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Thread: Excelsior bottom end kits

  1. #1

    Default Excelsior bottom end kits

    I am building 16 Excelsior bottom end kits. I will probably split the build with half early and half late model. The kit includes rods, roller bearings, retainers, pins, nuts, case bushings and thrust washers. If interested, contact me here: Thanks, Phil


  2. #2


    Will.these rods have replaceble outer races in the rods as well or will the rollers run in the rod like originals?

  3. #3


    Hi Mick. As it stands the rods are identical to the originals. I have considered using inserts. The inserts can only be .0625 thick and would have to be through hardened 52100 and ground to size. With that small cross section relative to diameter, keeping them round could be tricky. The roller diameter decreases to .1875 from .25. This increases the roller velocity by ~40%, which probably wouldn't be an issue with some sort of pressurized oil system. So without some extensive research I don't want to make a customers engine a test bed for dynamic design changes and not have it work. Phil

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009


    Hello all,

    To anyone interested in these parts, I can say this: Locating good usable original parts for these X motors is virtually impossible. I all you want to do is start up your X once in a while and putt around the parking lot, you will need to replace all these parts! The rods are very weak, the races are not replaceable and are generally worn and pitted, pins are always worn, rod cages are prone to break and crankcase bushings are usually worn out. There have been a few sources for some of these parts, but not all and the quality is not well proven. A few guys have had rods made up by Carillo at a much lower cost than Phil's but, they don't fit, so they are either useless or require a lot of other modifications!!!!

    I have a set of these parts for my 24 big X engine. They look and measure up perfectly and in speaking with Phil, the materials he uses are many times stronger than the original parts. I've not run these myself yet but I know Steve Huntzinger has and they are Cannonball proven, so I feel I can vouch for them. Phil makes exceptional, high quality parts and you can get the entire bottom end set in one place, and that's worth a lot!

    Phil, do you care to share the price and delivery time for these parts here?

    Gene Harper

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Sarasota, Florida


    As an ex-Excelsior collector/lover; I can say how difficult it is to find good, useable motor parts for the Big X. Phil's parts are top drawer, quality made parts and will easily out-live us old bastards
    Eric Smith
    AMCA #886

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2013


    Email sent,

  7. #7


    Here are rods we had made for big x excelsiors here in australia. They have replaceable outer races, cages and rollers in the rods from a harley sportster and rods beefed up where they crack and fail on the original rods. These rods are also good for 100hp!
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Melbourne, Australia


    I think I have all the remaining sets of these Australian made rods now, and there wont be any more made (As our engine building and machining guru John Trease passed away last year). John was a very clever guy and had built a lot of Veteran, Vintage and Classic V-twins. He worked out a way of using Harley races and the smaller diameter rollers that provided both the required strength and durability. I think he made 6 sets, Ive got 4, another set went into a 1924 Big X, and the final set was sent out recently by Johns son to get another Big X in Australia on the road.

    Phils rods look fantastic, and even without an insert race I think they will outlive most of us.

    I agree with everyones comments in regard to finding good conrods, Ive had at least 8 pairs of loose rods over time and I think I can save only 4 pairs (possibly less as I havent crack tested them all yet). They go oval in the races, crack and in some cases have had more than 1/4' bend in them! If youre planning on building a Big X, do yourself a favor and get onto the Phil's rods whilst they are available.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2009


    Hi Everybody,
    I thought I would update the group on what work I have done on the Excelsior.
    About 2 years ago I was contacted by a gentleman from Omaha, Nebraska, about making flywheels for a 1916 Excelsior to be used on the last Cannonball.
    I ended up making 2 sets. I decided to keep with the original design because of the original oiling system rather than reinvent the "wheels".
    I made the patterns, had them cast in 60-40-18 ductile Iron. Completely machined and balanced with a modification to use Carrillo Rods with repaceable outer races. I also made all new shafts due to failure when torquing (which were NOT manufactured by anyone in these posts).
    All the shaft holes were done in 1 setup per wheel on a wire EDM including the tapers and key ways and are correct to the accuracy on the machine which is +/- .0004 in.
    My customer completed the Cannonball from Portland, ME to Portland, OR, with no problems.
    Bruce Argetsinger
    AHRMA Dirt Track #67J

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    1 mile east of the Rocky Mountains.


    I've been following this thread since it started. you fellows are some very talented individuals who have dedicated your life's energies to keeping these old machines alive and more well than when they were factory new. Thank you for doing what you do.

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