Tail Plastic

Stock Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic

I plan on reusing the AR80's plastic tail piece, but it needed to be cleaned up and modified for my new tail light.

Stock Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic

Overall the plastic was in good structural shape.

Stock Kawasaki AR80 tail light mounting holes.

Except for this hole.  I don't think that was the stock hole for the stock tail light.  I'm not sure why the PO mangled it so badly.

Stock Kawasaki AR80 tail light mounting holes.

No biggie.  I planned on filling the stock mounting holes anyway because my taillight only needs a single small mounting hole.

JB KwikWeld Epoxy

I bought some JB KwikWeld Epoxy to fill the old holes.

Duct tape.  What can't it do?

I put some duct tape over the old mounting holes.

Scuff it.

And scuffed up the inside plastic to give the epoxy something to hold on to.

Mmmmm.  Generic cinnamon toast crunch.


JB KwikWeld Epoxy

Once mixed I liberally slathered the epoxy over the old mounting holes.  I don't really care what it looks like on the inside so I wasn't particularly careful.

JB KwikWeld Epoxy

Once dried I pulled the duct tape off to see what I had.  Kind of a freaky Mickey Mouse.

JB KwikWeld Epoxy

After a bit of sanding I had this.  Nice an smooth.

What is this for?

Except for this . . . thing.

Bondo and JB fills all.

I used some body filler to fill it in, and then sanded it smooth.

AR80 tail plastic

There were a few other places that needed some work.

AR80 tail plastic

A little body filler and sanding took care of those as well.

Rust-oleum Plastic Primer

After things were fairly smooth it was time for some primer.  I grabbed some Rust-oleum Plastic Primer.

Rust-oleum Plastic Primer

Rust-oleum Plastic Primer

Rust-oleum Plastic Primer

It will definitely need some more sanding and prep before final paint, but it looks good for now.

"Custom" Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic

Finally, it was time to mount my new tail light.

"Custom" Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic with pimiento jar tail light


"Custom" Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic with pimiento jar tail light

One hole.  Nice and simple.

"Custom" Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic with pimiento jar tail light

"Custom" Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic with pimiento jar tail light

"Custom" Kawasaki AR80 tail plastic with pimiento jar tail light

I think it looks pretty good.

Powder Coating Oven Extension

For a while now I've been thinking about how to powder coat the AR's frame and swingarm.  They obviously won't fit in my normal sized kitchen oven.  Do I have them professionally done?  Too expensive.  Do I buy an infrared curing lamp?  Too expensive.  Do I buy a large powder coat oven?  Too expensive.  Do I build a larger oven?  Maybe, but it seems like kind of a waste to build a whole second oven just to do a few larger items.  Do I build some sort of oven extension box that allows me to use the oven I already have?  Hmmm.  Yea, that sounds about right.

Some googling revealed a number of ways to build such an extension.  But they almost all involved buying stuff.  I decided to forget all of those and try to mostly use stuff I already had laying around the garage.

First I removed the door and storage drawer.  Oven doors are easily removable.  I don't know why.

I constructed a platform that was roughly even with the bottom of the oven.  The depth of the platform was based on the size of the random pieces of wood I had laying around.

I framed up a box and drywalled the inside with random scraps of drywall I had from a remodeling project from five years ago.  I was making this up as I went along, so the construction is pretty janky.

I splurged and bought four rolls of aluminum foil from Dollar Tree and a couple of rolls of foil tape from Home Depot.  About $20 in all.

I taped all of the drywall seams with foil tape.  Its load bearing tape now.

I stapled aluminum foil to the inside walls and then sealed the seams with foil tape.

I tried to transition the foil into the oven as gracefully as possible.  Its not easy.

I used some magnets to hold the foil to the inside of the oven because I wasn't sure the foil tape would hold up that close to the heating elements.  That also means it should be pretty easy to separate the extension from the oven.

After the walls, ceiling, and floor were done, it was time to build a door.  It was at this point that my wife came home from work and told me to make sure my life insurance was in order before I used this thing.

It would have been nice to build a door from a single piece of drywall, but that would have required buying a single piece of drywall.  So I made a single piece out of random scraps.

I taped the pieces together with foil tape.

And then faced the inside with aluminum foil.

I used some clamps to hold the door to the box.

I shoved a yard stick under the door to create a bit of a gap to the floor.

And then used tape to make hinges.  Cheap and easy.

Then I got fancy and added a handle.


I decided I'd continue to use the clamps to hold the door tight to the box while baking.

I added four eyelet bolts to the corners of the ceiling to act as hangers.  These where actually salvaged from an old Christmas tree stand, which I had gotten for free.  Cheap.

With the extension built, it was time to give it a shot.  Swingarm, you're up.

But not without precautions.  At this point I thought there was a very good chance that the thing would burst into flames, so I bought a fire extinguisher.

And had the garden hose at the ready.

I did an initial bake at 200 degrees to "outgas" the swingarm and to test for heat leakage and/or a complete meltdown.  But the extension handled it fine.  So I cranked the oven up to 400.  It took a very long time to get up to temperature.

While the box heated up, I shot the swingarm.  When we finally hit 400 I put it in and set the timer for 20 minutes.

It worked!

But I think I put the powder on a little thick.  I got some orange peel.

But you only see it if you get really close.

It still looks pretty good.

If I make sure that I don't go to thick with the powder the frame should work just fine.  I've still got some prep work on the frame, so that will have to wait for a future post.  Considering the fact that I only spent $20 on top of stuff I already had, I am extremely happy with my oven extension.  Anything worth doing is worth doing right . . . . or for extremely little money . . . . and with little regard for proper construction techniques . . . . or safety.