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Thread: Assorted Projects in the Shed

  1. #51
    Senior Member MadMax's Avatar
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    As long as it runs well.....

    55 in the shed? You'll be wearing a white towel and carrying Birch twigs (and vodka)? Can you rig up a Safari roof like on a Landrover to keep the temp down a bit?

  2. #52
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    On Saturday I was up for an early start (0530) to make the 300km trip down to Birkenhead (Port Adelaide) to ride the SL125 in the local VJMC Tiddler Run. And NO, I didn't ride the SL, I loaded onto my truck and travelled down in comfort at a reasonable speed, taking 3 1/2hr in the truck compared to an estimated 5hr that it would have taken to ride down on the SL.

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    The SL in the carpark of the Birkenhead Tavern with Port Adelaide in the background.

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    Honda Benly 90S that was on the run

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    A nice little Honda C95 (160cc) Benly

    The poor little SL obviously didn’t like the 3 1/2 hr trip down to Adelaide on the back of the truck. As we rode out of the car park to start to the ride down to Glenelg, it kept cutting in and out and wouldn’t run below 4000rpm. I turned around and headed back to the truck after tell the group to go on, and that I would hopefully catch up with them.

    A quick check showed that the battery was basically flat (3.6V). It seems that the new optical electronic ignition doesn’t like it when the battery is flat, and using the blinkers as I exited the car park was the final straw. Further checking showed that if I kept the revs above 4000rpm then the voltage was above 6.5V and things would be good to go.

    I set off, and took a short cut to try and catch up, but ended up ahead of the group. I had a good ride down to Glenelg, and back to the Birkenhead were we were to have lunch. I pulled in to the carpark expecting to see the bike but there were none there. As I was removing my helmet the group arrived, so I had obviously been ahead of the group and not behind them. After a very nice curry and chat with the other riders it was time to head back home.

    A 600km 8 hour round trip to go for a ride with a few other fans of small Japanese bike? Sound like a good thing to me.

  3. #53
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    While posting the previous tale about the SL125, I thought that there may be a few forum members interested in seeing the other project that has been taking up my time lately.

    I have entered to ride in the Vintage Class of the 2018 Australia 4 Day Enduro.

    This year is the 40th anniversary of the first running of the 4 Day back in 1978. The organisers of this year 4 Day is the Cessnock MCC, who ran the first few events (1978, 1979, 1980), they put out a call for riders who rode in the original event back in 1978 to come back and ride again. Being one of those who rode the first 4 Day in 1978, I thought that it would be appropriate for me to enter for this years event as I DNF'd the 4 Day all 4 times I previously entered (1978, 1979, 1980, 1981), and I would like to add a 4 Day finish to my motorcycling resume.

    What bike to ride was an easy problem to solve, as I still have the 1978 Husqvarna 390 AMX (Automatic) that I bought way back in July 1978, and actually rode the 4 Day on in 1979, 1980 and 1981. After DNF'ing the 1981 4 Day on it, I actually fitted my SR500 engine into the frame and rode it in that form for a few years in local club enduros and mx. By the mid 1980's, the 500 engine had been removed and the Hushy sat in parts in the shed at my parents place for the next 30 years. In 2009 I reassembled the bike to have a ride in the Australian Historic MX Championships, where I ended up having the transmission fail during my first practice session. Parts were sourced, and the transmission was repaired, and I rode the bike in the 2014 Harrow Vintage enduro. Since 2014 the poor thing has sat neglected in the back of the shed.

    SO, having payed the entry fee for this years 4 Day it was time to drag the Husky from it spot in the shed and do some serious work to get it ready for 4 days of hard riding.

    As the 4 Day uses public roads as part of the course, I had to sort out the electrics to meet basic roadworthy requirements. The easiest way to do this way to make a complete custom wiring loom. With only a 35w electrical output from the flywheel maggie, the headlight is barely legal but it will do, sorting out a horn was resolved by paralleling 2 x 9V dry cell batteries to give me enough power for a 6V horn. Yes they may not last long but it will get me through the scrutineering / tech inspection prior to the start.

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    It was then on to the big job, a full transmission overhaul. Luckily, after the previous transmission failure I had bough a whole lot of spares, hopefully enough to see my riding days out.

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    With the transmission all sorted, it was time to overhaul the rest of the bike, so new wheel bearings, brake shoes, chain and sprockets were fitted the steering head stripped and re-greased etc, etc. While checking the nitrogen pressure in the Fox Shox, I found that one of the bladders had burst, so a rebuilt kit has been ordered from the USA.

    I have taken the bike out for a quick shake down ride and scared myself. As part of the roadworthy preps, I fitted an electronic speedo (I have never had a speedo on the bike before). Looking down and seeing the speed pass through the 100kph mark while still acceleration HARD down a narrow rutted dirt track was a bit of a scary moment. Lesson learnt, don't look at the speedo!
    Last edited by colinjay; 02-11-2018 at 07:07 PM.

