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1958 Matchless G3 #762487
01/13/19 10:56 pm
01/13/19 10:56 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
Hello folks, I thought I would post my project on here, I also have a parallel thread on the owners club site but I figured I might get help, encouragement and heckling on here too. I also have a few questions, some of which seem to have stumped the owners club. I started the thread on the owners club site over Christmas so i will bring this thread up to speed first.

The first bit is a summary of things to date and then I will update this thread as I (hopefully) I make further progress. Also putting this online hels motivation.

I purchased this "bike" 5 years ago but other stuff has been higher up in the queue until now. Also, another project that I was going to finish off recently has had a temporary delay so I decided to make a start this one.

I bought it from eBay from a dealer who had previously purchased it from Bonhams auction in Harrogate in 2013. I put a low bid on it fully expecting not to get it and no one was more surprised than me when I bought it. When I went to collect it the dealer (who I recognised as a regular at various auto-jumbles/swap meets) told me that I had paid less for it than he had paid for it at Bonhams. I checked the auction results and he had indeed paid £70 more for it than I had. He had put it on eBay expecting a profit but fair play to the guy he put it up with no reserve and just chalked the loss up to experience. As I was loading it up he said that he thought it was worth 3 times what I paid for it in parts.

There is picture from Bonhams website of it as bought. The only difference when I bought it was that the dealer had added a seat (from a Honda CB125) to the bike for the sake of making it look more complete for the eBay advert.

[Linked Image]

I brought it home and it has laid at the back of my garage waiting for me to find the time to do something with it, until now.

Parhaps surprisingly I am not a huge fan of the Matchless G3LS but bear with me as I have plans and all will become clear eventually.

The first job is to get a UK Registration (Title for my American friends). Due to the way UK law works in regard to old vehicles the easiest way to get a number for this bike is to assemble it into something that resembles the bike that matches the chassis number. So I am going to assemble what I have and fill in the gaps and get a registration.

What have I got?

The frame, rear suspension, forks, wheels, rear brake, headlamp nacelle, petrol tank and oil tank are all (I think) from the same bike, a 1958 Matchless G3LS. The engine that came with the bike is a mix of parts from different motors but not a 1958 bike. The bottom end is from a 1953 G3C, a competition model. This is denoted by the suffix of "C" in the engine number but more crucially the holes to fix the cylinder down have different centres then the road bike. The road bikes cast iron cylinder is fixed by its base flange whereas the competition engine had an alloy cylinder which has studs going all the way through it to the head. My bottom end had a crank installed in it when I got it. I split the cases (with some difficulty) to have a look at it and the rod is history as are the axles (in fact someone has sawn off the end of one axle). I am going to assume that the flywheels can be reused. Everything else for the crank is available new.

The top end that I have is a standard G3 iron cylinder and a standard G3 aluminium head. The cylinder had a piston in it when I got it that was welded inside the bore with rust. I soaked it in penetrating fluid for about a month but it was still stuck solid. In the end I put it in my 20T press and applied pressure and heat. It took a lot more pressure than I expected before it let go and when it did so it went with a sudden and load bang.

There are four problems with this engine, first in order to build it I need a 350 competition top end. The second is that all of the small bits are missing, from the fasteners to the contents of the timing case, they are out there but its a time consuming job to gather them all (this is my first AMC bike so I don't have any bits in my stores). Third it has 2 areas of damage that need welding and machining and finally the cam followers are rusted in position solid.

I also have a set of standard 350 WD cases but I will move those on to someone who needs them for a WD bike.

The bike was also missing the plate and guts from the front brake but I have since picked up two plates and one set of guts.

It also came with a gearbox, the numbers on the box indicate it to be a 1946 Burman Type CP box.

There is no primary drive nor any controls/cables or lights. It also came with 2 random mudguards although neither are from a G3. I think.

AMC gearboxes fitted to late 1950's Matchless/AJS and they seem to be regarded as some of the best boxes on British bikes and were used right up to the 1970's on various bikes including the Norton Commandos so the plan is to procure an AMC box and clutch to use which would be appropriate for the year of the chassis.

John

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Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762488
01/13/19 10:57 pm
01/13/19 10:57 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
Phase 1 - Get a complete bike together.

