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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #21 · (Edited)
With this the twentieth episode the heads are revisited from the very beginning of the project where they were quickly re-assembled after inspection. They deserve the same attention as the rest of the bike and as the heads were thoroughly checked, the rocker boxes deserve a rebuild.

A quick tear-down separates the heads from the rocker boxes and though while a visual appearance shows everything ok, it will need to be completely taken apart to be sure. The cracked glass on the ends of the nuts is an indicator that I should probably go chrome this time.

As the pieces are disassembled they are put in there own areas as to not mix parts. Re-assembled outside the unit you can hear some deflection in the bushing on the first one. So onto the second one, not as bad but still mild wear. I decide to break down the other head and see if it has the same wear indication and see what needs to be purchased.

The other rocker box had mild wear on both. It was that first one tapping on the box that had the most damage. A measurement of the shafts with the micrometers showed them within tolerance. Broken shaft and bushings would have meant a whole new set. Next all of the pads will be checked, if they are damaged the rocker cant be salvaged. All of the pads are shown to be good as well.

After seeing that only the bushings were the issue , someone on the forum was kind enough to send me the special tools, so all i needed was to procure the new bushings to refresh this unit. A 9/16 tap and a drift is used to extract the old bushings from the rockers. It did look as if some of the bushings in my bike were previously replaced at some point.

With the bushings arrived, Jims kit 17428-57K, I start with the oil port side, chamfered side in first matching the oil port hole in the bushing to the inside oil port hole. The tool brings the bushing flush into position. An inspection confirms that the oil hole lines up. On one of them the oil hole was slightly off, so id chased the hole with a small drill bit to ensure adequate oil flow. At this point everything will need to be set up for reaming, that will be in the next video.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #22 · (Edited)
Continuing with Part 21 the bushings have all been pressed in the the rocker arms and the must now be reamed to size. Ive leaded the rocker arms into a vice with soft jaws. The reamer in a T-bar with light oil is turned into the bushing cutting into the first and then the second one.

This reamer being a bit worn I found going in both directions was helpful , also finishing off with polish and a drill for final fitment. The test is with the fitment, which shows to fit nice without binding nor deflection.

With all of them done, I move onto the washing and polishing of the rocker boxes with jewelers rouge. once polishing is completed, assembly begins, the face of the spacers are cleaned op on sand paper and oil, then all pieces assembled in the rocker box. Old nuts, bolts and washers will ne used for the test assembly.

Once torqued, binding is checked and endplay is checked. .08 / .13 and .14 / .10 initially I tried to disassemble the boxes and install appropriate shims. I did NOT like how the shims fit and decided since everything was in specification I would forego the shims and keep the end-play. Everything was re-assembled with new hardware.

Now with the rocker boxes assembled, the mating surfaces are cleaned as well as on the heads, and the gaskets inspected. the head is then lowered onto the rocker box, flipping everything over the washers and nuts are installed. The slack drawn out begins the torquing sequence. In a star patters 145in/lbs to 175 in/lbs brings everything together.

The heads are ready to be installed onto the motor.


Administrator - American Legion Rider - KA5LRS
26,725 Posts
Holy cow..BATMAN!! this build started in 2019? what..
Yep, and well documented to boot. Not everyone knocks these out in a few days. Some have many irons in the fire. Or maybe in my case only sober up long enough to do a few things then go back to drinking. ha ha ha

65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #25 · (Edited)
In part 22 we have the bike on the on the new lift, having assembled our engine and transmission from smaller projects. All of these are brought together as preparations are done, and the rest of the oil system is removed so that the engine can be properly installed.

The review of this new Kendon fold away lift can be seen here on my channel

With the bike on the lift I have some things I'd finally like to do, this includes some rear brake work, decking the engine mounts, removing all oil system components. This work has to be done while the frame is empty. Since the oil components were removed i just cleaned everything out with kerosene and stored it away.

The front and rear engine mounts need to be prepped with a file carefully to remove any raises and deformities, generally directly around the holes. All paint is removed too.

Once everything was ready, Jason stopped by to assist in bringing the engine over from the bench to the frame. We get to see the new jack in action, and a few quirks. At the right height it slid over from the motorcycle jack right into the bike. Then it was immediately secured with one bolt for safety.

With the engine now in the frame the rear bolts and front were inserted but the fronts were used only for alignment checking for resistance to center them. Only the rear bolts are tightened. They are tightened to 24 then 38 ft/lbs. The front bolts should come out with no issue at all if the engine is straight. The shift assembly/kick-stand is removed for further work.

Feeler gauges are used on the front to check clearance on each mount. Checking both front and side of each mount. 2.5 and 3 thou on one mount was sufficient. Once the shims were set the skid plate was added to the bottom of the chassis.

Now the front mounting bolts can be snugged with the rear shield mounts, Then the front mounts are torqued to 25 then 38 ft/lbs. a sharp boxcutter is then used to cut the protruding shim material, bending them back and forth to crack them. This area is finally cleaned and painted over with the paint used for the frame bringing this chapter to a close.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #26 · (Edited)
Continuing on with chapter 23, the engine now mounted and shimmed into the frame, the top end can now be assembled.Previously the heads have been redone as well as the rocker boxes so they are ready to go right back on. All of the bolts are prepared and inspected. A 9/16 torque adapter is necessary for this job. An important note, If the one bolt was not placed in when the cylinder was mounted, it will become evident now.

The head gasket came with the kit, and it only goes on one way. Each bolt had the threads lightly oiled. All mating surfaces were re-cleaned. The head was loaded into position, and all bolts loosely fitted so that the head can still rotate. The intake manifold is used to set the proper angle between the two heads before lightly tightening them down to stop rotation.

Now all of the slack is removed from all bolts and they are tighten just a few ft/lbs. Using the accepted shovelhead torquing sequence, each head is torqued beginning at 25 then 50, then finally 65 ft/lbs.

With the heads torques the top mount can be re-attached. I had bought a new one, but it was garbage, the angle was wrong as demonstrated, and I opted to stay with my old one. The VOES is installed with the bracket mount. Also the rigid oil lines are installed as well. The top mounts are torques to 40 ft/lbs. Finally the pushrods, still taped to identify are cleaned and reassembled. Installed into the engine they are adjusted with an adjustment gauge. All new seals were provided in the top end rebuild kit. With the pushrods completed, the engine assembly and final mounting is done.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #27 · (Edited)
Now at Chapter 24 there are several projects underway as well as a main project which is the installation of the transmission. Firstly, the battery tray mount was falling off and it appeared that the hole was oval and deeded to be welded and re-tapped so I started off with this, as well as clearing out any unnecessary parts in the area. Paint repair on the frame was also done around the transmission area. The rear brake Tee also needed some work before the tranny could go in.

With that work out of the way the transmission mounting hardware was cleaned and inspected before assembling so the tranny could be loaded in. All bolts were loosely fit in. The stator cover was then disassembled so that the new stator could be installed. While this was going on the chain was soaked in kerosene and regularly agitated.

The chain is then loaded onto the sprocket after the rear bearing is inspected, seating through the transmission sprocket around and locked.

Moving onto the inner primary, the bearing was swapped out as it was end of life and replaced with a high quality bearing. The race required some peening to fix up but it was a minor issue.

One issue was an unfinished lip repair by the machinist that required unexpected work that was a long setback also requiring spacers to align the primary to the engine. Upon assembly Id found a thread the machinist was supposed to fix but did not. I had to stop and heli-coil that.

All new bolts were used from a kit from colony after the repair. Once repairs it became evident that there was more bad news, my tranny mount was not true and had to be replaced. I went with an upgraded mount that could allow for proper shimming against the frame.

This was complimented with all new nylocks and washers to tie down the transmission.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Chapter 25 is a departure from the bike itself to focus specifically on the starter. Its never operated correctly relegating the bike to kick only. I'd like to have a go at it, before my knee gives out. This is brought into the house for work. The project kicks off with the removal of the two main housing studs. Immediately, things aren't looking good.

It would seem that the main bearing is just floating in the cover. So the armature is removed, followed by the end cap, and a look at the brushes show it to be so so.... Parts cleanup begins with kerosene. The outer housing is cleaned and inspected as a separate unit. The top cover is cleaned but it looks like the bushing has been eaten away somehow.

I was also finding inconsistencies with the thrust washers and not able to find a source for them.. The commutators were cleaned and inspected to see if the armature could be kept.

The old bushing is removed with a 1/2in tap, The cap was then sandblasted and powder-coated. the new bushing then pressed in.The old brushes were pulled out of the holder and then the unit cleaned, the old brushes de-soldered. The kit also came with a new isolation block.

A 50cal bore brush is used to bring texture to the bushing for the grease to provide a barrier. The cap was peaned for the new bearing, Timken 6004-ZZ to remove all of the slop.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Now in chapter 26 having completed the starter rebuild in the last chapter the next logical step will be starter installation. While sadly a new starter was ultimately used for the build, every effort was made to restore the old one.

Looking back in chapter 24 we remember that spacers were added to accommodate too much taken off by the machinist on the side of the engine. Everything had to be reassembled just to check clearance in the inner primary. The belt is used to determine everything is parallel. Rotating the engine a few times sets the offset, this was about dead on. At this time the first of two chain tensioners is now replaced, this was the broken one on the high side as the chain is now reconnected.

Now the forward controls are cleaned and re-installed. Then the linkage to the shifter is reconnected. All of the hardware within the inner primary is tightened down, the nylocks replaced with new. The two safety bolts are then tied off with safety wire.

The clutch hub nut comes to the shop to press out the seal, there was only one in it, ive replaced it with two seals, a more modern setup. The surface of the clutch hub and woodruff key mounting area on the shaft for the transmission receives a light coat of anti seize. This is also applied to the mating surface of the clutch hub before pressing it in, lining it up with the key using the new provided lock washer.

At this time the starter is mated to the housing and installed into the inner primary. New gaskets and deflectors were purchased, a bracket is removed from the transmission for mounting. The oil tank is fit quickly just to test for obstruction. Once the starter is completed it is followed by the solenoid.

Now the basket and belt are re-added, followed by the clutch hub nut, shifting through to 4th gear rotating the tyre. The rear is then dropped , and with the wife holding the rear brake the clutch hub nut is torqued down. A primary locking bar is used to lock up the the sprockets allowing the sprocket on the engine.

Finally the clutch basket is cleaned, along with new clutch plates and cleaned friction plates I repack the basket in order. Finishing off with the releasing disk. The clutch will be setup n the next video.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Chapter 27 continues with the setup of the clutch, installed in the last chapter. This is a five finger basket. Some prefer 3 some 5, both have their advantages and drawbacks. The locking tool placed in so long ago is safely removed. I use the standard procedure for setting up the clutch adjustment, nothing fancy.

Once the clutch adjustment is completed and tested the project progresses to the oil pan. Cleaned and inspected, repaired by Jason long ago. The bottom hose is pre-connected. also the ignition switch is cleaned up and resealed. With that the pan is easily negotiated back in from the high side and then sent in straight on the low side. With the rubber mounts installed followed by the ignition switch, everything is buckled down.

All of the pieces that attach to the oil tank are thoroughly cleaned and then re-attached. Electrical connections for the starter are now connected up before the battery tray would obstruct it. Other electrical connections are also made as necessary. Oil lines are also added from the tank to the bike at this time. As the hose connections progress, the thermostat is added off of the oil cooler.

