For the manner in which men live is so different from the way in which they ought to live, that he who leaves the common course for that which he ought to follow will find that it leads him to ruin rather than safety.

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Monday, May 26, 2014

Aprilia Electric Stuff (updated)

see update at the end...

My Aprilia is a 2004 RSVR Factory. This particular vintage is known to have some issues with the alternator stator and the voltage regulator. From what I have read on these bikes, they do like to occasionally burn up one or the other. I decided yesterday to take the time to check the condition of mine.

With the side panel off of the bike, the regulator is easy to get to. The connector between the stator and the regulator is called the "brown"' stuff. It has a nasty little habit of burning up due to high resistance pins inside. The previous owner had already eliminated the brown connector from this bike, choosing to solder the leads together directly. You can see where the wires come into the left side of the regulator, the connections are under the silver insulation.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

There Are Some Repairs...

that you just don't want to do. Like fixing spark plug threads. It's one thing when an engine is apart. Replacing threads means making chips. Engines don't like chips.'s how it's done when the engine is together. On my friends '69 HD Shovel Head.

The weapon. This tap does a couple of different jobs. The end will act as an insertion tool for the threaded insert, it has a ramped cutter, and the upper section will cut the threads for the insert.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Head Lamps

Ever since I've had Kook, she's been sporting a rectangular Aris headlamp. This lamp has been through a few surgeries. It started off as a rusty pile. I had the reflector rechromed, and I powdercoated the bucket. I had to put in a new lamp socket, and on and on. A lot of work for a lamp, I know. After the last surgery, it developed a dead short. When I switched it on, the bike died. Time for a replacement.

My new 3 1/2" lamp next to the old Aris. My new mount was made to carry the look of the new oil tank mounts up to the front of the bike for a bit of balance. The round lamp is from Low Brow customs, and it's a very nice unit.

Bringin' it Home

I finally brought my Kook home from the shop. It's been two and a half years since I have experienced the joy of riding my Triumph. When building these old bikes there's a long list of things to do when you first get them running. I got through my head torques, timing checks, oil checks...basically all the non-glorious parts of chopperin'.
Nothing, and I mean nothing, beats a freeway blast on this bike. I don't ride all that fast, but I don't need to. It makes 65 feel like warp 9. She's low to the ground, narrow, naked, and loud. I'll have to post a pic that shows the scale, but imagine this...I'm 5'9", and the handle bars are barely at my hips when I stand next to her.

Her last day at the shop. Blue paper towel is an attempt to chase down a tricky oil leak...which I think I did. It's hard to not have at least a little leak somewhere.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Oil Tank issues

(I'm repeating myself just a little bit here...but now we get the full story)
Every now and then a cool idea just doesn't work out. The oil tank that I built for my chopper had internal plumbing and an integral oil filter. It looked cool and was sort of unique. After getting the engine fired up, I realized that it was over taxing on the oil pump. You see...(for those that don't know Triumphs)...the oil pump is a dual piston-type pump. One piston draws oil from the feed and pressurizes it through the engine. The other draws oil up from the crank case sump and returns it to the tank. The return side doesn't create much pressure, and requires free flowing lines.

Here is the tank. I think it's pretty damn cool. However, it just doesn't work.