Thursday, May 29, 2014

Copycat! Copycat!

What you ask?  Well, at the 2012 Cannonball.....actually the Saturday night before the 2012 Cannonball, I met Doug Wothke, Cannonballer #88. Doug was in Virginia at the time and had lost a wrist pin retainer in his cylinder on his way from Alabama. Doug rode his Cannonball bike from Alabama to New York, then across the country!  We had only spoken via the 101 Chat Group before this and he called asking if I could help him with his 101.  My sons were in from Ohio that weekend, so there was plenty of help.  Doug arrived in West "by God" Virginia after catching a lift from a buddy.  To work we went!!!!  Doug spent the night, enjoyed some West Virginia hopitality, got his bike repaired and headed on to New York for the Cannonball.

But, as I began to enjoy the Cannonball  with Doug across the country, I became aware of the stuff he had outfitting his bike.  His friend,  Greg of Bad&G Customs, makes all kinds of nice motorcycle items, from tool rolls, to saddle bags, to awesome seats. I was really envious of all his cool items After the ride a few weeks later, a tool roll, just like Doug's,  arrived in the mail from Doug --- THANKS again!   Then at Christmas, my wife had gotten me a set of the saddle bags, just like Doug's. Awesome!  And finally, for my birthday, my mom (with the help of my wife)  had me a seat made, just like Doug's!  HA! Absolutely!!!  So, I'll be set up for this ride!  Thanks again Doug!

What a Monday!

Last week seemed to be all about airplanes.....instead of motorcycles.   To start, on Monday we worked on the 1967 Citabria that we're almost finished building.  It only needs a couple finishing touches and she'll be ready to feel the wind on her wings.
1967 Citabria

(I had Jeff, who paints my motorcycles, paint the Citabria.....looks pretty sharp,   if I do say so myself!)

1946 J3 Cub

Monday afternoon, my dad (Buck) and I went  to Petersburg (W99) to take our 1946 J3 Cub for a ride.  We flew it to Highrock Airstrip (our buddy, Bob Armstrong's private strip)On our return flight back to Petersburg, we had the cabane vee on the landing gear break after touchdown, so Tuesday was spent taking it apart and ordering parts needed for its repair.

1946 Aeronca Champ

Wednesday morning found me moving our 
1946 Aeronca Champ from Petersburg to 
Cumberland airports.  

Finally, Wednesday afternoon had me back in the shop where I worked on my Sunnen Hone by fixing the oiler, cleaned out the oil tank, added new oil and got it ready to go.  

However,  Thursday had me in Winchester, VA checking out a problem on the aircraft motor for the second Citabria that we have.  It's a project that we're going to build upon our return this winter from the Cannonball.   Talked with our engine builder, straightened everything out with him.  Returned home - DAY SHOT!!!!  Will hit it again in the morning.    

Friday morning, well, the red car showed up again for a clutch adjustment ("just a couple minutes, Steve") that ended up needing a new clutch rod made since the old one was bent.  Job completed and back to Cannonball bike.   Installed the valve seats in cylinders...WhooHoo!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Time Out.....Ford Repair

Since we didn't seem to be too busy, had to take a time out today for a thermostat installation,and radiator hose repair for dad (Buck).   It's finally starting to warm up in West Virginia and Dad wants to get his '40 Ford out for some cruising...... now back to the regularly scheduled program!

1 day down the drain

Making Sure She Looks Good....

Today, we worked on fitting to the fenders the frame to make sure she looks good before we send them to Jeff's for color and style. 

Jeff stopped by to look at the final fitting process

Blue, Blue, Blue....

Taking the masking tape off.
Got the frame back from Jeff's and she looks SWEEEEEETJeff, Dee Dee and I looked through Jeff's paint books of colors and we settled on a blue and silver gray paint scheme.  

Building Up The Front

Today, my wife helped me (as she often does) work on building up the front end.  We got the bushings installed in the rocker arms and the horn mounted.  Then we polished the main shaft for the spring pack, assembled it and  attached them to the dog legs. Finally, we put the race and neck bearings in the neck and then the front end to the frame.  She's starting to come together......

Some fine tuning....

Polishing the main shaft for leaf spring

Milling some nuts to the thickness I need

Cleaning out threads on neck

Two days later, for a two hour job!

Anxious and Ready To Go....Or Am I?

Looks like I may be missing a few parts...Huh?

Right Over Left, Left Over Right, Where To Begin

Got my original wheels back from Jeff, painted and ready to lace, but being that my wife says that my patience level isn't what it used to be, I called a buddy of mine, Art Decker to lace my wheels.  

I've always said it was fate when Art happened to move in right next door to my shop since he is a retired tool and die maker, loves old guns, cars and motorcycles and has his own collection of restored cars and bikes and happens to have the patience to teach this old dog some new tricks!

A Penny for Your Thoughts, Nickle for Your Parts

Ok, so I sent the frame and other parts and pieces to Jeff Keister of Jeff's Paint and Body in Romney, WV.  He's the same guy, that since I found him, can work magic with a paint gun and has brought a glow into the girls that I have brought back to life again here at Buck's Indian.

While my girl is getting her paint on.....I'm gonna nickle some cylinders and other hardware.

Now let's clear the workspace to get started....

Thursday, May 1, 2014

And So It Begins....

Why, you ask, is that frame fastened down to a milling machine?

Well, I was getting ready to load it in my van to take it to the painter's and was looking at it sitting on the floor of my shop, when I thought it looked a little off.  Upon closer inspection, I realized that my frame is bent, YES BENT!

Dick Jones (one of the "white knights" of my 2012 pitcrew) happened to stop by and helped out with the straightening process.  First, I made up some hold downs to fasten it securely to one of my milling machines.  Then I made a fixture that clamped around the tubing and began the untwisting and straightening.  To our satisfaction, we now have a straightened frame. 

I am confident that I won't be riding sideways down the highway now, so it's off to the painters.....