Sunday, May 22, 2016

The tale of 3 Pans

Sunday 22 May 2016 marked a special day where 3 Pans got together in Auckland, NZ. A cool, showery day in May but what a day to remember...

Murrays ,52 EL
My '61 FLH
Richards '55 FLH

The run started in Hamilton as the '61 and '52 left early and braved cool, rainy and blustery conditions. A stop at Bombay BP for fuel showed a minor problem with a broken cabbage cutter bracket on the '52 .

Early morning just after sun up

Waiting for Murray to arrive riding his '52

My '61 with a toolbox

Murray arrives..

Let's go...

Gas station, Bombay BP
Bombay BP

A broken bracket on the cabbage cutter..


'52, '61, '55

'55 FLH
 The '52 had a throttle cable problem so a temporary fix was implemented in light rain..
Back in Hamilton

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Kick start shaft breakage

The kicker shaft broke today. I'd got the bike started and I noticed the lever was a bit limp looking. A bit of a wiggle and it came right off. The motor was happily idling but I decided to abandon the outing.

It looks like it's been cracked for a while. The question now is what will I replace it with? Certainly there are a number of offerings of aftermarket shafts but how good are they?

The thought occurred that it's broken where the shaft has been necked so the clamping bolt can clear. It doesn't need to be fully necked though, only enough so the bolt can pass would do. The benefit would be a stronger shaft.

I've created a page on this blog site that gives more details of the fix and repair process. See blog pages, top right..

Monday, December 21, 2015

Primary, clutch, chains

The primary had water contaminated oil giving it a milky appearance. The big clutch race had rust pitting. It was repacked with grease. Overall the clutch was in quite good condition.
The cush drive was worn a bit requiring a spacer to correct primary chain alignment. The primary outer has a chrome snap-fit plug to facilitate greasing the cush drive parts via a grease nipple. I used an o-ring on the chrome plug. I massaged out a number of dents from the cover.
All the primary cover screws received fresh zinc plating in the home shop plating bath.
I left the inner primary in situ when I removed the motor. It worked OK but did make the engine left rear bolt awkward to tighten.
The primary chain is Diamond brand and was in very good condition. Now that the primary oiler has a proper screw to regulate flow, I need to keep close watch to ensure it's adequately lubricated.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Timing marks, distributor-timer, log book.

I checked my timing marks on the bikes' flywheel. I used a degree wheel to accurately determine TDC. Then I moved the flywheel to the 35° point on the degree wheel (full advance).
I drew pictures of the marks for reference. They were perhaps a couple of degrees out comparing to factory pictures..
The log book for record keeping.

Timings marks as they appear in the timing window. True TDC and 35° marks.
Note: I punched a small dot on the case to eliminate guesswork. I recommend cleaning the timing marks with thinners, then painting with white marker pen or white paint and artist brush. I also carefully marked the rear cylinder, using black and white paint to highlight it. Strobe timing showed how poor the dizzy timer condition really was.

A special tool made to service the dizzy-timer rear base bolt.. It needed heating with oxy/acetylene torch till red hot, then bending to the appropriate shape.

The bikes' dizzy timer had been severely hacked and modified to take an auto advance mechanism. As I write, I'm waiting on a single point replacement to arrive from Canada.

These pics are my old dizzy timer.

The body has been brazed and does not dismantle like stock ones.

It had a later automatic advance weight set up

It couldn't be removed without head removal else I have to cut or slice the dizzy. It fouls the heads' fins as it lifts out.

The replacement timer arrived before the Xmas rush. It looked good. I replaced the screw that holds the points for a longer one so I could use a spring and flat washer. I fitted another condenser. It strobed well with the marks absolutely stable. With the front cyl dash perfectly on the mark, the rear cylinder was slightly retarded. I'm working on a solution so will post soon.
This pic shows a cheap repop condenser. I've since changed it for the old Delco condenser the dizzy timer came with. This gives less visible sparking at the points with early indications of better running and easier starting as well. Testing shortly...
Update: A problem remains, especially starting

6V Dyna coil
23Jan2016. I picked up a second hand ballast resistor and fitted it to the coil power feed +6V wire. (See pic). Before I did, I recorded the coil amps draw for the 1.5ohm coil.
Without Ballast:
2.6A normal
2.5A running at idle.
Adding the ballast dropped about 1A off.
The points wanted cleaning and I removed the rocker point half for a proper clean up. The contact patch was light grey color with a thin dark blue ring around it. Usually points blue-ing indicates a condenser problem but when I've seen the phenomena in the past it's been much more prominent.
The condenser was replaced with one of the used ones on the shelf.
Initial testing seems good but I'll wait for a week or so before I declare the problem fixed.

For startup, I may elect to bridge the ballast resistor giving full 6V to the coil, switching back to run mode immediately the engine runs. The thought is it should provide a stronger spark and providing I swap back immediately to ballast resistor mode the points will last well. I'll test it as is first I think. I'm wondering if the ignition switch can accommodate my proposed "start mode" as it has an unused position (anticlockwise).

The other option I was keen to pursue is The 6V coils as fitted to 60's - 70's 6V Japanese twins. The CD175 comes to mind. I'd priced the coil locally at the equivalent of $60 USD. It was a repop with unknown ohm value. Another coil locally available was $80 USD 2.2ohm and looked like a good candidate.

In studying the topic some really good information came from Andy at Pazon Ignitions Ltd.

The current draw stated in the manual may be an average current when running (perhaps at idle).

The current draw figure you calculated (using ohms law) would be assuming that the coil is switched on continuously.

The actual current will vary depending on engine rpm, coil dwell angle (how long the points are closed), temperature (coil resistance will increase when warm) and supply voltage.

The supply voltage will normally be higher than 6 volts, and may vary a little with rpm. If the charging system is working, with engine running you would expect to see about 7.2 volts going into the battery (which will be fine for keeping the battery topped up).

I'm sure there's more to this chapter to come out yet. Stay tuned..
23Jan. No sooner said when another problem emerged. The engine was giving an occasional misfire, then it got progressively worse. I headed home. I began checking voltages. I discovered the ignition wire to the coil had .5 volts more when the switch was in "lights" position. I realigned the switch on the base and carefully cleaned up the hole in the dash console. It was applying pressure to the switch possibly causing havoc with the contacts. Testing next opportunity, perhaps tomorrow..

My ignition switch was losing one volt through the switch so I soldered the contacts to their tabs. The crazing is actually electrical spray grease by Wurth. It came out pretty good so I'm proceeding to reassemble and test..

Dizzy Timer advance-retard control cable 

Now with a dedicated blog page: