Monday, January 23, 2017

Clapper Restoration

I got the phone call.  My original 1954 (date code A4) wishbone frame (and small parts) were painted, done and ready to be picked up !  Pick up paint days are the best ..........
It's been about 2 years since I started restoring this frame.  It just takes time to get an original frame done right.  Thanks to Jordan Dickinson, Jeff Gelner and Chad Clapper . . . it's back.  Solid and straight and right.  Thanks bros. 

All types of resto projects goin' on at this place, from Jeeps, classic antiques, muscle cars, etc . .  check out the Excelsior . . .

He finally got it done . . . all apart - restored - full paint and striping - all back together.  A beautiful job.  Perfect.

This motorcycle previously had an "amateur restoration"  . . . and you know what that looks like - It's much better now.  Preserving our American heritage with classic, antique motorcycles.

As many of you already know, this type of work (restoring bikes, cars, etc) can be very stressful and drive a guy totally mad - his own ways of stress relief . . .
I don't know why they call him Rattlecan, Chad's paint jobs are some of the best.

A young, local ruffian, Colby inherited this '77 from his grandmother (who bought it new).  I feel so old now.  I must say, Colby has a spirit and drive to get this thing restored, so we started rippin' it apart.  It's very rough - but hey, we're professionals.  Hiccup. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Renzo Pasolini

Did you know the Ducati Paso is named after him ?

Ice Screws and 10W-30

Water can't freeze at 40 degrees . . . too warm in Iowa.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Don't forget . . .

. . . to put the clutch rod in BEFORE you get the pressure plate on, all the springs, and the cover all sealed up.  I did that once, years ago - and I looked down after it was all done and saw the clutch rod there on a shop towel . . . FFFFFUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCKKKKKKK !

Exactly 28 Hours Later . . . Ice Track

Livin' in Iowa . . . be ready for a change at any moment.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Shredded Ice

Jeff & Ryan tried out their new "Canadian" ice screws yesterday on the main channel of the Cedar River.  9" of ice, sunshine and 20 degrees - perfect conditions with hard ice. 

Fast Eddie (from Cedar River H-D) came out and ran borrowed equipment all day.  Here he caught his foot, but saved the day and kept right on chargin' . . . smile on his face.
Bake was hooked.  Most of the time he went by so fast, I only caught part of a front or rear wheel . . .
Lil' Schmitty's 2nd time on ice.  He looked smooth, never saw him down . . . and a he plowed the track in between heats on his quad - Bonus !
Fastest guy of the day on AMA legal Kold Kutters . . . Brian Schmidtke.  I knew which bike was his, 'cause he's got his name on his tires.  Chris Carr's ol' No. 4.
Burton tries out Jeff's CR . . . he's diggin' the hook-up !
Ryan Hackleman drove up from Des Moines.  Thanks for comin' up dude, and nice talking to you again.  Ryan's a crazy ol' cat who's finally mellowing out - ha ha.   Yeah right.


TECH: Early Sportster Primary

These are the factory H-D locks, for tightening the sprocket shaft nut and clutch hub.  I used an original brass nut-lock under the hub nut.  Supposedly designed to help seal from outside oil.
Double-Check your primary chain adjuster bolts.  If the bottom one is too long, it will hit the flywheel (since it goes all the way through).  I use loc-tite red, and an extra heavy flat washer with lock. 
Your clutch will function properly if you line up the small hash on the clutch hub with the big hole in the steel plates.  Stamping (beveled side OUT) on the steels.  On new Raybestos fibers, I take a flat file and deburr(square up) all the slots of excessive fiber material, so they slide nice on the clutch basket dogs.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Winter Fun

I guess if I don't get my bike going . . . there's always this option ?

Drew's Ride

Here's a pic I found of me and Drew's bike (a couple years before he let me sleep on Dolly's couch). 

At the Drags

. . . No pan rocker covers needed.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Last Lap

My buddy Kike has a tricked-out Victory.  I've rode a lot of miles with him.  It's an all black bagger with 100cu in motor - and it never failed.  When we'd be at a stop, the old timers where gawkin' at my panhead or ironhead.  The rest were checkin' out his Victory.  I saw him pull away from many Harleys - it runs hard, looks trick - and I wouldn't feel stupid riding his bike (like I would a new Indian(yuk).  It's too bad the company is closing, 'cause I liked their motorcycles.  But, I never bought one myself . . . and that's probably what did it.  A lot of dudes didn't buy one.  No matter what Arlen Ness or Roland Sands could do . . . they ain't makin' anymore.  But that don't mean they weren't any good.

Now Kike will be like me . . . ridin' iron(or aluminum) they don't make anymore !  Hey, she liked it !

