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Machined Spools for Redline...What do U Think???

1636 Views 46 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  R1formetoo
Hell guys. I've been looking into carrying spools on our site because customers continually ask if we sell the spools when we sell them a spool stand. After looking into selling other business' spools, I determined that the best route to go was machining my own spools to sell. I'm posting a few pictures of the ones I plan to sell on our site for $19.99 a pair (mounted on my R1) and also a picture of the spools that were on it. I didn't really like the conventional spool that was on it because they look rather nappy once well scratched up and because the manufacturer made the slot too wide, it allows the bike to swing from side to side slightly, which I do not like. These spools I also plan to send with stainless hardware and thread lock already on the threads. Once again my other spools were not stainless and I got tired of looking at the rust. So I'm essentially posting this thread to ask what you guys think. Do you think they will sell well with the spool stands I offer? As usual they would be warrantied for life as all of our products are. Keep in mind that no dimensions are set at this point. I may choose to make them slightly thinner or what not. A big thanks in advance for all the feedback.

Ian Gilmore
Redline Engineering
[email protected]
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R1formetoo said:
Fair enough, then how do you make them black. Anodize them, haven't seen black anodizing, does it exist? Any other ideas. And in reference to Moto's comment, I thought about that and its a good idea. They are about 1.25 inches long at the moment, you think thats long enough to effectively save a swingarm? I'll be glad to make a few sets of different length spools (when I get a lathe) and send them to someone who can then install them and push his bike over and see if they work. j/k

You get can damn near any color you want with anodizing. It's fairly cheap to do in large batches, too.

Locally, I can get a basket full of things in any color I want for $50. Doesn;t matter if I want 3 things done or 300 - as long as it fits in the dipping basket - then it's $50. I'm guessing about 100 spools would fit in there.

The length should fine at 1.25". Mine are about the samer and they've saved a few guys' swingarms. A few arcer friends of mine think that 1.25" is too long as they grind and lift the rear wheel. They also like plastic over aluminum as it'll grind away without lifting. But this is only a problem for 0.005% o fthe people out there.

I've made a million spools over the years, let me know if I can help you out with any questions - or lathe set up, etc.

What kind of lathe did you get? Manual or CNC? What kind fo DRO's?

Good looking parts! Good luck with them!

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zee said:
You only need a $350-800 lathe to make those small spools.
You COULD make them with a $200 lathe- it all depends on the accuracy, speed and quantity you wish to produce.

An $500 lathe is gonna take you a lot more time to make a spool than on a more expensive model with DRO's, etc.

Manual lathes suck for production runs - and that's all you're going to get for under $2,000. Plus it'll be a Chinese made P.O.S. to boot.

On the other hand, if you're making prototypes and "one off" special parts, the cheaper lathes can do a pretty decent job. But they won't last nearly as long and the make making repitive parts a pain in the ass.
But, that's just my opinion and I could be wrong :beer

Earache, what was the most effective method you found in cutting the pieces (saw or lathe)? And what are DRO's?
Ian - Depends on what the lathe can do, but the best way with the least amount of waste is to just mount a cut off tool in your tool holder. Cut off tools looks like a solid piece of high speed tool steel with an angle on the end. Index it straight into the work piece and it'll cut it off.

If you use a saw, you'll have to put the piece back into the lathe and face it to get the rough edges off and then turn it down to the correct length - and if you're making a lot of pieces, this will add quite a bit of time to the operation.

If the lathe has the power to cut off aluminum in the diamtere you're making, cut off tools are the way to go.

DRO's = Digital Read Out. Instead of reading the dial on your lathe,a DRO system gives you a nice, more accirate read out. This can also pseed thgings up quite a bit as you won't have to contiunually measure your work piece with a micrometer - which makes you stop the lathe to do. DRO's are so much easier to read and will speed things up quite a bit.

They ain't cheap though - a two axis system for lathes will run another $1200 to $2000 depnding on which brand you get. Might see if your lathe manufacturer has a model with thgem already installed . Tends to be cheaper that way.

Another way to speed things up is the material itself. Might look into using 2011 aluminum instead of 6061 for this application.. 2011 machines a hell of a lot easier and faster with less wear on tools. It costs a bit more, but the time it saves is worth it. Physical properties aren't all that much different. But it doesn't polish as well - in case you're going to offer polish spools.

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WheelSpin said:

As far as making them do double duty as swingarm savers, instead of just making them wider, could you possibly add a bolt-on plastic nylon attachment/extension which could be replaced if/when a fall occurs. This would save them from damage, & I don't think anyone makes them this way. Typically, its either all aluminum, or all nylon. A hybrid design would provide optimal double duty functionality as swingram protector & stand spool. Make it larger in diameter & then drill & thread it centrally to accept a plastic nylon extension.

What do you think?

I make mine with an aluminum insert in the center to give strebgth for use with stands and as a slider. Do you mean to put the plastic part on the inside with aluminum on the outside?
R1formetoo said:
No, he means the opposite, aluminum on the inside with a plastic covered end that is easily replaced.

That's what I thought - exactly jow I used to make them. But they cost, as you mentioned, so much that it's just not worth it to make.

Better off with all aluminum like you're going to make.

R1formetoo said:
Juerg, that will be investigated this coming week. Whats the thing in the picture and what did the machine shop charge you to cut those delrin parts?

I make all of my sliders from Delrin. It machines pretty easily and is a very tough material.

1.5" diameter bars, 4' long go for about $35 for black, slightly less for white.

It's good stuff!

R1formetoo said:
Hey Earache, you care to comment on any experience as to whether or not Smithy makes a good lathe? They sell a 39 inch lathe for roughly $3000 with a cnc upgrade kit for an extra $3300. I just wonder if its a quality machine or not.

Chinese junk made for hobbyists - much better stuff out there for the same $$. I'll PM you...

Was it Smithy's BZ-239 that you were looking at? I just looked at it - gear box - no belts as stated in my PM. Haven't seen that one yet, but if it's like the rest of the ir stuff...:eek:
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