Wheels, Tires, And Brakes…Oh My

Slappin' New Goods On A Wrecked Softail

1. The entire setup included: The Brakes (top): Lyndall APEX Composite Rotors with Lyndall Red-Plus brake pads, and Jaybrake’s J-Six front and rear calipers w/mounting bracket. The Front Wheel/Tire (bottom left): Ride Wright 50-spoke Fat Daddy Wheel w/ Avon Venom 120/70/21. The Rear Wheel/Tire (bottom right: Ride Wright 50-spoke Fat Daddy/Avon Venom tire, Renegade Sedona Pulley.

2. Nick from HB Hogs bolted the new APEX rotor on the front Fat Daddy. Since there was no fender to remove and the axle was already taken out, the wheel slid in place and he tightened down the bolts after reinstalling the front axle.

3. The J-Six was mounted onto the lower fork leg and it fit nicely with the Lyndall rotor. The J-Six allows you to install/replace pads with the caliper and rotor already mounted in place.

4. Brake pad installation was next. Each pad easily slipped into the Jaybrake caliper. There are two pins and two springs that come with each caliper to mount the pads. The pins hold the pads in place and the springs keep the pads separated so they don’t vibrate. Once they were installed, the ends of the pins were separated with a flat-head screwdriver.

5. The installation for the front wheel, tire, caliper, rotor, and brake pads had been completed. You could easily do this install in your garage with the proper tools. It was time to move onto the rear section.

6. Nick fit the Renegade Sedona pulley to the rear Fat Daddy wheel and then he installed the rear APEX rotor, and was ready to mount the wheel.

7. Mounting the wheel was a cinch with the correct pre-cut spacers already on hand. Nick placed the belt on the pulley and went around to the rotor side of the wheel, and proceeded to install the Jaybrake mounting bracket (MSRP: $99.95) after sliding the rear axle through.

8. The rear caliper was mounted to the bracket and hugged the APEX just right.

9. Once again it was time to install the pads.

10. The finished rear section of the bike looks clean and installation of the wheels and tires, front and rear brakes-rotors, pulley, calipers, and pads-helped bring the Softail one step closer to becoming a cold glass of lemonade.

You know the old saying: When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. We wanted to apply that wisdom to a wrecked ’01 Softail we came across that had been modified to fit a 200 tire. For the most part everything was in working condition, but we needed to swap out the damaged goods with working parts. We started with the wheels, tires, and brakes.

Ride Wright Wheels’ 50-spoke Fat Daddy wheels immediately came to mind. We called them up and told them about our project bike, and two 50-spokers were shipped out directly (a rear 18×5.5, MSRP: $775; and a front 21×3.5, MSRP: $850). We also wanted a Renegade Wheels Sedona pulley (MSRP: $450) for the rear wheel. The 3/8-inch spokes on the Daddy aren’t laced in a cross-lace pattern; rather, they are laced in a radial lacing pattern-and they’re extremely sturdy! Once we had the wheels in our possession, we wrapped them with Avon Venom skins: a 120/70/21 for the front, (MSRP: $189.82) and a 200/55R18 for the rear, MSRP: $282.79).

Our next task was to outfit the wheels with a top-of-the-line braking system, so Lyndall Racing Brakes got the call for a set of their 13-inch APEX Composite Floating Rotors (MSRP: $625 each). The rotor’s friction ring is made from functionally gradient metal composite material and is fitted with a sturdy billet aluminum carrier and fastened with 16mm aluminum buttons (many colors and styles are available for the carriers and buttons; you can create your own on their website). They are extremely lightweight (1.8 pounds) and will literally stop on a dime when mated with their Red-Plus brake pads (MSRP: $59 pair), which are made of a carbon Kevlar trace iron element. When used with one of their APEX rotors, the pads will last approximately 18,000 to 23,000 miles with zero brake dust and zero noise, according to Paul Kittrell of Lyndall Racing Brakes.

Finally, we wanted a set of six-piston stoppers, and Jaybrake’s J-Six Calipers (MSRP: $399.95 each) were just right for the look and performance we had in mind. The J-Six was designed using progress bore sizing with the smallest bore in the lead-in position. This differential bore progressive sizing is critical for heat distribution and pad wear. This also gives optimum lever feel and brake response. Plus, these black anodized calipers look great with the setup we were looking for.

With all of the goods in hand, we called up Ed Syer from Huntington Beach Hogs and Choppers to install it. We were hoping that brake lines and a master cylinder would arrive before deadline, but they didn’t.