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Topics - Oggers

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British Bikes / Terminology
« on: September 20, 2022, 06:34:42 PM »
Remind me please - brain fade...When the manual says rotate the engine forward, what does than mean please?

British Bikes / Removing the Mainshaft nut - clutch
« on: August 31, 2022, 02:31:50 PM »

The large Mainshaft nut - clutch end,  on my Ariel VB is absolutely stuck solid. I have the "special tool" which fits over the clutch centre, but that just bends when I apply torque to the the nut. I have to say it is plenty of torque too - courtesy of a long handled torque wrench. I don't really want to go at it even harder as I fear I may damage something... 

Advice welcome - heat from a blowtorch perhaps?

Many thanks   

British Bikes / Primary chain lubrication
« on: August 09, 2022, 03:29:27 PM »

As discussed previously, I have minor issues with pressed steel chaincases leaking chain lube oil. This is not for want of trying to seal things up, but they still drip after a run.

As an interim measure, and until I can resolve the root cause properly, one or two owners tell me they use heavy duty grease on the primary chain to reduce any leaks from the chaincase. Red n tacky Lucas grease was mentioned, the idea being that the grease adheres to the chain better than the recommended thinner oil, and being considerably thicker, has less propensity to leak from the chaincase. Some oil is also used but not as much - just to keep other things inside the chaincase lubricated - seals I think in come cases....

Thoughts welcome.     

British Bikes / Judder on slowing down
« on: July 17, 2022, 11:41:25 AM »

Bit of advice please. Triumph T120 judders slightly when coming off the throttle - especially at lower speeds. It is not severe, but perceptible nevertheless. Difficult to describe, but it is not a smooth transgression to standstill. When accelerating it seems fine though.

My thoughts

Clutch pressure plate needs adjusting. Perhaps not an even gap all the way round.
Clutch springs not equally tensioned
Carbs out of balance.

Anything else you feel I should check?

Any advice much appreciated as always   

British Bikes / Velo oil leaks
« on: June 28, 2022, 09:55:08 AM »

Velocete Viper drips oil both sides after a run. As mentioned before, suspect No1 is the chaincase, but I am not entirely convinced it is the culprit. Suspect no2 is the crankcase breathing set up. I seem to recall there is a breather hole in the crank axle, but that's about it. If that cannot cope, then I fear pressure builds up in the crankacase and escapes through any available orifice, taking oil with it, and thus dripping as witnessed. One mod. is to drill a hole through timing chest and crank housing and fit a threaded vent spigot. This all makes sense, but clearly involves an engine strip. Any recommendations I could do in the meanwhile would be gratefully received.   

British Bikes / Timing cover leak
« on: May 16, 2022, 03:36:58 PM »
As well as a small leak from the kickstart housing, I appear to have a slightly more severe weep from the bottom of the timing cover. I have since removed the cover, cleaned up the mating surfaces, and replaced the very thin gasket with a thicker one cut from flexitallic fibre sheet - about 1mm thick - along with a smear of Wellseal both sides. However, I have since found that one of the 3/16 screws - one at around 7 o clock - near the base of the cover where the leak was - does not tighten, indicating that the thread is stripped within. Another PO bodge had been made with some PTFE wrapped around the existing screw. The cover looks a much tighter fit and it is quite possible that the other screws will be adequate, but any thoughts as to what could be done here? I am well aware of helicoils, but anything else a little simpler - and at the risk of another bodge - a self tapper perhaps? just to obtain a bit of a clamping force in the vicinity.

Many thanks 


British Bikes / Sealing petrol taps into the tank
« on: May 12, 2022, 10:54:01 AM »

Quick Q please

I have now managed to shear my reserve petrol tap on the Viper. I have ordered a new one as below

Clearly the L/H side 1/4 BSP screws into the tank boss. Any advice as to sealing methods please? The old one simply had a Dowty washer and I am not sure if that is adequate.


British Bikes / Poor running - very smoky!
« on: May 10, 2022, 10:03:52 PM »

Velo Viper with a Monobloc 376 carb which I have just overhauled. Put the carb back on and the bike is now a pig to start and when it does, it misfires amd smokes very badly. Ran fine beforehand

Everything was blown through, all jets correct, but obviously the carb came off and was put in all manner of positions - inverted etc.

My thinking

Stuck float - but it seems free - worked fine beforehand.
Float Needle valve stuck in the seat or not operating

A pointer perhaps. When the engine was running - badly - I turned the petcock off, let it run badly and after about 20s or so, it picked up revs and began to run far bettter for about 5 or 10s before dying of fuel starvation presumably.

All clues gratefully received!


