BUILDING THE GLITZMOBILE
First thing to do is find a suitable bike that will make a really good replacement. I have had my
eye on a piece of “tat” that I bought for another $300 but this one did have the unusual feature
of some extra shock mounts positioned in a Majesty look alike position.
All components are duly stripped down and along with a 175 frame I’m off to the Chrome shop
only to find it is closed! Great start to the morning. Eventually after a lot of research I find a highly
recommended establishment in the bowels of deepest Phoenix. Yes they can do it and it will be
ready mid November some 4 weeks later. Ho F****** Ho!
Around mid January they tell the frames are ready and although the work and finish was superb
I haven’t been back….. ATTITUDE! So now I have a different plating and polishing shop where the
work is just as good and things are ready on time, Kerr West Plating.
Meanwhile back in the shop work starts on the motor and ancillary pieces. It needs a rebore so
order rings, piston, pin and gaskets from Speed & Sport PA. Also get some OEM cables from them
as they come with the lever guards and all the other fittings whereas the Venhill ones do not.
Order some tank and seat units from a, S Miller in the UK and acquire the last of the front fenders
from Matt at the other Speed & Sport in CA.
Locally bars, grips and glue from Mike at Hardrock Trials in Phoenix and a major order to BJ Racing
for a new Mikuni, reeds, bashplate and sprockets. Cycle Gear for tires, chains, filters and plugs
(it pays to be a MSF Instructor).
Now stay with me here as we will rebuild it with YOU as the student, just in case you want to try
this at home. Assuming in the dismantling phase you didn’t break anything, although 30 year old
bolts do have a tendency to shear, then here is what Shade Tree usually does.
Send the barrel off for rebore at Premier and while it is away fit new points and a 12 tooth
engine sprocket on the left side not forgetting to tighten up that flywheel nut and the key tab on
the sprocket! Don’t go for the 11 tooth as it is too low and the standard 13 a bit high for modern
day sections. Some of the new points come with a sort of Teflon covering so do remember to
emery it off before fitting or you will be sparkless. On the other side that dreadful oil pump must
go, 74 is different from later models. Remove offensive object and make a blanking plate to cover
the hole. The chain guard provides us with a nice bit of alloy which I cut off aft of the mounting
stay (see Hacksaw)…. Reason they have been known to get bent into the rear shock. Flatten
alloy (see Hammer) and then cut and shape (see metal cutters)
Back to the sparky side and like bomb disposal expert cut out the 2 lighting wires leaving just the
black one. Now take the black rubber grommet and holding it between thumb and forefinger
gently run a ¼ drill through it without major loss of blood or digits (see Shade Tree) Take one of
those 90 vacuum rubbers which you just happen to have and push it through the new hole in the
grommet. Now put the ignition wire through the 90 bend!
Fortunately for you here is one I made earlier and overnight I have had a small allen key
straightening it out, so offering the wire into the hole as I withdraw the key it goes through pretty
easily. Now we wait for the barrel to come back.
The ghastly airbox lower fender thing can be replaced with a bolt on K&N or UNI filter so now
remove all the pop rivets (see electric drill) and spend hours washing grime off the 30 year old
plastic. Thanks to the GREEN people here, as if it isn’t spotlessly clean the paint won’t stick to
anything! In this case for GLITZ it will be white. Now replace all the rivets or the proverbial will
come flying through the colander at the first event.
While looking at bits down the back end that rubber thing that mounts on the tailpipe has in all
probability seen better days and if you fancy keeping the tailpipe it will be as well to drill through
both metal plates and the rubber and put a bolt and self locking nut on it.
Don’t get carried away with the drill (see Shade Tree) as this little fellow always wants to leap out
of the vice just as you get through the steel and into the rubber.
Wheels next laddie! Huuuum, ever changed a tire before? NO, NO, put the screwdriver down!
Walk the bead down after undoing the security bolt then start and finish at the valve. Remove
rim tape and bin it! Wire brush the inside of the rim and now let’s play the “Concerto of DID”
Every 6th spoke tighten up a little, using the correct spoke key, and tap like a piano tuner
expecting a nice ding, ding….. a dung indicates more work. When the entire orchestra is in
harmony time for a rim tape and using a roll of electrician’s tape (3loops) then stick down on the
spokes. Reason, stops the spokes coming undone and makes working with the security bolt a
lot easier. Fit new tires and tubes and the new rear sprocket.
