W/E 26th June 2022

LCF at Les Vosges

This is where I should be…but I’m sat at home watching Moto2 on the TV 😦

The Jota engine has been doing quite a bit of traveling since my last post.

Fiat Panda to the rescue

I wanted the motor fixed as soon as possible so came up with the solution to pull the engine, dump it in the Panda and drive to Scotland. Cheapest option and it gave me and Mrs A a couple of days in a shepherd’s hut near Dumfries 🙂 The engine was checked over but aside from a slightly tight exhaust valve clearance was given a clean bill of health. Compression was consistent across the engine (checked via jump leads on the starter) and the absence of oil around the head gasket suggested it was okay.

The engine was put back in the bike and started…https://youtu.be/2nlO3oPlU2g ….well that didn’t go well did it! I fell into deep depression and had to be coached into a more positive frame of mind by the Scottish ace mechanic. In fairness it’s difficult to fix something when you don’t see the engine run – I should’ve coughed up the money to ship the bike back first time round.

The bike was duly collected and via a free ‘pity’ pass taken to Scotland. News from Scotland is positive so I should be picking the Jota back up this Wednesday…

Let there be light

In the meantime preparations for the forthcoming National Road Rally (NRR) were underway with the Turismo. I spent a bit of time on the electrics which first of all meant fitting a bicycle lamp to augment the lights. The bicycle lamp is a lot brighter and combined with an existing auxiliary rear lamp I should be seen.

Modern tech

To restore the rear brake light I upgraded the battery that powers it. These days the front lamp is a 6 volt item intended for a VW. The problem is that this bulb draws too much so if you activate the brake light the weedy fly wheel magneto dims the front light! I’d hidden a big torch battery in the tool box and this was now finished. So a modern rechargeable AGM battery for a fiver seemed like a good way forward 🙂


The tool box lid is normally held in place by the original button at the base and I suspect by a little screw in the top. I’d been running it without the screw and bound with red electrical tape (yes I know but better this than lose the tool box cap)! Modern wire is thinner at 1mm and this would sneak through the hole for the screw and onto the positive terminal. The negative terminal goes to earth on a mounting bolt in the tool box. It works 🙂

Insulating washer

I’d learned from previous rides out on the Turismo that a perennial problem is the rear tank fixing point. I’d planned to fix this by putting a nylon shoulder washer on either end of the mounting bar.


I took off the seat and retaining nuts only to find I’d already fixed the problem by putting petrol pipe over the end of the frame support. It looks like a good job (surely I didn’t do this) so I’ve left well alone!


I cleaned and adjusted the points but I still wasn’t happy with the ‘cheesey’ feel of the plug when I put it in. I’d pulled out a B6S and wondered if this was too hard. I’d remembered maybe a B8? Consultation suggested this change might make it easier to start so I ordered up a B7S and B8S. It did start and run okay but I had a niggling doubt about the thread despite not seeing any evidence of cross threading. The answer seems to be that the ‘S’ plug is too short. So we’ll have this fixed for Sunday and the quest for a Bronze award in the NRR. What could possibly go wrong…

Nick 🙂