The battery tray was disassembled and sandblasted at the bug ranch followed by a good satin powder coat. Reassembled the battery tray is mounted onto the bike which also finalizes the oil pan mount completing the tasks for this chapter.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Before getting fully underway with part 28 I'd decided that the Rear brake line had to go, it was simply too dangerous. Id measured out the size and ordered a replacement line, adding along with it the correct bends to accommodate the forward controls. Id actually got the bends first and then measured the lines against them for a good fit. The downward angled piece int he rear ensured adequate clearance at the transmission area.

I was finally able to install my Twintec pulling from storage, only for it to break upon installation. The folks at Twintek gave me an RMA price for a new one even though it was out of warentee for years so it was greatly appreciated. While waiting on shipping i had other things to do.


The starter relay connector was garbage, and I replaced it pin for pin with a new one.

Turns out the rubber mount at the speedometer is a special part, a one-off, and , it broke whilst removing. Mine was also different requiring modification as received, but it turned out nice.

The Oil pan trim screws were added

When the Ignition arrived all of these small tasks were out of the way. The wiring of the ignition as well as the coil, and most of the other wiring will need to be done at this time. The coil was re-tested before installation. All ignition wiring was then accomplished. A nice chrome outer cover finishes the coil off.

A new battery will also be installed. Though everything was pre-staged with the old battery. The regulator is also installed at this time. As the battery was topping off, the rear lamp was completely redone.

Finally in the smoke testing, only one bad connection was found and repaired. The cluster was added for testing as well.

The timing hole is opened to find TDC on compression. This is also annotated on the stator cover once found. The ignition is turned anti clockwise until the light is on, rotating till off then locked down, staticly timed.

The project is finished off with the installation of the battery cover.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Chapter 29 takes the project to installation of the intake manifold, the setup of the carb as well as an S&S stealth Air kit. I chose this kit so I could put on a stock harley air filter cover and not a mee-too tear drop S&S cover.

I had these old two piece clamps, that I did not have a lot of luck with so I went with a different setup on the manifold. The S&S ones Are better and I found them on JP cycels for 16$. To my surprise it was 16$ each!!! I found the distributor for these clams and got them for half price.

DIXON Stainless Steel TBC238 2.38 ID on Amazon

While waiting on the clamp, I snuck in the low side chain tensioner work....

I had to get a new manifold as I had the old O ring manifold. Using a type C bit I ported It for VOES. The Rubber rings were per-treated with Jacks 327. The manifold was installed with the clamps centered checking for crimping. A fitting was assembled between the barb fitting and the VOES.

The carb went back on the bench to check the Jets, I had a 68/295, I replaced the 68 with a 72.

Again, the S&S stealth kit was purchased as to not reuse the ugly ass tear drop air filter cover. I follow the assembly instructions, there were no issues doing so. The installation of the carb mount necessitated a longer case bolt. Another trip to Ace solved the issue. I left some of the thread on the new bolt for a clutch cable support. Due to the carb mount, one of the carb bolts is also too short, also requiring a slightly longer bolt from Ace hardware.

The carb bolted right on with a new o-ring, and the throttle cable was connected. This is followed by the mount for the air filter with the choke level. The overflow tube added thereafter. This is followed by the new air filter secured with two bolts.A special chrome beveled hex screw was purchased at ace and the air filter was slightly countersunk, all this so my original air filter would perfectly fit like it was stock.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Chapter 30 brings the project to a final checklist before the priming and timing. Ill start from back to front from my list, the first task is the chain alignment and tension. For this task Ill be trying out a new tool to see how well it works. The chain guard will be removed to make things easier. Firstly, I did want to see if the chain slack was uniform along the chain which it was, then I adjusted a ballpark slack measurement before installing the device. It provides for a fine view for minor adjustments of the rear end to show exactly when the rear wheel is aligned to the transmission.

