View Full Version : Drilling a frame for wires - need advice

12-29-2010, 6:55 PM
So, I'm getting to the point where I'm thinking about wiring my bike. My buddy and I just finished making my fake oil tank, and now in the name of cleanliness, I want to run most of the wires through the frame.

Some pics of the oil tank...



This being my first chop, is there anything I should know about drilling my frame as far as location and size of the hole? Should I reinforce around the hole? Or are frames strong enough on their own? I figure I should avoid any spots where frame would flex so I don't affect the structural integrity. I have an 81 XS650 frame with a TC Bros hard-tail.

I've found how to run the wires, but it's kind of hard to find the info online about actually modding the frame.

Any advice or links?

Thanks a bunch


12-29-2010, 9:57 PM
Haven't done this on my bike, but I've been told that it's a good idea to use a rubber grommet on the holes to keep your wiring from getting cut up. With vibration, et cetera, over time the metal hole can cut through your wires.
Your build is lookin' good!

12-30-2010, 9:43 AM
Hey Skyjac, thanks for the compliment and advice. It's my first build ever, so it's been a learning experience for sure. I'm planning to start a build thread at some point.

Yup, rubber grommets are going on my shopping list. I found a great supplier for nylon wire sleeving on ebay, so I bought a bunch of sizes. It's fire and chemical resistant so that should help with abrasion too.

Still curious if people just drill the frame and deburr it, or if I should TIG a washer or some metal around the hole for reinforcement? I guess it can't hurt, but is it necessary? I never really paid attention to this when looking at bikes till now. :)

12-30-2010, 10:00 AM
Don't know what others do regarding tig'n a washer in place, but I think you're on the right track. Don't drill holes where you can obviously damage the integrity of the frame, and drill your holes as small as possible. Just big enough to get your wiring through.

12-30-2010, 12:37 PM
How big of a hole? If your going to run a couple wires and not swiss cheese the frame you should be fine. i think welding is a little much, the grommets are a good idea though. Where are you planning on drilling?

12-30-2010, 9:01 PM
Also if you drill holes don't drill them in the same plane if it's a straight peice of tubing. I'd maybe drill one at the top side of the tubing and the other at a lower side of it. I've never seen anyone that has tig'd a washer in place but I don't think a washer is going to add much integrity to the tubing.