As I mentioned above the engine is a mis-match of parts and is missing all the small stuff so sometime in 2017 I picked up another complete engine at an autojumble/swap meet. This engine is badged AJS and is a 350 bottom end with a 500 top end. It came, so I am told, straight out of a running bike. From the way it had been packaged by the vendor I would tend to believe him. I saw it early on in the day but took a chance and left it and went back at the end of the day and made an offer on it and brought it home.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


First I decided to dis-assemble the chassis and see what I have and dont have and also what will need replacing or repair.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762489
01/13/19 10:59 pm
01/13/19 10:59 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
It all came apart without too much fuss with the exception of the forks. The forks fought me at every step of the way from getting them out of the clamps where they were rusted in tight to separating the sliders from the stanchions.

[Linked Image]


There are quite a few comments online that all say that separating the sliders/stanchions is a hard. The manual simply states that you need to hold the stanchion and use the slider like a slide hammer to get the top bush and oil seal out. The problem with this method is that there is a rebound spring that absorbs most of the kinetic energy that you impart into the slider so that all that happens is you get hot and bothered and the forks stay together. Some people say to use heat and others say to use a special tool that is available. After some time struggling and getting nowhere I had a good look online for pictures of this tool but to no avail so I came up with my own version. In the end I also had to use heat as well but once the tool was made the forks came apart quite easily.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


The right hand slider fought harder than the left because the top was oval (not my work) so I had to use the extractor to get the bottom bush past the oval section. This slider is quite bashed up and the lower part of it has some quite bad gouges in it so I need a replacement.

[Linked Image]

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762490
01/13/19 11:00 pm
01/13/19 11:00 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England

Next job was to reassemble the frame and check it. When I was dissembling it I noticed that it didn't sit right when sat on a block under the bottom rails, something was not as it should be.

I made a dummy axle out of some M24 threaded rod that I had in my scrap bin and set it on axle stands at the back. I put the stanchions back in the yokes and set them on a stand made from some scrap steel clamped together. I set the rear axle level and the front fork stand level and also parallel with the rear axle and made some measurements.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


To my relief it was only one part of the frame that was both bent and twisted. The bottom right rail. I had suspected that this item was defective as it has obviously been got at by someone in the past. Thankfully this piece is a separate item that bolts in. Whilst making enquiries elsewhere I spotted one come up on eBay and bought it. Upon bolting it into the frame all is now well with the geometry.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

You can see in the last picture that the two items should be identical and parallel. The left had side is parallel but the right hand side isn't showing where the "original" one is bent.

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762491
01/13/19 11:04 pm
01/13/19 11:04 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
However the frame has more issues. Someone has taken a hacksaw or grinder to it and also a drill in the past and two mounting points for engine plates have been damaged or modified.


[Linked Image]


Both brackets have been cut off so that they are narrower than they should be.

The front bracket has been drilled out from 3/8" to just over 1/2". The bigger bore goes 95% of the way through the bracket.


[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


I am pondering 2 options to fix the rear bracket:

1. Machine the ends flat and just make up spacers to make up the difference to make engine plates fit and hold it all together with the mounting studs.

2. Machine the ends flat, make similar spacers but weld them in place effectively repairing the damage.

I am leaning towards number 2.

Before I do either I need some information. How wide should they be and are they symmetrical at each side of the centre line of the frame? The width should be the same as the distance across the corresponding engine plate mounts on the engine so that should take care of that but does anyone know if they stick out the same distance either side of the frame tubes? I.e are they symmetrical around the frame centre line?

The front bracket is a bit harder due to the need to sleeve the bracket and lengthen it. I have an idea about how to achieve this but I need to answer the above question first.

That almost brings things up to date. I spoke to some people advertising on the owners club forum and picked up a few bits. I also advertised for parts and managed to get a primary case inner half. I need an outer half and I did get what I thought was one but it turns out its for a twin so if anyone has an outer half for a single that they dont want but do want a twin part then I would be happy to trade. Alternatively does anyone have an outer half for sale? See my wanted ad.

I also picked up a gearbox but its missing at least half its contents so I am on the lookout for either a complete gearbox, a doner gearbox with damaged case or just the guts for a gearbox.

Finally, I need a replacement right hand fork slider. they are 1 1/4" forks with a single mount for a stay.


Thanks,

John.

