Ducati 250

Ducati 250

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Running at last

Spent the last couple of days rebuilding the bike after getting the newly honed cylinders and checked out cylinder head back from the engineering shop.
Started 3rd kick this afternoon and, after a couple of shakedown runs out the back of our house, I went for a little ride. Did about 8 miles and I'm well chuffed! Engine pulls really well, new clutch springs have stopped that from slipping, all in all its seems to be a happy ending.
Couple of small things still need doing: Pilot jets are 1 size too small I think, headlight wants wiring up, with a switch and the sidestand needs looking at as its sitting too low and touches down on left handers.
Can't wait to get it MOT'd so I can put some miles on .

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Seat finished

Made a seat pan  for the XS very early on in the build - its on an earlier post. cut the shape from some 12mm steel, bent it to form a shape and welded some brackets on the bottom for fixings to the frame / springs.
Well, I covered it with reconstituted foam the other day and went shopping at Tandy Leather, in Northampton (very good websie by the way) They are excellent there, really helpful - ended up with some goatskins, tanned and dyed, which were only £3 each, also picked up some thread and tools. Below is the finished product:

I'm really happy with how its turned out, made one seat before for the sportster, but thats not great, this one isn't perfect, but good enough for me to use and be proud of.

Next project

Picked this up the other day:

Its a 1960 T100a, was rebuilt, i think, in the 80's, and has done 1600 miles since. Passed its MOT this morning, with just one advisory on the steering head bearings.
Runs really well - I've done about 25 miles of town riding since picking it up on Tues night - still getting used to the brake and gearshift being the 'wrong way round' - what makes it even worse is that the front brake is absolutely shocking - despite re-dressing it and cleaning. Gapped the points,plugs and tappets last night, which seem to have made a slight difference - not too sure how well the carb is set up, but its pretty smooth, all through the rev range. Of course its got its fair share of oil leaks. At some point I'd like to do a proper job on the engine - but I'll get the bike built first - the engine can wait till winter 2012.
I plan to ride it as is for the next couple of months and start making plans, with a view to saving up and beginning proper work in November time.
Thoughts at the moment are bolt on hardtail, probably a peanut type tank,sell the Akronts and fit a 21" front with a speedmaster and a little jap drum brake, Quite a skinny 18" rear, convert to 12v, electronic ign and go batteryless (any info on this would be much appreciated), maybe some clipons or vincent flats etc etc. Probably get some pipes made.

Saturday, 13 August 2011

False start

Well, went for my first run on the road this week, while it felt amazing to be riding it finally, the journey was not without its problems.
Main issue is with one cylinder throwing out oil really badly, rings, bores, valve guides, pistons and compression are all within spec and head gasket is good, also had a petrol weep from the fuel tap which wrecked the paint in that area of the tank - and the mudguard worked loose, even though there was loctite on the bolts, caused a little bit of paint damage, but I was in a 'fuck it' mood this afternoon.
Current situation is that the bike is stripped - top end torn down on the engine and head and barrels are at a machine shop being examined. Mudguard has been stripped to bare metal, filled and primed ready for topcoat tomorrow and the tank has a paint repair underway.
Pissed off at the knockback, but you live and learn, hopefully should be back on the road in a week or two. I've had a taster at riding it and can't wait for it to be finished.

Went to look at a T100 today, while I respect the old boy for building it from essentially autojumble parts, and ressurecting a bike that wasn't there before, it wasn't exactly done to a high standard - I suppose I've been spoilt looking at some amazing bikes recently. Anyway, he struggled to start it, then when he did, there was a little squit of oil coming from the head gasket which put the nail in the coffin.
The search continues...

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Shit the bed

Made a giant leap forward over the last week or two:

To make it rideable down the track at the back of our house I need to make some cables to length and I've got some replacement carbs coming, as I broke one of mine trying to get the seized mixture screw out, tried absolutely everything and in the end went for the do or die approach and I killed it! Also need to sort some decent air filters.

For the MOT I need to sort a horn and a new light plus get some new fork oil - I can bottom them out just bouncing on them

In the near future I've still got to cover the seat and finish flatting the paint, I used 2K clear laquer from a rattlecan, its been on for almost a week and its soft as shite. I also want to sort out some clipons for it, the current bars are just too high over the top yoke, due to the rest of the bike being quite low down.