THE “NO EXCUSE CUB”
With the 2010 season nearly upon us decision time as to what to ride and where? Will it be another all
out attack on the Classic Expert Class or the Premier Heavyweight division on the Enfield that never got
a ride in 2009 ?
The Cub has had a pretty good track record over the last 3 years, all the mods that have been done are
all to my liking and she is an absolute delight to ride.
Taking the stock Sammy Miller Cub from his showroom and shipping it to the USA was the starting
point back in 2006 but it didn’t get used as I was campaigning the Superglitzmobile in the Modern
Classic Int division and that was the all consuming passion of that year. With the Ahrma season over
and the hard fought Championship wrapped up it was time to let the Cub loose in anger.
First event was at my friends Keith’s venue at the now famous CAT Table Mesa Mine and at this stage I
had only changed the front end over to a Yamaha system with Brian Crawford machining me a beautiful
billet stem to fit the 3/4″ bearings. Steering was predictable but the Yam front end pushed the
wheelbase out by another inch so plans were in mind to find something more suitable to bring it back
to the datum. Other problems encountered at this early stage were the awful Amal twistgrip which has
a very narrow span and my gorilla paw flopped over the end. Well that was an easy quick fix to the
Domino but the other joke component by Mister Amal was the secondary kill switch called the
carburettor! Open the throttle quickly and the engine coughs, splutters and stalls. Now of course some
of this was a learning curve switching from the Two strokes to Four and the major differences in
engine characteristics, throttle handling and a lot of other do’s and don’ts. Quick as a flash two “5’s”
were in the book on simple up the bank round the tree type sections when I closed the throttle thinking
I had the right approach speed and enough inertia to get up the hill! Where the trusty Yam would have
run up the bank with ease the moment you close the throttle on the 4 stroke you get a large dose of
engine braking and when the brain realises things are not as you expect a second handfull on the go
faster lever results in nothing other than a stall!!!
First mods, the complete Yamaha front end
First changes in the carb department were a Kehin carb from BJ racing and this indeed was a step
forward giving tremendous performance off idle but a nasty backfire through both exhaust and carb if
the throttle was shut quickly. Sometimes a little “pinking” sensation as you trundled through sections
on idle but overall an improvement but I think the inlet tract was too short. Nonetheless in this
configuration I enjoyed a win in Premier Lightweight Expert at Wittman at the Ahrma season opener
in Feb 2007.
At Wittman I had the opportunity to test ride some other Cubs and tried one set up with the Del Orto
carb from Serco……… what a difference, perfect response, no hesitation and almost like being back on
the Yam. Luckily for me Martyn Adams had one all set up for the 199cc motor and a King’s Ransom
later I have one fitted complete with the K&N filter.
Smooth as can be with the Del Orto and K&N
Time to get the front set up and I have a set of NEW Cerianis complete with yokes that I purchased off
ebay. Brian is too busy to do another stem and front spindle for the Yam wheel so I’m left in the
workshop wondering what I can do. Looking through my inventory I find a set of 1970 BSA B50 four
stud forks and their yokes, yet another cheap ebay find. Well, the stem will be 3/4 inch so a Sunday
morning is spent trying to configure the set up. If I put the legs in arse backwards I can use a mounting
lug for the Yamaha brake anchor and if I saw off some huge lump of alloy for some BSA fixing it should
With new seals and boots fitted the legs go in and with taper bearings in the top the upper yoke is
raised giving a little more upright stance…. good! The wheel fits but the spindle is too short so more
digging in piles and I eventually opt to use a TY175 swinging arm bolt which is just the right length. Up
top manufacture some stops for the bottom yoke and test them for steering lock….excellent! All that
remains is to make some extension brackets to fit the SM front mudguard stays to the slightly lower
BSA stanchions. With everything complete the wheelbase miraculously comes back to the original
BSA B50 forks backwards and a Yamaha wheel
Next outing is a local CAT trial at Kingman and here the Cub goes well but in left turns I can feel the
front brake beginning to apply, seems a spacer washer is required to stop any twisting of the brake
plate so a simple fix. In this configuration I do the Diamond Don’s Ahrma event and have a good “head
to head” with Bob Ginder and Mike Parsley. I should have won this one but blew it on the very last
section. Nearly all the marks I lost were dumb dabs or panicky use of the clutch, or so I thought.
Kingman AZ where a little “binding” on the brake was noticed
Milliken and some great rides but a couple of mystery “5’s” going over the bars and landing on my
head ruined the day and I couldn’t catch Mike Buchholtz who rode 2 great loops before I could compete
on even terms.