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762510
01/14/19 1:58 am
01/14/19 1:58 am
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 5,239
U.S.
Magnetoman Online content

BritBike Forum member
Magnetoman  Online Content

BritBike Forum member

Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 5,239
U.S.
Originally Posted by George Kaplan
Before I do either I need some information. How wide should they be and are they symmetrical ...
I have a fondness for Matchlesses so I look forward to following this.

There's a pretty good chance my G80 uses the same 250 lb. (estimated) frame. Unfortunately, it's nearly inaccessible, and those two tubes are covered by sheet metal stampings, so couldn't get any useful information from it for you. My G15/45 frame is easily accessible, but it has two lugs at the front, not a tube. For what little or nothing it's worth, the rear tube of that frame is 3.5" across. I'll have to look again tomorrow to see if it is symmetric on both sides of the frame tube.

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: Magnetoman] #762532
01/14/19 12:30 pm
01/14/19 12:30 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
Originally Posted by Magnetoman
I have a fondness for Matchlesses so I look forward to following this.


Thanks MM, I have never had or ridden one so I am intrigued as to how it will turn out. I almost ended up getting this bike by accident because I never expected to get it for the low bid I put on it.


Originally Posted by Magnetoman
There's a pretty good chance my G80 uses the same 250 lb. (estimated) frame.


I think the so called "Heavyweight Singles" were all very similar except for displacement. The frame changed in about 1956 or 57 (I am at work so havent been able to check the changeover year). The main difference is the central down tube behind the gearbox.


Originally Posted by Magnetoman
Unfortunately, it's nearly inaccessible, and those two tubes are covered by sheet metal stampings, so couldn't get any useful information from it for you. My G15/45 frame is easily accessible, but it has two lugs at the front, not a tube. For what little or nothing it's worth, the rear tube of that frame is 3.5" across. I'll have to look again tomorrow to see if it is symmetric on both sides of the frame tube.


Thanks very much for the offer. Please dont go to too much trouble, I have a similar question on the owners club and my hope is that someone with a more accessible bike or frame will come up with the answer.

The engine plates are flat so the width of the frame mountings must be the same as the corresponding width of the engine mounts cast into the crankcases so i am reasonably happy that I have that dimension covered. The engine plates that I have, that came with the 1953 engine, are wrong for the later frame. I have some correct plates on their way to me this week and once they arrive I will bolt the engine plates to the '53 cases and offer it all up.

I am hoping at that point all will become obvious but I thought I would ask anyway in case it isnt obvious once I have the parts together. I am pretty sure that the 53 cases are, for all practical purposes of aligning engine mounts, the same as later ones. The owners club have a pretty good archive of material and one of my tasks this week is to turn my above statement "I am pretty sure that the 53 cases............" into "I know that the 53 cases..................."

John.

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762608
01/15/19 12:54 am
01/15/19 12:54 am
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 5,239
U.S.
Magnetoman Online content

BritBike Forum member
Magnetoman  Online Content

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Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 5,239
U.S.
Originally Posted by George Kaplan
The forks fought me at every step of the way from getting them out of the clamps where they were rusted in tight to separating the sliders from the stanchions.
Coincidentally, a set of rusty BSA forks given to me last week along with an equally rusty M20 engine have the same problem. I'll have to implement your clamp solution to get them apart. Or, put them on the shelf as-is along with the half-dozen sets of forks there that already are apart...

Attached Files Forks_GoldStar.jpg
Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762618
01/15/19 4:09 am
01/15/19 4:09 am
Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 2,965
Comox BC Canada
Gordo in Comox Offline
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Gordo in Comox  Offline
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Comox BC Canada
John: Looks like a nice project with a few areas for you to show us all that the challenges are just things to have fun overcoming. I look forward to your progress and updates.

Gordo


The roadside repairs make for the best post ride stories.
Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: Gordo in Comox] #762631
01/15/19 8:15 am
01/15/19 8:15 am
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
Originally Posted by Magnetoman
Coincidentally, a set of rusty BSA forks given to me last week along with an equally rusty M20 engine have the same problem. I'll have to implement your clamp solution to get them apart. Or, put them on the shelf as-is along with the half-dozen sets of forks there that already are apart...


The clamp tool worked great. I have a pair of aluminium vice jaws with a horizontal vee groove in them so they were perfect for holding the legs. If I hadn't wanted to clamp them in the vice (if they were pristine for example, in which case they might not have been so stuck) I would have used a nut in the top of the legs with a big washer under it and a length of tube over the leg to use as a stop for the stanchion end of the tool.

