ThaiMax - The story so far.

Since the re-build of BikeWeb has killed my links I am going to build this as a blog, rather than a book

I had been keeping this under my hat until such time as it appeared it would actually going to get off the drawing board.

Arriving in Thailand in February 08 has put my main (Burgman based) project on hold. Faced with the prospect of further delays, the need to commute to work through Bangkok traffic and the prospect of cheap labour, I decided to buy a T-max

I chose the T-max because of all the good work done on the ComfortMax. I initially intended to print of the design, try to borrow the moulds, take it all to a shop and say "make me one of these".

Finding a builder prepared to manage the project rather than just do work to order has been more difficult than I thought, which is frustrating given all the little workshops that do every sort of fabrication imaginable.

After reading about what was learned from the ComfortMax project I decided that I wanted to do things a little differently.

Initially I don't want to cut bodywork until I see if the performance is worth it, but I am happy to ride it is naked form for a while.

I want to position myself in the bike, then adjust the steering position to suit me, then apply bodywork around that position. Hopefully I can re-use existing panels, but with new mounting points.

Anyone who has applied brakes suddenly on a Mark I T-max will tell you that the front forks are not the best. Having experience this for myself, I starting thinking about a Hossack front end.

A conventional frame connects the rear swing arm to the steering head. The T-max has the rear swing arm integral to the engine. The frame connects the engine to the steering head. I however want a Hossack front end and a new handle bar position, so the existing frame does not fulfil this function. The other function of the frame is to mount the seat. I want a new seat and seat position.

In short, the existing frame does nothing that I don't want to change. I decided that I would have a new frame built as well as a Hossack front end.

The plan is to build a Hossack front end, strip the bike of bodywork and frame, and build a new frame to connect the engine to the Hossack. Next my seating position will be mocked up and measured. Then the seat and handlebars can be fabricated.

Once ride-able I plan to test the bike naked (the bike, not me). When and if I get suitable performance, we will commence bodywork. If performance is a failure, I can re-fit the original frame and bodywork and sell the T-max on.