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I've been designing my own motorbike as an occasional hobby starting way back in 1979, but more recently on the computer since around the late nineties.

My main aim was to design a bike that I personally think is beautiful and spectacular, and I have acheived that, I think it's a mixture of elegance and madness.

The image below is a crosseye stereo 3d image.

Learn how to see 3D photos like this.

The drawing below was the very beginning of the project maybe 1979, I've wrote 15 on this as I think that was my age when I drew this.

The line that I have circled is the absolute origin of this whole lifelong project. I maybe randomly drew a shape then thought "that would be a good shape for a fairing".

More sketches maybe around 16 years old.

Maybe at 17 years old I had the final fairing shape. The two front and back views were credit card sized which I carried in my wallet for inspiration.

I owned a Honda 750KZ around this time and used this brochure for reference sketches.

I was working as a trainee architectural technician and traced that brochure photo in spare time at work. I then altered the tracing using a razor blade to scrape off the ink.

I removed most of the perspective from the original and added chrome to the frame, turbo and nitrous oxide. New bodywork and shocks.

The front wheel and tyre was cut out of the sheet (as you can see here) so that I could lower the forks a bit. It was drawn using a 0.1mm rotring rapidograph draughtsman's pen.

This would still be around 1980ish. I realise now that I wasn't being too adventurous as I should have shortened the seat or made more drastic alterations.

Even now, I'm still quite pleased with this drawing considering how long ago it was and how ugly most bikes were at that time.

I'm not as keen on the colours used here. My intention with the background was to accentuate the tilted forward look of the bike which I think also looks good with cars. I've coloured the chrome here too.

1980ish was a few years before photoshop.

Made up the idea of venetian blind type lights that open with solenoid switches inspired by David Essex's silver dream racer which had similar fins that didn't move.

Aerials on bikes were cool in those days (maybe). Designed the KZX logo way back then too.

I did a few drawings like this by making a xerox copy of magazine articles about the Honda 750KZ then pencils and ink pens to add my fairing etc.

I had every intention of building the bike back then, and carried on occasionally getting strong urges to do so. So far it hasn't happened though.

I could consider just the design as a worthy lifetime project, it has kept me interested in design and technology, and still interests me now with computer graphics/animation etc.

In the 80s when I customised my 750KZ, I fitted the fairing that most closely resembled the one I had designed (not sure what it is off).

This has a round light and only looks a bit like my fairing design, but I painted it to look more like mine. I have cut part of the side panels off to show the K&N air filters.

I also tilted this fairing forwards a bit to try and get closer to the angles of my design.

This customisation was a big project including me doing all of the paintwork

I paid to get the engine teflon coated black and the alloy engine parts were chromed which eventually corroded and started peeling off.

You can see how the bike looked when I first bought it in my about me page.

Fast forward 20 years.

The following images show the design development in computer graphics.

I've made the subframe (in real life) out of 47mm stainless steel tubing which was a massive task all done by hand including paper drawings on a proper architects drawing board, cutting, filing and polishing.

The headstock has also been made/machined from stainless steel, but it's not been welded together yet.

(In 2005 I changed the disks shown below to incorporate the CH logo)

The frame was initially designed round a Kawasaki GPZ600R engine that I bought around 1994, I also had wheels and rear suspension from a Honda CBR1000.

I sold the engine and wheels and decided (in the early 2000's) on two Kawasaki KX500 engines side by side with a turbo (yes I know it's a two-stroke) or supercharger.

Two-strokes with turbos are fairly rare, but it's possible to have a two-stroke without expansion chambers (straight pipes) and a turbo.

It would just have less power than one with expansions and would have to be ported differently.

(The render below is me trying out compositing the bike into a background photo with pretty amateur results)

I used KX500B1 engines initially because I had an engine there for reference measurements, but if the bike was built now I would use two engines from a more recent bike.

Maybe two 650 four stroke motocrosser engines ( I like motocrosser engines because they're mental), which would make it a 1300cc with about 150 to 200 horsepower depending on superchargers/turbos e.t.c.