I was given a similar M20 engine quite a few years ago although I don't have it now but I can't remember exactly what I did with it. I think I traded it for something but I cant remember what.

At some point I need to free off the cam followers in the 1953 bottom end I have. I thought about using the molasses solution after seeing your M20 but I am not sure if the acid will be too much for the cases so I am erring on the side of caution at the moment. I have previously soaked them in various penetrating oils for about 2 months but they are still stuck solid.


Originally Posted by Gordo in Comox
John: Looks like a nice project with a few areas for you to show us all that the challenges are just things to have fun overcoming. I look forward to your progress and updates.

Gordo


Thanks Gordo.


Minor update. When I got back from work last night there was a message saying that a package was waiting for me at the post office which I am hoping is the engine plates. Unfortunately work is in the opposite direction to the post office so I have not been able to collect them yet. I am hoping that Mrs Kaplan will be able to collect them today but she can’t guarantee it so it might be a day or two before I can get them.

John




Last edited by George Kaplan; 01/15/19 8:17 am.
Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762666
01/15/19 9:36 pm
01/15/19 9:36 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
BritBike Forum member
George Kaplan  Offline OP
BritBike Forum member
G

Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
As I had thought, Mrs Kaplan didn't manage the post office today but I have not been totally idle on the G3. Yesterday and today I read various sources that describe the model differences from year to year. As I had expected the main changes are described but subtle changes such as, perhaps, a change in width of engine mounts are not covered, why would they be.

However I do have an engine that I wish to install and I also have another bottom end that might get installed at some point in the future so I have measured those and found that both engines have mounts 3 1/2 inches wide which also matches with Magnetomans's G80. Therefore I am going for 3 1/2 inches on my bike even though the engines that I have are earlier (pre-alternator) than the frame. It is possible that alternator motors might have wider mounts but I would guess that they are the same. It does not really matter to me either way.

I am still looking for confirmation on the offset either side of centre although I might be able to work that one out once the plates are here.

Whilst looking at the dimensions I compared the 1953 cases to a set of WD cases that I have. The WD cases have mounts 2 1/2 inches wide and due to the way they are sited the '53 engine plates wont fit so that confirms that the 350cc engines that pre-date the engine change some time in 1948 are different to the later 350 engines which are described as now sharing the 497cc engines bottom half.

Here is a picture showing the difference in the width of the mountings followed by a comparison of both sides. I was interested to see that the '53 engine still has some features that are cast into it to the top right of the timing case but these features in the later engine are left un-machined in contrast to the earlier one. The drive side of the earlier engine is also distinctly different.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]



Whilst on the subject of engines, I asked this question over on the owners club and whilst I have had lots of helpful opinion and theory I don't have a definitive answer so maybe you guys can have a go.

The replacement engine that I picked up in 2017 was described as a 500 top end on a 350 bottom. (as an aside I have since established that there is almost no difference between the 350 and 500 bottom end except for balance factor and also, according to some sources, valve timing. I have read one account that the 350 bottom end is better is due to the valve timing. I have not delved any deeper to form on opinion but I will look into it further once I get to thinking about the engine).

The engine that I now have was sold as an AJS unit however thats where my question starts. Matchless and AJS both used well known formats for the engine numbers which mean that motors can be easily identified and dated. No mysteries there as I am sure this is not news to anyone. My engine has a strange number that the guys on the owners club state is nothing they have seen before. Various theories have been proposed but nothing definitive. What I can say is that I am 100% certain that the cases have not had an old number removed and then replaced with this one. The area around the number looks 100% like the original cast surface.

One theory that has been proposed is that these cases were replacements sent to a dealer from the factory with no number on them. When a dealer changed cases under warranty they were supposed to put the old number on the new cases and then destroy the old cases. They did not always transfer the old number so there are good accounts out there of bikes with no engine number. At some time this engine could then have the strange number added once it was in a bike if a dealer didn't do it. Also this engine has a "P" on the other side just below the push rods.

(As an aside I have a spare engine for my Honda XR400 that doesn't have a number and I have established that Honda did/does the same thing)

As I say, this is only a theory as I don't have any definitive answer.

