM
You CAN run a evo sporty motor in a Ironhead frame but some fab work required.

I'd have to have a very compelling reason to bother doing that, like a mix of extreme poverty, a titled frame, already owning an Evo engine that needed a home. and no chance of getting a titled Evo frame due to living far away from civilization.

Kayakguy, does that frame have a title and if not what is your bulletproof plan for obtaining one? Since it's post-1970 title passes with frame.

kayakguy
06-13-2017, 5:15 PM
Thanks for all the info Doug. I am with you on the clearance and I want a bike that can be ridden the way bikes are meant to. I am hoping that staying with 19's will do that. I am also anal enough to have to have the bottom frame rails level.

I have two front ends to choose from. The original '74 and a '75. The are basically the same other than brand and front brake but if anyone sees a clear advantage I am all ears.

This frame does have a title and it is signed over to me. Luckily the Cert. Of Origin has three spots for resale. Then I get to tell the local DMV how to do their job. I have made some calls and it seems straight forward. I have used the DMV to my advantage in the past by knowing all the rules. I hope it will be OK but honestly it does weigh on my mind. I really don't want a weld on hard tail.

Dougtheinternetannoyance123
06-14-2017, 1:10 AM
There is many ways to go for titling a project but it all comes down to what state you live in and your skills at dealing with morons at the DMV. I worked for several Govt agencies and I can assure you its quite rare for any DMV employees to be hired with any actual Motor vehicle experience or knowledge.

Here in my State its not as bad as many but once you say "Harley" you are automatically suspect so dot the I's and cross the T's, I too have extensive knowledge of the state statutues and rules and like to show them the copies of them with appropriate sections highlighted. I have a 3 ring binder with tabs, pages and notations and open it up and point out each section. If they are cool but ignorant I take a certain approach,. If they are smug, cynical or hostile then I take a much more dominating approach. (look up verbal Judo, it can be very effective if done right)

If you like I am actually sorting parts the next few days and will snap some pix and get some measurements on forks I have if that would help. I need to ID the Ironhead front ends I have. At one time I knew and had them tagged,, but I cant remember which is which,, Showa is one and cant recall the other. Those are 35mm and okay for their day, but outdated and not a good performer. If given the opportunity there is compelling reasons to go newer forks if you can. 39MM forks are much much better and much improved ride quality as well,. The early brakes are shit too. (Just sayin') Its easy to upgrade and look good doing it.

As far as your frame goes,, When I talked about the differences it sounded like you had an idea of what you had but not sure. I was just trying to illustrate the differences.. I am not suggesting sticking a Evo motor in yours but theres a big difference between an early Ironhead and late type.

I had bought years ago a package deal of a big pile of sportsters and a mix of Ironhead and evo. There was a fairly nice and complete (minus engine) of a 1984 or 85 XLCH roadster thingy... Kind of a rare delux model. I debated adding a Evo motor to it. In the end I sold it with another Ironhead motor I picked up. But It would have not been hard to make it work with Evo.

kayakguy
06-14-2017, 11:37 AM
I could look for better forks I guess. The brakes would definitely be a big bonus. I need to educate myself on what will fit, which I believe is about any set of sportster forks. But in a way I kind of hate to not use the vintage stuff as well, it is an Ironhead after all.

Dougtheinternetannoyance123
06-14-2017, 1:01 PM
Well, with a nice looking aftermarket frame like yours you have many options and can run most anything you like. Even some late model hi-po Asian bike forks and look good doing it. Some might say that asian forks dont belong on a HD but truth is, HD went asian forks in the 70s so what the hey...?

It ALL totally depends on what your access to parts are (You have a computer & internet), Your budget, Time and ultimate goals. I pissed off a few people on another thread where the age old "Look cool vs performance/function" debate was stirred up because I said that no front brake and suicide shifters are hipster poser shit. Which is not really true, My point was if you want a show bike (Trailer queen) or something to pose with down at the bar/coffeeshop/hipster clothing store or manbun styling salon then Art is total function. Go crazy. But the guy asking the original question said he wanted a daily rider-commutter and my point is its death race 2017 out there. I already had a near death experience as a hood ornament so I am kinda partial to fast & agile to stay alive out there.

Im in the shop all day today and goal is sorting parts and working in the shop so if it helps Ill post some forks and measurements if it helps you. Next couple days or perhaps next week I am going to start a thread on fixing my frame so wont clog up your post with my own frame BS.

