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1973 Commando 850

Classic Norton Commando Motorcycles.

1973 Commando 850

Postby mschlake21 » Tue Dec 01, 2015 11:16 am

Picked up an 850 commando a few months ago. its a 1973 model. I'm hoping to get her all fixed up and I'm sure i will have lots of questions along the way. the PO found it in the basement of a house he bought, with the title attached to it. the title was sealed in a ziplock, so he made it part of the house purchase. seriously what are the chances. it was totally disassembled a year ago, motor and gearbox were rebuilt by an engine builder in Oklahoma City. New isolastics throughout the frame. All of the motor parts were polished and the guy purchased a boyer ignition that was included. most of the issues are cosmetic. needs paint, new headlight ears, and a few random bits and pieces. the biggest headache will be putting everything back where it belongs. this is the first norton I've ever worked on.

In case anybody is wondering, i paid 3k and he threw in a second 1970 commando 750. it was just the frame, the motor and trans, and front end. i sold it for 1500, so i only have 1500 in the 850. i want to make it back to factory fresh, so I'm going to have some questions about what goes where. Ive also got 5 boxes of parts, so I'm not even sure what I've got. i put up a wanted ad in that section, so if you see something and can help let me know. here is my photo bucket link, http://s1067.photobucket.com/user/mschlake21/library/ . i only have two pictures up there, but there will be many more to come. also my yamaha is on there if anybody is interested in jap bikes

First question. Im used to working on japanese bikes. I've done two or three of them. I'm trying to reinstall the norton clutch, and i can't find clutch bolts/springs anywhere. and instead find this goofy plate made of spring steel. Does this serve this purpose? does it even have clutch bolt/springs?
1974 Norton Commando 850
1969 BSA A65 Firebird
1978 XS650

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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby Torontonian » Tue Dec 01, 2015 11:35 am

First off , Congrats on the house and bike (s). The goofy plate is called a diaphram spring and flexes in and out slightly to grab or free up the clutch plates. You will need to purchase a Norton clutch tool to do any work. If you are handy you can make one too. I's dangerous to attempt work without it. Obviously get a manual too. :)
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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby L.A.B. » Tue Dec 01, 2015 11:48 am

mschlake21 wrote:First question. Im used to working on japanese bikes. I've done two or three of them. I'm trying to reinstall the norton clutch, and i can't find clutch bolts/springs anywhere. and instead find this goofy plate made of spring steel. Does this serve this purpose? does it even have clutch bolt/springs?



Manual:
http://www.classicbike.biz/Norton/Repai ... mmando.pdf
Clutch - section C14 & C34.

1973 parts book:
http://www.classicbike.biz/Norton/Parts ... _73-74.pdf
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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby dennisgb » Tue Dec 01, 2015 11:58 am

You might win the best deal ever award. :D

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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby baz » Tue Dec 01, 2015 12:08 pm

"Goofy plate" !!! Please read up all you can before working on this bike !! There are many pitfuls don't attempt to fit this clutch without a clutch plate compressor also if you have several clutch components in your boxes you will need to use a hardened clutch centre if you are using bronze plates also you need to get the clutch plate stack height correct and you need to shim the clutch to aligne with the engine drive sprocket cheers baz
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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby mschlake21 » Tue Dec 01, 2015 1:07 pm

I've been reading up a lot, and actually after asking this question, went back and looked in the box. i have the clutch tool too! I didn't realize what it was. thank you for the manual. he gave me a leather-bound manual with it, but its really jacked up. missing pages and oil stains. half of it is unreadable.

I'm going to have to order some gaskets and put the primary back together. i can't begin to express how stumped i was when i couldn't find the clutch bolts. Such a cool bike, but some very odd designs looking through the manual. it'll take some getting used to. thanks in advance!
1974 Norton Commando 850
1969 BSA A65 Firebird
1978 XS650

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Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby grandpaul » Wed Dec 02, 2015 7:16 am

Welcome!

A very good source of parts is Old Britts. Ella will likely answer the phone, Fred is very knowledgeable.
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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby illf8ed » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:01 pm

Hi Mathew,

Where on the planet are you? If someone on the forum is close by, might be able to help face to face. Nothing like someone pointing where the parts go and maybe help keep the skin on your hands by warning you about how and where the Commando can bite you. :)
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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby mschlake21 » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:51 pm

im a law student in Norman, Oklahoma... but I'm actually from the Virginia/West Virginia border. The Norton is here with me, unfortunately, with the flattest, straightest roads on earth. I'm about three hours from dallas, and 30 min south of oklahoma city. I'm not sure if there is a profile on here, but if so ill update mine.

If somebody wanted to help re-assembly i would be really happy to take the assistance!
1974 Norton Commando 850
1969 BSA A65 Firebird
1978 XS650

mschlake21
Posts: 45
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Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby 1up3down » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:58 pm

I suggest you start a new thread stating where you live again and ask if any forum member knows someone close to you who can come to your home and help

I would but I am in Albuquerque, you are gong to need a clutch depressor tool which flexes the plate and maybe a front primary chain sprocket removal tool

get a workshop manual asap and find a nortoneer close to you, ask lots of questions here and learn how to post photos on this forum

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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby mschlake21 » Wed Dec 02, 2015 7:03 pm

ok i can figure it out for sure, i will post as well. i actually ended up having the clutch depressor tool. and i have four manuals that i found in the bottom of one of the boxes. I've been studying that parts manual like nobody's business.

for those interested, serial # 309398, motor and frame match
1974 Norton Commando 850
1969 BSA A65 Firebird
1978 XS650

mschlake21
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:27 am
Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby mschlake21 » Wed Dec 02, 2015 7:19 pm

Image
1974 Norton Commando 850
1969 BSA A65 Firebird
1978 XS650

mschlake21
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:27 am
Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby 850cmndo » Wed Dec 02, 2015 7:30 pm

mschlake21 wrote:ok i can figure it out for sure, i will post as well. i actually ended up having the clutch depressor tool. and i have four manuals that i found in the bottom of one of the boxes. I've been studying that parts manual like nobody's business.

for those interested, serial # 309398, motor and frame match


Engine number?
'73 850 Roadster 300069
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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby grandpaul » Wed Dec 02, 2015 7:32 pm

You may have to un-bolt the engine from the transmission frame in order to wrestle the bloody tranny into position.
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Re: 1973 Commando 850

Postby mschlake21 » Wed Dec 02, 2015 7:34 pm

luckily, i already knocked that out. it was pretty rough. ill post better picks of it tomorrow. Had to basically take the motor out to get it attached.
1974 Norton Commando 850
1969 BSA A65 Firebird
1978 XS650

mschlake21
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:27 am
Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

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