W/E 13th and 20th April

Didn’t bother posting last week because the only news was about fixing the VFR (zzzzzzz)! Had to get a seized nut and bolt apart to remove the suspension wishbone so I could drop the old shock and install a new one. The old shock had broken its pushrod meaning the last time I rode it home the rear suspension was working like a squeeze box! Anyways all fixed and took it to work a couple of days – the extended period in the garage for the Honda has resulted in the digital dash going awol and the indicator idiot lights doing weird shit. Modern motorcycles hey…still it ran nicely and made a change so can’t diss the Honda 🙂


Visited the Bristol Auto Italia day on Sunday http://1drv.ms/1i6gUYR. Last year I took the little 100 and won the ‘Best Bike’ award but decided against shoving the exhaust on the tiddler preferring the Atlas (albeit with no speedo and a worn rear sprocket and chain). Fancied a bit of bend swinging taking the A4 and A350 – the plan worked well despite it being cold and me only wearing summer gloves.

The Atlas sat unnoticed – even had to move to help folk get pictures of the Benelli 900 sei parked alongside it (which although pretty had non-standard six silencers and pig ugly crash bars to protect that damned wide engine…not Italy’s finest IMHO)! In truth the event has a great vibe (as does Bristol generally) but the bikes were a sea of rather bland (if expensive) plastic Ducati’s and MV’s and funnily enough Benelli 900 triples. The eccentric adventures of the 70’s largely unrepresented – the line up of cars was by far more impressive – the Lancia’s were brilliant, some great Alfa’s a cute Fiat and a Maserati Sebring in particular that caught my eye – apparently it’s worth £130,000 which is a lot but then no more than the far less impressive wedgy carbon blinged cars currently available from Italy.

On the Laverda front the ILOC stand was pretty good with a line up of RGA Jota Sprint, Series 2 Jota, Formula 120, couple of Series 1 Jota’s a 500 based racer, couple of SF’s and a couple of 650 Zane’s. Got talking to the 650 Formula owner who was rightly proud of the gleaming black bike – it reminded me of how proud  was when I got my Jota originally. I hope the chap hangs onto it…in sickness and health!

Back in the garage I took a rubbing off the 421 Atlas and this sent it off to get the registration process started. I also robbed the old chain off the bike while I was at it because 405 needed a new rear sprocket and chain.

This is a bit worn...

This is a bit worn…

The replacement from the second hand spares box has 38 teeth as opposed to the 41 I’m currently running. It’ll give the bike longer legs but the downside is (from experience) that it’ll put extra load on the clutch. Still the clutch on this motor seems okay so hopefully it’ll all hold up.

errr and so are these. Single piece RGA discs

errr and so are these…

I also had to return to do more dismantling – this time taking the discs off the wheels. I note that the weight in the wheels seems mainly in the discs which shouldn’t come as a surprise given they’re iron. The front discs on the RGA are well worn with a lip all round the outer edge – when I put it back together I have some good condition two piece discs to go back on.

Bare RGS frame

Bare RGS frame

I removed sundry nuts bolts and ground the bolts out to take off the battery tray – these counter sunk allen bolts wouldn’t unscrew and needed the trusty dremmel. I also got the clutch covers off the RGS and RGA frames – they are threaded through the frame tubes so don’t just lift off.

RGS frame with additional brace under headstock

RGS frame with additional brace under headstock

I know I had the RGS frame welded due to a crack but had forgotten that this process also involved putting in a support brace under the headstock. I couldn’t see the original crack any longer and must remember to check this out before it is painted. A reliable source advised that it is unusual for RGS frames to crack so I want to be sure that this had indeed happened.

Progress seems to have slowed again since the engines where dismantled. Most things are boxed up and the danger is that they could stay that way for a very long time to come.  Mustn’t lose focus…

Nick 🙂

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