Tool Requirements

Joined
May 24, 2003
Messages
24
I'm getting back into Commando riding after a 20 year absence and my toolbox right now is 100% metric.

Can someone please advise what tools I should focus on to get started, Whitworth imperial spanner/socket sizes etc..?

What else should be lurking in the toolbox in case of a rainy day? Thanks
 
Joined
May 27, 2003
Messages
10
Richard:

I'm getting by with a normal set of SAE sockets and combination wrenches, plus a set of 3/8" drive whitworth sockets, a clutch spring compressor, an exhaust nut spanner and a BFH! :mrgreen:
 

Anonymous

Guest
BFH

The BFH is a Norton owner's tool that sadly is not used enough by the youngsters these days. LOL!
Don't forget a roll of baling wire and some bands cut from old inner tubes that slip around the tach and come in handy!
With the above mentioned tools, along with a slave cover to check the timing chain, and a cut down allen key to remove the dual Amals, there isn't much you can't do to repair a Commando.
 
Joined
May 24, 2003
Messages
24
Ok, head on the chopping block time - whats a BFH? Suspect I'm being set up for a chuckle or two, but it wont be the first time! :oops:
 
Joined
May 27, 2003
Messages
10
Richard, just make sure it's a Whitworth hammer, those metric ones will bugger up your bolts! :wink:
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2003
Messages
4
Jeez - the guy who sold me MY tools told me I need both a metric AND a Whitworth BFH...

Oh, and in case anyone wonders what "baling wire" is, it's the wire that at least used to be used in the field manufacture of hay bales - been the savior of many a broken vehicle.

road_thing said:
Richard, just make sure it's a Whitworth hammer, those metric ones will bugger up your bolts! :wink:
 
Joined
Sep 23, 2010
Messages
38
Country flag
Re:

road_thing said:
...plus a set of 3/8" drive whitworth sockets...

BSW or BSC?

did a quick google... most sites describe the sockets as simply "whitworth". should i even be worried about the difference, or just buy a decent "whitworth" set and be done w/ it?

thanks!
 
Joined
Jan 27, 2008
Messages
1,607
Country flag
Re: Re:

soturi said:
BSW or BSC?

did a quick google... most sites describe the sockets as simply "whitworth". should i even be worried about the difference, or just buy a decent "whitworth" set and be done w/ it?

thanks!

BSF, BSC and BSW relate to the thread count on British fasteners, from what I've learned. Whitworth and British Standard sockets and wrenches are sized by the width of the threaded portion of the bolt, not the head. The only difference is BS sockets differ from Whitworth sockets by one size - a 5/16 BS is a 1/4 W, and some sockets and wrenches will be stamped with both sizes.

Back when Joseph Whitworth standardized bolt sizes, he experimented with the optimal head size for each size bolt, and came up with the Whitworth system. As materials improved, the industry found the heads were, for the most part, larger than needed for the job each bolt was required to do. By changing the head size to that of the next smaller bolt, the heads more closely matched the load capacity of the bolt, and British industry could keep using their Whitworth tools.

On Commandos, many of the fasteners are SAE (also called AF), as the British cycle industry switched over to American bolt sizing in the late '60s. Only those parts which were designed under the old system kept the BS nuts and bolts. That's why most of the chassis fasteners are SAE, but the engine is mostly BSC

Anybody with older Nortons knows just about everything on them is BSC (also called CEI)
 
Joined
Jun 14, 2007
Messages
1,732
Country flag
Noob, hah?

Don't forget to have a large bucket of steam, and for pre-Mk III bikes, a LEFT-HANDED monkey wrench handy.

Trust me.

:twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
 

maylar

VIP MEMBER
Joined
May 13, 2007
Messages
4,139
Country flag
A set of 5 Whitworth 3/8" drive sockets is a must. Open end/box wrenches in Whit also. The most common are 1/4W and 5/16W, although a 14mm can be used for 1/4W in a pinch. The small one (3/16W) is close to a 7/16" SAE but not exact.

SAE sockets and wrenches are needed too. 1/2", 9/16, 5/8 and 3/4" especially. Inside the primary there are some bigger nuts that need 1/2" drive for torque - 7/8" and 1-1/8" IIRC. You'll need a big wrench for the rear axle too (I forget the size).

