Hairy Bikers and Other Petrol Heads

Discussion in 'Area 51' started by eastsidepilot, 20 March 2020.

  1. paulc

    paulc Western Thunderer

    Hi Adrian , yes i think you're correct about John Surtees but the guy with him is Tiff Needell aka fith gear presenter .
    I only ever got close to getting a bike when a family moved in next door and dumped one in their front garden .
    I was looking at it one day across the hedge when the owner came out and after talking said i could have it , for free if i wanted it . I said no as i was and still am a car nut but the bike , ahhhh a Royal Enfield . Oh well .
    Cheers Paul
  2. Stevesopwith

    Stevesopwith Western Thunderer

    This one has just returned from a major re-assembly by the AMC Meister, Ken de-Groome.

    Starts every time when he does it... sadly my 'knack' has declined somewhat in the last ten years !

    Lovely to look at though. :):).

    Matchless G3L 1946.jpg
  3. SimonT

    SimonT Western Thunderer

    You got it from Ken and it doesn't leak oil?;) A mate has had Ken do a load of his engines (Matchless, Brough, AJS) and his AJS trials bike is there now. (Cream job that looks like Steve McQueen should be on it.) Used to be a regular day out to take something up or collect. I'm now given free range to go and look at the layout while they discuss engines.
    My mate is responsible for this. It answers to Frankly and goes to the pub!
    PS The Matchless does look rather wonderful.
    Peter Cross likes this.
  4. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    Superb, don't want to teach granny to suck eggs but the trick with my Enfield one lunger was to just ease it over TDC then use all your body wieght on the kick starter, mind you I tried that on my last Triton that had an 11:1 compression ratio and it threw me over backwards :rolleyes:

    SimonT likes this.
  5. JimG

    JimG Western Thunderer

    Didn't it have a valve lifter? I didn't know that my newly acquired Jampot had a valve lifter until I was having a fight starting her at traffic lights in Glasgow, with kick backs and bruised shins, etc. Another motor cyclist stopped and told me about the valve lifter. He showed me how to use it and from then on, starting was a breeze - just over TDC using the lifter then just push down, no need to kick. Stared every time and she had quite a high compression ratio with the compression plate taken out.

  6. Allen M

    Allen M Western Thunderer

    Hi all
    This account about starting a big single reminded me of some I saw 30 or likely to be 40 years ago. The learner law had changed restricting the engine size (250cc?) unless permanently fitted with a sidecar. While out once I saw the sight. A lad in his late teens had said big single while all his mates had small bikes, mostly electric start. He was showing them how to start it, something like use the valve lifter, find TDC, then a good swing and it started. I don't think any of the about 1/2 dozen lads managed. I briefly thought of making an offer but it was such good entertainment watching from over the road that I didn't. I still wonder what they would have thought of some old bloke, I must have been in my 40s by then, joining them? And could I have started it?
    Being attached to the sidecar made it easier as the bike would not fall over.
    Having had a range of bikes from 50cc to 650cc, some with sidecar I now only have a 125cc maxi scooter. Having had my licence since 1960 and only road it once in the last year I will be sold as soon the lock-down is eased.
    Allen Morgan
  7. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    From what I remember it was disconnected.
  8. fenman

    fenman Active Member

    Garden and bike looking good Steve. Pete.
  9. Stevesopwith

    Stevesopwith Western Thunderer

    Thanks everybody... when my knee has recovered I'll give it another go. :thumbs:
  10. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    .....and there's always the old Le-Mans style start :D, that's how I got the Triton to start on a bad day.....but you need good knees for that as well :))
  11. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    Another favourite of mine was this Norton Featherbed Slimline with BSA power. Built from sourced spare parts basically, the frame and forks came as one. You might ask why build a Norbsa, well I had the engine and gearbox which I'd bought off an old mate who was skint, so it started there.

