Shaving Ironhead Forks

Here, we're cutting the fender tabs off of a set of Showa 35mm fork sliders from an Ironhead Sportser front-end. Motorcycles don't need fenders. It's a fact. And since we don't need fenders, we sure don't need fender mounts. Make an instant chopper by stripping your Harley of every extraneous bit of metal.

Shaving Ironhead Fork Sliders 1

First, get your tools ready. The two power tools that come in handy are a reciprocating saw and an angle grinder. Though, if you're feeling burly, a little sweat and a hacksaw go a long way. You'll also need a few different grits of sandpaper, some way to mount the slider while you're cutting it (I used a pipe vise), and maybe a set of safety goggles and gloves.

Shaving Ironhead Fork Sliders 2

Mount the slider in something sturdy. You're going to need to exert a bit of pressure to saw through the thick aluminum, and you're not going to want to fight the slider to keep it in place. A standing pipe vise works great. You can probably get away with using a bench vise, too, but be careful to put something between the jaws and slider so the aluminum doesn't get marred too bad.

Shaving Ironhead Fork Sliders 3

Saw off the fender tabs. Cut right through them and get as close to the slider body as you can without hitting it. You'll probably have to saw from a few different angles, especially if you're trying to save the brake-caliper tab. It helps to saw from both the bottom and the top and meet in the middle.

Shaving Ironhead Fork Sliders 4

Grind away the rest of the tab. I like to start with a grinding wheel and finish with a flap disc. The grinding wheel will work a little faster (and it's cheaper), but the flap disc will give you a smoother finish and a head start on sanding. It's probably better to grind less and have to sand/file more than to grind too much. Once it's gone, it's gone -- unless you can weld aluminum.

Shaving Ironhead Fork Sliders 5

Hit it with a file if there's quite a bit of metal left. Put some muscle into it. When you've got the tabs down to a small rounded bulge, you can start sanding. Start with heavy grit and work your way to fine. You can smooth out the brake-caliper-tab joint now, as well.

Shaving Ironhead Fork Sliders 6

Ok, one more to go.

Shaving Ironhead Fork Sliders 7

I'm going to strip the rest of the paint from these and sand them down a bit more. There's still a few marks from the grinder. Then, the fork tubes are going to Forking by Frank for a cut, and we'll have everything ready for a rebuild.

1 comment for 'Shaving Ironhead Forks'

1. If you want to check out how

If you want to check out how the pros do it...
crime scene choppers

nice and smooth

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