I'm fortunate to get an invitation every year to this. It's a good time to meet everyone at the beginning of the week, see what's up, make plans . . . and I get to see some builds from all over the country. Thanks Michael !
First year K-Model gear cover . . . No "A" after the -52 casting number.
The generator idler shaft boss is a bit different on these. It has a floating (spring load) bushing that rides on the generator gear oil slinger - to let air pressure out - and keep the oil in . . . usually.
You know it's an early cover from 20 feet away by the grease zerk boss on the shifter shaft (it's on the bottom, at 6 o'clock) Only the first few years of gear covers are like this. I'll blast the covers and get the kicker boss built back up - all restored. This kicker cover is actually a later version.
These carburetors (mfg. by Tillotson) are popular on all types of engines. 4 cycle and 2 cycle. They were the common fuel delivery system on many 2 stroke snowmobile and boat engines. Harley-Davidson had this model as standard equipment on Sportsters and Big Twins in 1967-1971. The KRTT, XR750 and XLR ran Tillotson carbs (single and dual) for all their race engines. I restored this one for the iron XR750. The motor had a version with no accelerator pump - but this model may aid in starting, and be a bit more practical. I'm rounding up the correct throttle(internal) control, correct handlebars and cable control. May as well do it right - like the factory did . . . This carb has a fuel atomizing "bomb-site" in the bore, and a unique 2-piece choke disc that spring loaded to relieve pressure upon a backfire. I also found this rare velocity stack.
I knew the Hells Angels rode panhead choppers with upsweeps back in the 60s and 70s . . .
. . . but I didn't know they rode K Models too ? I guess it had to be at least 750cc, but if we calculate it out, it really only comes to like 742cc ? Huh? Ah, he's cool, we'll let 'em in anyway, plus his family runs a liquor store !
Full Moon Nathan picked up this vintage drag bike a couple years ago . . . and he keeps messin' with it, kinda restoring it, and upgrading a little. It runs an original KR loop, small stroker motor, and some other little goodies . . . but it's fairly stock - and was run in Indiana or Ohio back in the early 70s. He's planning on makin' a pass at the upcoming Meltdown Drags in Byron, Illinois in July.
I guess it wasn't cost effective to design the water jacket around the port? Wouldn't you have a more consistent temperature? It must not take much coolant to make a difference, since the passages look rather small?
A lot of extra weight (and crap) just to cool that damn cylinder head . . . I guess they call this progress? I don't know why I care, since I'll keep going places on my 50s and 60s machinery anyway . . .
The proto-type liquid cooled Harley-Davidson MX (above). I guess if all these marketing ideas would have hit on all (or at least 1) cylinder(s) . . . and these protos sold . . . sales could have been through the roof ! I guess that's why these companies keep trying new things, and implementing new ideas into their products. (Is that Larry Roeseler in the air ? . . . or Bruce?)
I got my cylinder back from Chad after he tig'd on my new cooling fin. Nice job ! Now I have a decent set of K cylinders, ready to be bored and fitted to +.010 pop-up pistons. I have some new cast iron guides, new nitrite valves and a nice set of '52-'53 valve covers. These will eventually replace the worn out set on my black, "Street K" . . .
Above: These K cylinders have a bit of core-shift here and there . . . so I'll true up these exhaust ports and make them even all the way around. I also use a carbide burr to relieve any steps, rat tails and bumps inside each port. I visualize which way the air is flowing, and give it a smooth path to (or away from) each valve, without changing the port shape.
Above: I'm also working on John Hove's WL cylinders. I'll probably go in and smooth out these ports too - maybe make it run a bit more efficiently? I'll grind the valves and seats, and check out his spring travel for his cams. These are aftermarket, and not bolt-on by any means. I'll check the piston clearance, ring gap and fitment. 9 times out of 10 they're too tight and need honed.
The cylinders are kinda rusty anyway . . . It's good that aftermarket parts are still available (better than no parts) but the quality isn't always up to par. I'll make 'em a nice set, set up to specs - good for many miles of enjoyable riding. Motorcycling is the best sport of all !
How the hell do these Triumph guys make it anywhere on these things ? This is just crazy. I can just see somebody who's new at this - trying to rewire their Trumpet. Sparks flyin' everywhere, shit getting welded together. Throw a switch . . . then loud pops and fire and more sparks !
I'd better stick with my magneto XLCH with 2 wires !
I hang out with these guys above (at the AMCA Viking Chapter Swap Meet) in St. Paul, MN. It's a good meet, lots of nice bikes . . . and it's pretty laid back. Prices are reasonable and the vendors have great coffee and ice cream. There's a steak dinner at night if you want too.
There's bathrooms and showers in the bottom of the water tower. You'd think the water pressure would be better - but it's the same. This year I'm taking my chopper (no storage) so I don't buy a bunch of stuff I don't really need.
I saved a pic of this Sportster from a few years ago.
I'm sure it's still running around someplace?
Egeberg's was a big dealer back-in-the-day up in the Twin Cities.
The weatherman said it's gonna be nice, so it's me and dad riding up !
Camping . . . drinking a beer, having a bratwurst.
. . . and there's the cool car show in North St. Paul Friday nite !
Anyone remember this contest? With matched Sportster and Corvette (at the time) to me, just seemed like something too good to be true. To a kid, it was the best prize imaginable. To win this would make you the richest person on earth - the ultimate car and the ultimate bike ! Wonder where they are today . . . ? Those gold wheels were so cool. Maybe Roth still owns it? I know he doesn't sell anything. He probably never did actually own it - just for the photo shoot.
Styles change, and parts & accessories end up in the garbage.
Years ago this guy designed a flathead(sidevalve) combustion chamber which created a turbulence suitable for improved mixing of gasoline and air. It's referred to as the "Ricardo" head design . . . and it's basic design was used by all the manufacturers - and it works.
Last night I was talking to a friend on the phone about the new 2017-18 Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Their sales are down, etc.
I got this idea:
It appears H-D kinda missed their chance a bit on a market for sales to these "new kid" riders I call 'em. The big FXR craze is back, and they dropped the Dynas (which is ok) but maybe design your new bike to be FXR like, and promote handling ! Design a model of XG similar to Brawny Built's flat track bike. Why can't they build a new "rigid frame" chopper-type model? Sounds funny, but I think they'd sell. Willie G. did a lot of these same things, and his models are now prized and still popular. No matter what the reason the buyer has for choosing the new H-D Rigid (HDR), or the XGFT "Flat Track" or possibly aFXRCH (Competition Handling) model . . . Sales would be directed to the (35% and growing) hard-working "new kids" who work for America, in America, and ride AMERICAN !
The baby boomers will get a new "hot rod" trike - The "T", The Double T and/or The Triple T (all based on performance upgrades . . . and for a small, around town, fuel efficient, lower cost ride - the Side Valve Returns ! An air cooled miniature flat head with about 20 cubic inches, low compression - can run on 20% ethanol fuel, so easy your grandma can start it . . . The HDFH "Flat Head" . . . with the Ricardo head.
Maybe take a step back to what worked in the past?
What would Harry do ?
They probably don't need me working in their Marketing Dept. . . . ?