Road Racing Safety Wiring

The LRRS race body, and matter of fact every race body in the states, have rules and regulations one must abide by when indeed going road racing. These rules and regulations are in place to keep both you and the racers around you safe in case anything goes awry on the race track. One of the most important rules is safety wiring any bolt that may come loose during the race. This means drilling holes and safety wiring all of them.

At first it sounds ludicrous and one might think ‘Well my bike doesn’t fall apart while riding on the streets, why would my wheels fall off during a race?’ Under street riding conditions you are nowhere near the levels of stress that you would inflict upon the bike at race pace over race distance. High RPMs coupled over long distances and you can never quite know what to expect.

Drilling holes into your bolts may seem like a daunting task but as I found out yesterday it was quite easy, if not TEDIUOUS. What do you need when you’re safety wiring the unprofessional way?

  • Copious amounts of titanium/cobalt drill bits. When I say copious I mean BUY MORE THAN YOU THINK YOU WILL NEED
  • Center punch to mark a starting puncture to begin drilling
  • Vice to hold the bolts in place
  • Powerful drill with decent speed ratios
  • SHIT TON OF PATIENCE
  • Oil for lube – this was recommended to me but I didn’t bother with lubrication to make it go any faster

Start by marking the places you want to start drilling the holes. Keep them high enough in the bolt so that when you put them back in the bike, torqued to spec, you can still run the safety wire through them. This is very crucial.

Mark your bolts with high-vis sharpie.

Mark your bolts with high-vis sharpie.

Next place the bolts into the vice, secured and make sure it wont move during the drilling process. Use the center punch and mark the indent of where you want to start drilling.

Buy a strong steel center punch and punch away.

Buy a strong steel center punch and punch away.

Tiny little hole in which you can start drilling the bolt.

Tiny little hole in which you can start drilling the bolt.

When you begin drilling it is wise to start off slow so the bit can work its way into the bolt to make the indention larger. Progressively add more speed as you go along but be careful not to go trigger happy as you can damage the tip easily and even worse, snap the bit. Patience young grasshopper.

Slowly start, the apply pressure as you move along.

Slowly start, the apply pressure as you move along.

The idea here is to not drill completely through the bolt but to go half way down, flip over and proceed with the other side. Once the two points start to come closer you can feel tension in the bit as it touches the threads of the previous hole, go even slower here because breaking off a bit here will be woes upon woes.

You're done when you can see light at the end of the tunnel.

You’re done when you can see light at the end of the tunnel.

And VIOLA. Of course if you had high end drill bits and a drill press this would be easy peasy but unfortunately our press is broken and the bits weren’t the highest of ends so this made due. One side down and the rest to go.

The finish product.

The finish product.

I drilled the caliper bolts, pinch bolts and rear brake caliper bolts in one sitting. Took forever to do and a ton of bits broken but this saved me a lot of money from just going out and buying pre-drilled bolts. Pro-Bolts sell them but at $7-$10 a pop you are better off just learning how to do it yourself.

The aftermath. Poor broken bits.

The aftermath. Poor broken bits.

 

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One response to “Road Racing Safety Wiring

  1. Nice work, Jason! I’m not sure I would have the patience to do it; the temptation to just go and buy the pre-drilled bolts would be too great for me! So how many more do you have to do?

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