With the barrel back time to repaint, in this case Red as the Baby glitz 175 looked good in red
so SUPER GLITZ is going to be the same. Now armed with various flap wheels in 60, 80 and 120
grit time to find the drill (see Shade Tree again) and cut back those fin edges to super shiny alloy.
Rebuild the top half and note that since 1974 we have moved on a bit and gudgeon pins actually
fit without freezing and heating. Don’t forget those circlips!
Not much left now, just the forks. Drain the oil and don’t end up fishing around in the bucket for
those little washers. Now separate the legs! Remove the lower allen bolt which might require the
use of the Compressor and Hammer drill….. (See Shade Tree) and now tease off the rubber.
Locate the spring wire and ensuring you partially cover the leg with a hand ease the wire out of
it’s détente. You can use a dentist’s pick of the tip of a small blade. If you are on your hands and
knees now and are still trying to locate the “ping” that the clip made when it flew off as you
didn’t follow my advise. Now for the seals, find a medium size tire spoon and place the blade
under the seal. The radius of the spoon gives the right amount of pressure and the thickness of
the handle ensures you don’t damage the alloy at the top of the leg. Now fit the new seal and
use the old one on top to ensure it goes in deep enough and evenly, and do watch that hammer
(need I say???)
Now the frames are back and first job is to get the yokes on. 19 and 22 ball bearings, No, you
haven’t lost one. Next get the engine in the frame, which you can do by lifting and struggling and
a lot of pinches and blood blisters or, you can leave the motor on the floor or bench and offer the
frame around it. Swinging arm in, maybe replace all the bits depending on wear, the parts are
cheap enough and readily available from Speed & Sport PA. Shocks on, those nice Showa units
in this case and back to the front which I usually complete fully at this stage to get some stability
on the bench. So forks in, bars and levers, really nice Maguras this time. Fit the fender and then
the wheel and brake cable. Also a good idea to fit the clutch cable at this stage as the underside
Time for sparks so on with the coil and now get enough cable from the ignition side and route it
back and inside the main rear downtube. Take the black wire from the coiland join another to it
to go forward to the kill switch. New plug, remember to gap it at about 22, they often come at
about 35! And lay on the fin edges, hand crank and BINGO! Now take some Red tubing and cover
the black wire all the way back to the 90 grommet we fitted earlier. We now have a watertight
seal and a lot of protection from branches and trees.
Fit the exhaust and do use a new gasket, don’t over tighten, and now fit the lower rear fender.
I usually now fit the carb and the new reeds and complete the throttle side with a Domino fast
action. Good for the TY but not so good on the Tiger Cub. A UNI filter completes the job in
stunning Red. DO NOT fit the tail section of fender at this stage or Shade Tree will end up kicking
thing around the workshop. Fit the rear wheel, brake pedal, chain tensioner and kickstand and
cut and fit the new chain…. No, leave the chisel alone.. buy a chain breaker!
Finally and we are near the end now, have a look at the mounting stud on the rear loop of the
frame and compare it to the knobbles of the tire????? Yep it’s not central so just imagine what
a mess it would have looked if we rushed on?
Tank and seat unit on and with the 250 you can bolt it to the frame. The 175 has to have a cable
tie around the top rail.
Finish all the minor details with stunning red hoses and pipes, some eye catching decals and of
course the little BLACK CAT.
A few test rides reveal the jetting to be a bit off, but changing back to original sizes and it runs
like a top. This particular motor has TREMENDOUS SNAP and for whatever reason is one of the
best that I’ve ever ridden.
More testing and then fit a set of the Miller down and back footrests. These give a near perfect
position but they do tend to bend…. A strengthening gusset would help here.
Here’s a Sammy set on my Majesty
They are easy to fit directly onto the swinging arm bolt at the top and to the lower frame rail.
You do need to cut the original footrest hangers off, good work by Shade Tree with the Makita!
Note post 74 all TY250 frames have bolt holes in the lower rails. Only the CAT (dual sport) models
have them on 74’s …… so if it’s “sods law” and you have a bog standard 74 then don’t despair
and fit a threaded rod all the way through and cut and finish (see Hacksaw) with self lockers.
Another note Yamaha DO make swinging arm bolts in different lengths. Also if you use the BJ
Racing footrest conversion you had better be good at drilling and tapping (don’t ask Shade Tree!)
The angled Majesty chainguard and the Showa shocks
So that was the GLITZ that was. Still in the stable and finally fitted with a true Majesty chain
guard. A fabulous handling bike that won 2 AZ Vintage Championships and the 2006 AHRMA
Modern Classic Int Championship.
TONY DOWN with a little help from Shade Tree