Tuesday, 30 December 2014

34 - Fork repair

 Back when I stripped and rebuilt the forks one of them was sticking a bit at the bottom of its travel. If you pushed the stanchion up and down the fork leg it felt like it was binding a bit. A tug would release it but it didn't feel like the other side, which was sliding nicely.

 I mentioned this to Mr Romero when I was in his shop and he said this was a common thing. Allowing the forks to bottom out hard must swage or deform the bottom of them. "Not possible to repair" was his diagnosis. Although I didn't say anything, I didn't agree with him. I gave it some thought and decided it would be possible to hone it out.

 Today I pulled the fork leg apart and made a long "emery stick" from a couple of feet of brush shaft. I simply cut a slot in one end to receive a strip of emery cloth and put a screw nail in the other end so I could spin it in the drill.

 I gave it a few whizz's up and down near the bottom of the leg, cleaned it out, and within a few minutes I had the stanchion sliding in and out right to the bottom without any tight spots.

 So I reassembled it again, put the rubber boot over the fork and left it aside. 

 Clifford still has the frame, its only primed at the minute but should be ready soon in the new year.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

33 - Frames away getting painted

 I finally finished preparing the frame and got it rubbed down ready for painting. I left it over with a friend and hopefully he'll get it done in the next week or two. I'm looking forward to starting to put her together again. It's been spread out all over the floor for too long.

 I have a bit of a problem with the petrol tank. I put tank sealer in it 20 odd years ago and now its all starting to crack and come away from the fibreglass. Of course there's very little access down inside the filler cap so there's no way to remove it all before sealing it again with fresh stuff. The people who make the tank sealers say not to put any dissolving solution into it as it will only react with the resin in the glass and make it a whole lot worse, and I don't think swishing nuts and bolts around inside will get it out either.

  So I contacted a guy who works in a boat yard where they make fibreglass hulls. The plan was that if I cut a couple of holes in the bottom of the tank it would let me in enough to poke about and get the old sealer out. Then they could patch the holes up again for me before resealing it, but he's not overly keen on the idea. 

 So I thought a bit more about it, and the idea going round in my head at the minute is why not just cut the entire bottom out of the tank. Then I could fabricate a tiny aluminium tank to fit inside the fibreglass unit and finally reattach the bottom piece of original fibreglass. It would look the same from the outside but all aluminium inside. It doesn't need to hold much, just enough to start it and take it for a wee sail. I might be biting off too much here but i'm thinking about it.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

32 - Work in Progress

 I haven't been posting for a week or two but I still managed to get some work done. 
 I ordered a silencer box from Spain but as I suspected it did not fit all that well. The problem is the bracket, it's holding the box in a bad position so that it's hitting against the frame at the tail pipe. I think the best thing I could do is cut it off and make a new one that holds everything in the right position.  Note how far off it is in the bottom picture, plus the silencer also needs to move in towards the engine to make a bit of clearance against the frame.

  Stevie, a workmate, came over one day to ask how I was getting on with the exhaust pipe and offered to let me try his set of 'blow out' plates. I did try them but with not a lot of success. The problem was getting enough pressure inside the pipe to blow the dent out. At around 30 psi the air would escape because I just could not get the plates to clamp onto the pipe tight enough. So unfortunately I had to go back to my idea of building them up with brazing rod.

 In our conversation Stevie mentioned he was getting some bits zinc plated for a 250 Maico he's restoring, and did I need anything done? Well I hadn't thought about it, but I looked out some parts that evening and was really pleased at the result, especially the spring. Thanks Stevie.

 Included in that little batch was six original bolts from the wheel, they look good and I'm in the notion of sourcing a few more for the more prominent locations around the bike. Also I got a couple of new Akront decals for the rim too.

 So I'm almost finished with the frame, I had to make a little cable ring for the speedo and petty much all that's left to do now is it rub it down and get it ready for Clifford to paint. Hopefully I'll get it to him within the next fortnight.

Sunday, 12 October 2014

31 - Mudguard

 I started by marking out a centre line down the bike and transferred this unto the mudguard.

 When I was happy I drilled holes in the guard and welded the bracket to the frame.

 My own welding might not be just as neat as John's but I think it will do.

 And this is how it looks from the back and side.

Sunday, 28 September 2014

30 - Mudguard

 Today I had a look at mounting the back mudguard. I had to hammer and bang the lugs on the frame until the guard would sit against them nicely. 

 Next I took a marker and marked where I needed to cut the mudguard to make clearance for the chain guard.
 I'm always a bit apprehensive cutting something expensive like this as it's easy to make a mistake, but I think it will be ok. I don't have a chain guard yet but I reckon I can make one easily enough when the time comes.