So the model as it is just now is wrong but, I'm not going to model a four stroke engine unless the bike is being built as this would change the positions of lots of mounting points.

It also took me ages to model the current engines, so the choice of engine/superchargers/turbo would need to be made, then the model changed accordingly.

(I spent quite a while modelling the rear sprocket, but later decided to change to a kevlar drivebelt)

The exhuasts go through the frame into the tailpiece. I know this raises a heat and discoloration issue.

The frame tubing's diamater of 47mm is large enough for a smaller diameter 4 stroke exhuast to fit through.

I have considered filling the gap between the two with something like ceramics or another substance with very low heat conductivity.

Another option is to leave that gap empty using spacers and maybe even allowing air to pass through the gap by making holes in the front and rear of the side exhuast sections of the frame.

I also considered peltier cooling which uses two different materials bonded together. It dissipates heat using electricity.

The clutch has been removed from the left engine and the magneto from the right engine to squeeze them closer together.

The engine crankshafts are joined, the right engine has an extendeded clutch thrust pin and gearshift shaft that both go through the left engine to the clutch and gearshift levers.

The right engine's final driveshaft also extends through the left engine to a sprocket.

This sprocket joins to another sprocket on a jackshaft using a small chain. The jackshaft turns a pulley wheel that drives the rear wheel using a kevlar/rubber drivebelt.

(I got help and info on the jackshaft and joining two engines via american hillclimb websites, they've been doing that kind of stuff for ages).

(Below you can see the CH logo shape cut out of the rear disk)

(And the front disks)

(Compositing into a photo of Laguna Seca raceway)

The basic dimensions for the bike are copied closely from my customised KX500 ie. the seat height, wheelbase and distance from front to rear lights.

I modelled the forks and swingarm using a spare KX500B1 swingarm and forks that I had in a cupboard taking pretty accurate measurements with calipers and a steel rule.

I would use more recent forks and swingarm if it was built now, or even design my own if the budget allowed.

The engines are fairly accurate copies of my KX500B1, although I didn't have a spare engine so I took what measurements I could from the bike and used photos to model other details.

At this stage I still had to add cables, sidepanels, superchargers, air filters, coils, instrument console dials e.t.c.

The clamps going from the frame to the swingarm below were just temporary so that the bike looked complete.

The images below here were done using maxwell render. It makes much more realistic renders than the images above that were all done in solidworks.

Showing the recently added air filters and plastic carb hoses.

Having depth of field in the render adds realism.

This was a huge update taking maybe a few weeks.

Air filters changed to same colour as K&N filters, completely new rear subframes, re-positioned rear shock, new sidepanels and stainless steel rear panel.

The depth of field shows here as the front wheel is out of focus.

If two thinner engines were used there could be the option of leaving both engines intact.

The right hand side engine would have another short chain/sprocket which would join onto the middle of the jackshaft.

The gear levers would be joined together with a metal bar underneath. This would be much easier than the joined crankshafts etc. that I mentioned before.

Rear led light shining through four tailpiece flaps which are opened by a solenoid switch when the rear light or brake light comes on.

Also added spark plug caps and coils, and changed the handlebar grips to match the footrests.

Front light shining through five flaps which are opened by a solenoid switch when the front light or high beam comes on.

Although it's hardly noticable, I recently spent a ridiculous amount of time on the fairing to smooth all the edges.

The part of the fairing that comes under the handlebars was a problem area as it is four different surfaces meeting at a point.

I rounded this corner off completely and smoothed every other edge, compare it to the render above.

Out of all the parts of the bike, the fairing has the most "organic" shape which makes it much harder to model or update.

Over the years I've had to keep coming back to the fairing as it wasn't finished. I've even had help from engineers.

I thought the balance of black and silver needed changed on the tailpiece, it now matches the fairing and new side panels better.

I also tried a few different versions of silver shapes on the front mudguard, but ended up going for this (It could change again though).

I think this is known as the customiser's curse, every time you change something or add a new part, it affects how everything around it looks.

Different view of the rounded off fairing, still to add throttle cables coming out the top of the carbs.

View showing the hidden exhuast silencer with an oblong exit hole that will give the bike a unique sound.

