Metamorphosis: Ugly Goose into Eagle of Zeus

Discussion in 'Some Assembly Required' started by sakurama, Apr 24, 2014.

  1. sakurama

    sakurama on an endless build

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    I have no idea about the California. Like an old person I sort of checked out after the 90's and didn't keep up with Guzzi after the Daytona. I know my bike is a Tonti era and that newer ones have frames that can work well. I just bought a California wheel for my bike so I'd guess that it would work. Like older BMW's Guzzi didn't ever do much to modernize but unlike BMW they just sort of stopped evolving. Shame really. I've found the Wild Guzzi forum to be helpful if you have specific model questions. Of course you could always try this THIS. :evil

    As for the solder pot. I have no idea what else could be used instead of lead. I honestly don't even know what's in mine - I got it off ebay and it was filled already and I don't think I'll ever need to buy more in my lifetime unless I knock it over when it's hot. Then I'll have a lot more problems to worry about.

    Gregor
    #21
  2. Scubawerx

    Scubawerx Scubawerx

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    Quality work and quality photos. Nice documentation. Be sure and let us see the results.
    #22
  3. bobfab

    bobfab Long timer Supporter

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    x2
    :lurk
    #23
  4. sakurama

    sakurama on an endless build

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    So my goal is to get the bike roadworthy. To get it rideable enough to take some day trips and get to know it better. At the moment the main problem is no taillight or brake light. While I could have spent the day tracing the wires I would have to, at some point, make a bracket for the tail light and plate. I didn't feel like dealing with the wires.

    In looking around my shop I found a fair amount of stainless stock and since when all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail I decided to make my parts in stainless. Starting with some drilled stock parted into 8mm x 5/8" rounds that I'd use for the bolts. Stainless is very strong so I can make this pretty minimal.

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    One of the things I learned when I built my stainless exhaust for my AWD KTM 990 is that fit up is the key. The tighter the fit the easier the welding. So I use an end mill to profile the solid stainless rod.

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    Then I tig it together with no filler - just fusing the parts together. It's not the best way to do steel but it works great with stainless. I will sometimes add a little rod if I need but for the most part it's fused. Since I hadn't welded stainless in a while it took me a bit to get my settings again but I found them finally.

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    To support the tail light I added a light strap loop to the back of the subframe - it's not a permenent addition - at least I don't think so but you never know. Regardless it's hidden, it's very sturdy and it holds no weight.

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    The idea is to keep this as minimal as I can so as to not draw attention to itself too much.

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    Perfect? No. Fine for a first go round? Yup, it'll do. I believe that the final bike might use some frenched in LED's which I've been wanting to try - or maybe some lights in the ends of the frame tubes. Not this light for sure.

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    While I should have then turned my attention to the wiring I still wasn't able to face it so I moved on to the dash. Since I'm not going to really have anything up there I thought I'd just make a quick mount for the tach which is a very nice Vegalia. If the tach looks special enough you might not notice the rats nest of wires behind it. I start with some schedule 40 stainless seamless pipe in 316 that I found as scrap.

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    And then face it, bore it and flip it to it's true on the chuck and then bring it to final dimensions.

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    I wanted to make a back to hold it and I almost just put a strap across but then I decided to make it a bit nicer in case I decide to keep it on the bike so I cut out some 304 sheet on the notcher since I don't have a metal blade for the bandsaw yet. I cut just a tad oversize.

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    From there I tack it on four corners holding it tight in the vice to limit warping and then put it back in the lathe and turn the outside down so it's just proud of the edge leaving me enough to melt into the side.

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    At this point I found my settings and got my rhythm back on my stainless welds. I like welding stainless. I think I might do a lot more on this bike in stainless.

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    From there I drilled the center hole while it was in the lathe (obviously) and then marked out the two other bolts on the back with a scribe in some sharpy since it was handy. Oh, you'll notice that I decided to machine off the weld and turn the edge down to a nice round over and then I used sandpaper to give the back a similar brushed look.

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    At this point I turned and welded up two more lengths but realized that it would do the parallelogram thing unless I braced it. I thought about a small one on the back that wouldn't be seen and then maybe a larger one at a diagonal ala Ducait's trellis but then realized I wanted to soften it and add a little bend.

