Hi, not that that would be an intelligent or rational thing to do, but did somebody already try to convert a vl into an ohv motor using knuckle cylinders and heads? That seems to be a fun project and if somebody already have tried or done it I would appreciate any comments or recommendations. Thanks, Mac
Mac, I've never seen it done to a VL, but over the years my looking for race stuff has given me the chance to check out two UL/Knuckle motors. The first in MA about 1970, the second in CA about 1990. They were both raced in hillclimbs and if my memory serves me they both had chain drive front mount magnetos. The top end install looked pretty straightforward. The oil line to the rockers came off the cam covers. I know the one in CA had special one off cams ground for it. Can't say much else about them except that they sure looked cool.
In the mid 70's Larry Riley did build a UL conversion to shovelhead on a street bike, I rode with him and others to a wedding at Big Bason State Park in CA, at that time I had aquired a 57 XLA that was in a 56 Norton featherbed frame...As I remember Larry reground the flathead cams and made his own push rod covers ...Last I heard was that Larry's UL-Shovel ended up going east and so did the Nortster...
In one of the old chopper mags in the '70s there was an article on a Shovel/UL that I recall went into some detail on how it was done. Bike Bike, Street Chopper, Easyriders, one of them but don't know which! H-D themselves built a few OHV VLs that were hillclimber engines, I recall seeing one at Dale Walkslers when he was still in Illinois. I suspect he still has it. It looked similar to a FHAD OHV 2 cam but built on a VL lower end . Robbie
There was one that was done around here in West Mi. 20-30 years ago VL with knuckle top, a guy named Pete Bonczyk built it. He was a former HD dealership mechanic, and machinist. Sorry no pics....He is working on another one though, cuz I welded on a case for him last winter. Seems like there was a hillclinber one that just sold at Wauseon too.
Those appear to be factory shovel barrels. The stroker plate and "1650" tell me that even with 3.494" bore, it's 5.25" stroke. Those little plates on the pushrod receptacles are very interesting. based on the fact that they're inboard but the shafts haven't been moved over, I would guess the rockers were shortened to put the levers above the tappets, and (probably) rotated to improve the angles.
Cool! How thick are those stroker plates? 3/8? There was a chopper shop in Mt. Vernon NY and the guy had a UL/knuck that was on the shelf for years. I always wanted to hear it run. It was hard enough just getting the guy to answer the doorbell!