The carbs are accurate to the nearest mm as I had a spare one in my hand to measure from whilst modelling.

Added hydraulic (or air powered) telescopic centre stand similar to competition touring car hydraulic jacks.

Second attempt at compositing (adding a 3d model into a real photograph). I spent a ridiculous amount of time on this and ended up with average results.

The bike has to be moved around so it looks like it is the correct size and is sitting on the ground the proper distance from the camera.

Eg. If I zoom out (in the software), the bike gets smaller and looks like a toy. Also, if the software uses a different camera lens from the original photo (eg. telephoto or wide angle lens), the bike's overall shape and perspective is distorted and it doesn't look right.

The sun position has to be moved in the software to match the sun position on the day so the shadow is cast in the correct direction and is the correct length.

The software allows you to put in the exact coordinates of where the photo was taken and you can put in the exact time/date/year and it automatically places the sun in the sky where it should be.

But I ended up having to adjust the sun position manually.

The shadow under the bike is closely copied in colour and darkness from the bike and van in the background. It is darker nearer the tyres and gets lighter further away.

Also, the edge of the shadow is sharper nearer the tyres then gets more fuzzy further away.

The tyre rubber was a problem as it has a matt finish in some areas and is shiny in others.

I decided to make compositing perfection a long term goal.

First attempt at fully rigged animation with suspension/chain moving properly.

Like the compositing above, this was a massive amount of work over a few days.

First attempt at a stereo 3D anaglyph image (view with red/blue or cyan/magenta 3d glasses). I had to change the air filter colour back to yellow as red interferes with the anaglyph.

Added whitewall tyres. I've always liked whitewall tyres and remember having them on a bicycle when I was about 12.

3D Anaglyph this time in 2014 (view with red/blue or cyan/magenta 3d glasses).

31st December 2018 getting much better results. The metal looks more realistic by including a very slight dirt layer which looks a bit like finger print smudges.

Some metal parts also have very fine scratches and roughness. I spent a fair amount of time looking into adding realistic welds on the frame, but for now I have added smooth fillets with a slightly different metal material.

The tyre rubber is much better than I've had on previous renders though I would still like to add tyre wear that is more worn in the middle than the edges of the tyre.

Another 3D anaglyph (view with red/blue or cyan/magenta 3d glasses).

The metal below on the swingarm and engine mounts looks like it needs wiped with a cloth, and you can see fine scratches on the rear shock where it reflects the white studio light.

The metal on the sprockets has a slightly rough texture which gives imperfect reflections.

The paint on the engine has an orange peel finish which can be adjusted in substance painter to make it more or less noticeable.

Adding dirty grease on the chain and road dirt/dust all over the bike would add more realism, but I want the bike to look like it is brand new and hasn't been ridden yet. If I ever built this bike it would be used like a show bike and always kept immaculate.

Another close up showing the orange peel finish on the engine paint. The smudges on the frame are easily visible here too and the rubber coolant pipes have a rough texture.

Another fading slideshow which has an effect similar to an animation. When fading in between images you are more able to see the 3d shape of the bike.

Loop animation from September 2020

A 4k loop animation from February 2021 with more realistic tyre texture including sand coloured dirt/scratches/cuts and all of the metal has fingerprints and scratches.

Click on the gear icon in the bottom right and select 4k to see it in high quality. There is a fullscreen icon next to the gear icon.

Another 4k loop animation with the environment rotating from February 2021. A closer view showing the realistic tyre texture and scratches on the metal.

Click on the gear icon in the bottom right and select 4k to see it in high quality. There is a fullscreen icon next to the gear icon.

Below is a zoomable 3840 x 2160 pixel image. Zoom in/out with mousewheel or left click an area to zoom in, click and drag when zoomed in.

(You won't be able to scroll the page with the mouse wheel)

When zoomed in this close, the bolts and nuts didn't look real as they all had sharp edges so I added a 0.5mm radius filleted edge to them all. I did the same with the edges of the shock and the rubber on the footrests.

P.S. Its not a retro bike, it's just taken me 25 years to design it.

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