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Project Knucklebolt hits the road

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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Mon Mar 10, 2014 8:00 pm

Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Tried to post some pics, but they wouldn't go.

Put the first miles on the Little Mistress....2.3 miles to be exact. Just prior to, I put the 25 tooth engine sprocket back on, which required a 84 link primary. After adjusting that up, the rear chain was a little loose, but I was too excited and took it out without a rear chain adjust, and the rear chain flopped around a little more than I expected or liked.

Timing was still a bit too advanced, so getting into third gear resulted in a bit of PING. So, I just eased it around the two mile loop, and called it good.

Other than that, no problems, no oil leaks, sounded and felt great, felt like a comfortable ride.

I sure am rusty on the foot clutch...stalled it on a U-turn because I didn't put her in neutral, and coast through the turn.

The gears feel quite tall for sure, but she's so light that it doesn't bog or anything like that in first gear.....but you can tell she has long legs and I did most of the two miles in second quite comfortably.

So, I'm quite stoked. While I had the primary chain off I cleaned off the clutch hub bearings real well. I installed those long bearings previously, and discovered they don't like heavy grease, so I re-greased with some light Teflon lube. I also put two extra plates in, one steel, one friction, and wow oh wow did I get this clutch right. Eases into first gear nice as you please, nice and easy. Also shifted from gear to gear just fine, considering I was rusty on the jockey shifting too. Clutch engagement was slicker than sour owl snot.

Hopefully Wednesday will bring nice dry roads, and ride #2 will be longer than two point two miles. YEAH!!!!!!!

Now to do battle with the Department of Licensing. oh boy.

ken.
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woody

Posts: 487

Joined: Mon Apr 15, 2002 12:01 am

Location: Wa, USA

Post Wed Mar 12, 2014 5:34 am

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Congratulations, Ken. That first ride is always a good feeling. Glad your project is running.
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:57 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

The second ride was better, have 8.9 miles on it as of today. Still some ping when I lug it, hope I don't have to retard it much more, or I may have to think about losing some compression. On the other hand, it's running nice and strong and sharp, no flat like if the timing was getting too late. Haven't actually checked it with the timing mark to see where it is by-the-book. With the mechanical advance, (45 mechanical advance circuit breaker) I might have timed it in reverse (the procedure) of how it should be done, that might explain how I got it so far advanced in the first place.

She's a little noisey mechanically, but seems my 45 was too. Been so long since I've been around a flathead I've forgotten how much mechanical noise is normal.

Actually got it in 4th gear for, like, maybe ten seconds. Just not "enough" road close to home to open it up. But not being licensed yet, I dare not stray too far from home.

The tranny shifts great Woody. Me, I'm shifting okay...but I'm really surprised at how rusty I am....feel like a born-again rookie or something. But when I do it right, she just "snicks" right into gear.

k.
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Thu Mar 13, 2014 7:55 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

18.6 miles and the last twist of the circuit breaker cured the ping. This thing has power, throttle response is really "crisp". Screwed up somewhere when I initially set the timing, when I put in the circuit breaker. Did notice the first time I started it, that it had a heck of a tendency to kick back. !!!

Foot clutch and hand shift is coming back, starting to hit the gears like a ratchet shifter. !!! Yeah!

Okay...couldn't contain the excitement.

ken.
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amklyde

Posts: 625

Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2003 1:01 am

Location: Wisconsin, USA

Post Fri Mar 14, 2014 8:34 am

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Congratulations on your finished project. Such a great feeling to get out and ride a machine you have worked so hard on. Big Flats are noisy motors, although I remember a 37UL that Tom Phillips had many years ago that was very quiet. Most of the racket comes from the gearcase and Tom had sorted through his cams for the set that fit best and then lapped them together with fine compound as an assembly.
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Fri Mar 14, 2014 6:59 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Thanks, and that's what I kind of figured. Been so long since I had the 45, and I believe/remember the Kuncklehead was a pretty quiet engine, but that was a long time ago too, maybe it was more noisy than I remember, but I kind of recall thinking, at the time, that a lot of the shovel heads made more mechanical noise than my knuck. I know that the flathead cylinder heads transmit a lot of noise too.

Also noticed that once I get it in fourth gear, all I hear is wind and the exhaust!

ken.
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Thu Mar 20, 2014 8:17 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

36 miles and the shifting and clutching is coming back fast. At first it was almost like I had never had a foot-clutch-hand-shift bike before. (rode one for 20 years) Yeah!!! She sure feels strong. That engine PULLS! I don't think the stock Shovels, Pans, and Knucks are going to leave me very far behind. 25 tooth engine sprocket feels GREAT. First is a little high, but the bike is very light.

ken.
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Sun Apr 06, 2014 8:48 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

66 miles, and we're going to the WSP Thursday for the VIN inspection, and assignment of the VIN number.

