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Old 03-15-2008, 08:27 AM   #61
Putts
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Very nicely said, mate. We've come a long way to get to, "Turn the key, thumb the starter, take off."
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Old 03-15-2008, 09:10 AM   #62
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THANK YOU!!!

And a quote to remember...."And then the over restored examples. Nice. But no character what so ever. I want to be able to feel every owner when I look at a bike so old."

These pics, all of them, had me totally mesmerized. Truely "Men and their machines".

From the youngest fellow to the eldest, from the gear driven speed-o-meters to the linked drive belts..........absolutely priceless!!
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Old 03-15-2008, 05:49 PM   #63
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Wow that was some very cool interesting stuff! I cant believe the drive systems on some of those bikes.
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Old 03-15-2008, 06:54 PM   #64
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Thank you ever so much, I throughly enjoyed seeing there is still life in those old machines. Looked a fun event to witness in person.
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Old 03-15-2008, 07:35 PM   #65
bill pierce
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WOW!! Thanks
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Old 03-15-2008, 07:44 PM   #66
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Eek Outstanding!!!

Thanks for those amazing pics.
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Old 03-15-2008, 09:09 PM   #67
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Great post. A dear departed friend of mine grew up in Brighton and used to talk about it often.

-RIP Jose Pratt Brighty -

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Old 03-16-2008, 01:38 AM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcs
I'm no expert, but let's see...

Standardized controls are a fairly new thing in motorcycling, having come about really only in the last 40 years or so and still not totally universal worldwide.

These very old bikes will typically have a clutch, which could be as simple as a belt tensioning roller, usually worked by a hand lever. It's not spring loaded like modern clutches; push the clutch lever in and it will stay when you take your hand off. The throttle is probably a twist grip even from the earliest days, but you might not notice it in pictures because the cables were often run inside the handlebar tube. Some very old bikes will have an amazing system of external linkages instead of hidden cables! That throttle was probably on the right grip (most folks have right master hands) but not always. Then you'll need a spark advance lever, a compression release lever, a shift lever (well, if your bike has a multi-gear transmission, which came around 1910-1912 for most makes), and of course a lever on the oil pump for the rider to lubricate the top end. Then there'll be a kill switch, perhaps a muffler cut out lever, and, so the rider's feet didn't feel completely left out of the riding experience, a foot lever for the rear (only!) brake.

All these bikes will have unique features, but in general to get underway: put the bike up on the (center) stand, open the kill switch and petcock, tickle the carb, give the oil pump a few strokes, set the spark advance, open the compression release, disengage the clutch, select the best gear for starting, engage the clutch, put your hand on the throttle and then begin to pedal. As the engine begins to spin, close the compression release, carefully give it some gas and - voila - the engine began to fire. Quit pedaling, engage the clutch, tap the brake to stop the rear wheel from spinning, get the bike down off the stand, select first gear, tweak the spark advance, give the oil pump another stroke, disengage the clutch as you give it some gas and ride away.

Perfection! What could be simpler?
tcs
Thanks; that's exactly the sort of explanation I was looking for. Fascinating. I'd like to see a video of that start-up sequence. :) I don't even know what spark advancing or compression releasing is.
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Old 03-16-2008, 04:19 AM   #69
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WOW

Being a vintage/classic car and bike lover can´t be more satisfied to see some of those bikes around here!

Cheers to you my friend!
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Old 03-16-2008, 05:39 AM   #70
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Wow!!! Gotta love CXU 333, with the inline 4 mounted lengthwise! Leather drive belts? Exposed valvetrains? Wow... wow... wow... awesome!

Makes you see how motorcycling really did begin as a 'gentlemens' sport... love the outfits, and the bikes!!!

I gotta see that in person someday.
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Old 03-16-2008, 07:08 AM   #71
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Wow!

Diggin' the pudding bowls and classic garb.
Many thanks for the "detail" shots!
What a cast of characters!
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Old 03-16-2008, 11:32 PM   #72
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How to Ride One

Quote:
Originally Posted by tcs
I'm no expert, but let's see...

Standardized controls are a fairly new thing in motorcycling, having come about really only in the last 40 years or so and still not totally universal worldwide.

These very old bikes will typically have a clutch, which could be as simple as a belt tensioning roller, usually worked by a hand lever. It's not spring loaded like modern clutches; push the clutch lever in and it will stay when you take your hand off. The throttle is probably a twist grip even from the earliest days, but you might not notice it in pictures because the cables were often run inside the handlebar tube. Some very old bikes will have an amazing system of external linkages instead of hidden cables! That throttle was probably on the right grip (most folks have right master hands) but not always. Then you'll need a spark advance lever, a compression release lever, a shift lever (well, if your bike has a multi-gear transmission, which came around 1910-1912 for most makes), and of course a lever on the oil pump for the rider to lubricate the top end. Then there'll be a kill switch, perhaps a muffler cut out lever, and, so the rider's feet didn't feel completely left out of the riding experience, a foot lever for the rear (only!) brake.

All these bikes will have unique features, but in general to get underway: put the bike up on the (center) stand, open the kill switch and petcock, tickle the carb, give the oil pump a few strokes, set the spark advance, open the compression release, disengage the clutch, select the best gear for starting, engage the clutch, put your hand on the throttle and then begin to pedal. As the engine begins to spin, close the compression release, carefully give it some gas and - voila - the engine began to fire. Quit pedaling, engage the clutch, tap the brake to stop the rear wheel from spinning, get the bike down off the stand, select first gear, tweak the spark advance, give the oil pump another stroke, disengage the clutch as you give it some gas and ride away.

Perfection! What could be simpler?
tcs
That's fairly good, but a few items need clarification. Very few of those bikes have a CLUTCH! The Harleys, the Indians, the v-twin AJS, the Morgan, and possibly another 3-wheeler; otherwise, it's direct drive via belt from the crankshaft to the rear wheel - single speed, no clutch.
If you want to stop, you kill the engine using the valve lifter lever (which lifts the exhaust valve a little bit off the seat, and the engine loses compression). Brakes are terrible; usually a bicycle-type stirrup on the front wheel, and a 'dummy rim' on the back, which you press a pad of friction material against a rim beside the tire (like a carriage). Throttles as we know them weren't invented until the late 20's, and most of these bikes use two-lever carbs; one lever controls the throttle slide (so far so good), the other raises and lowers the main jet, controlling the fuel intake (I lost you there, I know - it's really a pain at first, but becomes second nature after a while).
Gearboxes didn't come into vogue until the early 20's, although some advanced marques used them in the 'teens (H-D/Indian, Sunbeam, etc). The American manufacturers were amazingly ahead of the curve until the late 1920's, and built the fastest and most robust bikes in the world. What happened after that is a long story, but I can tell you, a 1915 Harley is a FAST motorcycle for the day. Some modest tuning will see near 100mph on a bike with no brakes or suspension to speak of.
I know the fellows with the 'original paint' H-D and Indians pictured, they certainly are aware of how special these survivors are. Amazing bikes.
The event is organized by the VMCC in England (Vintage Motor Cycle Club). It's not easy riding a bike with no clutch or brakes in modern traffic.... These are great photos, thanks!

If you want more pix and talk about old bikes, visit my blog;

thevintagent.blogspot.com
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Old 03-16-2008, 11:42 PM   #73
FREDO RIDER
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Great photo report. Thanks !

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Old 03-17-2008, 02:58 AM   #74
the venturer
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congrats to those who still make those old days legendly live.
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Old 03-17-2008, 03:49 AM   #75
claudio17
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Wow! Wich I could see things like this more often. Thanks for sharing.
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