I don't know if this is relevant but the engine came from the Isle of Man, is the number linked to the isle of Man or maybe Ireland?

Any one out there have any ideas? Pictures below.


[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #762716
01/16/19 9:11 pm
01/16/19 9:11 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
BritBike Forum member
George Kaplan  Offline OP
BritBike Forum member
G

Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
The engine plates arrived today courtesy of Mrs Kaplan. I had hoped that once the plates were here then the alignment of the engine would be obvious and I was pleased to find out that it is obvious.

In the first picture the two highlighted mounting points have not been modified and confirm that the alternator models share the 3 1/2 inch width and I can now define the extent of the required repairs. Note I don't have any studs yet but plenty of bar in the correct diameters so I have cut slightly oversize lengths to use to locate everything and will turn them into studs when I repair the frame.

[Linked Image]


The second picture shows what I had wondered about, if the engine mounts are symmetrical around the centre line of the frame? It isn't.

[Linked Image]

When I was putting the engine plates on I have noticed that the front mount that has been sawn off hasn't been bored out as I had first thought. The engine mounts are 3/8" bore at the edge but are a bigger bore in between.

I have take a poor phone picture of one of the rear mounts of what I mean.

[Linked Image]

Now I can get on with repairing the frame.

Once that is done I want to get it on its wheels and to do that I need a right hand fork leg. I have made some enquiries but no luck yet. Hopefully one will turn up reasonably quickly.

Also, any ideas on the engine number?

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #763059
01/20/19 9:20 pm
01/20/19 9:20 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
BritBike Forum member
George Kaplan  Offline OP
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G

Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
This weekend Mrs Kaplan has been out of action due to a virus and chest infection so I was promoted to more important tasks than screwing around with old bikes. However I did manage some progress in-between other duties.

I mounted the frame on my mill and squared off the ends of the modified mountings. As usual the actual cutting took about 1% of the total time to do the task. When that was done I put everything back together and measured the 4 repair sections required, made them and tacked them into place. Then I partly dismantled everything again and and welded them in place. On the rear bracket there is a small part of the repair were I couldn't get my TIG torch in but it wont matter for the repair and wont be seen.

One thing I noticed when doing this was that the holes in the frame brackets are not central to the brackets. The repair pieces I made were turned on a lathe so the OD and ID are Concentric. When offered up in their intended destinations and the ID's lined up, the OD's are slightly offset. Observing this I pondered if the holes in the frame mounts were drilled after the frame had been assembled. That way any manufacturing variances would not matter?

Anyway after welding the repairs I blended the two OD's with a flap wheel.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


On Friday I got a lead on some of the parts that I need, I will know more next week, hopefully they will unlock the next bit of this project.

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #764984
02/09/19 9:05 pm
02/09/19 9:05 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
G
George Kaplan Offline OP
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George Kaplan  Offline OP
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G

Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 206
England
Even though I haven't posted on here in a couple of weeks I have not been idle. I have been gathering parts to fill in some of the gaps. I now have the new parts to rebuild the forks including new stanchions. I also managed to get a pair of replacement sliders because my right one is too damaged to reuse.

I have also picked up a generator type primary chaincase and a complete alternator type primary chaincase. I am pondering my options on the chaincase/charging set-up so have covered both bases. I also picked up a complete AMC gearbox as the one I acquired previously was missing quite a few parts. I also have a lead on a late AMC clutch not too far from me so I think that covers most of the transmission parts I was missing.

I also spent some spare time one evening drawing both the earlier style engine plates and the later style engine plates in CAD. This is in case I decide to go with a generator type setup for charging in which case I will need some new, hybrid, plates in which case it will be a simple job to get some laser cut, like I said I am just leaving options open at this point.

Whilst the forks are apart (and reminded to do so by Magnetoman's current fork thread although I don't have access to a hone) I measured my one good slider and the two "new" sliders and have found the two "new" sliders to have ID's of between 1.5615 " and 1.563. My good "old" slider is between 1.562 and 1.564" ID. The bottom bushes are all exactly 1.560 OD. I cant find any specs for these forks in the various manuals that I have and I have also asked on the owners club forum but they have told me that there is "no known spec for these forks" (which I am skeptical about). I therefore don't have a definitive clearance for the bottom bushes but I am pretty sure that the 0.0015" to 0.003" that is available if I use the two "new" sliders will be OK.

