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Discussion Starter #1
Ok-- I've been meaning to post this up for a while.

Here's everything you need to make a professional looking tail tidy with a lighted plate frame. If you can tell a screwdriver from a hammer, you can do this with basic hand/power tools. This will result in a lit tail tidy that fits the bike exactly and uses H-D connectors so you won't have to cut a single wire. Just clip and unclip as needed: If you just want a tail tidy, follow the applicable parts below:

Parts required:
From New Castle H-D Online Sales:
Part #69523-09, license plate bracket (the dog's arse): $56.35
Part #73191-96, recepticle contacts (you'll need two): $0.50 each
Part #73152-96BK, recepticle housing: $1.02

From Revzilla:
Joker Machine license plate back mounting plate: $23.35

Or, if you want to go with Amazon, you can get this one in chrome if you have the desire to powdercoat or rattle can:
Barnett License Backing Plate 709-80-71012: $8.71

From eBay:
Black Radiantz led license plate frame: $31.24

From Lowes: Two low-profile fasteners (maybe $1.50?). They look sort of like two washers with stems. One stem screws into the other, making a low-profile connector. Use Lock-Tite when putting them together.

From wherever: Four black license plate fasteners.

How to put together:

Take the European dog's arse and carefully drill out the rivets holding the metal bracket to the plastic. They're REALLY tough, so drilling is a bit of a challenge. Remove bracket. Throw away plastic portion.

Using the low-profile fasteners from Lowes (see pics below), fasten the bracket to the license plate backing plate.

Take the Radiantz license plate frame and connect the two receptacle contacts with the wires. Insert receptacle contacts into the receptacle housing. They will click in. This housing will now snap to the OEM license plate power cord.

Use the license plate fasteners to attach the Radianz license plate frame, the license plate and the backing plate/bracket combination together. You'll have to dremel a small notch into the backing plate for the license plate power wire to pass through.

Attach to bottom of tail under frame using bolts and carriage/fender washers as required. Feed led power wire through and connect to power cable.

Either remove shocks to drop tail of bike towards tire or use a strap along the tail to tension the rear shocks to full compression. Determine required angle of license plate frame. You may have to bend the bracket to get the right dimension (I bent mine to make sure the plate was more visible, but would still not touch the tire at full compression).

You're done. That's it. Obviously, there are ways to go about this cheaper, and you can substitute parts as required. However, if you follow the above instructions you'll end up with a tail tidy that looks like it came with the bike. You may also be able to find the parts cheaper somewhere else-- I didn't spend that much time looking for the parts. The part numbers are correct though.

Good luck.

R.
R.
 

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F2NV
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As always, great contribution to the forum and superb explanation
 

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I fly lower now...
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This is what this Forum is all about!

FBJ, I may not do this mod but I do want to acknowledge your tireless efforts to share good, usable info with the rest of the F'ers here. Great job, my friend!!!

G.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
You could have rivetted the plate to the backing plate as well and just painted the rivet heads
I considered riveting, but then you would have to use washers which wouldn't be as clean. As well, I never, EVER get things riveted perfectly straight, so this was a better solution for me.

R.

PS: Thanks for the nice comments, all. Just paying it forward.

R.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
your tag has expired. Don't give the cops another reason to pull you over... :hidesbeh:
Yeah, I know-- shows when I last rode, doesn't it? I have to take the whole thing apart anyway to install a new rear fender, get clear bra coating installed, and reinstall the rear rack, so I've been putting it off until then. And the weather's been SUCK whenever I've been home lately, so no riding anyway.

R.
 

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P5YC0
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thanks for the list I have all the parts on order Ill take some pics as well when I do it.
 

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As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so I did the FBJ Tail Tidy as my first mod just after purchasing my VRSCF--it only had 13 miles on it when I did the Tail Tidy mod and I was still running the dealer plate. FBJ was fantastic about patiently answering all my questions and even made sure I had the right aluminum T-nuts from Lowe's to replace the rivets. Forum member scorched was also instrumental in my Tail Tidy mod, and took the time to answer numerous questions for me on the phone and talk me through some steps as I incorporated his spin on the Tail Tidy as well. So I guess mine is a hybrid Tail Tidy--The FBJ/scorched Tail Tidy.