Back to my favorite Renthals
Donner with only a single mark lost all weekend and now a switch to my favorite handlebars and a set
of new levers using a Magura front brake and a Moose needle roller bearing clutch on the other side.
Confidence is building and now a run up to Chehalis for my one and only visit to the North West.
The new “Moose Clutch Lever” is fitted
At Chehalis only two sections that present a problem and one is a fun mud climb on an adverse bank
and the other that takes me for another classic A over T is a section I considered a simple cleanable
affair. Now the score is on 3 for the base over apex rides and 15 wasted marks for the season.
September and again at Casper I drop into a river and the front wheel stops dead and I fly over the bars
head first for yet another A over T……. this is getting annoying! Sandia a week later and on a simple
bank turn,… head first into the dirt with hands on the bars and feet on the rests!!! This head banging
has got to stop!! A review of Brenda’s photographs and a grinding through the memory banks comes
up with the same conclusion……. its that Miller Man and his Hi-Boy frame and footpeg position. Over to
the workshop and out with the tape measure…….. sure enough front spindle to center of rests is 2″
shorter than my Yams and the pegs themselves are 2″ higher too boot!! With a trip to Bob’s place in TN
only a day away I manage to persuade Barry at Premier Motorsports to drop everything and reconfigure
Replated for extra strength and 2 down and 2 back the pegs go on but I now need to lower the rear
brake pedal as the Cub uses the stud cover on the engine case as it’s stop point. A bit of alloy does the
task and screws on the case further back. TN for the 2 day and the Cub excells in all handling
departments and is a delight to ride.
Replated, 2″ back and 2″ down and the new mod on the brake stop
In the Premier Lightweight division I have a clear points lead over Bob but on countback I need one
more win as a second place won’t help. Hollister is my last event of the year and of course I can now
win the Championship if I get a win, or I can elect to check. With the new handling and a small dose of
overconfidence I sail round the first loop clean and lose a dab on the second going too low on a bank
and having to take a prod to get back on course. Third lap clean for a total of 1. Well bad luck, someone
else has gone clean and I’m second! I could have still won had I flewn down to GA and checked there
but at that point I gave up!
2008 and this year the plan was to go for the “double” as under the rules, or so I thought, I could
compete in both Int on the big heavy Enfield as my Ahrma card was still stamped INT and then at MY
discretion I could ride ONE class above my card and ride Expert on the Cub…… and nobody had said
a word when I rode Premier Lightweight Expert all the way through 2007. With Trialsmaster points at
Buckeye 6 more wins were required and these were achieved at Perris (1), Donner (1), Cotopaxi (2),
Milliken (1) and another (2) at Tooele. Riding the Enfield is quite a task lugging 300lbs of gun carriage
over obstacles various but 7 wins went in the book so the double was done, or so I thought until it was
noted that under some stupid rule you can only score Championship points for the class stamped on
your card!!!! You can imagine my views on the subject which are not PRINTABLE here.
WON 2 LOST 1 !!!
A great fun ride for the Win at Perris
Enjoyable “double win” at Cotopaxi
The last two wins at Tooele
2009 and no changes planned for the Cub, other than oil, tires and chain its into full battle for the
elusive Classic Championship. Starting at Buckeye with a win on day 1 and Trialsmaster duties day 2.
Due to finances and the wish to do the Pre 65 nothing until Milliken when a clean card was achieved
after a real good mental and physical arse kicking in Scotland. Another clean card on day 1 at Turkey
Rock and another good win on day 2 after a less than stellar first loop. With Donner out due to Brenda’s
injury nothing until Cotopaxi at the end of August so 2 wins here wraps up the Championship and with
insufficient rounds left as Sandia gets the CNX I elect to ride out the season at Casper on the Cub
finishing with 9 rides, 9 wins and a Trialsmaster duty. Of course with 20/20 hindsight had I entered
Prem Lightweight I would have won that division as well as Len Sims did all season……. but that
would be a worthless Championship in my view.
The “Trampoline Pit” at Milliken for a zero card
Another zero card at Turkey Rock
So what would I LIKE for 2010? well, a bigger motor perhaps either 230 or 250cc, an alloy bash plate
like the Armac frame design as although the SM hard plastic one is effective it is very difficult to get the
bike to balance on a workshop stand. Other glitzy things would be a chrome frame ? the Armac
exhaust ? and their pretty little tank ?
Pretty Exhaust, nice tank and a flat bash plate
Armac bash plate without the bottom tube
Currently that is all pie in the sky, and in truth the machine wants for nothing, so let battle commence
again for that Classic Championship and if I get my behind kicked then I really can’t blame the bike as
she truly is ………The NO EXCUSE CUB