Archive for October, 2014

I finally got around to posting some pics from our Barber 2014 Festival Trip.

As usual, a huge turnout of the faithful. This is an event that has some real momentum and seemed even busier than last year. Parking was at a premium due to the large turnout and I hope they have plans for more as it could put a damper on the event.

Friday may have been the peak day but Saturday was no slouch either.

Even the “Globe of Death” was a big hit. Imagine three bikes inside a 16 foot globe with a hot babe in the middle of this mayhem! Barely enough room turn one bike around let alone three of these guys whizzing around inside a teacup. Then one of the guys gets a flat and calmly finishes the show like it’s no big deal. Yikes.

Jerry Wood’s auction was the usual collection of junkers and jewels. A few bikes went out the door for bargain prices IMHO and some brought top dollar. Ya gotta love auctions.

Anyway, here are some pics.



20141010_103133Twin engine Bonnie that started and ran as nice as it looks

20141010_104700Jamie Goodson from Brooks LeatherĀ  and Ryan Ambrose racing for Big D Cycles

20141010_110522Alex Mclean pits

20141010_110630Alex Mclean’s tidy (and fast) Manx20141010_132821

Yours truly in front of the Triumph twin engine Bonneville Streamliner.

Too bad the salt was rained out this year

20141010_133611A clump of Vincents


Yet more Vincents….I mean you couldn’t swing a dead cat without hitting a Vincent at Barber’s this weekend. They were everywhere, I lost count at 60.


The Legendary “Gunga Din” that Rollie Free rode in his abbreviated swimwear.

They did an obligatory start up which deafened half the crowd. No matter, most of the old geezers were hard of hearing in the first place. What???!!!




Another auction picture


Part of the Trials event


NYC Norton pits

20141012_091538NYC Norton


Kenny hisself laboring away


Ryan Ambrose’sĀ  Triumph Thruxton championship winning bike


I had a few extra minutes on Saturday and pounded in some swingarm bushes. Of the course the manual seems to think they won’t need to be reamed. Yeah Right…

I stuck an old fork tube into the triple clamps to see if they would line up up ok. That worked out OK but I’ll need a 1 5/16″ socket to tighten up the stem nut. Looks like it might need to be thinwalled too. We’ll see whats available at good old Sears.

Finally got around to having the tires mounted on the rims so there is progress. Can’t wait to make it a rolling unit.



Well, got the frame back with its new coat of paint, so I figured I’d throw the tank on it to get some measurements for the seat.

Pounded in a set of steering head bearings and it looks like the triple clamps will go together with no major issues.

Next, the tires will go on the rims so I can hopefully make it a roller before the snow flies.

Jeez, the camera makes this thing look a mile long dunnit?


Finally got the front wheel laced up to a new rim and a hub I have been saving for just such an occasion.
It took a couple of tries to get the pattern right as it isn’t the stock layout or even the alternative alloy rim pattern. In the end I put in some nipples without spokes to get some starting angles and went from there.
Then there is the usual trick of jumping on the wheel to get it over far enough to center in the forks. Good times.
Anyway, it got done and looks pretty nifty, now I just have to polish out all the scratches I put in it. aaaarrrrrgggghhh
20141016_183719Here’s what it looks like for the initial mockup and measurement. It’s centered and trued, but Ill check the runout again after it rests.
20141016_183731Is it possible to have too much polished alloy?




It all started when I found an abandoned project on EBay. Someone had started to build a chopper of all things, and then decided against it after buying a crapload of expensive parts. I added it all up in my head and said this is a no brainer.
I was high bidder when it ended, made the road trip to pick the stuff up and my next project began.
After months of dead ends I finally found a straight frame. (Makes me regret tossing all the ones I was tripping over years ago.) Anyway, the good news is that I found one, stripped it and sent it off to the Vintage Vendor in VT to slap some paint on it.
You may notice in the pics some tasty stuff; namely a set of CNW triple clamps, a modified and powder coated transmission cradle, polished alloy tank and tons of stainless hardware. I left out the pic of the polished transmission with Quaife case and hydraulic clutch slave cylinder lest you be overcome with alloy lust.
Anyway, most of the big lumps are present including an interesting 750 engine with nicely polished ports etc. A nice winter project that I can’t wait to start on. Did mention the belt primary and the high output alternator?
1973 Commando frame

Norton 750 motor

Wheels and forks