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    And welded it in place.

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    Yeah, the nuts are ghetto but I just knew that the studs would fight me hard if I tried to remove them so I could use bolts so I just pressed on. The head light is from a Yamaha XT 500 I believe and is missing the clips - so I hot glued the bulb into the rim. Again, it's a ghetto move but I'm all about just getting this thing running.

    Gregor
    #24
  5. DustyRags

    DustyRags Idiot

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    Jaysus, your ghetto-ass, thrown-together bits look better than anything I can even think about!

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
    #25
  6. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    Nice mounts there, reminds me of the headlamp mount on a BSA Goldstar - very cool!

    Looks like everyone should have an ultrasonic cleaner, and everyone with an old bike should have a solder pot too.

    Only breakdown I ever had was a broken throttle cable. I bit of a walk and I found a "motoculture" repair shop. They fixed walk behind cultivators which were very popular in France up until recently. The shop guy fixed it in minutes refused to take anything. Even French peasants seem to have big 4x4 tractors these days.
    My mate works as a sock mechanic - the old pre computer machines used bowden cable for their actuators and had shed loads of really good quality cable, both inner and outer, much better than the oem stuff you see.a
    So along with cycle stuff, a range of sources for control cables is out there if you scout around.

    The early cali's were Tonti frames. At that time pretty much all big block guzzi's were interchangable. Adding or subtracting brackets and bodywork got you whichever you wanted.
    As they moved away from the original LAPD look, the swing arms got longer in several steps, but the basic frame remained. The Cali as late as mk 3 still had a basic Tonti frame, although there were some rumours about lowering the frame at the rear to suit the idea of "cruiser design" floundered along.

    Google on Tonti frame and there are loads of pictures so you could identify a Toni frame from across the road.

    Gregor, did you see the V7 scrambler in wildguzzi? Not come across that one before. May/may not be capable but sure is kewl.
    #26
  7. sakurama

    sakurama on an endless build

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    Yesterday I got the bike running and rode it to the local coffee shop but it was riding so nicely I just went past and that of course was my mistake. Shakedown runs are to be ridden in concentric expanding circles until the issues are resolved.

    They weren't.

    The bike stalled and wouldn't restart and the other golden rule I broke was that I didn't bring tools so when the switch failed to light the bike and I couldn't bump it, well, what I don't have a photo of is me pushing the Guzzi a 1/2 mile home from it's shakedown ride...

    After cleaning the switch gear again, tightening the connectors and then filling the empty tank I boldly set off for the DMV. And that was the rest of my afternoon. Waiting. In. Line. Forever.

    No pictures of that either. Good stories are about editing.

    But while I was out the FedEx guy delivered a package all the way from China via ebay.

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    No, not what you think. They're "Fauxhlins" Chinese copies of the $1500 piggy back Ohlins. I figured the shocks on the bike were so far gone that for the $300 I was bound to see some kind of improvement.

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    Of course being for a GSXR or something the bushings were the wrong size so my morning today was spend making up aluminum spacers for them.

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    But I got them mounted up and they add a nice splash of sexy to the bike and as I had plans to meet a couple of friends for a lunch time ride up Skyline Drive I guessed I'd discover how they worked pretty quickly.

    This is the gratuitous iPhone shot since there's no room on the bike for me to carry anything but a phone and a wallet.

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    My kids broke the visor on one of my Shoei adventure lids and so I had to dive into my box of old helmets and found this one - one of my many flaked and flamed race helmets from when I was learning to lay paint. It was a little dusty but a few wide open stretches took care of that and it matches the bike just fine. And I still love flames and flake.

    So my first real ride on the bike was a complete success. The bike has plenty of engine, the handling is rock solid and neutral and the shocks, while lacking the traditional Ohlins plushness, are fine so far and way better than what they replaced. The only bad part of the ride is that seat - it's wickedly painful. I need to do something more about that. When I swap the Ohlins front end onto the bike I'm going to put some Tuono upright MX bars on it and then lower the pegs a bit too. A more comfortable and upright position will make long days on the Guzzi a pleasure instead of a painful test.

    When I got back home I found my new California wheel waiting for me. The first thing I did was see if there was room on my mill to be able to do the necessary machining to make the wheel fit.

