Introduction: Reflective Motorcycle Tiger Stripes
Dual sports, or dirt bikes that can be legally ridden on the street have some distinct advantages over other classes of motorcycles. They handle well, are cheap, get good fuel economy, and are simple to work on. The main downside of dual sports is that in terms of looks, they're just a little, well, boring. Bright things and tiger stripes are not boring, so thus the idea was born to combine these things.
It should also be mentioned that this is a great way to make riding a motorcycle, particularly at night much safer. When the headlights of another vehicle hit this vinyl, it'll light up like the sun, keeping you seen and safe.
Step 1: To EBay!
Now I needed some reflective vinyl. This stuff comes in sheets with an adhesive backing, like a huge sticker. I looked around eBay and found some yellow/orange reflective vinyl, 18" wide for about $6 a yard. I bought 3 yards of it. I used about half of it.
Step 2: Cut and Paste
Tiger stripes are a great design, because they're really hard to mess up. I started cutting wavy 1.5" wide strips out of the sheet, and stuck them all over the plastic pieces on the bike. The particular vinyl I bought was the kind used on highway signs, and was very thick and hard to bend around tight corners, so I cut the ends of the stripes flush with the ends of the panels. Some thinner vinyl could wrap right around corners.
Step 3: Might As Well Do the Helmet Too
The same process was followed for the helmet. The design is semi-symmetrical and the striped move around the vents and other features.
Step 4: Results
Overall, the project turned out very nicely. As you can see in the pictures, the bike really lights up at night and certainly is more visible to other motorists. During the day, the vinyl as a nice somewhat sparkly hexagonal texture in the sun. Sure it looks a bit ridiculous, but thats the whole idea.
Be sure to check out my other instructable on making the leather seat in the last photo from an old jacket.