PUCH 250 SGS

Restoring a barn-fresh 1966 Sears Allstate

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Amal tips

Amal - high speed modI had my Amal concentric carbs sleeved by Bruce Chessel of Woodstock ON – it was the best thing I’ve done for the bike. Sleeving the carb is actually a bit of a misnomer as it is the slide that gets sleeved, the body is just bored out and the slide is sleeved in brass to prevent galling from like metals.

I stumbled upon this service bulletin in a forum the other day and thought it worthy of reposting. My 750 commando is so thirsty at WOT that i need to open both fuel taps to keep the engine from stumbling – perhaps this will give a bit more top end?

Here’s a note from Dave Comeau (Atlantic Green Technical Services) when I was running 32mm carbs before I got the original 30mm Amals re-sleeved:

The ’70 model you show on your website, assuming it is the one with carb problem would not have originally been a 32mm. However that is not a big deal that they are not 30mm.
Your symptom of rough running at just off idle/light cruise is indeed….. cutaway.
Raising the needle will have more affect at bigger throttle settings.
If you have combat carbs with 3 cutaway, you will do better if you mod them to 3-1/2 or try them at 3-1/4 before you go all the way to the full 1/2.
IIRC each cutaway # is 1/16″ ,,,,,so a 3 cutaway is 3/16″
1/2 is 1/32″ custom 1/4 is 1/64″

posted by Fastback in mechanical,performance,restoration and have No Comments

’74 850 Commando – start at the fenders.

I’m getting the ’74 850 Norton Commando ready for sale in the spring. Phase one is to dig out the parts and see what’s missing, what needs help and generally what’s what. I’ve never had the bike running as I bought it in mid tear-down and just dragged it all home and put a tarp over it.

Today I got out the fenders and realized they are dirty (paint overspray), dented and looking pretty sad. I decided to do a quick fix on the front fender dents from a bottoming out – the bike came with two front fenders and I think this was the spare. I was in a rush (not much time theses days…) and the final product isn’t perfect but good enough – I forgot how picky stainless is to polish – very similar process needed as with Platinum.

The bike has chromed covers – not my cup of tea but it’s not looking so bad cleaned up.  I see one reason the bike was apart, looks like the oil tank was brazed, needs a lick of paint.

posted by Fastback in restoration,Uncategorized and have No Comments

CVMG Paris 2013

My annual pilgrimage to Paris (Ontario that is…) for the Canadian Vintage Motorcycle Group’s annual rally.

Our camp was busted buy the keystone cops for having a “fire” when Paul tossed the wiener wrapper into the bbq… it flared for all of 35 seconds disappearing into ash on the coals, this happened just as the 1920’s cop car drove by, prompting screeching tires, headlight interrogation a hilariously absurd grilling (pun intended) regarding fire, or the absence of fire, wieners and what is or is not a fire…. not our first run in with the overly enthusiastic volunteer keepers of the peace.

Note the mileage on the Puch, before and after.

posted by Fastback in cool bikes,events/shows and have No Comments

Dead of winter – parts on order

Eight inches of snow fell in the last few days and it feels like winter! The garage is nice and cozy and Alison has kindly taken our children to her mother’s house for the weekend.  That leaves me free to waste time ordering motorcycle parts and dreaming of warm weather and children bouncing in the sidecar!

Yesterday while Paul and I were trying to master walnut shell blasting (not so good), I was looking at my Velorex 560 and realized I really should get it the proper sized rim and tire.  I had to take a look at the rim and try to figure out which is the hub I’ve got as it determines spoke length. I am ordering parts from http://www.jawamarkt.cz/en. The language is a bit odd on the website but I believe that “ribbing upward” refers to the 360 style of hub (shown below).

I am hoping that the shipping will be reasonable, but I’ve ordered some Hungarian tires too so it might be a bit heavy! I will use the same tires on the Puch as well – might as well go exotic!

360 Jawa hub

I need to rebuild the shocks and forks on the Puch, so I’ll place an order with the Austrians for parts soon. I suppose I should really look at the wheel bearings and brake shoes while I am pushing for road safety certification.

I need a rear tire for my Norton 750 Commando too and want to repair the bondo that poped out. This time I will use fiberglass to make up the difference and just use bondo for a final finish.

Dreams of BMW’s are on hold for the moment… sigh.

posted by Fastback in parts,restoration,Sidecar and have Comment (1)

Anglo-Germanic love affair

I’m dipping my  toe into the into the  world of BMW motorcycle ownership and it seems that I’ve discovered another subculture of motorcyclist. Which leads me to the conclusion that bike owners are like their bikes. British bike owners, (BSA, Norton, Triumph etc.) are used to the engineering idiosyncrasies of bikes made in what was effectively a large scale cottage industry.

I know a guy into rat bikes, mostly I think, because a can of flat black spray paint covers up his complete lack of technical knowledge. ok – I admit this theory is all very loosely based, no empirical research has been done, but BMW-land seems to be a very orderly place.  The forums are organized,  bikes are highly documented and generally it seems a very well organized bunch of owners, verging on anal-retentive, which isn’t surprising for followers of a German bike made in the same high standards factory as aircraft engines until the late 60s.

Check out the video made for Untitled Motorcycles in the UK – they are producing “bespoke” customs and have a noir commercial featuring, you guessed it, vintage BMW motorcycles.

posted by Fastback in cool bikes,rants & rambling,restoration and have No Comments