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    Thankfully my mill has just enough room to get the wheel in there so the next project is to machine it to the dimensions of my Lemans wheel (of which it's a perfect match) and then get bearings, make spacers and do the swap. Looks like it should be a very simple thing to do once a good fixture is made to allow for perfect concentricity. I made a couple of pieces that would help in getting my measurements for the jig as well.

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    That's the gratuitous Instagram shot. I like the rough and ready look of the bike right now.

    Gregor
    #27
  8. waylongway

    waylongway madmax Supporter

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    #28
  9. sakurama

    sakurama on an endless build

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    That's cool. He sounds great and I might just do that when the time comes.

    Gregor
    #29
  10. Keith

    Keith Slabbing it

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    What inserts are you using on your lathe tooling?
    #30
  11. sakurama

    sakurama on an endless build

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    Ah, you've stumbled onto my achilles heal. Inserts are like another language to me and I used to share shop space with an insert savant so I could rely on him to help me but now I'm in the wilderness and lost. That said I tend to default to TCMT's in 3/8's size in order to simplify my life. I used to never pay any attention to material either but I've learned that lesson and now keep all my stock well marked. Sadly I've not learned that lesson with my inserts yet so I have some mixed but my next goal is to learn more about them.

    One of the things about modern tooling, as it was explained to me, is that manual lathes and mills simply can't spin fast enough to take advantage of some of the more modern inserts which capitalize on modern CNC's ability to spin at insane rates - 10,000 or more rpm's whereas my lathe tops out at 2000rpm and that's only with the collets - my 6-jaw I probably rarely spin up much past 1000-1200. Despite that I've gotten much better at choosing my feeds and speeds and my lathe is now very well set up and holds a .0003 at 6-12" out with collets.

    If you know of a good site that can explain insert nomenclature please post it up for me.

    Gregor
    #31
  12. Keith

    Keith Slabbing it

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    Up until about a week ago I was in the same boat or worse, which is why I asked the question. I have been getting my 10" Rockwell up and running and have turned a couple of small pieces, using the used five piece tool holder set I had bought. They had triangular inserts in them, but I had no clue what designation they were, or even that there was a designation. That's how little clue I had.

    Then I started searching.

    One of the first places I found that explained the naming was this place:
    http://www.carbidedepot.com/formulas-insert-d.htm

    From there it was trying to figure out what kind of inserts I already had and seeing about how to replace them. I went through MSC's website, as well as ENCO and the variations were staggering. Was it a 7* rake, or an 11* rake, etc.? They had been working really well for the stick of 6061 I bought to play around with and I wanted to keep that up.

    Until I could figure out exactly what I had, I copped out and bought one of these:
    http://www.latheinserts.com/1-2-HOBBY-LATHE-KIT-500-Lathe-kit.htm


    I've heard the same about the feed rates, as well as the HP requirements, the small lathes we operate simply do not have the oomph to power the inserts along. I didn't get any tooling with this lathe and had some HSS stuff with the last one. I figured on learning about carbide with this one.

    ________________________________________

    Your Guzzi build makes me wish I had kept my four speed, loop-framed Ambassador. Keep up the great work.
    #32
  13. sakurama

    sakurama on an endless build

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    Thanks for the link - I knew there must have been a site out there. I'll study that this week as I prepare to make my fixture to machine the 18" wheel to size. I ordered the bearings for the new wheel and when I'm done with my trip I'll try to make some more progress on the bike. Like learning how to do upholstery perhaps.

    If you're still learning about shop practices and such I found a book that was a great help and valuable resource: Machine Shop Fundamentals The author has a second book that's just as good. I learned a lot from these books.

    Gregor
    #33
  14. slackmeyer

    slackmeyer Don't mean sheeit. .

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    Always a nice surprise to stumble on a new Sakurama project thread. And then I ended up staying up way too late catching up on your house thread, 30 pages of reading to do since I looked last. Congratulations on the move in.
    #34
  15. Fast_Boy_Slim

    Fast_Boy_Slim Don't call me Wighty

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    I expect you will have seen this pic before from a Davida helmet ad?

