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Friday, 5 November 2010

Cubbie. Wales. Mr Pres. THE TRUTH.

You might not know this, but I converted my 1962 Triumph Tiger Cub to a 'rigid' some time ago. I'm not going to go into any more detail other than to say it was all my fault but hey, it's a learning process, and if I'd listened to the guys when they told me to get the swingy thingy pin / bush setup reamed when I rebuilt it, then maybe things would have been different...

So, it's been on the list of things to do for some time, but I just don't seem to have enough hours in my days, or days in my weeks, or even weeks in the month sometimes. Also on the list to 'look at' were the forks. The new seals I fitted never really fitted properly and they were yet another part of the bike that ran on a 'total loss' system. But guess what, the little bike got me around all 34 of the 33 Scottish Counties (yes, you did read that correctly) on Cubbies Counties (2008-2009) so I ain't complaining. Anyway, my reputation obviously goes before me, and the President, Bill Phelps, of the Vintage Motorcycle Club heard of my plight (no time, no skills, umpteen bikes to build / mend / keep / get on the road) and offered to fix Cubbie up for me. It worked out quite conveniently that he was attending all 3 parts of the Scottish Double Plus 1, and on the last leg at Blairgworie, he instructed me to take Cubbie to him and he would then convey my poor little bike to his Welsh workshop and attempt some repairs. See quote from previous post, below, or skip it if you read it before...

There was hardly time to breathe after the Plus1 was over, and on the Friday, I
was back to work and not home til about 10pm. While I was out, Mrs BC had
received an instruction from Mr VMCC President, Bill Phelps, via Past Pres Harry
Wiles, saying that I "must get Cubbie to Blairgowrie tomorrow for the National".
Frown. I was all set to head off early in the morning to accompany Pilot Rae on
his Ariel outfit, but not ready to have to extract Cubbie from the shed and
devise a safe and suitable way to transport it one hundred miles south. But when
The President gives an order, one finds it hard not to comply. So after my tea,
Mrs BC and I nipped out to the shed and moved a whole lot of junk around, and
wiggled Cubbie free from alongside Skorpy, where it had been sitting since about
June, when the MoT expired. The rain was lashing down outside, and the night was
of course, pitch black, so rather than load up there and then, we measured the
hay trailer and the back of the truck - in case there was any chance it would
fit in there. Well it probably could have been made to fit, but not without
draining all the oil and petrol and cleaning the muck off, so I came up with a
cunning plan, Baldrick. If I screwed some blocks of wood to the floor of the
trailer, and wheeled Cubbie on diagonally, it would just about fit and the
blocks of wood would stop Cubbie's back wheel from sliding from side to side. At
goodness knows what hour, I packed my rucksack, put the camera batteries on
charge and got to bed. Up at 5am on Saturday and at least the rain had stopped.
Once I managed to get Cubbie out of the shed, backwards, with little room to
manoeuvre, it was fairly straightforward to load it onto the trailer and strap
it down, and then we were off.
I wasn't there, 'cos they took the opportunity to load Cubbie onto Mr Pres's trailer while I was busy working, but some right old hilarity was had by all, and thanks to Pat Kirkham, there is plenty of photographic evidence, some of which you may have seen in the VMCC Journal, but in case you didn't, here are some snaps....

These snaps by Mr P, Pat's Snaps to follow...

So off Cubbie went, to Wales, in the company of an Indian and a Nimbus, (my, what quality company my little bike has been mixing with these days!) and once settled into Mr Pres's workshop, work began. After Mr Pres had been to the Isle of Wight and several other VMCC do's in his capacity as President, he set about examining the bike and making a mental note of a few more little jobs that he thought needed some attention...
On the bench, awaiting execution, er, I mean examination.
Quote "is this REALLY how the rear brake is adjusted?" I don't think Mr Pres wants me to actually answer that question, but the answer is yes, of course, how else would one adjust the brake?

Quote "Yet another horror - now gone". Boo hoo, I quite liked that funky little arrangement.
Rear end stripped, ready to remove the pin...

Like so...


Quote "YES I DID USE THIS HAMMER". I'm not sure I wanted to know that.
No quote, but I'm sure he was thinking this bit could do with a clean. I made him promise NOT to clean Cubbie though. And you think I'm kidding.

New pins and isolastic bushes ready to fit...

Like so.

After a quick cuppa tea, Mr P tackled (sorry, no rugby pun never mind) the forks

They look alright to me...but rumour has it, Mr P had to use the oxy torch to remove the screwed fork tops which were seized. Oh, and he had a bit of bother removing the offside stanchion due to the welded lug which had distorted the leg.

Just the shroud in place...

Hmmm, is that rust?

New stanchions in place - thanks to Bantam Cub, sorry it's taken so long to get around to letting someone else fit them for me.

Now, if I were doing this job, and I had to find or make a new oversize fork oil drain screw, I'd be stuck, but Mr Pres just goes and turns one up. Next thing I need is a lathe.

Old one on right, new 'un on left. A braw job there ma man.

