Friday, February 12, 2021


Gave Ed G. a call tonight after checking out his revised workshop blog, now called " Black Coffee". While talking about all different aspects of shop life and other things. One subject touched upon was the early MAC and MSS rocker boxes; inside the rocker arm is a thin washer. This washer helps control the level of oil. This washer is held inside via a conical spring. Ed had mention that sometimes people have stretched the spring to add pressure onto the washer.  however, this is a bodge and not a proper fix due to it changing the function of the spring.

Strangely, I never looked much into the rockers when they were disassembled. So a quick dash to the Iron MSS project storage box to check out the rockers. Even more so, I didn't even notice the washer internal of the rocker. Not only that, but the spring in my very much worn out and bodged iron MSS was stretched out to add pressure onto the washer. Always something to learn. Thanks Ed!

Oil control washer removed.

View of a bodged conical spring.

Checkout Ed's blog "Black Coffee at

Ed's other blog, the inner mechanations of Velocette repairs

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Lliam's Journey

August 10 was the shortest time for passing.  Yet, in the knowledge that this too shall end. I stole a few minutes to gather memories of a deeper intellect. In those minutes I was, where I should have been. The time where you see the event as just that, an event with no passing.

We spent the last day riding in the fall light.  Clearings showing the landscape as it lay. The sound of black hoske mufflers as they pass by.  'Too slow  my good man, your holding up the pace'  the old BMW pulls past in a blur of sound. Then the road opens out a full hill climb as we power up the Aircraft designed boxers.

The roads, some like this where one can see clear to the other end, others as century old cart paths paved during a more affluent time.  With few cars or stop signs a one hour tour of five town connectors pulled from the memory banks within my head.

Gear changes crisp, BMWs in classic black roaring though the wooded backroads as  leaves fall into  winter slumber.  The twisting pathways of the past unfold before us.  Each turn an exhilarating sensation as our tires grip pavement

 in the cosmic (comic?) universe.
So sorry to hear of your passing this morning, you will be missed.
Lliam Burke r.i.p

The Early days, Lliam and Molly on his 1984 R100RT. They did several cross country trips on this BMW.  The bike still exist with over 360,000 mile on it. Photo by Duncan Kautz circa 1995

Birthday Bill

Pettengill Farm with Larry Ronai

At Larz Anderson on the Velo. Photo by Dave Petty

Lliam and Jenna

In with the Velocette crowd at Larz Anderson. Photo by Dave Petty

digging into a 67 Beeza

Lliam and BOB (Beast of Burden)

Having a black and tan

Keeping killer in line

Mitch and Lliam working on the Beeza

Molly, Lliam and Rosie, ready for a ride


I'll be seein' Ya'

Friday, January 8, 2021

1947 Velocette MSS. Pretty Pictures of Ugly.

After a conversation with Ed G, I got out the old Lumix and shot a few pictures for him of broken up and worn Velocette Bits. Most of the pictures are of the engine out of the 1947 Iron MSS project. Broken barrel and head fins, here and there plus pictures of the rocker box where  oversized bolts were wound in to make their own threads after the old threads gave up the ghost. I bit more patina then one engine should wear? I suppose you could bust off more fins and make it into a full on dope motor...  too bad the flywheels aren't up to that task.
The other set of pictures are the mostly worn out barrel and piston. The barrel is from the alloy MSS engine 10675, the piston is the original out of MSS 13084. Big questions, is there life left.

As said, pretty pictures of ugly.


Thursday, January 7, 2021

1967 BSA Lightning tear down

With the iron MSS pulled down and awaiting the next step for repairs, the floor was clear to reprocess my dad's old BSA. He'd bought it as a basket case around 18 years ago. We had put it together; some new parts, some used parts and gave it a fireup right where it stands. And then it sat, dad got sick and the old Beeza sat and sat. Dad passed ten years ago and I put the bike on the back burner, mostly because there were many small details never completed; wiring, paint, and the usual run down tidy up of loose ends. 
So with a new year and a clear space, its time to help this old bike run again. But this time we'll see if it can get onto the roadways this summer. First chore is to tear it back down to the crank, recheck oilways, clearances and give it a clean up.

photo in the pushrod tunnel
Over the period of  three days I took as much weight off the engine case to remove it from the frame. Dad has replaced the pistons and had the head reconditioned by Import Machine. everything still looks great internally. Only a few minor items will need attention.

Three days, down to the block and ready to split the cases. Time to find parts and suppliers.