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Thread: 1920 Harley Model F

  1. #161
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
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    Blighty
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    Hello folks, well its time for me to post a small update on my 20F and hopeful more updates to come in the near future.

    If you remember I found that the bores were in bad condition. The first port of call was to find someone who could be reliably trusted to bore out these blind cylinders. I spoke to Steve Slocombe who kindly put me in touch with the guy that he uses, the only downside was that he was 250 miles away.

    I also spoke to someone more local who came recommended so I went to him.

    The first thing he noticed was that my cylinders had been relined previously. This must have been done some time prior to 1936 which is the last time the bike was on the road. I left the cylinders with him and to cut a long story short it turned out that the existing liners have cleaned up nicely. As well as the scores and pitting the bores were also oval. No wonder it ran like a smoke machine. I have been told though that the previous lining job was actually very good. There are still some marks at the very bottom of the bores but they are below the rings so it is not a concern.

    After a debate and lots of thought about new pistons, I decided to go with new cast iron pistons so I spoke to another specialist also reasonably local to me who could cast them for me. I picked the pistons up just before Christmas. Here is a picture of the new piston castings, one old piston and the core box and pattern.




    Here is a close up of one old piston next to a new casting. Somewhere inside the one of the left is something that looks like the one on the right.




    I would have quite liked to have machined the pistons myself but 2 things put me off. One, I would have been really annoyed if I had made a mistake. Two, my milling machine isn’t functional at the moment so I don’t actually have the equipment available to do them. Therefore I got someone to machine them for me. I have used a more modern style plain cast iron rings which have been kept high to make sure that they avoid any of the remaining few marks at the bottom of the bore.

    I picked the pistons and cylinders up this morning (14th April 17)


    Once I knew that the pistons were done I knew that the next job was balance hence my post over in the Engine section.


    I deliberately hadn’t pulled the bottom end apart until the pistons were done so that the disassembly will still be reasonably fresh in my mind when I go to re-assemble it. One evening this week I reduced it from one lump into lots of bits.







    That brings things up to date. Whilst that is happening I need to find someone to machine the cylinders to accept new exhaust valve guides because the new valves are at best a rattle fit in the old integral guides.

    I do have a couple of other jobs to do which I had delayed until I had the engine work in hand so hopefully everything will come together in time to get some miles on the bike in the not too distant future.

    Watch this space.

    John
    Last edited by ihrescue; 03-18-2018 at 12:52 PM. Reason: This post was edited to correct some bad photo links

  2. #162
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Sarasota, Florida
    Posts
    3,830

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    You certainly have been busy, and productive, John; and your timing looks like it will work out quite well, with Summer just around the corner. I am so impressed by your thoroughness, and desire to make your '20 run well. I am looking forward to hearing your impression of it's road manners. Are there some good places to ride in your vicinity?
    Eric Smith
    AMCA #886

  3. #163
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    United States
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    442

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    These "Build Threads" always amaze me on what you guys can do! Even though I don't have an "F" Model, I've been "watching" this build.
    Jim

    AMCA #6520

  4. #164
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    Dec 2015
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    Blighty
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    Thanks for the comments guys.


    Quote Originally Posted by exeric View Post
    I am looking forward to hearing your impression of it's road manners. Are there some good places to ride in your vicinity?

    I am keen to get to know how it rides too Eric.

    Without publishing my exact address on here I live in a village just to the west of the City of York. If you dont know, York is a very historic city and is very popular with tourists.

    I live in a very rural area and the roads outside my house have on average probably 1 car every 15 to 20 minutes. Also I am also close to the North York Moors and also the Yorkshire Dales which are also very picturesque.

    If I ever get it on the road I will see if I can borrow my Nieces GoPro and put up a video.

