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Messages - Oggers

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British Bikes / Re: F-B 250 cruiser 80
« on: February 10, 2022, 12:28:29 PM »
Thanks Ian - appreciate that. I am looking around for a Brit single in reasonable order for around a grand - and not a Bantam! Not too concerned if it runs or not as I can fix most, but not a rust bucket. Proving difficult to find!   

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 / Re: Applying pinstripe tape
« on: February 01, 2022, 10:40:32 AM »

Yes - I am rapidly coming to the same conclusion. It must be achievable using tape as the other side of the tank in the same area is perfect!


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 / Re: Timing
« on: June 20, 2021, 03:47:03 PM »

You can set it up statically with the provided holes in the base plate. I always felt that revving my Commando on the stand to 4,000 rpm, apart from being antisocial, was a tricky thing to strobe anyway with the bike and engine leaping all over the place. I used to do much as Oggers originally suggested and didn't find any problems. Old bikes and modern fuels are likely to require advance quite different to what is specified anyway

Static is very easy, and yes agreed about the difficulties setting dynamically. As it was set, it was not a million miles from static. I gave it several blasts up my (very convenient) mile long hill, and now set it a smidge advanced over what it was. Initially I set it retarded from what it was, and oddly, I thought it was down in power a tad. Certainly not as crisp when accelerating.

I realize I should get a strobe nevertheless. 

British Bikes / Re: Timing
« on: June 18, 2021, 04:40:49 PM »

Sort of what I was getting at. I don't have a strobe and I have had a little success before  - moving the plate ACW/CW a smidge -  and using basically similar methodology of letting it rip up a nearby long hill in top and seeing if it performs any better - or not - within reason of course.

I've often though that there are too many variables on individual bikes to be able to set dyanmic by the book - so to speak. Hence the above method which may be more attuned to my particular bike's foibles and variations. 

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 / Re: Firing on one cylinder only
« on: June 13, 2021, 12:13:58 PM »
Right - It seems I have an answer. Carbs are Amal 930s, and the copper clip which secures the needle is split at the very point where the needle clips into it. Thus the needle is not engaged at all with the slide. To compound that, the needle/clip assembly was entagled with the carb spring - rather than resting on the slide body under the spring. The mix would have been hugely over-rich!

No idea where I went wrong. I was very careful on disassembly. The only thing I can think of is that I hit the slide assembly/needle inadvertedly when it was out of the carb and dislodged the needle.

Many thanks for the replies in any case. 

British Bikes / Re: Firing on one cylinder only
« on: June 12, 2021, 08:42:24 PM »
Yes Boyer, and battery reads 12.5V when not running.

I can only think it is something I have done when either servicing the carbs or removing rocker covers. Would fitting the rocker covers upside down foul the tappets I wonder? I 'll take a look....

Swapped the HT leads - no difference.

Yet to try

Swap the coils - dont see why, but you never know
Run the bike with IN/EX oblong rocker box covers off - too see if valves are sticking. How do you unstick them!
Check O-ring on carb inlet manifold. I may have disturbed it when refitting.

Anything else?

Many thanks


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

British Bikes / Re: Notchy gearbox
« on: June 09, 2021, 08:16:04 AM »
Slight tweaking of the clutch actuating rod (winding it out @1/4 turn) and the rear wheel has almost stopped rotating when on the main stand. For sure there is no real drive there and it is easily be stopped by the rear brake. Chains - hadn't thought of that, will check. Many thanks

British Bikes / Re: Notchy gearbox
« on: June 08, 2021, 05:44:09 PM »

I stand slighty corrected. When on the main stand and in neutral, the rear wheel rotates quite quickly suggesting a little clutch drag. I'll try and adjust things further. Just took it out and I moved the gearlever a notch over the spline. Seems slightly better....   

British Bikes / Re: Notchy gearbox
« on: June 08, 2021, 11:37:47 AM »

My poor description perhaps. Clutch nut  = clutch operating rod ajustment. The slotted rod held by locknut behind the cap in the centre of the outer primary chaincase.

It's not particularly difficult to engage first from standstill, nor does it move much with the clutch lever fully pulled back.

For sure it has a short gearlever, considerably shorter than my other British bikes - Ariel VB and Velo MSS - and indeed I did  think of swapping it for something longer. I just wished to clarify that there is not something I could do to improve things before I did so. Mine is also unit construction....

British Bikes / Notchy gearbox
« on: June 08, 2021, 09:47:30 AM »

1966 Triumph T120 Bonneville is proving to be an occasional pain in the neck when changing gear - especially from 3rd to 4th. Here it basically does not engage into 4th and finds neutral instead. Compared the other bikes, the gearchange just does not seem positive in selection and seems over-light - for want of better words. The throw of the gearlever between changes is also very small, and finding neutral from 1st or 2nd is a very fine art. The delicate tap required at the (standard) gearlever to find neutral is almost imperceptible.     

Of course I realize this may be all perfectly normal and that I need to adapt my right foot to the circumstances, but it does seem a little "light"

Things I have done fairly recently

Fresh gearbox oil - to the spec as per the manual - filled with correct amount
Fresh engine oil - to spec
Various adjustments at clutch nut - the one concealed behind the chaincase
Various adjustments of the clutch cable at both the lever and at the gearbox ends
Cleaned up the clutch plates/basket
I change up at around 4000/4500 rpm with a slight whiff of throttle.

It may simply be an attribute of the gearbox - which I understand to be original - but all thoughts welcome, particularly from other T120 owners.   

British Bikes / Re: Exhaust valve lifter
« on: April 26, 2021, 02:30:35 PM »

I like it....I have oiled the inner and reduced the bends and yes, I agree the original rouring is daft - far too close to exhaust.


Force exterted by you on the handlebar lever will make no difference to the force exerted on the nipple. However, a larger lever at other end will.

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