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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings;

Being a VERY new old SV owner, I just wanted to start off posting with my solution to an apparently widespread issue- broken mounting tabs on SV650s & SV1000s headlights.

Googling around, I found quite a few examples (eBay and other spots) of folks trying to unload broken examples. And I found some new ones as well, but they were all over the $200 mark. Too rich for my blood.

Being retired, tech-savvy, and easily bored, I thought I'd try my hand at unscrewing the inscrutable. Or something like that.

The top-inner tabs on my particular headlight had one intact and one broken tab. Whipped out a set of calipers and tried to record every possible measurement that seemed relevant. (Later I went back and got the ones I'd missed. Oops.), then on to my trusty laptop where I input all the data into SketchUp, my favorite mechanical doodling program. Once I had a model that seemed to replicate the reality with some accuracy, I transferred the model into my 3D printer and ran off a sample. It's worthy of note here that both the headlight housing and my printing filament were both ABS plastic. This is important because it is trivially easy to weld like-to-like components.

No, my first try wasn't quite good enough. I had to loosen up a few clearances a mite, and I increased a couple of lip areas to give more adhesion area. The second try came out quite well. The module slides forward in between the original reinforcing ribs until it is stopped by the reverse face of the light housing. Alignment with the mount was right on.

To make things permanent, I first cleaned up both pieces with warm water followed by alcohol swabs. Once thoroughly dried, I used a cotton swab to carefully apply ABS cement (available in the plumbing aisle of most hardware stores you can name) to the mating surfaces on both pieces. Then you just slide things together and let it sit for a day. The cement acts to soften/partially dissolve the ABS, and when the solvent evaporates, you are left with one solid piece of plastic.

I hope the photos are clear enough. Happy to answer any questions.

Ride safe.
 

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Excellent, PeterL!

What is involved translating Sketchup output to 3D input? I've only used Sketchup a few times but it is a friendly program and very cool the way you can rotate and view the design from all angles.
 

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Aye- there's the rub.

3D printing is still by and large a hobbyist activity. Despite claims to the contrary, it is not at all a plug-and-play endeavor. Multiple file types, multiple (often proprietary) printer software, And W-A-Y more fiddly settings and parameters than you ever want to comprehend. Herding cats is a cakewalk next to a lot of this.

There. You've been warned. Any sleepless nights or arguments with your S.O. over your toy budget are on you from here on out.

In my case- I'm using SketchUp Make (the free version) 2017, this was the last year they made it standalone, it is now an online subscription. But the old stuff is still available for download and works just fine. And from the online cache of user-written tools, I downloaded an "STL Export" plugin. STL (STereo Lithography) is one of the most widely supported formats for transferring models to print form.

I strongly recommend an 'open source' printer. One that does not require proprietary software, filament, or consumable parts. There are many excellent, FREE printing software out there, play with them until you find one that works for you. Next, do NOT buy the cheapest filament you can find. Look for products/vendors who have been around for a while. Read reviews online- there's more data there than you'll ever need. Again, just find a site or three that speaks your language.

Now that you're feeling thoroughly overwhelmed- here's the answer to the question you actually asked in the first place:

  • From SketchUp, export your design to a format your print program
    understands
  • Import the file into said print program
  • Input desired parameters (material, resolution, etc)
  • generate the model in software. Step through the print layer-by-layer to insure there are no problems.
  • Once satisfied, click the PRINT button and stand back in awe. For several hours. (Awwww!)
Welcome to my world!
 

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The devil is in the details!

I've wanted a 3D printer since they first came out. I still do not have one but did buy a small Sherline Lathe and CNC mill a few years ago.

Similar to 3D printing there can be a lot of setup to make the machine do what you want. Crashing the cutter into the work and ruining both is not uncommon for me. :)

Once a decent replicator comes to market I believe they will sell like hotcakes lol.
 

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On second thought, I think any replicator business plan will have a fatal flaw... "Replicator, make me another replicator".
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yah- take a look at RepRap.org if you're curious, that is exactly the way these things started out.

To be fair, there are a number of commercial-level machines these days $10-20K and up, which are supposedly quite turnkey. As I live much lower on the foodchain, it's a bit more work.

I'm on my fourth printer in a bit over 2 years. Every machine I've had has taught me new things. And every one has been modified to a greater or lesser extent in order to rectify deficiencies I found while operating them.

The biggest upside to all the frustration has been the accompanying joy when I conquer a problem, however small. And it is quite rewarding, when I have an idea for something, to be able to create a workable physical prototype in a very short time. I wasn't ever the type to whom 'Retired' was a comfortable state. I LIKE having my mind occupied with something challenging.
 

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What a fascinating thread this has been, thank you OP. I may have to get a 3-D printer (like you, not because I need one, but I’m also retired from mainstream work (not old-age retired - but could afford to retired) and so need things to keep busy).

As commendable as the repair was (and it was ingenious), I couldn’t help wondering why you didn’t just weld the broken off tabs back on with some plastic solvent in the first place?

Best wishes,

Alan




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My SV is a 2004 model, it is now 2019. Sometime in the intervening decade and a half the original bits wandered off, hopefully to live rich and fulfilling lives or whatever it is that fragmented plastic does.

Missing those crucial bits, one or more previous owners attempted to rectify things using a) assorted drill bits, b) a variety of bargain-basement hardware (none of it even metric), and c) lots of zip-ties.

Lacking the patience and required armament to track down all the suspects and beat a confession out of 'em, I just wanted to fix it. And as I hate repeating myself, my completed repair now feels solid enough to use as a winch point. (my personal mantra: "Anything worth doing is worth OVERdoing")
 

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My SV is a 2004 model, it is now 2019. Sometime in the intervening decade and a half the original bits wandered off, hopefully to live rich and fulfilling lives or whatever it is that fragmented plastic does.



Missing those crucial bits, one or more previous owners attempted to rectify things using a) assorted drill bits, b) a variety of bargain-basement hardware (none of it even metric), and c) lots of zip-ties.



Lacking the patience and required armament to track down all the suspects and beat a confession out of 'em, I just wanted to fix it. And as I hate repeating myself, my completed repair now feels solid enough to use as a winch point. (my personal mantra: "Anything worth doing is worth OVERdoing")


That is a perfectly good explanation sir :)


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... I understand how you feel - about fixing things properly. My bike is a K6,when I acquired it the radiator was held on with zip ties - and it looked as though it had been for years. The PO was not concerned about it at all, and I suppose it did work (in that it cooled the engine and didn’t leak), but there was no way I could live with it. A good used radiator and a few other bits were not expensive and soon had it back to the way Mr Suzuki had intended.

The bike was full of similar bodges, none of which was particularly expensive to fix, but it was quite satisfying to sort them all out. Now the bike is running nicely and looks fine (for a 13 year old 135,000 mile bike).

Good thread - well done.

Alan


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