72 Combat Proddy Build

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Update:

I've started many threads on different subjects around this build. I'll make a consolidated list here so you don't have to wander the depths of this forum to find them.

Introduction
Brake Caliper Teardown with pictures
Amal Retentive
Amal Fuel Lines
Custom Wiring
Rear Axle Puzzle
Swingarm Spindle
Head Steady
Dyna Coil Mount
Gearbox Teardown
LED Turn Signals
Fuel Tank Mounting
Oil Line Routing
Breather installation
RGM Belt Install
First Kick
It's Alive!
Brake Bleeding
Boyer Problems
First Test Ride
Wheel Bearings
Wheelbuilding
Brake Light Switch Alt
Kickstart oil seal
Tanks a lot
K&N Air Filter
Gearbox Adjuster
Just Forking Around

More to come...



_____________________________________________________________
There must be a hundred 72s being rebuilt on this forum alone. Let me see if I can make this one go too. I started the information back on this thread if you want to reference back.

As described before, this is what the bike looked like some 15 years ago when I first picked it up.



It had been at my Dad's and he and my brother had been collecting parts to make a racer out of it. They gave up after several years of it sitting apart and got it back to me recently.



So today I laid out all the parts. Here I am with my 3 1/2 yr old. Hopefully she won't be too much older by the time this thing is back together. :D Yes, that's a Bultaco cap, but I do have a Norton shirt on!

Also as mention in this thread, I hope to video most of the process. I did video the parts as they were laid out. I still have to decide how to edit it all together.

I'm still putting the list of major missing parts. Some of them will come from my brother's spares pile and some will need to be new. I'll mock it together and then when I'm satisfied I have all the parts, disassemble, refinished and rebuild for good.

Here's the "fun pile".
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

Nice stuff. I really like that brushed AL tank. Get " cyberlink power director " to edit video. Has some pretty good reviews.
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

seaguy said:
Nice stuff. I really like that brushed AL tank. Get " cyberlink power director " to edit video. Has some pretty good reviews.
I'll just use iMovie or Final Cut Express. They'll be fine.

The tank will get polished and clearcoated (I think).
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

That's some nice stuff, try to finish before your daughter gets her license so you can test drive it and shake it down for her.
I just got a bike back to roller status after I took it apart a couple of years ago and it is a nice feeling.
 

grandpaul

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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

Get that sucker together, we'll get our wives and same-age daughters together, and I'll meet you with my Dunstall replica Combat, let's say......

BARBER'S IN OCTOBER!
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

grandpaul said:
Get that sucker together, we'll get our wives and same-age daughters together, and I'll meet you with my Dunstall replica Combat, let's say......

BARBER'S IN OCTOBER!
Maybe if I worked on bikes for a living that might be feasible (ahem) :roll: , but as I sit at a desk most of the time it's going to be a challenge. If this thing is together and running by next summer I'll be glad.
 

grandpaul

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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

I didn't say WHAT YEAR!!!
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

I had talked about building the bike up "dry" and then taking it apart and doing a final build. I think I'll change my mind. Originally it was because the bike was a wee bit of a basket (ok, several baskets) and that way I could tell what was missing. But as there are so many new parts, it doesn't really make any sense to fit the new parts and then take them all apart, especially things that shouldn't come apart (think bearings and bushings). So screw it, I'll refinsh the frame and just put the sucker together. How else am I going to make it to Canada?

Even after the powdercoating threads I think I'll end up powdercoating the frame. I emailed Dave Wedlake, he's restored some of the most beautiful bikes I've ever seen, and he powdercoats his frame. Needless to say, if it's good enough for him it's way more than good enough for me. And because he'll be doing it there is no worry about any problems.

I need a modified front engine mount for the MkIII isos. I could shorten the ones I have but my brother found the correct one in his pile. As soon as I get it I'll round up the parts and hopefully get them out to get coated.

There's still two dirt events coming up and those take up time and money. Then the long wet winter...
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

Good luck with your build, I hope it all goes together easliy for you.

May I suggest you have the frame checked for straightness before you have it painted. It'd be a shame not to.

Regards Graeme.
 

grandpaul

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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

Old Britt's site has an excellent primer on powdercoating Norton chassis parts.

I'm in the "don't do it" camp on powdercoating cylinders, but the opposing camps seem to have equal numbers.
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

That Tank would look great in Yellow, to match the rest.
Take time to make good cover plates and screw in bolts to protect threads before you powder coat. :wink:
It is a bugger to clean off after.
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

grandpaul said:
Old Britt's site has an excellent primer on powdercoating Norton chassis parts.

I'm in the "don't do it" camp on powdercoating cylinders, but the opposing camps seem to have equal numbers.
I've read the Old Britts on powdercoating. It was brought up here once that the masking they recommend for the swingarm section of the cradle is excessive.



I think someone here powdercoated in a light color and there was this huge bare spot. With black they recommend painting it to keep the clearances.



I've powdercoated smaller parts myself and quite aware of the potential issues. If I don't get all the parts in this batch I'll powdercoat the little stuff myself.

Any suggestions on checking the frame?
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

Regarding excessive taping on the cradle at the swingrm mount, nobody would want to have the bush flange or o-ring bearing on powdercoat or paint. The cradle is milled to a tolerance there. But if you only remove the coating at the bearing area and you can get the swingarm to it, then the clearance is too much. Hence, you gotta remove it all. You can paint it up around it after it's installed if you like though. You can use rear iso shims to tighten up the side clearance if you need to. If you need miscellaneous doodads, let me know.
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

In Australia there are a few specialist frame and fork straighteners.
Perhaps if you ask one of the local racers or race teams they may be able to recomend a reputable engineer.
Ed Milich at bimotacagiva.com would be worth an email, he's in LA I think and races Cagivas and Guzzis.
I know that with a Ducati they like to have the frame with the engine and swing arm and back wheel together, thats how he did my Mk3 too.
If you plan on having it checked or straightened profesionally, I wouldn't take it to anyone other that a specialist.

Regards Graeme.
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

Graeme is correct. Nobody would argue having the frame checked by a profesional with Commando experience is good advice.
But it would be interesting to know how many folk on the forum do this? Especially the guys that do a lot (Granpaul..?).
I am not a profesional restorer, just a shed dweller, so I took this route...
I inspected the bike prior to strip down, for signs of damage or repairs to the frame....kinks, welds etc...I also aligned the back wheel to the front wheel and checked they were in line...no offset. I also looked from the back at this point and checked the back wheel was parallel to the front wheel in the vertical plane...i.e. looking for a twisted swingarm.
It all looked good. (These alignment checks are crucial) I continued to check for damage during stripdown that would concern me, especially around the headstock, for signs of a front end impact and found none.... so I powdercoated it and built it up.
I can let go of the bars on the move and the bike is rock solid, but maybe I was lucky.
I did strip an Ironhead sportster and had it straghtened without needing to repaint once though...
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

I just lay it out on the shop floor with a straightedge and level. As Stu says most damage tends to be visible, fork stops take a whanging in a front ender.
You can check the neck with a plumb bob.
Norton frames used to be so cheap I just changed them out but now I'd probably have one straighened if I found damage.
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

When I first got the bike the front end was on and complete (see first picture). I assume no front end accident. If I recall the bike was probably taken out of service due to a blown gearbox I seem to remember a bunch of gearbox parts in a pail.

The frame looks really good no kinks or dents, I will give it a good eyeball before shoving it out the door. Thanks.
 
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Re: 72 Combat Proddy Build- It begins...

Usually if one front end stop is caved in that's a hint. The two times that happended to my Commandos it mooshed the right hand one.
 

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