What follows are periodic reports as the RXL kit was being made. Many of my plans, prices and features changed as the kit came together. Ignore all pricing in the following unless in matches with the information on the RXL page.
Great news. My first RXL report to you was 1/9/12. A year and nine months ago! Today I can report the patterns (nose and hood) are done and have been delivered to the mold maker. After two or three weeks I get the molds and go over insides with a fine tooth comb so the parts come out perfect unlike too many other fiberglass hoods that are made roughly to be painted. Then the first part will come out of the mold. (The second hood will be for my showcase sled and the third one will go to Donny Sayen, my old neighbor, Polaris devotee and early supporter of the RXL concept then it's first com,e-first served). Hood #1 will go direct to the graphics maker so we can make hood and tunnel RXL graphics. Then it's over and we can all get busy finishing our projects. Along the way I'll have pricing. I do not know at this time what it will be. I'm thinking give or take $450. I now have the Midnite Blue formula (thanks to Dan Buchanan) so I will make hoods in that blue with black and white as special option colors.
On an unusual side note, SnowGoer magazine interviewed me for a story in one of their next issues (I expect this coming issue in 30 days or so). They feature industry people who represent interesting positions in snowmobiling. They picked me because I am off in a weird little place making aftermarket hoods for vintage sleds. It is likely to be more than a half page. If you don't have a subscription go buy one at the newstand. SnowGoer would appreciate that.
Last Monday (10/7) we (Dan Buchanan and I) had Wayne Davis (the foremost snowmobile photographer in the world) take photos of Dan's completed Mini 120 RXL. I'll show you the photos soon and they will blow you away. We haven't offically introduced the mini conversion kit but already 5 hood/graphics kits have been sold. [$299 hood, $125 graphics plus carton and S&H]. Kevin Sondreal from Reynolds ND bought two. Kevin is an early report list watcher and of course an extremely exemplorary person.
I was flippin' through the Dennis Kirk catalog and happened by page 168 and saw the price for handle bars and about fainted. The cheapest was $34.00 and most were around $65. I will offer this bar for the RXL. I've used them on all my recent sleds. They are 27.5" long which makes them a bit longer than most sled bars. You get more turning leverage that way. The pull back is 3" and 7/8" diameter of course. They have knurling from 2" to 5" from center and best of all they only cost 29 bucks. Have me toss one in when you get a hood.
Say on the seat issue. I won't be able to supply seats because to fit the small and large tanks would really run the cost up. Two models plus the mold coats for foam would drive the price out of site. If you have good foam, do a search on ebay as I just did. They have some pretty nice seat covers some with tunnel side knee pads. Now if you want to be as authentic as possible call Conrad Van Batavia in Verndale, MN. He makes RXL seats and I'd guess if you sent him Indy foam and seat base and told him you want an RXL style seat he'd make one up for you. His number is 218-639-1815.
I've heard noises from my mold maker so I know he's working on the RXL molds.
All for now.
Tonight we are gonna talk about tunnel graphics. RXL and Indy tunnels have different shapes. The Indy tunnel has a rear grab bar/bumper, the RXL does not. I have designed the above graphic similar to the RXL but I've worked around the Indy bumper which is very practical.
Decision one. Are most of you going to retain the bumper or are you thinking of removing it? (Majority rules just like the hood scoop issue months back. You voted no vents).
Decision two. You know the cost issue is big with me. I want all costs to be low as possible-none of us should dump a pile into an old Indy because it is smart to recoup your money when you sell. I would very much like to put "RXL" on the tunnel graphics not cc sizes like on the racers. This way I can make one-size-fit-all stickers and not have to stock and charge extra for seven different sticker sets; (400, 440, 500, 600, 650, 744 and 800.) Can you accept this?
Give me Yes/No. Thanks.
I just got my preliminary pricing from my glass guy. Here they are:
Body costs are more than I expected but when you consider that you are buying a hood plus the nose piece, two major large parts, it doesn't seem too out-of-line. Most hoods alone these days are around $400. If you and some friends want to place a multiple order, I will give you each a discount. The blue/black bodies are polished and ready to mount. The white parts are assumed to be painters and are not polished. When you order-specify the tank size you are using because we will trim the tank opening back for the large tank. Graphic prices are to come.
Perspective. A rough investment in an old Indy is about $700. To that add $700 for body, about $195 (guess) for graphics and you are at $1600 plus whatever you do to customize the sled. Could you get your money back when you sell? I think you could find a buyer for a tricked out Indy for under $2000
The headlight is rectangular (about 7" long) and has an adjustable stem that will mount to the upper roof of the nose-sort of hidden and out of the way
Flat race bars are 29" wide and provide plenty of leverage
I pick up the body molds this weekend. I like to polish them for my own sense of quality control then I'll wax them to be delivered back to parts maker on December 5. At that point parts can be made for you. To get on the waiting list call my cell 952-607-6063. I'll probably send each body kit in two cartons for safety and to keep the shipping parts as low as possible.
Thanks. It's been a long road.
Okay I laid out the graphics over the weekend. Now, I'm not going to apologize for modifying the original RXL graphics. They were not well executed at the factory. All I did was what they should have done at the time. This week I head out to Cece, my graphics gal, for the hard work to begin.
A little FYI... I just received notice of fiberglass resin increases. This may or may not effect Tim who makes the hoods. If there is a bump, I'll so note on my site and will send notice via this Report format.