 I held it in place while my wife eyed it up to ensure it was central. Here we noticed a bit of a problem. The lug on the frame is not sitting centrally so it tries to pull the mudguard to one side. You can counter act this by pulling the bottom of the guard to the other side and putting a twist in it, but I didn't want to do that. So off came the lug to be repositioned in the proper place.

Actually when I looked at the other frame it was worse. I really believe a lot of the frame building wasn't done in a jig at all. Somebody was just holding the bits together in roughly the right place while they were tacked. 

Saturday, 20 September 2014

29 - Stand

 I spent a hour or two doing a bit more fitting work to the side stand. I started by making a little pin for the spring to hook on to. Then I had to take the head races from my old frame and put them into this one as I needed to put the front wheel in.

 Now that the bike could stand up by itself I cut the stand to a height that allowed the bike to lie at an angle. I didn't want it lying over too far, but not so upright that it would be easily knocked over either. I think I'm happy but maybe I'll get a few other opinions before I weld the foot on.

 Finally I drilled a hole to locate the pin at an angle that was not sticking out too far but kept the spring away from the tyre.

Friday, 19 September 2014

28 - Frame welded !!

 I got the frame back today. John had done a very neat job of welding in the new parts.

 So that's the cracked bottom tube replaced, a new side stand and bracket made from scratch, a new pin for the brake pedal welded on,  and the sump guard replaced.  Now to carry on !!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

27 - Making Some Nuts

 A quick one today. I got a piece of 21mm AF stainless steel hex bar and made a couple of new nuts. One for the centre of the clutch and one for the front wheel spindle. One of the old ones had been tightened up with a hammer and chisel by the looks of it.

 I've got plenty of bar left so might make a few more if anyone needs one.

Monday, 11 August 2014

26 - Fixing dents

The exhaust pipe was one of those things I didn't know what to do with. I can get a brand new one from Spain but sometimes I like to keep as many original parts on the bike as I can. I've never been one for concours restorations as I always feel that a bike has a history and a bit of sentimental attachment to its owner, and this history should be displayed rather than stripped away with new parts.

 Our pipe always had a couple of huge dents in it. I don't know who done it, but it was there from the beginning and was like an old battle scar. I felt like the pipe was worth rechroming but I would have to do something to improve the look of it. 

 I took it into work and had one of the welders tack some screws into the dents, then with a bit of heat I pulled on the dent with a slide hammer. They pulled out not to bad, but need a bit more work. I'll try to fill what doesn't come out with brazing rod then smooth this down. 

 It might all be to no avail as the chrome plater could turn round and tell me he wont do it. But it if comes to that I might just have to buy that reproduction one.


Monday, 14 July 2014

25 - Building Up Crankcases

 All the bits of the engine have been sitting around in a box since being cleaned so I spent a couple of hours today putting the crankcases together. Here's a step by step photo gallery of the gearbox rebuild. Sorry for the quality , they're only taken with my phone. Everything was in good enough condition.  The main shaft was repaired by Travan Engineering over 20 years ago. I think the guy might be dead now. It was hard chromed plated and ground then oil-lite bushes fitted in the sleeve gear. A good repair that has lasted well.

kickstart mechanism

output sleeve gear

hard chrome repair on mainshaft

selector drum installed

mainshaft gear train

layshaft gear train

first selector fork

second selector fork

third selector fork

note top side of layshaft gear
note top side of gear has raised edge

gear added to mainshaft

detent plunger installed

kickstart gear installed

note thrust washer on kickstart gear

new gasket

crankshaft installed

Thursday, 10 July 2014

24 - Wheel Building

 I built up the back wheel today, it was lying around for ages. I was going to make a new liner for the hub, but what I've decided to do instead is to re-line the brake shoes with a thicker material then skim it down to suit the hub. Before I could do that I had to put the hub on the lathe and remove a little lip which had formed on the edge of the old brake liner and would have stopped the new shoes from going in. 

 I got the run out down to approx 10 thou or 0.25mm so that's not too bad. The needle on the dti flicks a bit but then it's an old rim with lots of dings around the sides. An offset of 36mm from the edge of the hub puts the rim in the centre of the frame.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

23 - Frame

 Besides wallpapering a bedroom I've got the new tubing cut and the ends machined with a 20mm cutter so they blend with the frame. It fits well. 

I've also been making a new side stand and bracket. It's made exactly like the Bultaco one. I could have engineered it to be better but since the original lasted 40 years I'm sure this one will last just as long.