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Old 11-21-2017, 08:57 PM   #41
Goldy
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Default Re: 1955 AJS project

Hi Ratso, things have actually been progressing fairly well in spite of some minor family related issues...I'll post some more pics and a detailed progress report near the end of the week.
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Old 11-22-2017, 03:01 AM   #42
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Looking forward to it Goldy!
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Old 11-22-2017, 12:26 PM   #43
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You fuckin' betcha!
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Old 11-23-2017, 04:29 PM   #44
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Ok, as promised, here's an update.
After missing out on a used set of exhaust pipes on fleabay, I found a new set in Austria. They were advertised as cosmetically imperfect, but damned if I can see anything wrong with them, and the shipping was incredibly fast; only five days. That order didn't go by boat and the cost was only about ten bucks more than the used set I was looking at! So while those were on the way I ordered a set of the universal barrel type mufflers from BCS, which arrived only a couple of days before the pipes. After that I had to get busy making up some mounting brackets and an offset adapter to give the mufflers a slight kick upward. After a couple of days fiddling and machining I was happy with the way they looked, even found a decent set of finned clamps in my junk bin to complete the look. So the little bastard has an exhaust system now.



The clutch...I knew this was going to be a big problem. Being a model 20B it has a different set up from the model 20 and the parts book is almost useless. It was no surprise to find out that the clutch was a worn out piece of scrap metal...The drive lugs on the clutch hub were worn to about half their thickness and rather than build them up, I opted to purchase a hub. The price and shipping was reasonable and when I considered how long it would take to build them up and then square them off again, it was well worth it. The little splined adapter that joins the hub to the transmission mainshaft was missing, so I had to order a new one of those as well off the AJS/ Matchless Owners website. The clutch basket was worn right-to-hell out as well with deep grooves in the basket and the bearing race was badly worn also. I managed to find a replacement in Malaya...it took ages to arrive, but when it came I was pretty pleased...no internal grooves, and the bearing race was as good as new. I just needed to build up the height of the basket about 6mm and machine it smooth so it would hold a fifth clutch friction plate. Speaking of clutch friction plates, I had a hell of a time sourcing them, especially since I couldn't find out the correct part number. Eventually I got hold of one of my suppliers in Ontario, who was able to help (although at a very high cost). Expensive or not, they arrived a few days later and I could see that things were finally going to come together. I made up five new spring anchor bolts, fitted 24 new roller bearings and offered it up to the mainshaft. With the little conglomeration finally in place I cut a nice new piece of chain and connected the engine to the transmission, then fitted the outer cover.

The old clutch hub and basket:





Clutch installed and left side exhaust:



Along the way, while waiting for parts, I decided it was a good time to begin to tackle the seat. I had intended to use a spring seat, but after some soul searching I decided that something like a shortened version of the old 'cobra' style seat would look sort of cool and also period correct, so I found a piece of 1/4" aluminum plate and cut a seat pan out of that, then bent it to fit in the hydraulic press...it's a start!
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Old 11-24-2017, 03:59 AM   #45
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Default Re: 1955 AJS project

I assume you have spent some time making the edges of the inner and outer primary covers as perfect as you could so they will hold some oil. The '52 single that I sold before finishing looked like it was going to be a challenge to seal up.
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Old 11-24-2017, 05:03 PM   #46
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Oh, I have given that chain case my best shot...new rubber seal and lots of three bond. No oil in it yet and who knows how many times I will have to take it apart and try again. For now, I'm keeping my finners crossed.
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Old 11-25-2017, 01:34 AM   #47
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A little cobra-type seat'll look fine. Perhaps pad it just a bit more deeply than the usual cobra so it doesn't look too little and the gas tank correspondingly too big, knowwhatImean? Would it be too foofoo to use piping on the seat that harmonizes with the paint color?
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Old 11-25-2017, 08:19 AM   #48
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Wow!...I know EXACTLY what you mean! You an I must have been born under the same stars! I was thinking a little thicker over the front, a little thinner over the fender and maybe some coloured piping. I'm not 100% sure on the tank colour yet (blue or purple candy?), but I'm pretty sure I'll be using gold pinstripe and lettering, so if I used gold piping it would go with whatever main colour I was using on the tank....sound like a plan, or something that belongs in the circus?
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Old 11-25-2017, 12:43 PM   #49
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Well, since you are kind enough to frame it as a question, I would choose piping that went with the bike's base color rather than gold.

I mean, you are going to do the top of the seat in diamond-tuft purple velvet, with chromium buttons, are you not?
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Old 11-26-2017, 10:30 AM   #50
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Ha-ha! Absoubtly!

Not 100% sure on the base colour, that's why I thought I would just go with the gold. Anyhow, I guess that's small potatoes right now, lots of other stuff to do before I start thinking about paint.
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Old 11-26-2017, 01:45 PM   #51
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Hope it turns out to be as enjoyable to ride as it is to read about.
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Old 11-27-2017, 09:59 AM   #52
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Default Re: 1955 AJS project

The cobra styled seat gets my vote also....
You were lucky to find those clutch parts, I didn't think you'd be able to do that....
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Old 01-08-2018, 07:07 PM   #53
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Had time to do a little tinkering with this last week too...I will try my hand at almost anything and although I don't have the proper equipment and I know I will never be much of an upholsterer, I think this came out alright. I spent last Saturday evening sitting on the couch with "the boss of me" watching Netflix and poking my fingers with a needle, while gradually hand stitching up a seat cover (Saturday night...yeah, it's kind of sad when you think about it...but there was beer too. ) Finished up the job this morning. I don't think it came out too bad for an armature.



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Old 01-09-2018, 07:09 PM   #54
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WHOA. That looks *real* good. I think you nailed it.
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Old 01-21-2018, 11:19 AM   #55
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No photos this time, but a small progress report is in order. The primary case...it held oil for about three days, then when I added a little more, it proceeded to leak all over the lift. I took it apart again and gave it another shot...this time it's been a week and so far it seems to be oil tight, but for how long, who can say? Got all the control cables fabricated now...front brake, clutch, throttle and ignition advance. Fabbed a simple, but sturdy bracket for the new speedometer and fitted the cable to the rear wheel speedo drive. Next on the agenda is some spark plug leads, a wiring harness and fuel tank mounts.
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Old 01-21-2018, 06:56 PM   #56
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This is going to be one sweet looking bike ! Excellent work on the seat !!
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Old 01-21-2018, 08:57 PM   #57
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That seat looks great, no creases and piping is straight. How does it feel to sit on?
Be great to see some info on the cable construction!
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Old 01-23-2018, 08:33 AM   #58
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Great lookig seat... comfy too I bet.
My back side gets sore just looking at my seat..... gotta do something with that before the snow melts.

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Old 01-23-2018, 05:36 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stormin View Post
That seat looks great, no creases and piping is straight. How does it feel to sit on?
Be great to see some info on the cable construction!
Well, the seat feels good just sitting on it, but the only true test will be when the machine gets on the road...if I can spend a day riding around on it without feeling like my arse has been spanked with a three foot piece of strapping, it'll be OK. As far as the cables go, there are no special tricks, with the possible exception of machining up the proper adjusters and cable nipples...the cable ends are simply mushroomed out and soldered to the nipples...I'm sure YouTube must be full of all sorts of instructional videos.
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Old 01-24-2018, 04:55 AM   #60
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Here's my 1/2" pipe cap solder pot for soldering cable ends:

[IMG][/IMG]
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