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  1. #1
    MadMalcolm
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    Default chopper Weight vs stock weight

    How much would you estimate the weight of your chopper is compared to a stock bike since itís all about cutting of non essential things?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MadMalcolm View Post
    How much would you estimate the weight of your chopper is compared to a stock bike since it’s all about cutting of non essential things?
    It all depends on what kind of chopper........... What kind of question is that???

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    Quote Originally Posted by MadMalcolm View Post
    chopper...?
    Language is fluid and varies by region/generation

    I like your definition "cutting off non-essential things"

    We'd need a year make and model to give you a definitive answer.

    But I can't sleep, so I'll play along...
    Your typical Evo Softail chop? 1984-99
    Probably lose 30 or so pounds by going hardtail,
    (Some of those aftermarket frames are heavy sonofabitches)
    ditching sheet metal,
    Tiny saddle,
    Open primary, (this can actually get heavier too, with the big billet backing plate, wide belt styles)
    You can throw out even more weight if you go kick only. (No more starter or big battery)
    You can probably save about 2 lb in wire,gauge(s) and signals that are "unessential"
    Some people even (gasp) ditch the front brakes.

    Throw on a heavy ass Springer, wide tire, or 80 spoke wheels and your back where you started

  4. #4
    MadMalcolm
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    I was thinking more of a Shovelhead 1968 with 4 speed ratchet top on a hard tail frame

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    Are we talking chopper vs. FL or ...FX platform?

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    Quote Originally Posted by hillcat View Post
    Are we talking chopper vs. FL or ...FX platform?
    Only FL were made in 1968

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    In the case of a '68 shovel, that would be an FL. Those weigh about 750# in round numbers. A chop with the swingarm frame will weigh about 550 - 600# if using all HD parts. (A standard FX, kick start SuperGlide weighs about 550#, and the FXE electric start version weighs about 585#). From there, if you get serious about weight reduction, you can get below 500#, and closer to 450# with a rigid frame. Note that the generator motor weighs more than the cone motor, so the cone version is the best for a lightweight big twin project. Lighter wheels, minimal sheet metal, short pipes, and no stupid tall bars and sissy bars, etc., are the way to lighter weight. chopprs on Shovelhead Forum claims under 400# for his cone shovel chop with PM wheels (very light drag race wheels, not the fancy ones), but I am skeptical, our FX modified drag bike was 450#.

    This weight reduction was what drove the early cut-down, bobber, chopper work. Many of these old big twins were being ridden in scrambles and other race events where lighter weight is gold. It also improved street performance without big $ motor mods.

    This is a good question and many overlook weight when it comes to building their motorcycles.

    Jim

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    I have a stripped down, hardtail cone shovel. Kick only, tin primary, basic wiring, no front fender, a wassel tank and so on. That thing weighs just under 490 pounds with all 2 gallons of gas in it.

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    I don't understand the question about weight???????????????? What does it matter........

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    Hmmm...been eyeing a 79 FLH with the same problem....it's obese....even with the bags off it's rear and mattress thing called a seat and it's light display, in the recycle bin.....it's a freakin pig on wheels!

    I figure: ditch the 12v car battery and starter motor and replace the 2 gas barrels with a slim saddle tank. Probably less then 100lbs but I bet it feel a ton lighter moving or .... inevitably ...being pushed down the road.

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    Less weight = free horsepower.

    IMO fuel tank size reduction is purely for esthetics on a chopper, not weight since the weight difference is trivial (and if a rider wants less weight they can look at the gas pump then fill accordingly) while split tanks offer much greater range. Range is a moot point on bar bikes though.

    Chops are fashion statements based on heavy, low-HP drivetrains but need not LOOK that way. Choose your fashion and enjoy!

    If you want to slash unsprung weight spoked wheels with aluminum rims will do it. Got (lots of) money? Dymag will sell you carbon fiber race wheels. Sprung weight can be reduced by aluminum oil bags, magneto ignition with a battery eliminator to run lights, no gauges, aluminum controls, aluminum or carbon fiber rear fender, and if you are hardcore you could even run a titanium frame and exhaust. Have some light V-twins:

    http://www.stradafab.net/ducati-sportclassic

    How light do you want to spend? It would be an interesting exercise and different from the norm.

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