Board index Flathead Power-Technical Questions, Answers, and Suggestions Big Twin Flatties VL ohv conversion

VL ohv conversion

Moderators: Curt!, Pa

Post Mon Jan 12, 2009 3:14 pm

Posts: 103
Location: Switzerland

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

Post Mon Jan 12, 2009 6:48 pm

Posts: 767
Location: CA USA
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.

Post Tue Jan 13, 2009 11:13 pm

Posts: 14
Location: Daly City CA U.S.A.
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...

Tom (09)

Post Wed Jan 14, 2009 8:37 am

Posts: 391
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

Post Wed Jan 14, 2009 9:18 am
panic

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Last edited by panic on Mon Jan 19, 2009 10:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

Post Thu Jan 15, 2009 6:17 am

Posts: 58
Location: SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA.
This thread reminded me of a old bike I have in the back shed, think its a U with a Shovel top end.Has 1650cc stamped on it. If any-one interested I could send them a pic & they could post it....

Post Thu Jan 15, 2009 9:41 am

Posts: 767
Location: CA USA
Would like to see it. All thumbs around computers, can't help with posting.

Post Sat Jan 17, 2009 10:48 am

Posts: 146
Location: Utah,USA
VL Magnum?

Post Sat Jan 17, 2009 5:09 pm

Posts: 58
Location: SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA.
Cases are 39U. Rocker boxes have Magnum 1650cc Stroker written on them....

Post Sun Jan 18, 2009 6:57 am

Posts: 146
Location: Utah,USA
"Cases are 39U. Rocker boxes have Magnum 1650cc Stroker written on them...."

Sportster cylinder heads??

Post Sun Jan 18, 2009 5:32 pm

Posts: 58
Location: SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA.
Looks like Shovel heads to me....

Post Sun Jan 18, 2009 5:51 pm

Posts: 146
Location: Utah,USA
Aluminum Heads?

Post Sun Jan 18, 2009 7:06 pm

Posts: 58
Location: SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA.
Yes, they are aluminium....

Post Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:07 pm

Posts: 103
Location: Switzerland

Thanks for the informations. OZY45RACER if you send me pictures of your bike I will post them here. Look for a private message.
Mac

Post Sun Aug 23, 2009 6:37 pm

Posts: 729
Location: nekoosa,wisconsin,usa

Chuck are you listening ? KICK START WHERE ARE YOU ? TOM FABER ?
JOHN

Post Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:13 am

Posts: 199
Location: Cedar Springs Mi USA

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.

Post Fri Sep 11, 2009 12:32 pm

Posts: 103
Location: Switzerland

Hey guys, here are the pictures from OZY45RACER:

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Mac

Post Fri Sep 11, 2009 8:48 pm
panic

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.

Post Sat Sep 12, 2009 12:19 pm

Posts: 197
Location: Bucktown, PA
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!

Post Fri Oct 02, 2009 5:24 pm

Posts: 56
Location: new zealand

to ozzy45racer how much for the bike? seems too cool to be out in the weather 8)


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