    Norbsa 650 twin..png
    The name Norbsa never quite had the same appeal as Triton and I'd bought the tank with Norton painted on it, but I did change it eventually.
    It was sold and I built another Triton :D....spec. for those interested was 11:1 comp.ratio ( it used to pink on 4 star), high lift cams, gas flowed head, high capacity oil pump, close ratio gearbox ( would hit 60 in first gear ) and big Amal's . I did get it to do an 11.5 sec. standing quarter time at a 'Run wot you Brung' meet at Santa Pod but burnt the clutch out. Made an amusing ride home with the close ratio box :rolleyes:. I reckon it was good for 130 mph but the old Smiths needle waived around like it was clockwork so couldn't really tell. :))

    Triton built '86.png
    Triton built '86. 2.png

    Jeez ! .....wish I'd kept all these:rolleyes::(.
    Last edited: 30 May 2020
    3 LINK, dibateg, Boyblunder and 6 others like this.
  12. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    Just about sums it all up :D...........

    Growing Old.jpg

  13. adrian

    adrian Flying Squad

    :thumbs: :thumbs: :thumbs: That's always been my mantra - although a subtle variation "growing old is mandatory - growing up is optional!"
    3 LINK, Allen M and eastsidepilot like this.
  14. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    They call them 'Bobbers' nowadays, not a word we'd 'ave recognised back in the '70's, we called them 'hardtails' or 'lowriders' then.
    Here's one I was building, in my Father's firms carpenters shop where I carried out my apprenticeship, this would be back in '74 ish using a '68 Bonnie :eek: sacrilege today, but I saw the light and starting building Tritons after :D.

    Scan_20200714 (4).png Scan_20200714 (5).png Scan_20200714 (6).png
  15. Allen M

    Allen M Western Thunderer

    I totally agree. A long time friend recons my age is about equal to my shoe size that is 10. I don't agree I think about 16 as I know the difference between boys and girls.:);)
    Allen M
    oldravendale, fenman and simond like this.
  16. simond

    simond Western Thunderer

    That’s discrimination, that is!
    oldravendale and 3 LINK like this.
  17. Nick Dunhill

    Nick Dunhill Western Thunderer

    My son and I are restoring this, although a vital component is missing due to C-19 issues.



    It's in his attic bedroom.....where else would you store a motorcycle?
    simond, Peter Cross, 3 LINK and 7 others like this.
  18. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    That's the way, start 'em young :thumbs:.

  19. adrian

    adrian Flying Squad

    Restoring? That looks more like a new build to me.
  20. Nick Dunhill

    Nick Dunhill Western Thunderer

    Hi Adrian.
    Thanks for the iron wire you gave me a couple of years ago, I'm still making fire irons from it!
    Yeah I had a big debate with a mate about restoration vs conservation. I paid quite a lot for the bike as it was surprisingly quite original. It has matching engine and frame numbers and the original tank, seat and forks etc, and the Victor Special models are very rare. My mate said I should just do an oily rag job on it to conserve what exists but a lot of it was too far gone. One of the forks had burst, the frame was cracked and had to be repaired. The rear shocks were shot and the electrics had largely been removed for competition use? The headlamp wasn't original and the brackets were completely rusty. The engine was in surprisingly good condition, just needed new big end and a clutch (and new valves and guides and primary chain etc)

    So basically we weren't going to get an MOT without rebuilding, and one thing lead to another and it ended up in the condition you see.

    So it is like a new build, and the debate is whether it's representative of the original bike or not? Lots of the bike is built from new reproduction or NOS parts and pretty much all of the fastners have been replaced with stainless items. Lots of the parts might well have been replaced anyway on a 50 yr old bike. Mudguards and wheel rims rot through, exhausts tyres and brake parts are consumables and before the days of Honda it was expected that you'd rebuild the engine after 10000miles maybe.

    So I don't know whether it was sensible to do a ground up resto like this. I am however looking forward to going out and posing on it!