Saturday, July 23

Panhead update

When I realised the barrels and pistons were shot, I called everyone I know for advice about who to go to for professional advice and repairs. This job is beyond me.

I had a few recommendations, all of whom I'd heard good things about; Toshi even offered to look at it for me when it gets a bit quieter and colder.

But I am impatient; this is my only bike. I want to ride again sooner rather than later. So the Pan is with Richard Millard near Lincoln; he's a top bloke, with an excellent reputation – especially with other people in the trade. He has a lovely Knuck with some very rare old bits on it. He even shared a house with Jesse James years ago in the early days of WCC...

Rich has already split the cases and checked everything over so we know where we're at.

The good news? Some money has been spent on this engine in the not too distant past: JIMS sprocket shaft, nearly new Manley valves, etc. Rich also told me the cases are some of the best he's ever seen: unbodged, unmended and unmarked. The '56 heads are in great nick, too, as is the oil pump.

Bad news? The pinion shaft is worn, and the bearings are pitted. Both should be replaced as the crank had lateral and up 'n' down play. The crank will therefore need re-balancing and shimming. I also need a new primary chain, cylinders and pistons.

So, it could have been worse... and better. I will end up with an engine that I can rely on, and that I will be able to ride again soon this year... not next.

(Thanks for those cylinders Bob, unfortunately Rich doesn't want to risk them as he doesn't know how far the rust has penetrated the bores.)

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