At the moment I am just re-assembling the forks so that they work. Once I have a complete bike and paperwork I will then strip them, polish the sliders and rebuild them properly.


John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #765013
02/10/19 12:15 am
02/10/19 12:15 am
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 5,239
U.S.
Magnetoman Online content

BritBike Forum member
Magnetoman  Online Content

BritBike Forum member

Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 5,239
U.S.
Originally Posted by George Kaplan
I cant find any specs for these forks in the various manuals that I have and I have also asked on the owners club forum but they have told me that there is "no known spec for these forks" (which I am skeptical about).
As a result of having a fondness for Matchlesses as well as for books I have ~50 books and manuals on the marque (some just different editions of the same book). I assumed I would be able to find something in one of the books but I had no luck. Sorry. Almost certainly someone will have worked out the correct specs to use but on-line forums are like icebergs in that most of the knowledge is below the surface, i.e. in the heads of people who don't use computers.

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #765015
02/10/19 12:25 am
02/10/19 12:25 am
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argyll. scotland, uk
gavin eisler Offline
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I would be pleased with a 3 thou fit, any tighter and the forks will not travel and flex correctly. I think that goes for most brit forks, the tubes arent big enough , they flex a fair bit, especially from a sidecar passengers point of view,
if you ran as tight as a thou they would lock up when flexed.


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Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: gavin eisler] #765069
02/10/19 7:29 pm
02/10/19 7:29 pm
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England
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George Kaplan Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Magnetoman
...I have ~50 books and manuals on the marque (some just different editions of the same book). I assumed I would be able to find something in one of the books but I had no luck. Sorry. Almost certainly someone will have worked out the correct specs to use but on-line forums are like icebergs in that most of the knowledge is below the surface, i.e. in the heads of people who don't use computers.


Thanks for looking MM. Its not a big deal not knowing as the sliders are obviously not excessively worn so I am happy that they are not out of spec.

Originally Posted by gavin eisler
I would be pleased with a 3 thou fit, any tighter and the forks will not travel and flex correctly..


Thanks Gavin, I had figured something similar.

Today I spent a bit of time in my garage although I seem to have mainly identified various small new parts that I still need to order.

One thing on my shopping list is a set of bearings, bushes, seals and springs for the gearbox. I had the chance to buy 2 gearboxes last week, one was described as having been fully rebuilt and the other was complete but no other history. The second one was about half the price of the first. I went for the second box because I would want to strip the box down anyway and the cost of the refurb parts will be no more than the price difference between the two boxes and if I rebuild it I will know what it is like. If I had bought the rebuilt box I would have been irritated if I had had to buy new parts for it.

Once the various new parts arrive next week I should be able to make some progress.

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #765315
02/13/19 7:33 pm
02/13/19 7:33 pm
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George Kaplan Offline OP
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Whilst I wait for a couple of small parts to arrive this week to enable progress I have a couple of questions.

The first I have already put a separate thread up on the competition section about and it is regarding a clutch or rather my lack of one. I am not precious about originality for this bike and I have been pondering my options.

I have read elsewhere regarding the use of a Honda clutch with a centre adapter on British twinshock scrambles bikes using an AMC gearbox. A Honda clutch seems (in my mind at least) like a good possible option as its probably a lot better than the original Matchless clutch.

Does anyone on here have any experience with either a Honda or other non-AMC clutch with an AMC gearbox and if so do you have any info on what clutch was used?

(I am excluding Newby or NEB clutches from this question as I know I could just go and buy one of those off the shelf ready to fit to an AMC box.)

The second question is regarding ignition. It has been suggested to me that a Lucas SR1 magneto would be a good choice. I don't have any experience with this type of magneto so I have read everything I can find about them and they seem like a good choice. I will assume that any second hand mag will need a rebuild but my query is, do these rotating magnet magnetos suffer with failed armature windings as much as a rotating armature mag?

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #765319
02/13/19 8:54 pm
02/13/19 8:54 pm
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Cork Ireland
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chaterlea25 Offline
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Hi John,
Do you have an auto advance unit and suitable drive cases ? I did not see these in your photos
As the SR1 was made in later years than the rotating armature mags they usually have modern type insulation rather than shellac so
last much better, condensers are canister type and easily changed
Check prospective purchases for worn bearings or loose bearings in the housings

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: chaterlea25] #765321
02/13/19 9:25 pm
02/13/19 9:25 pm
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England
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George Kaplan Offline OP
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England
Hello John, I dont have the auto-advance unit or a mag yet. I did however recently pickup a case for a front mounted mag with the bulge in it to take the auto advance unit.

