Aug 31, 2012

Bling for my Trike!!

 My friend Phil has been teaching me how to make what I call 'aluminum pretties' or 'bling' for my trike.  He has made a lot of this kind of thing for his Harley Davidson motorcycle, out of aluminum and brass. I don't want to do brass for my trike as it is too hard to keep looking good, so will just be doing aluminum.  With the first piece, Phil did most of the work to show me how to do it, and with each piece made now he does less of it and I do more of it.  He's really good at this sort of thing.

Here, Phil is cutting out a feather from a sheet of aluminum.

Now he's showing me how to file the edges of the aluminum to take off the rough stuff left by the saw blade. 

You are now seeing Feather #1, all shiny... and Feather #2 which has been sanded though at this point still needs a lot more sanding with finer and finer grits of special sand paper.  It take hours and hours of work to make these.

In this photo, you can just see the engraved spine of Feather #1. Feather #2 has been sanded and polished. It is now ready to have its spine engraved onto it, and #1 needs to have the spine engraved again as it has been partially polished off at this point. 

Both feathers have been attached to my gas tank.

These took a lot of work but wow, they sure look good on here!! They will require a lot of work to keep them looking good too.  Phil's show bike doesn't get ridden as much as my trike does, so no problem for him.  Aluminum is a soft metal so it is able to be cut, sanded, polished and bent to fit like this, yet it also damages very easily.

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