I have one of these which i hope to fit this week to finish the front end on my Goldie. The bottom yoke stem is sloppy in the T Dow top yoke with the standard sleeve nut fitted. As i have just turned 50 last week i can plead ignorance, can any old rockers out there tell me how to sort this? I also understand that it was also common to tap the Alloy yoke and fit a grub screw to lock off the stem nut in the absence of a pinch bolt?
Hi mike, I too had the same problem, I thorght some one had machines to top yoke out ? not sure if the yoke came with a new Caselated nut in the 60s . My fix was to weld a steel bush onto the adjusting sleeve so it fitted the yoke bore, I do know that the yoke should be held on with a lock nut, which threads onto the adjuster and down onto the top yoke under the cap nut on top of the steering stem. I made one of these by parting a portion of threads off an old top yoke cap nut, then machining a outer ring with 2 c spanners slots then welding the threaded portion into the ring . Will try to post some pics at the weekend. I only did this because I did not know where to get the parts from.
Hello Mike ... I have two of the Taylor Dow top yokes and I understand your concern as I've had the same worries with no clamp on the stem.
The yoke on my much modified '59 'special' came with a very nice crafted version of the bearing adjusting sleeve in combination of the top locking cap nut. With the bearings adjusted 3 small allen screwx fitted into the indexed tapped holes in the yoke locks it in place. BTW, this front end is nice and rigid.
If we think about it a bit ... the fork tubes being clamped and secured in the yokes determines the rigidity of the front end and not the steering stem. The stemm has very little bearing on the front end rigidity. I'm told some race bikes have only a small bolt between the yokes for assembly ease and some have no stem at all, just a raised boss on the yokes to secure the bearings.
Speaking of bearings .. have you converted the GS to tapered roller head bearings? Nice. I assume you have fitted the 1" over length upper fork bushings needed to compensate for the 1" 'drop' in the Dow yoke?
My other Dow alu yoke is fitted to my '62 'improved' Goldie Clubman project bike under construction. This yoke I bought used years ago that came with a thin locking nut that fits the adjusting sleeve that 'double nut' the OEM cap nut to the adjusting sleeve maintaining bearing adjustment. It should all work OK.
There's no "slop" in the fit as you comment on. I wonder if your upper yoke stem hole wasn't bored out for a crafted version of a adjusting sleeve as the one on my GS I've described?
These Dow yokes are much heavier than needed and would be a good project on a milling machine to 'hollow out' the underside much the same as our custom made alu yokes for the racers.
Here is some original sales info and a pic of my lock nut. Before i bushed my adjuster i bored the top yoke out a couple of mill to clean the hole up and so the bush was a decent wall thickness. I wish they only cost £5.50 now! Hope this is a help.
Sorry to take so long to reply, i have been trying to contact some local Goldie owners and without phone numbers and crap weather the scene has been quiet.
However i managed to to contact 'Dinger' and mates who i run into occasionally at a midweek meet they appear in this film:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U2ppHf-EG8o
Dinger has owned his 350 from new and he told me tonight that his TD yoke (purchased in 63) fitted tight with the castlelated nut, after some time the alloy yoke started to wear on the bottom edge on the stem hole against the steel nut. He now runs the yoke with it machined out and fitted with Bronze bush.
In summary, if your yoke has a larger hole then it has been bored out at some point. I am referring to the early yoke, which is sand casted and has the words Taylor Dow and Superleggera. Later RGS yokes were different!
Your locking ring is the way to go as per the original kit, i am probably going to bore out the hole and fit a bush if not go with your idea.
Yes mine is the early top yoke then with the cast in lettering. Forgot to mention before I welded the bush to the adjuster I clamped The castlated adjuster to the bottom yoke stem thread with a Jubilee clip lightly, so the threads engaged correctly then tacked up the Slots which normally get compressed by the pinch bolt on the standard yoke. This way you get propor thread engagement.