Just a suggestion. (Remember that all advice on a free forum is worth about 1/2 of what you paid for it) What I like to do, is look online and magazines and find pix of ideas I like.. I take a lot of pix at shows too. (I'm in PDX and the ONE Moto show is very inspirational) I then see if i can take someone else's idea and change it around a bit and make it my own. So, I make a idea board of pix of stuff I want to try for each build. Pix of details and certain styles.. Mock up and standing around staring at it is the final decider,, but an idea board sure helps get the juices started.

kayakguy
06-17-2017, 7:26 PM
http://rs961.pbsrc.com/albums/ae91/canoeguy/IMG_1743.jpg?w=480&h=480&fit=clip

http://rs961.pbsrc.com/albums/ae91/canoeguy/IMG_1745.jpg?w=480&h=480&fit=clip


Alright first off I know my shop looks like a bomb went off. Hey, I'm working on it!

So, the front end is beefier than I thought. Right now I have the '75 front end mocked up. I may have to look for a 21" wheel to achieve a skinnier look. Or maybe the 19" will grow on me.

The frame is also too high in the front. Keep in mind as well that everything is barely bolted together.

I don't know if I am feeling it. Any thoughts?

kayakguy
06-20-2017, 5:57 AM
C'mon guys...I am looking for input here. I am going to start making choices. I would also love to know what you think I should start at for tube length. 2 under?

FatChibs
06-20-2017, 8:03 AM
tbh if you go 2 under youre probably going to have ground clearance issues

kayakguy
06-20-2017, 9:47 AM
I was worried about the clearance but I am trying to get the frame level. The general consensus is to have a level frame but this is looking to be an issue.

Do you guys think the S120 frame is just wonky? I am not even using a small rear wheel.

Tattooo
06-20-2017, 11:34 AM
http://rs961.pbsrc.com/albums/ae91/canoeguy/IMG_1743.jpg?w=480&h=480&fit=clip

http://rs961.pbsrc.com/albums/ae91/canoeguy/IMG_1745.jpg?w=480&h=480&fit=clip


Alright first off I know my shop looks like a bomb went off. Hey, I'm working on it!

So, the front end is beefier than I thought. Right now I have the '75 front end mocked up. I may have to look for a 21" wheel to achieve a skinnier look. Or maybe the 19" will grow on me.

The frame is also too high in the front. Keep in mind as well that everything is barely bolted together.

I don't know if I am feeling it. Any thoughts?


Has it downed on any of you guys that it will be lower when you get the motor and everything else on the bike??????????? It's amazing what weight will do to lower the front end........

Nice start on the bike , now clean up your damn shop.... LOL

kayakguy
06-20-2017, 12:36 PM
Has it downed on any of you guys that it will be lower when you get the motor and everything else on the bike??????????? It's amazing what weight will do to lower the front end........

Nice start on the bike , now clean up your damn shop.... LOL
Hell no, it hasn't! Thanks for pointing that out! You would think I would have thought of that after muscling the thing out of the frame. Well I guess I will need to wait until I get the engine back together before I go too far with the forks.

DoomBuggy
06-20-2017, 1:14 PM
I like the stance myself, very close to what I have on my Panhead. I cannot tell by the picture, but that almost looks like a wideglide front end, how far apart are the downtubes?

To those who know, didn't Paucho use the big twin bearing cups on thier frames, or am I confusing them with another brand?

-H

Tattooo
06-20-2017, 6:09 PM
Hell no, it hasn't! Thanks for pointing that out!


LOL Your welcome......

kayakguy
06-28-2017, 6:18 AM
Well, I measured my frame clearance and it is only 4.5" I know this is a popular frame for people to build off of so what do they do, just run a really low bike?

With my area being full of uneven pavement, crappy entryways, and gravel roads and parking lots I think I need to be higher.

CarlBrain
06-29-2017, 4:49 PM
Well, I measured my frame clearance and it is only 4.5" I know this is a popular frame for people to build off of so what do they do, just run a really low bike?

With my area being full of uneven pavement, crappy entryways, and gravel roads and parking lots I think I need to be higher.

Id kill for that much clearance. Only have 3". It's not bad with Ohio roads. Just can't haul ass around turns.

kayakguy
06-29-2017, 6:04 PM
I am also planning on higher pipes so that should help a bit as well.

Shopshirt
08-27-2017, 7:19 AM
Well, I measured my frame clearance and it is only 4.5" I know this is a popular frame for people to build off of so what do they do, just run a really low bike?

With my area being full of uneven pavement, crappy entryways, and gravel roads and parking lots I think I need to be higher.

Resurrecting a dead thread but...Yes, the S120 frames are "wonky" because of the way Paughco built them with straight legs on the rear of the frame to match the angle of the back bone. If you look at later production frames Paughco started using a kink in the rear frame legs to bring the clearance up.

Also, in the pics the axle is rolled all the way back in the plates. If you have 4.5 inches in clearance at the rear of the frame, when your adjust the axle it will move it forward and the rear of the bike will probably come up another .25 inches.