Thanks for the advice on choosing an SR1. I had heard that the condenser was simple to change.

If the bearings need to be replaced does the mag then need re-magnetising in the same way that a rotating armature mag needs to be re-magnetised after stripping one of those down?

John

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #765338
02/14/19 2:43 am
02/14/19 2:43 am
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Magnetoman Online content

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Originally Posted by George Kaplan
If the bearings need to be replaced does the mag then need re-magnetising in the same way that a rotating armature mag needs to be re-magnetised after stripping one of those down?
Unfortunately, yes. The reduction in magnetism as a result of removing it from the structure will require a higher kickstarting speed. However, I don't have enough experience with SR1s to know if it would be higher than a leg can reasonably provide.

Attached Files SR1_magnetizing.jpg
Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: Magnetoman] #765352
02/14/19 8:23 am
02/14/19 8:23 am
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George Kaplan Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Magnetoman
Unfortunately, yes.


Thanks for the confirmation MM.

I am at the point of wondering if I should just make an electromagnet myself. I am usually happy to farm stuff out once or twice but once I get beyond that I always think that I am starting to waste money which wuld be better spent on getting the correct equipment to do it myself (within certain parameters and limitations).

John.

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #765365
02/14/19 3:07 pm
02/14/19 3:07 pm
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Magnetoman Online content

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Originally Posted by George Kaplan
once I get beyond that I always think that I am starting to waste money which wuld be better spent on getting the correct equipment to do it myself (within certain parameters and limitations).
Very early on I realized that usually I could buy whatever special tool I needed to do a job for about the same price as I would have to pay someone to do it for me. So, even if it seemed like I might never need to do some particular job again, I bought the tool. I carried this practice into making my own special tools where none existed, a few examples of which are shown here and here.

Given the above, making my own ~250-lb. electromagnet was inevitable. I don't use that electromagnet often, but when it's needed, there is no substitute.

A significant advantage of this do-it-myself (or OCD...) approach is that when a job is done, I know it was done correctly (or, if some hidden aspect of it was screwed up, I know where it's screwed up).

Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #766240
02/23/19 10:15 pm
02/23/19 10:15 pm
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George Kaplan Offline OP
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England
I managed some progress today although an unexpected visit from a relative meant that i didn't get as much done as I had hoped.

The day started getting the gearbox case ready for re-assembly, I had already scrubbed the cases in my parts washer but I gave them a soda blasting and a hot water wash to finish them off.

I have one and a half gearboxes and will assemble one from the best parts although I will keep the gears from one box together. Here is a comparison of the cleaned case against the one I am not using. No prizes as to why i chose the one I did.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

Once everything was clean I was able to assemble things including bushes, bearings, seals and springs and piece it together.


There is a very large amount of literature about rebuilding these boxes so I wont repeat it here. I did find the article on the Old Brit site to be one of the best with very clear text and pictures.

The instructions say that you need to set the end float on the layshaft only if using a roller bearing. However I have 0.036" float even though I am using a ball bearing so I will be shimming mine. I have ordered a 0.030" isolastic shim to leave me with 0.006" float.

[Linked Image]

(Note to self, i really need to get a surface grinder although I need a bigger workshop first.)

Thats as far as I got due to the aforementioned visitor.

John

Last edited by George Kaplan; 02/23/19 10:23 pm.
Re: 1958 Matchless G3 [Re: George Kaplan] #766305
02/24/19 4:39 pm
02/24/19 4:39 pm
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Magnetoman Online content

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Originally Posted by George Kaplan
(Note to self, i really need to get a surface grinder although I need a bigger workshop first.)
There are certain motorcycle restoration tasks where only precision grinding will do. I don't need my lathe's toolpost grinder often but, when I do, it's for something I couldn't have done any other way. I've found my Sunnen hone (a type of precision grinder) more essential and of much wider use than I appreciated before I got it. Although I've managed to squeak by thus far without a surface grinder, if I came across a small one in decent condition I'd probably decide I had no choice but to somehow find room for it.

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