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    #35
  16. dhubbard422

    dhubbard422 Adventurer

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    Sep 29, 2008
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    Central Texas Hill Country
    Very nice Gregor! You've made a lot of progress with your Guzzi in a very short time! I'll have to check in on this tread (in addition to your GarageJournal thread)...

    In 1977 I was at Doc Storms Big D Cycles and torn between a 900 SS Duc and an 850 LeMans... I bought the Duc, but I've always had a soft spot for the Guzzi. A friend has managed to collect one of each... Here's a link to his Guzzi:
    http://harvestclassic.org/downloads/RallyFlyer2006.pdf

    Enjoy the good riding weather! Oregon has some wonderful roads...
    #36
  17. sakurama

    sakurama on an endless build

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    Yes, of course. Technically unsophisticated it nonetheless is a stunning image that has become a true classic shot. It's a difficult thing to hit on the mix that yields a memorable classic. I've had a few and sometimes you know it and sometimes you're surprised. Probably the most popular shot I've done was for Rev'It! a couple of years ago. It's become more posters and screen savers than I can count and when we were shooting it we knew it. Judging from the crowd that formed behind us everyone there knew it as well. Wonder what it was about this shot... :evil

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    That Guzzi without the girl is nice but a bit scrappy in a pseudo racer way.

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    Combining that rough and mean looking bike with a girl that is small, soft, slumped and vulnerable looking but with pristine skin and face creates the tension that makes the shot work. I've come back to this shot a lot to dissect it as I think it's one of the most successful motorcycle/girl shots ever done.

    But getting back to the Guzzis I have found many I like but none that I think are perfect. At least to me. A couple of favorites are these:

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    Not really unusual but they're simple, clean and lean. They respect the long lines of a Guzzi. Not sure that I'll do that but I do like them.

    Gregor
    #37
  18. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    The French one, from the advert, just shows how many ways you can play with a bike like a Guzzi and end up with something visually exciting. (even if I can't always analyse the reasons!) And no, they don't need to look all new and shiney. An area where I have experience!

    Two nice examples there. I prefer the tail from the first, it has a hint of the curve of the Imola, and for me, seem to balance out the mass of the front better.
    The tank on the the second is wonderful - all properly swoopy in true Italian fashion (except when they were doing the nasty square and had edged stuff). Plus the ever cute flyscreen.
    Is it an age or geographical thing? the cut down/non exsistant tail thing? Over here you wouldn't get away with so much wheel exposed, and by the time you have added a legal plate and light set they usually look shit.
    The finish and attention to detail and quality of the photograph on the second does it lots of favours of course.
    Did you notice the cable entry boxes on top of the carbs? CNC'd little gems. There is a small ball bearing inside for the throttle to run on, so works to reduce that Guzzi throttle friction.
    There was a company in Germany that made these, now sadly gone. On a positive note, there is nothing to stop someone with facilities making their own. For a small finders fee.
    USD forks, again, is it me being too old? Not seen any yet that look exactly right. Then again, Guzzi were doing USD forks before WW11.

    I did post a comment on the brackets you made, but it seems to have gone missing in the ether. Struck me straight away, the resonances with the headlamp brackets on a BSA Goldstar, so for me a big++++!
    Much more "works" than the gaudy chrome Tommaselli ones I have.
    #38
  19. Fast_Boy_Slim

    Fast_Boy_Slim Don't call me Wighty

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    Sorry if that was too obvious, but what with your housebuild/2wd project/job/wife&kids etc I don't know how you get time to sleep let alone surf!

    I like the seat on the Davida bike. That little rake up at the back makes the whole silhouette of the bike work for me. The teardrop taillight is a cool touch, but I always wanted to see what a frenched in single 59 caddy taillight would lookin a seat like that.
    #39
  20. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    Re the inserts, my step son was a tooling engineer. He liked the Sandvik Coromant stuff. Not only were the tips excellent quality, they had a first class technical support.
    One difficult job he had was working out how to machine Tee slots in a 4ft square by 4" thick block of nimonic. Without it distorting.
    Rolls Royce had sent his company this job as they couldn't get it to work.
    Did it in the end.

    He'd pass me over loads of samples he got, usually jumbled in a baggy. On the machines I had access to, it seemed to make little difference - but I only machined mild and stainless steel and occasionally aluminium.
    #40