W/E 21st January 2018

DSCN9168.JPGI’d let the schedule slide so that the work to get the Atlas ready for the French AG in Chartres was becoming urgent. The engine was in one piece and running and starting well on the fresh ignition curve (#3). There was still a little hesitation at tick over but the engine had more punch and ran more smoothly. The clutch wasn’t slipping but was dragging. I adjusted it at the bar as I couldn’t be bothered to take off the case and gain more adjustment at the engine end of things.

The main problem to solve was the back brake which refused to bleed up equally across both pistons. I got both pistons working but the outer piston was a bit lazy and came out after the inner. I worked out that if I held the inner then the outer came out so figured that once the inner had hit the disc then the outer would follow and everything would be okay…

Initially I had the bike up on the bench so could get the union at the lowest point but once I’d been for a run round the block (with the bleed nipple not done up tight so all the fluid leaked out) I did it on the ground and pressed an old RGA disc into service.


It all seemed good to go and then I noticed that the pin holding the pads rattled in the housing. This happens over time (even had it happen on my RGA) and a way back I’d had problems when the pin went AWOL and locked the back wheel! As the picture shows I wired the pin in place but my contingency was to also just not use the back brake (anyone riding from the 1970’s knows a back brake is there just for show…). And that’s how it ended up being.

The final pieces of the jigsaw was fresh oil and this time Rock 20/50 which ought to play nicely with the clutch and a liberal coating of ACF 50 anti corrosion spray.

Full report on the LCF AG can be found in the Trips section

Nick 🙂

W/E 14th January 2018


Long time since I posted but as you can see nothing has changed in the garage!

Observant readers will have spotted that I’m no longer working 😦 This turn of events provides a great opportunity to get to grips with all the Laverda ‘projects’ I have to complete. It’ll also challenge me to fix things properly rather than using ‘time’ as an excuse not to do a proper job…let’s see.

The Atlas is getting some TLC in advance of a trip to the LCF AG next weekend. The Atlas was taken down to check it in preparation – which proved a wise move.


Removing the rear cush drive revealed a bearing about to collapse. I was surprised that I hadn’t noticed handling problems beforehand. Anyhow no worries I have a spare ready to go…but this is going to be a bugger to remove.


Another surprise was that the clutch pressure plate had significant wear.

I installed a new set of clutch friction plates (same as on an SF750 btw) which I hope will stop clutch slip. I measured the new plates which start off life with around 3mm of ‘cork’ – the minimum is 2.5mm (which I was running) however with a millimetre (at least) missing off the pressure plate new plates wouldn’t have been enough. Lucky I had a spare pressure plate. While in the primary side I put on a new gear return spring…but couldn’t be arsed with new clutch cush rubbers even tho’ I have them on the shelf (old habits die hard)!


From the primary side I moved to the ignition. I found as I suspected that the ignition curve was incorrectly installed last time I had it apart. The bike had run okay on the go but hesitated at low speed making pulling away a bit of an art. I checked the Sachse website and will go for ‘3’ first off which gives a steady level of advance – ‘4’ does have a few more peaks and troughs and gives the engine more ‘feel’ but I think we’ll start off with 3. Either way ‘2’ gave too much advance low down so the hesitation ought to improve.


This picture shows the inside of the nearside panel with some heat damage caused by a hot silencer! Luckily it’s not visible on the outer side. My fault for not putting rubber bungs onto the silencer but this problem hadn’t happened before in many, many miles. The problem came to my attention when the Atlas broke down on my last trip out of London (ironic huh?) due to a blown fuse. I couldn’t get the panel off as it had melted to the silencer but I could just access the fuse box with a bit of bending and a new fuse seemed to sort it. Now of course the question anyone experiencing this should ask is ‘Why did the fuse blow?’ So far I have checked the wiring and it all looks okay – I am going to ensure all connections are clean and watertight before France + pack plenty of spare fuses and fit some silencer spacers.

The final workstream is the rear brake which wasn’t working. Stripping it showed a seized piston along with a missing locator button on a pad. The calipher now seems to be working but the outer piston still seems lazy i.e. both pistons don’t respond to pressure at the same rate.


Finally got my 2017 Three Nations trophy for completing the Welsh, National and Scottish rallies. Here’s hoping 2018 brings similar success and a host of new stories.

Take care out there

Nick 🙂