W/E 26th January

Damn!

Damn!

So set to working on the RGS and promptly dented the damned tank! I can’t begin to describe how much pain this caused me but I guess that forces the issue and the bodywork will have to be resprayed. A similar thing happened to the RGA tank a while back and £200 put it right (all because I was draining the petrol and had the tank on the workmate) – but damn, damn, damn!

Almost there

Almost there

Anyways we have to move on otherwise I’d go mad and the bike has come down with not too much further incident. Well I say that but one of the studs holding the oil filter in place snapped – lucky there is a piece proud of the crankcase so it shouldn’t be too bad to get out and fixed. The nearside footrest hanger has a seized allen bolt so I have applied Duck Oil and walked away. Although the engine is just held in by the mounting bolts I haven’t stepped up to seeing if the front engine mount will cause the same problems as with the RGA but I’m expecting it to.

To make it easy to move around I’ve left the forks in for now. So the target is that by next weekend we will have the RGS engine out and then the journey back to working triples can begin.

The Atlas continues to start. I replaced the nearside indicator that I’d taken off as a pattern to use at last year’s Stafford Autojumble. I also inspected the ignition pickup to see if this is the cause of a misfire but it all looked clean inside. I’m going to need to check the air tightness of the inlet rubbers but in truth I know the problem lies with the carb settings. It’s no big deal it just means taking the tank off once again.

I took the bike for a 10 mile run and came home with an oil covered motor and left leg! Good job I ordered those dowty washers for the oil feed unions. Anyways oil leak aside the bike benefitted from the short road trial – I’m sure it wasn’t firing properly on two when I left but by the time I got home it was on two but misfiring over 5,500 rpm. That carb has sat in a box for a long time and I never checked the size of the main jets. Also it might be worth taking a look at the inlet manifolds for air leaks because it was a bit odd at the bottom end – racing like it had an air leak.

Final comment is how odd it felt after the VFR (not really a surprise). The rear shock is set way too hard but the slim profile and flickability of the narrow tyres made it cool round the country lanes – how the hell I rode it to Scotland I don’t know…

Nick 🙂

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W/E 19th January

Smoke filled garage see's the Atlas up and running

Smoke filled garage see’s the Atlas up and running

Hurrah the Atlas is back! Not quite back on the road because some fine tuning is required to stop the popping and banging in the silencer but it runs and appears to be oil tight.

Last weekend was frustrating because I couldn’t get the sprag to bite – the ring gear is too worn to work with standard rollers so I am on the hunt for a reasonably priced supply of 10.3 x 10 mm rollers. One idea is to cut down drill bits or to get the sprag spigot reduced so I can maybe get 11mm rollers. Anyways let’s see…

The other angle was to get the Zane 650 sprag working again. I’d taken this off because it had started slipping but somewhere in the past I’d got another bearing with a secondhand Ducati 600 starter gear wheel. Frustration kicked in however when I couldn’t find the needle bearing it sits on so I put a call out for a secondhand one.

In fact I put a call out for a few things – M7 brass exhaust nuts from http://www.ecas2cvparts.co.uk/ and spring washers meant for a Vespa off ebay + some M12 dowty washers for the Atlas (see later). I determined to try and anticipate or sort things without procrastination (yeah, yeah).

So the Zane needle bearing arrived and the sprag duly fitted. First off the engine turned but the sprag didn’t move the engine. My first thought was the starter was going backwards so I ran off to google and read various woes of similarly inflicted home mechanics. It was only later in the day after I’d done a bit of thinking that I realised I’d put the sprag bearing in the wrong way round…Sprag ‘righted’ she fired up quite easily – especially as I hooked her up to the RGS battery. It certainly makes the point that the bike benefits from extra punch and I will look into options.

The other hassle to be sorted before the bike would start was to stop it leaking out of the cylinder head where the oil feed enters on the nearside of the engine. I was concerned that the thread on this junction wasn’t as good as it should be but the light torque wasn’t wholly to blame and removal of the banjo bolt showed the washers either side to be ‘dowty’ washers i.e. a rubber seal on the inside edge. I found some on the spare motor and it seems to be oil tight – although at the moment the garage fills with smoke on account of the excess oil that’d got onto the exhaust.