With the alignment done the rear was torques down, and the alignment checked for shifting. The tool worked out very nicely. The chain guard is cleaned and reinstalled though I would like to replace it. For now though its onward to Brake bleeding, starting with the rear brakes. With that completed the rear brakes feel very good.

I move onward to the transmission topping off with 80W90 using a level on the frame in conjunction with the level screw. One bolt loose on the clutch arm, mom stopped by so I let her fix it.

I never liked how the license plate sit so I modified the bracket to lower it about 1.2 inch. I them moved forward to the front brakes, and it was apparent that they were leaking bad on the high side needing a removal and rebuild.

Disassembled on the bench, it is cleaned and reassembled with a new seal kit. Reinstalled, the front brake system was gravity bled and then with the pneumatic system on both sides.

A good amount of stuff done, the goal is to finish the checklist in the next chapter.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Chapter 31 concludes the checklist starting with the installation of the inner primary. The gasket is first greased to be removable, then the bearing for the starter Bendix is greased along with the thrust washer. Guide puns set up the installation, its an exercise to get everything lined up with the gasket as the first few bolts go in. These, in aluminum are tightened by hand in a cross pattern. The protective tape on the inner primary is finally removed. The covers For the primary are then installed except for the timing cover.

Last time my kick stand rubber fell off, this time I'm going to clean the surface with a Dremel before re-installation. With the cover installed the kickstand assembly can be re-installed.

Next the exhaust pipes were pulled from storage, cleaned up and inspected. The ends cleaned like new are dressed with grey RTV along with new exhaust gaskets, this has always worked for me. Ive never been a big fan of the single bolt system.

Following this I was simply going to drop in the oil filter and add oil but the cap had seized up but was able to be repaired. After fixing it I had added 3 quarts until I could determine the level after priming.

The chain was then lubed, using a cardboard wedge so I wouldn't make a mess. I used more than usual since the chain was completely stripped and de-greased.

With the tyre pressure checked, I recorded the ignition settings and then readjusted them for a special config to set up timing . Following this the seat was installed.

Finally Lilly, my special assistant installed the starter onto the bike. Completing all tasks on the checklist.


65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #35 ·
Finally arriving at chapter 32 where we are ready to hear the engine run for the first time. Before doing so however the oil system must be primed properly. Id like to be sure that we have proper lubrication after all of the work that has been done I don't want to ruin it on the first fire.

Taking the return hose off of the oil pan and replacing it with a glass jar will provide a good indicator for success. All of the sections of the oil pump and tappet filters are opened up and a few pushes on the kicker are given. Walking away I let gravity do its thing. 30 minutes later I come back to see how things are progressing.

Pushing the kicker I can see as oil fills one passage, I close it in order, wait and test and move onto the next passage. This continues until all passages are closed. At this point the electric starter should show a few pounds after a few seconds of running. This is an indication that its safe to run for several more seconds until it reaches the jar, and the unit is primed. Everything is re-assembled.

With no need to Push the kickstarter any further the plugs are re-installed along with the cables, the gap, measured at .040. Now the fuel bottle can be connected to the carb I add some E0 gasoline to the bottle.

One last inspection and a test of the carb settings, I set up my flir camera on the low side, were going to run the bike once as a smoke test and quick setup. Its amazing how quick it heats up when its a new build. A quick dial in and its turned off. This is followed by an inspection with a complete cool down before Jason arrives.

During the cool down I take the time to clean up the rear type and other odds and ends, As well as a full inspection.

Later that afternoon, with Jason stationed at the low side the bike was run again to set up the timing. He had the light and called out the direction as I set it on the high side. The moment the timing was set, the bike was shut down. The settings on the Bike were set back to the correct running mode. All the remaining covers were then re-installed.

The gas tanks then came out of storage and were cleaned. Minor rust inside was mitigated with Ospho. The fuel valve was however replaced. With the tanks ready, they were mounted, along with the gauge pod and bib. Completing the Build.

Time to take it on the Road and seat the rings, but that's for another episode....

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