  4. #54
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    Here is a picture of how the Husky looks at present

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    A few blasts from the past;

    Me in action on the Husky during the 1981 4 Day Enduro

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    Me at the fuel stop after DNF'ing the 1978 4 Day Enduro on my Yamaha IT250 back in 1978

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  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by colinjay View Post
    Here is a picture of how the Husky looks at present

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_2574.jpg 
Views:	15 
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ID:	4733

    A few blasts from the past;

    Me in action on the Husky during the 1981 4 Day Enduro

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	1981 4 Day 133.jpg 
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Size:	90.6 KB 
ID:	4734

    Me at the fuel stop after DNF'ing the 1978 4 Day Enduro on my Yamaha IT250 back in 1978

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I always enjoy your historic post Colinjay. I have a bit of Husky blood in my past, although as a former user of the Fox airshocks, I will offer that I was happier with the Ohlins that came stock on those bikes. The air shocks are just too much work to get and keep dialed in.

  6. #56
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    read a interesting piece not long ago about the Husky Autos
    Apparently Husqvarna had a contract with the Swedish military to mount skis to their bikes for winter training .
    the riders found it impossible to keep their feet on the skis and shift at the same time so Husky developed a Automatic transmission
    To offset the cost Husky offered the Auto in the consumer dirt bikes

  7. #57
    Hi Col,

    Can't recall if it was you or not but I recall a green auto on the line at an open MX at Mallalla.

    Had gearbox issues later on.

    Not seen a Benly 90 before.

    SR
    ...'Any unnecessary items on the bike, that it doesn't really need, shouldn't be there!'. (Café racers creed). SR..

  8. #58
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    Hi Stew,

    I asked the owner of the Benly 90S on a previous ride and from memory it is an SE Asian model that was imported here privately.
    Last edited by colinjay; 02-12-2018 at 07:50 PM.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by pcnsd View Post
    I always enjoy your historic post Colinjay. I have a bit of Husky blood in my past, although as a former user of the Fox airshocks, I will offer that I was happier with the Ohlins that came stock on those bikes. The air shocks are just too much work to get and keep dialed in.
    My bike came STD with Gas Girling shocks. They were ok for a short period, but faded badly if there were a lot of whoops. From memory, it didn't take that long to get the pressure settings dialed in, but I was never a top rider so I probably just settled for good enough instead of trying to get them absolutely perfect. I will have to do a bit of experimenting after I have overhauled them as I now weight considerably more than when I first set them up (I recorded my setup in the manual, so I have a reasonable base line to work from)
    Last edited by colinjay; 02-12-2018 at 08:20 PM.

  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmonk View Post
    read a interesting piece not long ago about the Husky Autos
    Apparently Husqvarna had a contract with the Swedish military to mount skis to their bikes for winter training .
    the riders found it impossible to keep their feet on the skis and shift at the same time so Husky developed a Automatic transmission
    To offset the cost Husky offered the Auto in the consumer dirt bikes
    Husqvarna developed the automatic in the early 1970's but didn't get the original contract for the Swedish Army, they lost out to another manufacturer. In 1980 after the original contract winner couldn't deliver, Husqvarna where then handed the contract as they were able to deliver bikes within the contracted time frame. The reason that they could deliver the military bikes, the 250cc MC250MP (Motorcycle 250 Multi Purpose) in a short period, was that they had continued with the development of the automatic and had released the 360cc Automatic as a MX / Enduro bike in 1976, and followed this up with the 390cc versions in 1977, 78 and 79, which had proven the design of the transmission. Civilian 430cc and 500cc models were also produced in the 1980's.

    The reason for the development of an automatic transmission was that the Swedish Army wanted to be able to put soldiers with no motorcycling experience onto a motorcycle and have them achieve a decent level of competence in off road riding with just 1 week of training. As an ex-military instructor (17 year in the Navy) and as a motorcycling riding instructor (I currently work as a Rider Instructor delivering the mandatory learner training here in SA), and I can tell you that getting someone with no experience to a level of competence that would be required by the military in just 1 week would be near on impossible with a manual transmission bike. The use of Skis was just a side advantage of having an automatic transmission.

    Sales wise, Husqvarna sold an awful lot of the 250cc Military Automatics, not just the Swedish Army, but also to other Scandinavian and European military forces, as once the bikes had been proven to be reliable, others saw the advantage of using them. Sale of the civilian MX and Enduro automatics were never that high, mainly due to the fact that riding one was so different to riding an "normal" bike that few experienced rides bought them plus they were expensive compared to the manual transmission bikes available and were expensive to maintain.

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