The person I've been talking to at WSP is saying they will have to license it as a "homemade" vehicle. From my understanding of the WAC codes, that's not quite correct, but I guess I'll have to take whatever they give me. Their reasoning is that the aftermarket frame disqualifies it from being an assembled vehicle, and that it will not resemble a stock 1937 Harley Davidson. (this reasoning is without ever having seen the bike) However, the frame I have (Paughco) is a "OEM Replacement" frame...and I don't think they realize that. So I printed up some pics of stock bikes that they can compare with mine. And I printed out the WAC code that describes homemade vs. assembled, and highlighted the pertinent points, which they may take offense to. My MSO for the frame also says "OEM" on it, so that should help.

The problem with it being a "homemade" vehicle is that it will have to have turn signals to be street legal. It will have to conform to 2013 vehicle code. I built the bike to be as "clean" as possible, and I sure don't want turn signals, and all the associated wiring.

On a more positive note, the mechanical noise from my engine has quieted down a lot after I hit about 40 miles. I mean like 60% or something. This is good. It was almost kind of....dare I say..."objectionable" at first, but now she's sounding good. Maybe the generator gear had to loosen up or seat in better, as the noise would increase quite a bit when I turned the headlight on. Not any more.

And...I got her up to 60mph on the last ride...no small feat on the very short straight stretches close to home. !!!!!

So....wish me luck.

ken.
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fhsmith1

Posts: 205

Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2006 6:10 pm

Location: Georgia

Post Mon Apr 07, 2014 5:05 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Ken
You probably know this but the authorities probably don't. The original frame didn't have any serial #s. The only numbers were on the engine. If you have good engine #s you may be able to use them. That's what I did in Georgia.
F
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Tue Apr 08, 2014 11:11 am

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Wish I was in Georgia! (been there) Washington State has always been kind of "vehicle registration unfriendly". My first Harley was a 45 that I bought from the Harley Dealer. Numbers turned out to be bad. I went through a lot just to get it re-registered, and then I never could get a title. Then it was stolen from me, so that was the end of that. But three years I fought with them to get a title, and never did.

Anyhow....yes my engine has perfect, beautiful, unmolested numbers on it, you would think they would use them, but the State is pretty hung up on the idea that all motorcycles should be registered by the frame # unless it's an original, unmolested (as far as they can tell) bike.

My hope is that I can convince them the frame is a "stock replacement frame", which it is. Unfortunately Paughco does not list it as such. However, the MSO does say: "Type of frame: S/L OEM 0X30 4C FB". So my hope is that they will recognize the "OEM" as a OEM replacement frame.

I'm also taking a hard copy of the Washington code (WAC) that lays it all out, pictures of my bare frame and a picture of an original bare frame, and some pics of original 1937 UL's. The WAC code states that to be an assembled vehicle, it must be "recognizable" as the type and brand of motorcycle that it is. No brainer, right? Well I'm not holding my breath, that's for sure. !!!

Okay, thanks.

ken.
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Pa

Site Admin

Posts: 4696

Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2000 1:01 am

Location: Ohio USA

Post Tue Apr 08, 2014 12:25 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Take it to a different BMV in your state and present it as original.
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Tue Apr 08, 2014 9:02 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

It's been suggested that I take it to Idaho, get it licensed, then transfer it to Washington. But....at this point I'll just keep my appointment and throw myself on the mercy of the WSP.

k.
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:17 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

And the saga continues. They would not license it as an assembled vehicle, only as a "home-made", and a 2013 at that. Therefore, they told me to bring it back within 60 days, with TURN SIGNALS on it, and they would license it. They insist that because of the Paughco frame, it's a "fabricated" motorcycle.

Oh great....turn signals on a 1937. !!!! And I was going for a "clean" look.

ken.
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45Brit

Posts: 1414

Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:29 am

Post Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:22 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

The more I read about US registration procedures, the happier I am I don't have to deal with them ! What are the legal requirements fir turn signals?

Looking about on tbe net I see that Ford, among others, fitted turn signals in the 1930s consisting of separate units in tne same style as the Harley "bullet" running lights. Some if the auto restoration suppliers list them. There was also a style if turn indicator known here as the "clacker" because the sound it made, which consisted if a case about the size and shape if a Harley "mousetrap" containing a metal arm which flicked up when tne solenoid was activated - I remember my parents owning a 1950s Ford Anglia with indicators like this built into the door pillar.

