Author Topic: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...  (Read 3724 times)

J6G1Z

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Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« on: January 15, 2014, 09:28:09 AM »
To those of us that appreciate both of the Ascot models, they are perhaps a couple of the best looking bikes that Honda has ever released. That is until you get around to the back side & look at the extended fender with its license plate mount hanging down even further. It doesn't matter from what angle you view the back of the bike, that rear fender is fugly & really ruins the lines of the bike. If only there was a commercially available tail piece to clean it up, like is available for many of the modern Sports Bikes. Unfortunately there is not & it's up to you to get creative if you want to clean up the back of the bike. There are many ways to go about this & each bike owner will have his own take on what should be done. Below is how one VT500FT tail end was worked over, but first, here are a couple of pics of the OEM set up. This bike has been in an accident so please excuse the broken & bent turn signals.

J6G1Z

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2014, 09:34:38 AM »
Now here is how one of the previous owners modified his bike before it came to live with me. Again you will have to excuse the droopy turn signal. Unfortunately the threads are stripped & I haven't had the time to fix it yet. If you'll notice, the turn signal spacers have been removed & the signals sit in much closer to the bike now. That is a nice touch, as I used to kick the right rear turn signal on occasion when swinging a leg over on my previous VT Ascot.

J6G1Z

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2014, 09:44:31 AM »
Looks like I should have used duct tape instead of masking tape to cover the plates. :D Oh well... No big deal.
As you can see, this really cleans up the back of the bike & looks fairly easy to accomplish. The tail light lens was removed during this modification & a rectangular hole was cut in the bottom of the lens to let white light out onto the plate below. The hole is about an inch wide & about 2/3rds. the width of the lens. It almost looks like the bracket that was fabricated & attached to the fender to mount the license plate could have been made out of the fender material that was originally cut off.

So here is one example of how someone modified the back of their bike. If you decide to clean up the back of your bike, please consider taking some pictures and/or write up a description of what you did to add to this post.

Thank you & good luck
J.

J6G1Z

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2014, 09:59:04 AM »
Here is how I modified the rear end of my FT500 Ascot. I unbolted (is that a real word? LOL!) the rear portion of the inner fender & removed it completely. This removed all the lights & the license plate mount from the rear of the bike. I then took some steel 1" strap type of material that I picked up from Home Depot & bent it into what resembles a squared off "U" type of shape. This piece of steel attaches to the rear most top frame rails with 2 bolts on each side & is long enough to extend to the end of the upper tail piece of the bike. This serves as the license plate mount.

J6G1Z

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2014, 10:06:42 AM »
I had previously purchased a license plate frame from Cycle Gear that has LED lighting built in: http://www.cyclegear.com/CycleGear/Accessories/Add-ons/Other-Add-ons/brand/SPEEDMETAL/LED-License-Plate-Frame/p/44045_59408

This unit is often on sale for about half the listed price & comes in either chrome or black finish. This really cleaned up the rear end of the bike. If you decide to do this, you will also need an LED flasher unit like this one: http://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/flashers-load-resistors/lf1-s-pin-universal-motorcycle-electronic-flasher/193/841/

I haven't finished working on this bike yet & it is about half disassembled right now, but here are a few pics that I took during the mock-up stage.

 


J6G1Z

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2014, 10:20:05 AM »
As you can see, the license plate frame just fits inside the tail piece almost like it was made for it. If I were to do it again, I would try to drill the frame mounting holes with the "U" shaped bracket tilted up more, instead of straight on like I did. You can see part of the bracket hanging down from the side. It's not much & now that the bracket has been powder coated black it probably won't be as noticeable, but I believe there is enough room to have it up higher & completely hidden from view.

The wiring was super simple to hook up. The LED license plate frame comes with wires that are plenty long & a good wiring diagram. All wires are color coded & some even matched the color code of the bikes harness. I went to Radio Shack & bought the correct sized connectors. After cutting the wires to length, I crimped the connectors on & plugged them into the bikes original wiring harness. Everything can be returned to stock if needed.

Now let's see how you folks have modified the back end of your bike to clean it up...

Thank you
J.

plasticadam

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2014, 05:00:10 AM »
That's a big improvement - but lets be honest anything that removes the excess of black plastic that came as original will be a positive.
And you Americans should just appreciate not having to fit licence plates that are about 6 foot across like us in the UK! Reckon they knock 10mph off the top speed.
I'm still working on the single seat + tail piece conversion along with LED rear lamp and new indicator mounts. Very nerve-wracking taking a hack-saw to the tail-piece - its a one-way ticket cos you can't glue it back together  :D
Taking photos and will post it up when its done

J6G1Z

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2014, 07:10:38 AM »
Thanks PlasticAdam, Please include what you've done, or start a new post on your bike detailing your modifications. I look forward to seeing other peoples ideas.

J.

Lefty

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2014, 02:24:55 PM »
Hey, that's real cool! The more I go through this site, the more money I'm going to spend, ahaha.
 very nice mod- I really dislike the tail section on the FT, I think I might copy that.......

Joe D.

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2014, 09:25:51 AM »
Hey J6G1Z,
how hard or easy was it to do the wiring? That looks so much better.

J6G1Z

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Re: Custom Ascot Tail Ends...
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2014, 11:58:53 AM »
Hey J6G1Z,
how hard or easy was it to do the wiring? That looks so much better.

Hi Joe,

It was easy. The LED license plate frame comes with a good wiring diagram & plenty of wire. I shortened the wires, then I used some small bullet connectors that I bought from my local Radio Shack. They crimp onto the wire & fit the OEM connectors.

Know that your turn signal flasher needs to be changed or the signals won't flash. You need one of these: http://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/motorcycle-accessories/lf1-s-pin-universal-motorcycle-electronic-flasher/193/841/

If you go with the LED plate frame, be careful at stop signs & lights to make sure that you are not rear-ended. The LED's are bright, but there isn't near as much red light as the OEM tail light.

Good luck
J.