I used all the same parts as FBJ, but instead of getting the Joker Machine license plate back mounting plate, I did what scorched did on his and just cut down the plastic fender portion of the Part #69523-09 to just the license plate bracket part, instead of just throwing it away. This saved me the $23.35 that the Joker plate back cost. I think it looks factory and even has the factory HD part number on it right behind the plate. Here is what it looks like when I cut down the plastic part and put it back together with the T-nuts:





And here is what it looks like installed on my VRSCF:











Thanks FBJ and scorched, you are true gentlemen and your contributions to the F Brotherhood are to be commended!

-Buster
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Looks great! I think you might have improved on my idea; I didn't trust my dremel skills, but after seeing yours, I think I might have gone that way if I had to do it over again.

And, you don't need to worry about notching for the power cable to the led frame.

Excellent work!

R.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
One thing to consider-- I used black plastic bolts (you can pick them up at any motorcycle store) to mount the led frame to the tidy. I was *pretty* confident of my measurement, but didn't want to use metal bolts so if I was off a bit and bottomed out, I didn't want to take the chance of gouging the tire. I figured the plastic bolt would break before scoring the tire.

Maybe overkill, but that was my thought process.

R.
 

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Looks great! I think you might have improved on my idea; I didn't trust my dremel skills, but after seeing yours, I think I might have gone that way if I had to do it over again.

And, you don't need to worry about notching for the power cable to the led frame.

Excellent work!

R.
Thanks! I couldn't have done it without you blazing the trail and scorched ensuring me that I could cut the plastic and make it look good like he did on his Tail Tidy. As you mention, I didn't have to notch the real plate like I did the dealer plate. I was just mocking it up with that plate and cut too much. Here is the finished version, I'll bet that plate number looks familar ;)



One thing to consider-- I used black plastic bolts (you can pick them up at any motorcycle store) to mount the led frame to the tidy. I was *pretty* confident of my measurement, but didn't want to use metal bolts so if I was off a bit and bottomed out, I didn't want to take the chance of gouging the tire. I figured the plastic bolt would break before scoring the tire.

Maybe overkill, but that was my thought process.

R.
I though about using the plastic bolts too, but I ended up using steel and nylon lock nuts that came with the LED plate frame. After the final install I cut off the extra bolt length and then used the dremel to polish it all flush and smooth. Even with full shock compression they don't touch, but even if they somehow managed to, they are so smooth that they shouldn't do anything but rub lightly instead of gouging the tire. Here is what it looks like on the back:



Thanks again!
 

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Here is my version which WAS inspired by FBJ. Nice write up FBJ...
I wanted more of the plastic to the left and right for a more integrated factory look. I'm not sure anyone notices but me though.
Ideas and inspiration and information is what forums are all about IMO.



[/URL]
 

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Scorched, Can you share any tips or tricks for how you cut the plastic dogs-azz? I have all the parts ordered! Hoping to work on this weekend.

Here is my version which WAS inspired by FBJ. Nice write up FBJ...
I wanted more of the plastic to the left and right for a more integrated factory look. I'm not sure anyone notices but me though.
Ideas and inspiration and information is what forums are all about IMO.



[/URL]
 

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There's some detailed information and photos here:
http://www.1130cc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=259457

Make sure the plastic is warm so it isn't real brittle. You're just a bit south of me (I actually work on the IL side of the river but live about 1 ½ hours north of St Louis) so it wouldn't help to set it in the sun. Basically just make sure it isn't cold. Normal room temp will be fine.
I initially used some tin snips to cut away the bulk, you could use a Dremel or what ever for the bulk work. Then trim it to how you want it with a Dremel or hand files (my personal favorite for detail work).
Just read through that thread. Let me know if you need any more info.
Just keep in mind, you are only going to end up with about 10% of what you started with.
 
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