So with the Atlas headed in the right direction I turned my attention to the RGS and started to strip bits off it.

RGS begins its journey to get back on the road

RGS begins its journey to get back on the road

I paced myself and got all the fairing panels off along with the exhaust system. As with the RGA lots of road salt damage. What I decided however was that things were beginning to get out of hand with regards to organisation so once I’d taken off the initial bits I decided to start putting bits into boxes. What an excellent idea – two boxes full of Atlas parts, three for the RGA and two so far for the RGS. I also squirreled away sidepanels and fairings by hanging them from the rafters. At last I am starting to see the garage floor again!

Laverda parts stacked high!

Laverda parts stacked high!

So the year has taken a giant leap forward – I will soon be able to be back riding a Laverda on the road!

Nick 🙂

W/E 5th January 2014

Decided to start the new year with action so spent a hour couple of hours working on the Atlas on New Year’s Day.

Took the old carb off and after some cosmetic cleaning (the outside only) of my spare carb on it went. The new carb looks fine and the application of Duck Oil to the choke lever and throttle valve means it works very smoothly. The choke has a fresh cable banjo bolt which along with a new handlebar mechanism I think I have in the box of spares means I can restore the choke to original factory operation i.e. I can dump the bodge I rigged up using a bent coat hanger!!!

Inspection of the old carb showed that only the nearside pump worked – this is the side that wasn’t affected by the split inlet rubber. I plan to get some carb cleaner and get to work on restoring this carb. I think restoration will involve quite a bit of work to clean the black deposits.

Remote petrol bottle makes life easier

Remote petrol bottle makes life easier

Anyways it was back to the garage to on Saturday to see if the Atlas would fire up. A depressingly familiar morning revealed itself…With the new remote petrol reservoir rigged up I started to pump the starter (with the RGS battery similarly rigged up to ensure I had enough juice to run the starter) but the sprag clutch was toast and just spun on the shaft. Damn it was going to be back to stripping that down before I could test out the new carb. Then I heard the drip, drip, drip of petrol and saw that the newly installed carb was leaking away all over the starter – off with the carb for inspection. This showed that the diaphragm had been removed from the carb so I duly swopped over the one from the original carb.

DHLA diaphragm

DHLA diaphragm

It pissed me off and I hope the tomb raiders haven’t taken anything else off the damn carb. I suppose the good thing is that the removal of the diaphragm was obvious so at least I didn’t get everything hooked up and then couldn’t find out what the problem was.

Busted spring and seized plunger prevent the sprag working

Busted spring and seized plunger prevent the sprag working

Examination of the sprag showed two plungers had seized in their bores and one spring had been broken. A 4 roller sprag just won’t work…Anyways the Leo Zimmerman sprag is good in that you can dismantle it and push the plungers out – fresh springs, plungers and some better, albeit used, rollers installed we’re good to go.

Plunger seized onto bore plug - separate plug and plunger shown alongside (feature only on bespoke Zimmerman sprag)

Plunger seized onto bore plug – separate plug and plunger shown alongside (feature only on bespoke Zimmerman sprag)

 

Well Sunday arrived and I decided to head off to the garage to fire up the Atlas before breakfast only to be confronted with a slipping sprag still! Examined the sprag and can see all of the rollers are damaged so hopefully a new set will cure the problem.

Spent time looking for the bits and pieces to put together the replacement Zane sprag I ran a while back but in the end couldn’t find the centre bearing and so gave up – damned garage is still such a mess!!! I also took the alternator cover off the spare engine to set a perfect sprag setup. The trouble was that without a means to lock the engine I couldn’t get the crank nut off. Decided I was getting ‘pissed’ with the whole episode and so walked away. I have a bearing shop nearby so hopefully will be able to source the 10mm rollers and have another go tomorrow.

Grrrrrr

Nick 🙂