Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Spot the difference?

Have you ever noticed that 99% of all bikes have the speedo drive on the left side of the front wheel? Neither had I. Well, at least not until I started to look for a new speedo drive to replace the original one on my Husqvarna, which for some unknown reason was mounted on the right side.

Since my new front wheel spindle has a diameter of 25 mm – in order to fit my Gixxer forks – the old 20 mm speedo drive wouldn't fit, and couldn't be modified (like enlarged/drilled or something like that). After a lot of digging in the intertubes, I found that some Ducatis use a 25 mm front spindle and I finally found a drive from a 996 at my local breakers in Fleninge outside of Helsingborg, who incidentally is THE least service minded and friendly establishment I've ever had the displeasure to visit. Anyhoo, the problem is, as you can see in the image, that the Ducati drive is meant to be mounted on the left side and can't be flipped over and mounted on the right side, since it then spins the speedo wire backwards. And there is simply not enough room on the left side where the disc carrier gets in the way of the speedo cable...

At this point you are probably asking yourself; why the hell doesn't he stop this nonsense and mount a modern little magneto driven speedo instead? Well, first of all: I like a challenge, and secondly: I really want a nice looking proper mechanical speedo, and not some poncy liquid crystal, glorified pedal bike computer. I know that the 996 drive won't be very exact since it's calibrated for a 17 inch wheel, but that a compromise I can live with.

I sat wracking my brains for hours on how to modify the drive gear or the spindle in order to make it all fit. Then it suddenly struck me. What if I simply flip the wheel over? After all, I can just as well run the brake disc on the right side... I'm not entirely sure if this means that I have to exchange my Tochico brake caliper for a right side one, or if mine can be used, but that's a small issue. Time to start looking for a nice looking speedo. Any suggestions?

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