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Math meets meth (aka shop built isn't always a good thing?)

4830 Views 87 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  Shovel_Dan78
Figured it's been long enough, I really should just start a build thread for my 1978 Shovel. This may at times be random and rambling, but that's pretty much how I go about bike building, and life in general 馃榿
My brother got a 2000-something Softail, so I needed to get a bike to keep up. Got on Craigslist, and stumbled on a Shovel almost as old as me. I never really believed in it, but this was love at first sight. Knew in my heart that this was my old lady, and immediately called the dude. Set up a date to look at it, and of course, boss man sends me out of town on that day. Nothing stops true love, so after a white knuckle drive down a mountain (sorry, coworkers!) I made it to check it out.
She was even prettier in person! Since it had been years since I was on a bike, and had never ridden anything as finicky as an AMF Shovel, I told the dude "Yeah, looks good. If it fires up, and you make around the block, I'll take it". She fires up, first try. Oh my God, what a sweet sound! He makes it back, and I'm sooooooo sold. Check the VIN with my "What fits what" book. The bike has FL bodywork and an electric start + kick, but the VIN says it's an FX kick. And the engine number matches the frame!
Tire Wheel Land vehicle Fuel tank Vehicle

Sounds good to me, let's do this!
He hands me a folder full of receipts from professional shops, so I figure, wow, must be totally good work (more on this foolish assumption later!!!). I let my brother ride her home, because I trust his riding skills ore than mine. And that is where my adventure begins...
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Holes in heads and cases is 1/8NPT.

Wide variety of fittings available.

I did did mine in stainless hard tube with push-to-fit fittings.

Not not leaked a drop in years and is easily serviced/removed.

Jason
Pardon me for being nosy, but what's with the thumb nut on the O/P sender?
Pardon me for being nosy, but what's with the thumb nut on the O/P sender?
I like details and I like brass.

This bike has a few brass pieces I made and some brass fasteners here and there.

Cosmetic.

Jason

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You look kind of young to be working with tools.
Thanks, Jason 馃榿 Originally I wasn't going to put any brass on this bike, because on some of my past bikes I went overboard and people started calling me steampunk! But I am digging it so far.
Weird tech question, not even really motorcycle specific, but i installed the oil filter and tightened 3/4 turn. I had to take it off, before running the engine. Is the filter still usable, or is the rubber crush gasket a one time use thing? Just curious.
I'd install it and run the bike. If the news is bad, it oughtn't to make too big a mess if you're prepared.

I lean toward thinking it will reseal just fine; but it's well known that I am a dull-witted fool.
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I went ahead and reinstalled the filter, as the oring didn't look damaged. No leaks yet. First startup, I kicked it over a dozen times to get oil flowing into the new lines, then fired her up. I got a bit scared as the pressure crept toward 60 psi, and visions of a new S&S crate danced in my head. But after a few minutes the pressure went down to 45 at idle, so I grabbed my gear and went for a test run. Seemed a bit rough running, but smoother if I stayed over 2000rpm. Back home, pressure settled down to 10 at idle, which is normal for me. Don't see any oil spewing anywhere, so I'm stoked as hell!
Now to figure out why my practically new starter relay is not clicking, argh!
Today's lesson is never assume your grounds. After much tracing, testing and wire jumpering, I figured out my solenoid relay is good, it just wasn't grounded. I have it mounted to the bottom of my oil tank. It worked when I first installed it, so I assumed that since I had the bare metal base was bolted to my metal tank, that the tank was grounded. Wrongo!
The bag is only mounted with those rubber tubes with threads on the ends. I didn't think about this when things were working. But I came to realize that what was actually grounding everything was the metal braided AN lines running to the engine that were originally there. Switching to hardline with rubber hose on each end eliminated the ground path! So, made a little ground wire from the solenoid mounting bolt to the starter bracket, and things are A-ok 馃榿
After a few days of riding my oil pressure still seems to worry me a bit. As far as how it is running, it doesn't seem different than before I added the remote filter.
But starting up cold (around here, temps in the low 50's), the pressure on my Arlen Ness 0-60 psi gauge goes right to 60, and stays there for several minutes. While riding it's in the 30-40 range, and when up to temp and at a stop light, it's around 10. The gauge is in a port just above the oil pump (see pic). I am using VR1 straight 60 weight oil.
Besides adding the remote filter, I changed the oil sleeves on the hardlines from the block to the head, and from head to head. Not sure how worried I should be. It's running ok now, but I dont want to cause any long term damage! Thoughts?
Wheel Tire Hood Automotive tire Automotive lighting
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worn rocker bushes, that where it starts most of the time butt 10 psi at idle sounds okay .
To get a fairer view or to monitor i would split the oil feed line to the rocker boxes, place your arlen ness at the far end of the rocker box so it will be the last in line, the pressure in the bottom end depends on the pressure in the top end .
I provided the valve that opens to the crank with a nail or rivet upside down so it indicates on the outside wether the valve opens , with a engine on temperature a 3mm lift is okay.
All it takes for me is to have a look at the nail every now and then鈥ot every minute ofcourse.
(The lift on the nail showed in the pic is while warming up, it will hold a steady 3 mm after a while), the other pic is in cold condition)