1978 Eagle River World's Championship

The Polaris factory team was called The Midnight Blue Express.  Jerry Bunke(Rushford, MN) Steve Thorsen(Fergus Falls, MN) and Todd Elmer

I was at this race (12 yrs old) and got an autographed photo of the Polaris Team for my friend Tony Trainer.  I'm a Yamaha fan, and they got blown off the track that day.  I wonder if he still has that glossy photo?  It's worth money now !

116 YEARS AGO . . .

Did you know the H-D Bar & Shield Logo was patented in 1911?  (CORRECTION: May of 1910) From now forward, I'm running some of my more obscure historical facts though Bill so we get it correct.  I like to keep it accurate on this blog.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

'66 Gear Box

Workin' on my friend Eric's (period crusty ironhead resto) 
1. Big Noot got the endplay debacle figured out. 
(a head-scratcher deal, you'd never seen before)
2. Ground the counter thrust washer
with special tool, - now it's spec.
3. Replaced a bad gear (we had one, last nice gear)
& measured race, shaft and rollers.
4. Replaced kicker bushing & Seal.
(I turn seal wrong-side out, bevel the edge and turn
it back to prevent cutting it with the shaft)
5. Kicker shaft took .014 shims, all tight...
it helps keep hub teeth engaged when starting.
6. New push-rod end seal
7. Dustin fixed/welded rear motor mount
8. I replaced and sized new shifter shaft bushings
in the case and gear cover. (gear cover bushing drilled
for grease zerk, without hitting the inside of bushing !
9. New sprocket seal (leave screws a bit loose, center it
with your sprocket, then snug up screws.
10. Countershaft bearing installed correctly
PS. Another helpful hint: I always take apart the Pawl Carrier and inspect the springs.  I bend 'em around, (sometimes they break) and check to see the springs are worn on one side.  If these bust, then it shifts like shit or not at all.  I grease them up, nice and slippery.  I like the factory springs(if you can find them) and the Eastern springs are ok too.  Over & Out.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

CP 1038 and/or CP 1035

I like to collect fasteners . . . even better when I buy a part and someone left the original bolt or screw to fill the threads.  CP 1038 bolt head designations.  Slotted, fillister heads.  1/4-24 threads.  All that is H-D fastener glory.  Kevin Baas' KH is missing the original gear cover screws - Hey, I got 'em.

Bolts stored in coffee and nut cans - Keeping traditions alive I'm back home from the swap, and she asks if I had fun, etc. - and I'm all excited to show her my rusty bolts and my nuts . . . ha ha

Swap Meet Scores

 . . . and I really don't buy anymore unless I can use it on my build, or need a good spare. 

Monday, January 9, 2017

Old Timer

This guy came up and politely asked me some early ironhead questions, which I answered for him.  As usual, we got to talkin' . . . and he built this bike himself.  It's got all types of neato modifications.  He was a customer of the Harley Hospital (Leo Payne's venture performance business) and Payne had his hands on this very engine. 
It always kinda blows my mind that I can meet someone 25+ years my senior, and we get into the same stuff on this very day.  We've had all the same failures with these bikes, and know what works and what doesn't - and it never fails . . . I learn something new from all this.  These ol' timers that still own their original bikes are the total shit.  The guy and his trusty old bike were just the coolest . . . right down to the boxed Camel pack, still in his front pocket.
(that's him in the old framed photo, deerskin vest, same bike)  
Terrible with names, but I remember faces....

Iggy Pop on CBS Good Morning Show

Old rockers are the best - and they always seem so normal, and make perfect sense, but they're often portrayed very differently by the media.  A true classic. 
Great story and interview - Well done.

Factory Harley-Davidson Leathers

Eric owns King's old leathers, complete with dirt.
 (I'm sure Rich remembers the spill, or maybe not!?)

Retro Rewind - Dubuque, Iowa

 . . . is Up in Smoke !  
If you missed it, you'd better go next year for sure - It's Fun !

Friday, January 6, 2017

Dave Barr is Riding the Edge

The first time I read this book, I somehow got Dave Barr's email, and he called me at work.  Holy Crap . . . it's Dave Barr on the phone !  We chatted, and it was way cool for him to call me(some nobody) and talk about his trip.  Now I'm reading it again. (every morning for 1/2 hr. before work) . . . and like any great book - it's better the second time (since I'm a shitty reader anyway).
I've been inspired, and educated by Dave Barr in many ways.  Because of Mr. Barr, I've become more Active - and less Stagnant.  Life is short, and if you're sitting on your ass, you can't get that day back.  I'm more careful with money.  I exercise more.  Small, problem issues don't bother Dave Barr(he may disagree) - and I try not to let them bother me.  It's a great book.
Before I knew the book existed, I saw him talking at a dealer show one year, not knowing who he was.  Dave Barr is a fighter and stands up for what he believes in . . . and a really nice dude too, just to call me up that day.  Thanks again Dave.  I'm at the paragraph where you're riding through Iowa right now . . . which I know was 'cake' compared to rest of the trip.  Incredible Reading !