Dumbo/Jumbo will fly again!

Closing in for the kill now with only fork seals to fit and cables to go on it looks like I will soon be in a
position to write the last in this series, “The Reveal”. Well that would seem about a week away with
postal strikes and now Thanksgiving as yet another excuse for non delivery of mail.

Time to turn my attention to a few more of the cosmetics and finish off the back end of the elephant.
Splashguard should be riveted up and fitted and then I can get the joke wheel in and complete the
mudguard. Get some urgency from BJ Racing and get the throttle cable on its way and hopefully the
long awaited seals will get here from the UK. Also need to get my decal man in Phoenix to follow me
through on the web and cut some tank stickers in the SWM style.

The new splash guard will work well

Decision made on decals, so now in the hands of the post office once more. By the time I’m finished I
won’t want to part with this thing and I’ll be wishing I put those gold rims on. Well who knows, as I
haven’t heard from the owner it maybe he has forgotten all about it or doesn’t want it anymore.

A bitterly cold day with a high wind chill factor made being outside bloody unpleasant but on a positive
note the splashguard went on and will work well. The post person arrived bringing cables and oil
seals and amazingly the old betors came apart without a problem and the new seals were fitted and
the “tusks” are now back on the pachyderm. One leg had oil in while the other was running on mud
and water! (A Shadetree mix to replace SAE 10)

The Betors come apart, this one had oil, the other used Shadetree
Engineering’s Water/Mud Combo Fork Lube

The Shiny Tusks are back in!

Everybody else cooperated today and all decals and the throttle cable are on order. No excuses now
and the rebuild should be easy  once the wheels are in. A little groveling in Santa’s old lever box turned
up two usable perches and with some new lever blades I now have a couple of workable units for the
handlebars. The normal polishing and repainting will follow and I’m looking forward to getting on with
the project. I’m now on a very limited time frame with Thanksgiving on Thursday, the Christmas
decorations ritual on Friday and Brenda’s birthday on Saturday. However I don’t suppose anything else
will arrive in the time period so patience on the Jumbo for a couple of days.

Yesterday I was looking for the classic lock nuts for some bolts? Seems I’m completely out of the very
standard small metric fellows so time to look in the nuts and bolts boxes. What do I do with them? Do
I throw them away when I undo them? I must have 2000 + bolts but only about 100 nuts and of course
none in the size I want or of the locking variety. Another trip to Ace for a box or two of the common ones

Yet another bitter cold day and the ice hasn’t melted so time for the heater in the workshop, the new
(old) levers got the treatment and don’t forget if you are rebuilding levers make sure all the critical parts
are well cleaned and get all the mud/grease off the pivot point and you might just get that silky feel
when you rebuild them.

The elephant is coaxed onto its side and time for some decaling, so into the mini paints and brushes
section and repaint the manufacturer’s logos on the two portions off the exhaust and then carefully
expose the logo on the flywheel cover. Delicate work this but in my opinion makes a big difference to
the overall finish…….. but you can be the judge. Never seen a bike with so many manufacturer’s logos,
they are everywhere! I assume they were proud of their creation but the cost to emblazon them on
nearly every component must have been pretty expensive.

Logos everywhere, some hand painting

With the heater left on I might just get some serious rebuilding done this afternoon and then go and
get those nuts. The back wheel will be next after cleaning a very nasty chain. As I mentioned in an
earlier edition on this monster the chain may be relatively new, as are the sprockets, but always difficult
to tell when people don’t look after their investments. I’m guessing a good hour to rectify the chain and
get some lubricants into the rollers and always satisfying to get that smooth machinery noise when
you spin the back wheel. That took longer than expected and 90 mins were spent getting Shade’s chain
back to snuff. He also had an interesting spring link, well one of the two, which was bigger than the
other and had two fish plates? Fortunately I saw one the correct size in the 2000+ bolt box so once
more onto the bench with the contents and more happy sifting.

A newish chain with the “Shadetree Eng” lubricant “CRAPO”  a fine blend
of grease, mud, dust, rust and baked cow****

90 mins later with penknife and wire brush

Wheel finally in and despite the flats on the rim it rotates without bashing anything on the way round.
Chain and brake all functional and here are the 2 before and after shots of the arse end of an elephant.
See if you can spot the difference

You might remember this….. bent everything. As Shade says “if the adjuster
won’t move bend the rod…and get a bigger Hammer!”

