Instruction Book from the Ark

Now that it runs it’s time to turn my attention to the fire breathing “Dragon from Redditch”. I know
a lot of you are saying why is he screwing around with a Mikuni and why doesn’t he buy a new
Amal?  ‘Cos it’s fun!

The Mikuni has exactly the same flange mounting as the Amal but on a 4 stroke is gets a little
cluttered up there under the tank but it is workable. A few mods and some serious fettling of the
jetting so testing begins as I’m keen to have a go on the old lady.

Nearly there

Now that I can start the machine life takes on a rosier hue. Find compression, switch on fuel
(no leaks), choke on, first kick ….. duggerdy, duggerdy, dug. Set up slow running with a slightly
bigger pilot and this tunes out using a 40. Next problem, it won’t rev out cleanly so off with the
filter and now mark the twist grip and throttle rubber for various slide positions, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4
and full.

Test 1 using a 190 main……awful, spitting, banging and overall very unpleasant

Test 2 using a 150 main ….. better, but not good and now the problem zone is just at 3/4 throttle
where it starts hiccuping….and after several runs and rapid throttle closings a serious backfire in
the exhaust. Seems like we are on “the cusp” here, either move the needle or come down again
on the main.

Test 3 using a 130 main……. pretty damm good! Clean all the way but in truth I can’t see that
many sections where I will be using full power. So a bit more running on these settings then check
the plug to see how close to “coffee” we are.

Back about 2″ on the footrests

After last year’s discovery on the footrest front, time for some adjustments in this area. The
height is good at around 12 and just above the bash plate, however with the frame shortening
and head angle change I need to come back another couple of inches which will improve the
handling, might have to shorten the rear brake pedal but we will see how that pans out.

On another tack, my possible benefactor from Spain, Javier Cruz, just purchased the “Gaunt” 500
RE Bullet after this year’s Pre 65 Scottish. I can’t say what he paid for it as I’m sworn to secrecy!
Like myself his knowledge of these big monsters is pretty limited but he has already offered it as
an alternative to the 2 James machines should I get an entry in the “2009”

The Ex Peter/Neil Gaunt 500 RE

Mine for comparison

Unlike mine, Peter Gaunt’s was a winner of the event in 2006 and does look fairly “trick”. The
frames are slightly different and who knows what lurks inside the fork tubes? I may get to have
a chuff round on it at the 2 day in Madrid next year if all the plans come together.

So just to really **** some of you off here are the machines that Javier is offering for me to ride,
and just so that you don’t think this is a one sided deal I’m offering him, and a friend, my “Yams”
to ride here in the USA for either the Casper Spectacular or maybe Donner or Dickson…. his call.

Choice 1 Javier’s baby James that he rode this year

Quite UNBELIEVABLE!! Choice 2, the other JAMES

I love it!

So a choice of THREE, and here is what I’m offering in exchange


The 320 Majesty

The 77

This just has to “Happen” or I will be so grumpy!

Tony Down (very, very lucky)

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  • 7/6/2008 11:29 PM Steveo wrote:
    Wow ,the 1st James i recognized,but the second”square-barreled” one,I’ve never seen.What is it?My first bike was a ’54 James,so I’ve got a special place in my heart for them.Good luck on getting to the Scottish!
    Reply to this
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