I don't think I've ever used metric tools on my Norton, except that 19mm is close to a 3/4 SAE.
 
Joined
Oct 19, 2005
Messages
18,978
Country flag
AMEN for METRINCH!!!!!
There are some fasterners on '72 that don't fit any named system plus damaged ones that only Metrinch fits on flats and can remove normally.
The front isolatic mount nut/heads are 9/16" on both my '72's.
the 1/4W-14mm socket and end wrench will need grinding thinner to get in to all they need too, gear box especially.
Bailing wire is ancient history, new age using bailing twine which is fine up to a point of heat or rubbing. Zip ties and duck tape handy.
Dental picks angled and curved to pick out circlips and particles and blims and dropped washes in tight deep spots and getting clutch plates out.
A Super magnet disc to two, ~1" OD, to suck out steel clutch plates and a bunch of other uses beside refrigrator notes.
Test light handier than meter probes.
Thread file or die/tap set.
Wood 1"x 1/2 two to 4 ft long, to lever up cases to align or remove iso mounts.
Big handled hook to pull on/off big springs
Bright light and magnifier lens.
Flat sanding plate
Impact driver to go with BFHammer.
BFH = 3 lb sludge not wimpy framing hammer. Hard rubber /lead shot hammer.
Small tack driving hammer, claw hammer too or wrecking bars if claws can get behind the kick lever. Tiny flat pry bar pair to handled angled screw driver like pry bar pair to lift off cogs and help part stuff and stuff stuff back in.
1.5" end wrench or 4X deep socket to deal with *LH reverse thread* main shaft chain sprocket. Expensive impact socket or DIY with welded on tube.
Tiny adjustable wrench and vice grips/pliers and flippable screw and plug socket handle 90% of riding nip ups.
Electrical terminals and some spare wire long enough to jump battery to coils
or ignition or cut up for scab ons to ride on.
Surgical gloves for easy off hand mess to ride on after messing with a mess.
Don't know if they can stand gas to transfer yet, hm.
LED flashlight that can be held in teeth or a tiny head set for after dark two handed tasks. Bicycle LED flasher for road side marker if above not enough.
Razor blades and wood chisels to get glued cases started apart
Bladed bearing pullers,
**Special** triangle pinon gear puller if on tight as factory intended.
MAP or propane torch.
Candle wax and Kroil oil.
Drifts of various sorts in small nail to racket extension size for carbs to cradle bolts.
Bungee cords to hold cables wires and do dads out the way w/o total removal or banging around.
Good rubber bands to hold rocker arms in place as each placed and not un-placed
dealing with the next one. Hook on opposite rocker ends via bands over head.
Fine and course big and small wire brushes. Nothing feels like restoring to me than bench wire brushing rust crusts away and burnishing the rest to shiny.
Blocks of wood, tiny wedges to 4x4 blocks, also handy to protect from BFH on stuff like fork stanchions or reluctant axles.
 
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
Messages
327
ok the complete cheese of their video aside - are Metrinch legit or novelty?
Anyone else use these things? They seem expensive.

I ask because my sockets and wrenches are mostly hand-me-downs, cheapos and inherited bits (although I did score on the BS wrench collection from a family friend that had them for his Morris Minor waaaaay back).
I've lost all my 10mm sockets, have way too much 1/2" crap and I can change all the plugs on a V8 simultaneously.
I seem to spend half my time cursing "too big, too small... " :evil:

Thoughts?
 
Joined
Apr 15, 2009
Messages
11,405
Country flag
fastback said:
ok the complete cheese of their video aside - are Metrinch legit or novelty?
Anyone else use these things? They seem expensive.

I ask because my sockets and wrenches are mostly hand-me-downs, cheapos and inherited bits (although I did score on the BS wrench collection from a family friend that had them for his Morris Minor waaaaay back).
I've lost all my 10mm sockets, have way too much 1/2" crap and I can change all the plugs on a V8 simultaneously.
I seem to spend half my time cursing "too big, too small... " :evil:

Thoughts?

I have them and love them. I got a set on close out from Sears a long time ago and it was pretty reasonably priced. Considering you can replace your inch, metric and maybe some whitworth with one set it's not that expensive.
 
Top