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Author Topic: Cosmetic Electra X Mods  (Read 5847 times)

Thumper

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Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« on: October 04, 2007, 04:53:23 PM »
What cosmetic changes are people making to their Electra X's?

I will likely retain my saddlebags for practical reasons, and my solo seat for economic reasons; but am considering changing the turn signals, taillight and mirrors.

Has anyone else swapped in a different taillight or turn signals? Do you have photos?

As a follow-up to my post on bar-end mirrors several weeks ago: Has anyone removed the welded-in inserts on the Electra X handlebar to install bar-ends? If so, how did you do it?

As a follow-up to my previous post on a 'minimalist' Electra, I am toying with the idea of removing the sidecovers and getting a battery-relocation kit (although I'm not sure there is one for the Electra X). I'll have to spend an afternoon mocking up the 'look' on my Electra to see if it appeals to me. Anyone done this yet? If so, what did you do with the ovum cases?

Matt

luoma

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2007, 02:37:45 AM »
When I first got my Electra, I thought the styling just didn't fit. There was a mix of old and new that clashed. Changing the seat seamed to make the biggest difference. Now I think that the tail light and turn signals need to go. I'm not sure I'd go to the expeence right now, but I'd love to see pics of one that's been done right.

Kevin Mahoney

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2007, 06:28:56 AM »
The Electra was meant to come with different tailights and signals but the facotry never got around to sourcing DOT approived models so the same old units that were on the Classic bikes have been attached. Same with tyres. They were supposed to come with Avon Venom series. I have been told that new one will, but I will believe that when I see it. Check out some European sites or out original ad (in the catalog) and they show the lighting that was meant to come here

exmayor

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2008, 07:35:26 PM »
Would it work to use Classic 5 speed low bars and bar end mirrors?  Are there any control fit problems using those bars on an Electra?  I have only had barend mirrors on my bikes and will want to make that change.

Rick
'06 Electra w/Rocket sidecar (Green)
'02 Ducati Monster 620 (Dark)

Kevin Mahoney

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2008, 10:07:55 AM »
Rick,
We are all in Germany and I am the only one with a computer. As luck would have it the guys who could answer the question are not available until late next week.

2bikes

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2008, 03:12:40 PM »
I have put the classic chrome and coach-lined delux tank with knee pads on mine.  I have now just fitted the deep valance chrome front mudguard (see my item on the trouble I had fitting this).

Adrian

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2008, 01:03:14 PM »
I just don't think the factory appreciated the depth of feeling over traditional Bullet styling in the US, UK or Europe when they launched the Electra-X on the export market. I wonder how many Electra-X buyers bought one because of the uprated mechanical specification but really wished they could have kept the 50's styling of the classic models.

The factory could easily have supplied lean-burn models for export with traditional tinware (see the 350 and 500 Machismo models available to our Indian friends), but they chose not to, so it's up to us to see if we can get them looking a bit more like the motorcycles we really wanted.

Is anyone out there planning to create a flat-track style Electra custom?

Regards,

A.

Thumper

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2008, 05:34:14 PM »
I just don't think the factory appreciated the depth of feeling over traditional Bullet styling in the US, UK or Europe when they launched the Electra-X on the export market. I wonder how many Electra-X buyers bought one because of the uprated mechanical specification but really wished they could have kept the 50's styling of the classic models.
<SNIP>
Regards,

A.

Adrian,

I think you hit the nail on the head.

It is so reminiscent of the asian interpretation of a 'chopper' in the late 70's and early 80's. Here in the states they were called 'cruisers' from early on. But they missed the mark with a large audience. They were relatively small displacement, insectile looking, and foreign looking to us. The Yamaha 'Specials' are a perfect example. (Eventually, we got used to them and the rest is history...) What looks 'normal' or even 'appealing' is very subjective and often depends on the culture.

The Electra X "Classic 70's" style only serves to remind me of the worst of those foreign interpretations of the era.

It also goes both ways though. I never liked the Americanized versions of many bikes that came over. Often they'd replace a standard riding set-up with goofy 'buck-horn' or 'ape-hanger' bars. The seats were sometimes goofy stepped seats, or a sissy bar was added. I always preferred the standard and more sport-oriented flavor of the euro models - and still lust after euro-only models (although the lines are very blurred now...)