British Bikes / Velo Viper
« on: May 02, 2022, 08:30:34 AM »

Checking the oil level in the gearbox of my 1958 Velocette Viper, I found green khaki stuff oozing from the level plug. Feeling I ouught to be better safe than sorry, I drained it and put clean GP50 in. Any ideas what this stuff is? I assume some sort of specialist gearbox oil?

Gearchange feels a little notchy also. Nowhere near as smooth as the MSS - clutch adjustment perhaps?

Bike seems to run OK, but on idle it remains on high idle after a run, then settles down, then occasionally stalls. I have fiddled with the idle and the air mix screw, and cleaned the latter out. No real difference. No discernible air leaks either. I seem to recall this being a symptom of a poor mixture. Can anyone confirm please?

British Bikes / Balancer chain
« on: March 28, 2022, 04:23:30 PM »
Quick Q  - I have replaced the balancer chain on the Honda 250 single -  and yes I am taking liberties with a Jap bike! This chain is about the size of a bicycle drive chain but needs cutting down to size. This is not an issue, but various folk suggest a rivet link to join it. I have no experience of rivet links, no tool, and no-one up here can seemingly assist. Will a split link in lieu be too much of a risk?

British Bikes / Erratic chronometric
« on: March 25, 2022, 04:54:06 PM »

Smith chronometric speedo on a 55 Velocette MSS has developed a fault. Basically it is reading very low - reads 10 mph when shoud be 40 or so. Mileometer works, cable looks OK, no sharp turns or kinks in the cable. Fine yesterday!

Clues appreciated.

Thanks as always


British Bikes / F-B 250 cruiser 80
« on: February 10, 2022, 10:21:04 AM »

Opinion welcome please

Francis Barnett 250 crusier 80 ( I think)  for sale and I am tempted. Looks like late 50s/early60s - date not specified, and looks like a single from the pics.

Anyone any idea what these things are like?

I believe they are two-strokes, and never having had a two-stroke before I have no real idea on the engine oil requirements - except the pre-mix in the tank like my chainsaw! Is that it or am I missing something please?

Thanks as always

British Bikes / Applying pinstripe tape
« on: January 31, 2022, 05:05:51 PM »

Gold pinstripe on the Velo Viper chrome/black tank is 6mm wide. It is tape, not painted. Due to previous owner operator error, petrol was spilt on the pinstripe at the base of tank and at the front - the portion that goes horizontal then upwards - or downwards and horizontal depending on your point of view! The tape blistered badly, about 8 inches of it has since been removed, and the boundary between the chrome and the black of the tank which forms the pinstripe line subsequently cleaned up. The surface is fine. I have a roll of 6mm pinstripe tape which is a perfect colourmatch, but unfortunately despite all my efforts, it will not follow the sharp bend which deliniates the chrome from the black at the front bottom corner. I have tried pulling at the tape around the bend and very gradually pressing the tape in place - no joy - I get folds on the inner edge, tried a hair dryer - no luck....Any advice much appreciated as to how to pursuade the tape round the bend!.   

British Bikes / Timing
« on: June 18, 2021, 01:39:02 PM »
Sacrilege perhaps, but is there any merit in the following as a temporary substitute for dynamic timing with a strobe.

Warm engine
Hold at 3500 or so rpm
Move stator plate round ACW or CW - by a small amount until the position is found where the revs max out

Bike is 66 Triumph T120 with Boyer. Seems to run fine but may benefit from a small refinement in the timing.


British Bikes / Firing on one cylinder only
« on: June 12, 2021, 12:56:04 PM »

Another  fault developed with 66 Triumph Bonneville Post the clutch issue - and thanks for all replies - I moved on to service the carbs (Amal 930s).  Just a visual of floats,main jets, slides etc to see if all was well. I removed the tank, removed the carbs, replaced everything as per. It's all pretty new, so didn't notice anything, and didn't really expect to as the bike was running fine. Another thing I did was simply to remove the rounded oblong rocker box covers - it has a later head - with the intention of checking the valve clearances. I didn't bother in the end as all seemed well. All reassembled as per manual and woe! Right hand cylinder is not firing - well mostly, it seems to now and then when testing on the road, but basically there is no power there. Left hand seems fine.

What I have done so far

Checked carb for float faults, needle, needle holder - all seems well. Bowl gasket fine. Carb seems to be delivering petrol to the engine and not flooding - I can see the spray through the inlet. All seems well here.

Checked for spark at plug. Fine. Good spark. Changed the plug just in case. No difference.

Checked the coil - all connections appear fine. No real reason to suspect this. Coils are pretty new.

Gave the exhaust valve several tap on the head- stuck valve perhaps. No change. Admittedly did not do inlet.

It's all very odd - it ran fine a day ago! I may have disturbed something, but no idea what.

All suggestions are most welcome

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