The list of other odd jobs that Mr P carried out includes "re-fitting the Nacelle properly using nuts and bolts to replace the cable ties", ouch, ok, so I didn't get around to ordering some bolts that fitted. "Made a proper headlight rim adjuster screw and spring, fitted new W clips to headlight beam unit and rim and headlight was adjusted correctly for the MoT. Removed front wheel bearings and re-greased, replacing one that was noisy." Jobs that I've been told to do in the not too distant future chain, possibly sprockets too, and brake linings...oh go on then, maybe I can do that when it snows.

Hud on, just a few more pics to upload from the camera and then that's this tale ticked off. While you wait, have a look at the pics below, of Bill putting on some style at Aberdare Park in the early 1960s. The bike is a Manx by the way, but you'd spotted that already, I'm sure. What I probably shouldn't tell you is on the next lap, Bill decided to take a short cut through a tulip bed. Unfortunately, there are no pictures of that move - unless anyone out there knows of some...

I bet he didn't think, all those years ago, that one day, he would be the President of the Vintage Motorcycle Club, or that he would be fixing up a scrubby Cubbie for a wee lassie in Scotland.

I cannot say a big enough THANK YOU to Bill for all his efforts in, firstly, convincing me to part with Cubbie, then getting the bike to Wales, doing the work and finding the time to get it to the MoT test (hello Barry, hope the pic below meets with your approval) in between all his other commitments. I also must thank "Dickie" on the aberdeenbikers forum for collecting Cubbie on his way home from a race meeting at Pembrey.

MoT man Barry wanted to see what GBC looks like, but he's too late! She's gone!


rbobby572 said...

What were you thinking doing your brakes like that! Gotta ride safe!!! Do enjoy your stories...

Darrell said...

A near-new Cubbie. Better...stronger...faster...and was that rust on the fork tubes? Yikes. Also, was it just the lens, or were the fork tubes rather "un-straight?"
Great write up as usual. And GBCs twin sister seems to be giving her a run for the title. Must be a family trait.

U N said...

" reputation obviously goes before me,..."
What? For neglecting bikes? I'm amazed that forks as rusty as that would actually go up and down!
Good argument for not having shrouds on your forks - if they're bare at least you can see them rusting.


Gorgeous Biker Chick said...

Hello rbobby, good to have you on board, the back brake works fine and is easy to adjust, just have to keep an eye on the end nut and make sure it doesn't slacken off.

Wotcha Darrell, we were just talking about you today - don't worry, all good! Those tubes...just an illusion...

UN, yep, that's probably the one!

Winnie the Pooh said...

The wonderful thing about Cubbie,
Is Cubbie's a wonderful thing,
He's held together with tie-wraps,
But now at last he's got springs!!

Now then, that's enough of the "Rough Inferior", tell us about the Brough Superior!

Stuart said...

The truth is out at last! Nice to know Cubbie has regained his bounce.
The rust was a bit unexpected, with all that oil around... ;-)

U N said...

Terry....."gonna ride it to Shetland summer 2011." Ho, ho, ho! We're going to remind you that you said that!


Stuart said...

Have faith UN, where there's a will there's a way.

Better order plenty of silicone and cable ties GBC!


Darrell said...

Nice to know you were talking good things about me. Maybe you were discussing your upcoming trip to Florida?
(No snow)

Anonymous said...

Very well done that man! (Mr VMCC Pres)

So ... does Cubbie steer and handle the bumps better now?

Graham B

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...rust never sleeps...had an "Onda" 90 with rings that had gotten rusty and it actually squeaked when I fired it up after a long lay-off. A little penetrating oil fixed it right up. I've finally bought a lath. Problem is it's bolted to the top of my MC trailer, in a lock-up. Now I have to get the proper voltage and phasing to run the thing. ( As well as clear space and get it moved in ) Miss the Adult Ed. metals class that got shut down in my area due to lack of funds for such classes. Lathes, mills, surface grinders,"cold cut" saws...all kinds of neat-o stuff. Oh well.Lathes are great, if you have the skills to run them. I was lucky enough to go to a High School with shop classes with amazing teachers. Hairy Larry

Gorgeous Biker Chick said...

Tee hee, a poem, lovely!

Nice to know some people (er, one person?) have faith in me Stu - take heed UN, I will be there, and Terry will too, betcha a bar of choccy...

(Oh why can't I keep my big mouth shut!)

Darrell, there's a plan, no snow and no rust? Yes?

Larry, you need to get that lathe sorted and running, oh imagine how many chunks of metal you should rip up into tiny coily curly bits that pile up around the workshop.

Y'all sleep tight. Thanks for the comments, this place is buzzin' again.

The Chief Bodger said...

EEEEEK!!!! I thought my B44 looked a little ropey what with the rust and all, but it had been sat out in the weather for a couple of years! (Not by me though I need to add)

Oh well, at least Prez Bill did some good work on Cubbie. Good job after seeing some of the bodges.

BTW, yer twin is a real cutie ;)!


Mrs B.C. said...

This is a comment!

Stuart said...

Well done Mrs B.C! Welcome back, you have been missed.

Darrell said...

Sorry dear, while there is no snow, there in fact rust. Surrounded as we are by oceans, salt air is everywhere, as well as the moisture normally found in a jungle. But if you want, there is always Disney (the center of all evil in the universe).

Gorgeous Biker Chick said...

...and there she was, GONE! These blinking comments, arrrrgh!!!!

Disney. Hmmm.


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