Matt

luoma

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2008, 10:44:31 PM »
Hey Matt, it's not only the japaneese that made some fashion felonies. Remember the Norton Highliner? What a way to ruin a perfectly good Commando.

Actually, the Electra isn't changed too much to rescue. It still has basically the same styling. I even like the bobbed front fender. I do wish it had a traditional rear fender with stays, instead of that ugly sub-frame. Other than that, I think the first thing many people change, even with the classic/deluxe models is the seat. My bike looks entirely different with a tan solo seat. I even like the shape of the tank on the X. Now if I could swap out the dorky turn signals and insect antenna mirrors I'd be happy.

Adrian

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2008, 01:01:35 PM »
luoma , Matt,

so we do what we have always done with our bikes: if there's something about it we don't like, and we can change it, we change it! As you say, the Electra's looks are not too far gone to make it much more pleasing to the eye, and if it takes the loss of some bad tinware and untidy frame lugs to achieve it - well, just do a neat job and go for it!  I guess you're not worried about putting it back to stock for resale, are you? Just make sure you have enough space for the increasing pile of junked stock parts...

Some US export models of the old Brit stuff were very cool, the '56 Indian Woodsman version of the Bullet inspired me to customize my Electra. I haven't cut any frame lugs off yet, though!

Matt, there was a 350 lean burn Bullet sold on eBay here in the UK a while ago you would have loved, the owner built it just for scrambles, the only tinware was the gas tank and fenders!  There was no sign of a battery, so I'm guessing he used a crank-mounted PVL ignition or similar..

Regards,

Adrian

Thumper

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2008, 04:17:23 PM »
Hey Matt, it's not only the japaneese that made some fashion felonies. Remember the Norton Highliner? What a way to ruin a perfectly good Commando.

Actually, the Electra isn't changed too much to rescue. It still has basically the same styling. I even like the bobbed front fender. I do wish it had a traditional rear fender with stays, instead of that ugly sub-frame. Other than that, I think the first thing many people change, even with the classic/deluxe models is the seat. My bike looks entirely different with a tan solo seat. I even like the shape of the tank on the X. Now if I could swap out the dorky turn signals and insect antenna mirrors I'd be happy.

L,

Yep, it was the looks of the tan solo seat on the green paint (in one of the promotional pictures) that actually made me buy my RE. Funny that I ended up with the black saddle!

Matt

luoma

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2008, 05:20:55 PM »
Adrian wrote, "I guess youre not worried about putting it back stock for resale."

Why on earth would I want to sell it. The bike can become anything I want it to be (it's like a two-wheeled Erector Set, remember those?). And besides, I've not had this much fun on two wheels in a long time. I may add another bike to the stable, but there is no doubt in my mind that the day I sell the X, is the day I begin to regret my decision.

TRider

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2008, 06:11:40 PM »
luoma
I agree.  I am so happy and relieved that my Electra didn't sell on Ebay.  I know I would have regretted it.  My wife is not real happy about it now, but thats ok too.

Terry

LJRead

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2008, 06:35:42 PM »

I think we are all glad you didn't sell your bike, TRider - you had put yourself into getting it to where you wanted it and we enjoy your contributions to the forum.

In an hour or so I go to finally, I hope, clear my Thunderbird through Customs.  This has me a little concerned as they are allowed to charge up to 54% of the total cost of bike plus transport and as it turned out the transport from India mounted up sky high.  But I'm now considered a 'local' and they usually give us locals a break.  We'll see.

There are several things about the Thunderbird I don't really like, the tank goes up alarmingly and creates a space between it and the top of the engine, and there are those odd chrome pods for the instruments that I'm not appreciative of.  But then I have this Machismo coming and there probably won't be much I want to change on that, so maybe the best thing is to just leave the Thunderbird alone and use it like my father did his 'work car', an everyday work horse.  Reading all the nice things you all  do with your bikes puts too many ideas in my head, but maybe they can stay that way, in my head, as I get my financial affairs back into order.  Good enough!

TRider

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Re: Cosmetic Electra X Mods
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2008, 10:28:41 PM »
Larry,
Thanks for your kind comments.  We are all looking forward to you taking delivery on your Enfield.  You have waited a long time.  You have more patience than Job.
Please post a shot of you and your bike together.  I for one can't wait to see it.  Hopefully this will be LARRY's DAY.  Ought to be turned into a national holiday for your island.  LARRY'S DAY.

Later
Terry