'49 Short Block

A solid model: FL

Panhead Rocker Arm Rebuilding

When your rocker arm shaft is loose in your blocks - My first attempt at fixing this, saves you buying all new rocker blocks (expensive).  This check pin is "stepped" in ascending increments up to .875 diameter max.  Rocker shaft is .874 diameter.  The cast iron base was milled clean on the inside surface, removing(about .0015-.002 of material) just cleaning it up. You only need to remove material from the iron base, not the bronze top plate.  The blocks are bolted together and honed until our check pin just fits into both sides or (.875).  The steps on the pin tell you when you're "gettin' close" to the proper diameter.  Now the bores have a nice cross-hatch, and are round again - returning to factory specs. and clearances.
(PS. I think Hawbaker made the check pin?)

Crazy Kool Chops of Late . . .

Surfin' around - See what I found . . . !  Wowza . . .

Cool Bike . . .

. . . cool jeans.

Rayborn III

This is the son, who is really fast too . . . and has won many road races on high-powered equipment.  This is the only picture I've ever seen of him without his helmet.  Usually he's pictured layin' it way over in the corners . . . or in a full tuck on the backshoot !

Mama Tried Show Milwaukee - Motels & Lodging

If you're going to the Mama Tried Show and lookin' for a nice motel . . . The Forty Winks Inn is real nice, and a good price too !  I stayed there last year.  Clean rooms, nice shower, good coffee . . . and now the show is even a bit closer.  Off -95 Exit North on Hwy 100 - then West on Bluemound Road(Hwy18) a few blocks.  Address: Forty Winks Inn - 11017 W. Bluemound Road - PH: 414-774-2800

Paul Goldsmith

Paul was (maybe still rides motorcycle I heard) a professional motorcycle racer and race car driver . . . He came up through the ranks a few years before Joe Leonard (actually helped Leonard a bit with racing) and was (still is) a very popular rider, and historical figure in racing circles. (no pun intended)
Goldsmith could really wind up those Harley KRs back-in-the-day. Dirt tracks or pavement - he was a threat to win on most any type of track.  Paul always appears to be a bit taller, more lanky than the typical motorcycle racer.  The taller riders impress me (like Ricky Graham), since usually it's the "stocky-jockey" build type that makes a good flat-tracker or road racer.  Paul maybe had to work that much harder - making him one of the all-time greats of the sport.

XLR Exhaust Valves

Stainless exhaust valves with chromed stems with "tulip" shape.  Back in the 70s when you sent your ironheads to Jerry Branch for porting & polishing . . . they came back with these valves in them.  (and a 4 digit number stamped on the bottom of the head for identification).  1 3/4" head.   Quality constructed - and just cool. 

Race Only

 . . . well, maybe NOT the box-stock '52 K Model ?

Not Like the Others . . . BTSV

We got this lower end together.  Very nice.  It runs a close set of flywheels.  We notice everything is real tight in some of these older engines.  The flywheels are close to the cases, the scraper . . . the rods can be very close to the baffles . . . and a bit different assembly than overhead valve motors . . . they omit a thrust washer, etc . . .
Before doing one yourself -  
Read the manual for Big Twin Side Valve

XLCH Rockets

The power and torque of the Sportster XLCH? was demonstrated at the LA Coliseum in 1960.  Only question is . . . I don't see a generator - so maybe it was an XLR? (or maybe just removed generator and blocked the hole with a plate?  I don't really see a magneto in there?  An XLCH would climb that ramp anyway !  That looks scary high . . .

Flying off the Wagon . . .

IF I can stay focused - I'm golden.  It's just boring living in a small town in the dead of the winter months.  I must find things to make it interesting.  Like walking over to the shop after dark.(I do it a lot).  I get focused and work away . . . affixing a VLD cylinder to a boring plate and cutting valves seats, grinding valves, you can see I achieved nearly textbook seat widths for intakes and exhausts (exhaust a bit wider to carry away some heat) - The '49 lower is done, honed a set evo cylinders . . . walked home in the dead of a cold winter night, over the bridge with ice and water running cold and clear.  Opened a bottle of bourbon and started drinking, broke out the records, cranked 'em out - and turned myself into a total wreck by 10pm.  I had fun for about 4 hours - then 24 hours of "this sucks."  
Moral of this story: I should stick to work & drink Coca Cola.

Chris Berg @FM95.9 & AM1580

Chris does a great job on his morning show.  I walk by and he always gives me a wave.  Our local radio booth looks out over Main Street, so anybody can walk by and see 'em broadcasting.  Their weather report is always spot-on . . . just look out the window I like their blend of oldies & newbies.  AM1580 is my go-to station . . .

(P)art Exhibit at the Harley Museum

This is a unique idea - Harley-Davidson is showcasing drafted and air-brushed drawings from their old service manuals, advertisements, bulletins, etc.  I've been looking at these drawings since the age of 5 or 6yrs old.  After you learn a little more about these, they are a valuable tool for restoration, assembly and general information to the consumer (for which they were intended).  After your interest in these motorcycles becomes more and more advanced - you notice "inaccuracies" and incorrect drawings.  The artists saved a little time in many occasions by using the previous year's touched photos, and re-airbrushing parts - and even airbrushing entire parts out-of-the-picture . . . whereas the part is not shown at all.  Parts floating in mid-air with no brackets - fender rivets that disappeared?  It's kinda funny sometimes.  You know what would be really cool with this exhibit?  If you acquired the actual parts (like in the drawing above), and hung them from very thin thread in the correct positions.  You could cadmium plate and/or Parkerize the parts as original - and the viewer would get a 3 Dimensional look at the display parts.  Maybe they did do it ?  I'll have to go check it out soon.

Little John 5 Speed

Paul Cox acquired a couple of these for his latest bike build.  I noticed a case at the Cedar Rapids swap meet that had "Little John" cast right in the case, but I didn't know what it was.  I saw this advertisement in one of my old, magazines - wouldn't you just know it ?

Rex Beauchamp

His name still comes up . . . I talked to a guy from Michigan who owns a race bike of his . . . and, an XR ridden by Beauchamp recently sold at the Meccum Auction.  Time just keeps going . . .

Good Reading Over & Over

Old magazines from the late 60s, 70s and 80s are so great.  They are incredible useful sources of information and ideas to the motorcycle (and auto) enthusiast.  My thinking is that, guys just had less money back then - you had to do-what-you-could.  Now it's so easy to just "buy" anything you want.  That's why these mags were saved, 'cause they were a valuable resource.  Knowledge to be learned.  They had more tuning and tech-tips then today's publications . . . showing you steps to modify and service your hot rod.  Information.  Products.  Photographs showing the bike, the motor, the paint -  and the parts you want to see.  Now it's just different.  Hey . . . I page through Dice, Show Class, American Iron, but, it's just not the same.  These old issues are originals - from the era "when the shit we dig was in" . . . Now what goes around - comes around.  Old mags give it to you - from when it was bro - pick some up soon, turn on a lamp, kick back with a beverage - and enjoy.    (with a candy cane !)

My Dad's 70th Birthday Today

Still going . . . and still crazy about Harley-Davidsons
Happy Birthday Dad