Straight, clean and polished

The reconditioned levers were all put back together last night so now I have some thing to heave on
after we get the “Ice fishing” in the clutch housing organized. Time for the rear mudguard today and
then move up to the bars area and secure that clutch thing and bolt on the kill switch with the new
shortened wiring through the frame. All that will be needed then is the front end, and now that the tusks
are on just wheel, stays and fender to complete up there. A few days off for the holidays and other tasks
and then, hopefully next week the decals, throttle cable and Wayne Weedon’s gold number plate
should all be here and then…… it will be REVEAL TIME!

First set of re-conditoned levers………. but,

The rear mudguard went on and looks good and after polishing every bolt, washer and nut for the front
end time for the “ice fishing” in the clutch hole and reconnect all that system before going for the front
wheel. Well goodie goodie! the cable nipples are too big for the levers…. ain’t life grand!!!…..and the
construction of the cables appears to have been done by the apprentice…. not impressed!
So back in the lever box, and of course the bent Dominos have the right size for the nipples. Elect to
use the Domino perch and find two other blades that will match the cables. All sounds easy until you
take everything apart and find they use different size pivot points. Nothing for it I will drill out the old
Dominos and use them with different pivots. Another 2 forward 4 back day!

Despite all the frustrations I spent 1 hour in the shop this morning and achieved more in that time
than all yesterday afternoon. The Domino perches were drilled to take the bigger pivots, the blades
were sanded back to polished alloy and pivots were spun up and the remainder painted. With all that
done flip the front wheel in and now I can push the beast around. Almost tempted to slip back and
mount the stays and fender but in my own best interests I’d better stay clean as guests are due soon.

Second set, using the Domino perches

Today’s mission is outside putting up Christmas lights but I might be able to sneak in the shop and
finish up the front and throw up a couple of “before and after” shots of the front just to tease you all.
First all the delights of humping all the decs down out of the loft then the norm of finding how many
lights that were working last year have failed in 10 months of storage.

It had to be a joke 13 out 17 strings of lights have failed when they were all working when taken down
on 12th night? How can you build in that sort of failure rate, the mind boggles! So with no lights to put
up I can return to Jumbo and finish off the front end. Fit the second set of levers and now for the brake
cable after the stays and brake anchor. After a little adjusting it is obvious that it is not going to fit. Off
with the new cable and a quick check against the old for “free length”. The new one has 2 EXTRA
inches of inner cable!!! So do I use the old or shorten the new one I have waited all this time for? It
gets shortened and matched to the new rebuilt Domino lever. All working and on with the new

So here is the before and after on the front end after a fair few hours of polishing spokes, rim, and
forks along with the anchor stay which also had the SWM logo embossed in the alloy.

Another neglected piece

Even a SWM logo on the brake anchor…. who knew?

Thats it for the epilogue of rebuilding,… and all the final shots, post logos and throttle cable and
Wayne’s Gold Comp plate will up be up in the next article “THE REVEAL”

Funny thing is…… I’m almost beginning to like this thing and I’m looking forward to test riding it in a
later article. It as a 51.5 wheelbase and the footrest position looks about right although the footrests
themselves are a bit primitive, and it seems the kicker will hit the rest! I’ll be bending that back to a
better shape.

Now if it were mine…….. gold rims, some bigger span Domino or Magura levers, Michelins instead
of Dunlops, some new Falcon gas shocks, and some different pegs.

OK, a quick sneak peek before the reveal………TC photographer caught
in the act…. it looks better in daylight without the “photo effects”


P.S. Despite all my plans the “REVEAL” has been delayed due to non arrival of some essential parts.
If the postal system ever delivers the goods then all the invited guests will be rescheduled for the event.
So, avid readers please be patient, lets hope the wait will be worth while. 5/12/09


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  • 12/10/2009 7:19 PM Tim Jackson wrote:
    Like your website, riding and writing. Few have your flair for describing riding techniques. I’m taking notes. Congratulations on your 2009 AHRMA success! Keep up the good play and see you on the circuit in 2010! This was my first year in trials. I will be back to defend my 11th place national standing, if I can quit falling off! Tim Jackson, Idaho Falls, ID (AHRMA Intermediate VMX[’71 matching #s B50 MX] & PVMX [’77 Elsinore 125])(AHRMA Novice Modern Classic Trials [’74 350 Sherpa T & ’74 TL125]) P.S. I’ve recruited a local friend, Randy Hubbard, from the AHRMA Expert MX ranks, who is restoring a ’74 RL250. He told me that after watching me slowly beat the tar out of myself section-by-section in vintage trails that it looks like fun!
    Reply to this
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