So if yiu have them, maybe you could get a bit creative with some period accessories?
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...
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woody

Posts: 487

Joined: Mon Apr 15, 2002 12:01 am

Location: Wa, USA

Post Wed Apr 16, 2014 5:36 am

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Put some on for inspection and then take them off after it's done.
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Pa

Site Admin

Posts: 4696

Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2000 1:01 am

Location: Ohio USA

Post Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:34 am

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

As I suggested.....Take the bike to another BMV but this time also take along Bruce Palmers book "How To Restore Your Harley Davidson". Bruce Palmers book will prove to the BMV your year of bike did not have frame numbers and only engine numbers identified the bike. The BMV will not know the frame is not original.
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Pa

Site Admin

Posts: 4696

Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2000 1:01 am

Location: Ohio USA

Post Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:37 am

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

45Brit wrote:The more I read about US registration procedures, the happier I am I don't have to deal with them ! What are the legal requirements fir turn signals?

Looking about on tbe net I see that Ford, among others, fitted turn signals in the 1930s consisting of separate units in tne same style as the Harley "bullet" running lights. Some if the auto restoration suppliers list them. There was also a style if turn indicator known here as the "clacker" because the sound it made, which consisted if a case about the size and shape if a Harley "mousetrap" containing a metal arm which flicked up when tne solenoid was activated - I remember my parents owning a 1950s Ford Anglia with indicators like this built into the door pillar.

So if yiu have them, maybe you could get a bit creative with some period accessories?


Though some automotive manufactures offered turn signals in early automotive manufacturing, turn signals were not law. States could only enforce turn signals if the particular auto came equipped with turn signals and the state the auto was registered in had mandatory state vehicle safety inspection.
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45Brit

Posts: 1414

Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:29 am

Post Wed Apr 16, 2014 9:07 am

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Pa wrote:
45Brit wrote:The more I read about US registration procedures, the happier I am I don't have to deal with them ! What are the legal requirements fir turn signals?

Looking about on tbe net I see that Ford, among others, fitted turn signals in the 1930s consisting of separate units in tne same style as the Harley "bullet" running lights. Some if the auto restoration suppliers list them. There was also a style if turn indicator known here as the "clacker" because the sound it made, which consisted if a case about the size and shape if a Harley "mousetrap" containing a metal arm which flicked up when tne solenoid was activated - I remember my parents owning a 1950s Ford Anglia with indicators like this built into the door pillar.

So if yiu have them, maybe you could get a bit creative with some period accessories?


Though some automotive manufactures offered turn signals in early automotive manufacturing, turn signals were not law. States could only enforce turn signals if the particular auto came equipped with turn signals and the state the auto was registered in had mandatory state vehicle safety inspection.


That's true enough, but my point was that if turn signals must be fitted for modern reasons, there are some options involving period-style units.
Shoot, a man could have a good weekend in Dallas with all that stuff...
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fhsmith1

Posts: 205

Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2006 6:10 pm

Location: Georgia

Post Wed Apr 16, 2014 5:31 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

I must be lucky here is Ga. Georgia didn't title motor vehicles until 1954. For that reason they wouldn't transfer the title from Washington state to Georgia on my 1946. Tag only. That was 13 years ago.

On my 1942, I had a bill of sale on the engine cases. The bill of sale said it was a motorcycle. The tag office gladly accepted it and issued a Georgia tag. That was 5 years ago.

I have been through traffic stops on both since with no problem.

I agree with Pa. Try another DMV and tell them you restored the original frame. They will never know the difference. Especially with the Book Pa mentioned. To me it would be worth a try before putting turn signals on that bike. You WAY achieved the clean look. Very cool.
F
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knucklebolt

Posts: 210

Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Location: Six miles East of Cheney, Wa.

Post Thu Apr 17, 2014 7:30 pm

Re: Project Knucklebolt hits the road

Thanks for all the support. I'm not sure I can go to another WSP inspection station, I'm sure it's on record that I've been there, I think they have entered it into the computer and it wouldn't go well if I tried to have it inspected in the next county. I'm also unsure that they won't/wouldn't know a stock Harley frame from the Paughco frame.

I'll take it back in, clean it back up, and take my chances for now. She's ready for some serious test-riding and I really want to get a plate on it. Once I get a title, maybe there's a way to appeal it or get some kind of change of title. Maybe not, but I'm pretty sure that if I start playing games with the WSP, the WSP is going to win and I'll wind up with no plate, tag, or title.

But it's a shame, the WAC reads that if it is made from Harley parts, has a Harley engine, and can be "recognized" as a Harley, then it's an assembled vehicle. It says nothing about the frame being original. And my engine has these pristine, perfect numbers...just seems so "odd" that they would do what they are doing.

Woody....how could you suggest such a thing????? :)

ken.
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