W/E 21st February 2021

So life gets in the way. Struggling to make progress on the bikes in the midst of other pressures on my time. The situation will improve but at the moment it’s all I can do to grab an hour here and there.

The consequences of Brexit are beginning to reveal themselves as sourcing parts just became more difficult and more expensive. The parts are all there but exporting to the UK has become a major pain in the ass and some European suppliers are thinking this is more hassle than it’s worth (and this’ll also become the case with ebay trade). It’s more expensive because of import duties, customs handling charges and bigger credit card conversion costs. Hopefully this’ll all settle down and new ways will be found but at the moment running a Laverda just became more difficult.

V5 (C)

I’ve known for a long time that the paperwork for the Jota isn’t up-to-date because back in the day I never updated the registration from a V5 to a V5(c). The consequence of this is that I could’ve lost the original registration number which would have been a pity but maybe more of concern was having to go through a long re-registration process. I finally got it together and checked the registration hadn’t been re-allocated from which it was a simple process of £25 to get the V5(c). Now I have the right paperwork I have to change the owner from Mrs A to me…a legacy of some insurance ‘fancy footwork’ when I bought the Jota back in ’87. You can try and outrun ‘the man’ but he always catches you in the end…

I’ve been using this time to sort through my garage loft. This activity has revealed a lot of parts I’d forgotten I have and also cleared space. I’m not only getting loft space but floor space too as I’ve sent a few bikes off to hibernate elsewhere. I’ve been bringing parts down for the Jota – though I still can’t find the original fuel tank cap. I know I have it but at moment it’s still in hiding!

Pile of bits

Aside from the petrol tank cap the parts are almost all there. There’s an ongoing issue with the wheels as covid is preventing me getting a rear to match the front. Funny enough the garage tidy revealed another thick web front that I had forgotten I had. This’ll be pressed in to service as the current front has a luxurious coat of powder coat which is slightly too dark.

The other ‘new’ item is the front mudguard which I’ve stripped to bare metal. This had the typical crack in the nose and maybe 10 years ago I got a fellow Laverdisti to repair it by welding in some plates from a crashed 120 Jota. The mudguard had a layer of filler all over and I wondered if this hid some mega dents but not so. It’ll need a little help here and there but nothing major.

Underside of mudguard with a strengthen plate in the ‘nose’

Finally I decided it was time to return to Atlas #3 which has started and just needs tidying to make it ready for spring. The small gearbox return spring was broken (again) last time I rode it. This little spring is such a pain in the arse to change as you have to remove the clutch. You can still change gear by preloading the gearchange (gentle tap on the lever) so I must have ridden a few thousand miles like this rather than sort it out.

All this to change a stupid spring…

I started off in a reasonable frame of mind but this changed as I worked on… Last time I put the primary case on I was meticulous in coating the allen bolts with copperslip. Despite this some bolts still needed persuading with an impact driver to release. I’m going to ensure the primary case is real clean before it goes back together and I’m going to place a copper washer under each bolt to try and get on top of this corrosion which makes a simple task irritating. Next up the clutch centre nut won’t budge. I have a clutch locking tool and applied heat but no deal. I could feel the accumulated stress building up and decided to walk away before something got broken. It can wait another day/week/month/year…

Nick 🙂