chrome1851tn dash1950tn

Stock brake and kicker

Revised brake and kicker

New plating

Reproduction "blade" levers

Foot Controls

Before I started tearing the bike down to refinish the frame, I decided to go with rearsets instead of the factory controls. The bike is small to begin with, and especially with lower bars I find it more comfortable to have my feet back a little. The passenger peg mounts seemed like an obvious location for the new foot pegs.

On the left side, moving the brake lever means it will now foul the kickstart lever. After working on a nifty little folding brake lever for three days, Rich Lambrechts sent me a picture of his solution - a bent kickstart lever. I had thought about bending the kick start but for some reason decided it wouldn't work very well. Reality set in when I saw the picture of his, so I abandonded the folding brake lever and stole Rich's idea. Thanks Rich! Then again, the folding tip I was building was kind of cool!

The kickstart lever got thrown in the vice and out came the torch. A little heat, a little leverage via an old fork tube, and in no time the kickstart issue was solved. I did bend up a wire gauge before I started so I knew how far to go with the bends.

On the right side, it looked like I could get away with mounting the new shift lever on the engine, facing backwards instead of forward - basically using the back half of the stock lever. Doing this would avoid running any linkage from the engine to the new peg. Simple and effective. If I were to do this, the shift pattern would be backwards from the original pattern, which would be yet another shift pattern I'd need to keep track of. I already have moments of confusion when switching between a modern bike and my 750 GT, so I decided the added complexity of a linkage was worth it to keep the stock pattern.

As I progressed it became obvious that using the passenger pegs for a mounting location presents various difficulties, one of them being the shifter fouls the exhaust if you put it there. This could be solved by rerouting the exhaust, which isn't a bad idea anyway. It could also be solved by putting a new lug on the frame, like the 250s have, so a bracket could be bolted on and the rearsets put where ever they'll work best. That seemed like the best idea, so that's what I did.

Some of the issues with trying to install rearsets using the passenger peg location:

  • The kickstart needs to be modified to clear the brake lever
  • A lug needs to be welded on the frame to locate the end of the brake cable in it's new position
  • A shorter brake cable will be needed
  • Brake light switch needs to be modified
  • The left peg needs to fold to clear the kickstarter
  • The shifter on the right will hit the exhaust in use
  • The final location of the pegs won't be much higher than stock, though they will be further back



Hand Controls


I don't like the look of the stock clutch and brake levers, the ball on the end looks clunky, like it was added after the fact to meet some new federal requirement. I thought about shaving the knob off the stock parts, but ended up buying some reproduction levers off of eBay from someone in Thailand. The stock perches were sent off to the platers, and the misc hardware was polished up. The peg that hods the choke lever in position on the perch had broken off so I drilled it out and put a pin in it's place. The original switchgear was still useable so that got cleaned up and reinstalled. I also re-used the original throttle. The tab over the chain that holds the cable was in decent shape on mine, but sells replacements if you need one.