    John

  5. #165
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    Sep 2005
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    I would love to see a GoPro of your region, John. When you say Moors, I think of those fantastic Hammer horror films of the '60s with Christopher Lee, and Peter Cushing. With those guys around, you would want a motorcycle that could get up and go at a moments notice
    Eric Smith
    AMCA #886

  6. #166
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    Dec 2015
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    Blighty
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    Ha ha, probably not my 20F at the moment then.

    The original Hound of the Baskervilles comes to mind for me and of course who could forget An American Werewolf in London where they get caught on the moors in the fog and end up in the pub called the Slaughtered Lamb with the pentagram drawn on the wall. (who could forget Jenny Agutter in that film too)

    I cant promise the Slaughtered Lamb pub and I hope it doesn’t turn out to be a horror film but once I get it squared away I will see about doing a home movie.

    John

  7. #167

  8. #168
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
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    Blighty
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    Hello everyone I am finally able to start updating this thread and, hopefully, get this bike back together in the not too distant future.

    First a note about pictures. As you all will have noticed most of the pictures to date have succumbed to the Photobucket issue.

    From this point on I will host pictures on this thread on the amca site so that I avoid the issue from now.

    However it is possible to get around the Photobucket issue. If you use the browser Chrome or Firefox then you can install an add on that fixes the issue. I have the add on and havent had a problem since and I can view pictures on many threads on various sites that I cant see if I use a different device. Occasionally you may need to update the add on.

    You just need to google "Photobucket Firefox fix" or "Photobucket Chrome fix" and you will get several links to the relevant fix for your browser.

    Once you have got it you will be able to see all of the broken picture links on this and other forums.

    John

  9. #169
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    Dec 2015
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    Blighty
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    So, in the last proper installment I had in my possession cylinders that had been bored out just to the point where they were clean. I then had new piston cast in cast iron to match the bores and they had been machined to size.

    Unfortunately there was a problem, the new pistons had been machined incorrectly. Without going into too much detail the main problem was that the gudgeon pin/wrist pin holes didn't line up across the piston. in order to get them in line would mean making them bigger which in turn would mean a bigger pin which would leave the small end bush too thin.

    After much thought I realised that the only solution was more new pistons.

    The problem was that the foundry that cast them was quite busy and it meant I had to wait until they had a bigger job that they could fit mine in with. In the end it was about 4 months before they were able to do them for me.

    I then entrusted the machining to a guy who specialises in making steam engines and he has done a great job although he was very busy so it was a couple of months before he could do them. (at this point I still didn't have a functional mill so would have struggled to do it myself)

    Here is a picture of one of them.




    At this point (mid October 2017) I had another problem. Here is one of the less graphic pictures. I knew it was not so good when I could see a bit of bone sticking out at the base of my fingernail. This was on my right hand and I am a righty so I was curtailed from, amongst other things, making progress on my bike projects. I ended up with a pin in it for about 6 weeks. Without turning this into too much of a tale of woe I had another problem over Christmas so it was January before I was firing on all cylinders again.



    Since then I have had a few other things to attend to but now I can get back to the 20F.

    I built some knife edges (see my "Knife Edges" thread in the engine section) so that I could work out if my assembly needed re-balancing with the new pistons and if it did then I could also re balance it myself. As it turned out I have decided that the balance is fine as it is.




    Next the bottom end needs to go together which is where I am now.




    However the various rollers, cams and gears in the timing case need to be lined up. The manual says to use stacks of fibre washers 1/64" thick to do so. I have plenty of fibre washers but fibre doesn't immediately jump out to me as the ideal choice to shim gears and such like to line them up. My gears and rollers do need some adjustment to get them to line up properly. There were none in the engine when I took it apart but given that the engine is apart I want to align things properly. I can make shims and I have at my disposal fibre, delrin, teflon, nylon, bearing bronze and of course steel. My gut says that bronze would be best but what do folks on here think. Should I stick with fibre or change to a different material?












    John

  10. #170
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    740

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    John, it's great to see you are back in commission, both your finger and 20F thread ! Looking forward to learning more !

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