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If needed i can provide more details on the nail modification.
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Thanks, Id be interested to know a little more how this works. Looks pretty neat!
Pre 73 oil pumps feed constant pressure to all
73 on feed the top end till relief valve opens to feed end oiler via pinion shaft for rod bearings . HD manual shows the 2 systems in 70-78 . Also a good break down on shovels is Donny Petterson the Shovelhead book. Shows from 66-84 a good book to have .
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Pre 73 oil pumps feed constant pressure to all
73 on feed the top end till relief valve opens to feed end oiler via pinion shaft for rod bearings . HD manual shows the 2 systems in 70-78 . Also a good break down on shovels is Donny Petterson the Shovelhead book. Shows from 66-84 a good book to have .
Also 73 got a 6- 24 oil pump ratio pre was 5-25 drive gears
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Thanks, Id be interested to know a little more how this works. Looks pretty neat!
there is really not much to it but it鈥檚 pretty functional , just find a nail, washer and o-ring that match the pump parts .

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Thanks, Dutch, the drawing cleared things up. I was just kind of wondering how it wouldn't leak 馃榿
Hoges, if I'm understanding you right, if I have a pre 73 pump, it won't matter where my pressure gauge is located, but if I have a post 73 setup, it would be most accurate to place it at the end, like Dutch suggested? Honestly, I haven't been inside the pump yet, but given the Frankenstein nature of my bike, I assume nothing these days. I just know that it's not the old cast iron type, lol.
I definitely plan to pick up Donny's books. I hate spending that kind of money on a book, sight unseen, but after looking at the table of contents and seeing that they are 700+ pages, I figure they've gotta have lots of nerdy tech info for a progressing Shovel nut like myself 馃
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There is an O-Ring which would keep it from leaking, although it depends on the tolerance of the hole vs. the nail. A small amount could leak, but he's using it, so it's likely either not much or nothing.

What kind of nails are you using? Some nails are galvanized, I'd avoid something with a coating.
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Never leaked a drop, i used a large stainless rivet (3mm rod) where i cut of that round rod end and welded the head to the other end of the rod, now it looks like a nail somewhat.
All happened in the days i had younger eyes鈥.the split rocker box oil line i use in the gauge picture is a stainless tube which i tig welded as well鈥0.3 mm wall thickness.
I would definitely burn it to ashes when i had to redo it these days.
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Continuing my archaeological dig into Frankenshovel, I pulled the front wheel as I get ready to do fork seals. Wasn't really expecting what I found! Definitely some weird meth machining? I'm going to guess they used a sportster axle
for the 21" wheel, but made some funky sleeve spacer things, including one that was brazed to the chrome dog bowl? Crazy! But now I need to need to figure out what axle exactly was on there, what size good spacers I need to make, or what bearings and new axle I need to go into the wide glide. Lot of research to do!

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Pretty sure this axle is a one-off job. Looks like raw stock on the big end, transitioning into turned and sanded portions. The threads are sharp, and end abruptly like you would see from a die. Gonna start looking for a new axle, because I'm not keen to believe that Johnny Choppashoppa made sure to use good grade steel instead of the first cheap drop he found at the salvage yard 馃槀


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