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#591519 - 03/23/15 9:05 pm In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 11,110
RF Whatley Online content
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RF Whatley  Online Content
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Posts: 11,110
North Georgia, USA
Avid readers of this column will remember the Norton International we were working on several weeks ago. The Inter has a single overhead cam /cam box that looks like this....





This week I was given the honor of timing the cams on another similar engine. Before I could start I had to familiarize myself with the (new to me) mechanism, which turned out to be one of the most interesting and elaborate I've ever seen. So of course I took some photos so all my BritBike friends could share the experience. All I knew at the start was that an 8" degree wheel was fitted to the crank to gather accurate numbers.

Unlike the single overhead cam Jap bikes you may have seen, the Norton uses an elaborate, multi-piece cam shaft design to allow full freedom in cam timing adjustment. The camshaft is powered by a vertical drive shaft which runs off the crank. This drive shaft enters the cambox and powers a set of bevel gears, enabling rotary power to make the right angle turn...



Although the bevel gear rides securely on the camshaft, it is not connected to the camshaft. The connection is made via a set of drilled holes in the gear and another set in a flange on the shaft. The drilled holes are spaced in such a way as to form a vernier, thereby allowing adjustments as small as 5 crankshaft degrees. A special pin is used to select one of the hole pairs and thereby fix camshaft timing. The special pin has a flat that engages the base of the hex washer/nut used to hold the gear in place on the camshaft. (See photo #2)

However, the story doesn't stop there because only the exhaust cam lobe is keyed to the camshaft. So after finding TDC and zeroing the degree wheel, the first step is to time the exhaust lobe. Then one has to remove the opposite side cam box cover and begin again with the intake lobe.



The cam lobes are not only drilled for weight reduction, but on their mating surfaces another set of blind vernier holes is drilled. A second pin rides in these holes and allows nearly infinite intake cam lobe adjustment...



Setting the cam timing is not difficult, in fact it's rather straight forward. The problem is that the rocker shafts cannot be installed until the left side cover is restored, so taking a degree reading means cover re-assembly. Therefore getting the intake cam lobe set correctly may take 20 or so tries for a novice like myself. And then one last dis-assembly for sealing.

Lubrication is just as unique. A sping-loaded quill mounted in the bevel gear cover (not shown) is used to inject oil directly into the gear-end of the hollow camshaft. Oil then exits both cam lobes and fills the circular envelope evident in the last 2 photos. Oil in the envelope lubricates the L & R camshaft bearings. Oil is also taken to the rocker shafts to lubricate the rocker arm roller bearings. Most oil drains back down the drive shaft, but a small sample is piped to each valve guide.

To say the least, it was a fun morning. Just thought you'd like to see.

bigt


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

RF Whatley
Cornelia, GA

"Shop Boy" at Rodi British Bikes
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#591525 - 03/23/15 9:39 pm Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
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DPO Offline
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Douglasville (Atlanta) Georgia
Cool! Thanks for taking the time to share! Looks like some stuff I could really screw up!!


If you love it, let it go. If it comes back, you've highsided!"

1971 Triumph T120
2005 Triumph "America"
1976 BMW R90/6
#591562 - 03/24/15 5:03 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Sep 2011
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PhilM Offline
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UK London
Thanks for taking the time to post this, really interesting and requires a lot of patience I would imagine. There wasn't any need for a breakfast crossword this morning, trying to get my head round this was a big enough challenge for me and I think I'm almost there. Am I right in thinking that trying to determine which blind vernier holes matched between the exhaust and inlet cams was the reason for the 20-30 assembly/disassembles?

Phil

#591563 - 03/24/15 5:15 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Sep 2008
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TT John Offline
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Whitstable England
Fantastic, wonderful, your description of the mechanism with the photo's, I had never seen the workings of one of these motors. Thanks for taking the time to show us.

Kind regards TTJohn

#591572 - 03/24/15 7:13 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Nov 2009
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Peter R Online content
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Peter R  Online Content

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Netherlands
Certainly a unique (if not complex) way for fine adjustment of the valve timing.
Thanks for posting.

Last edited by Peter R; 03/24/15 7:14 am.

Peter.
1974 Commando 850
1972 Trident T150T
1961 Goldie DBD34
1969 Benelli 250 sport special
#591586 - 03/24/15 9:07 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Jan 2005
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Don Leaming Online content
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Don Leaming  Online Content
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Ontario Canada
Now this is really interesting! About 30 years ago I had the pleasure of watching my father in law's neighbour doing the timing on a Norton in his basement. Can't now recall wether it was a Manx or an Inter. His place was a real Alladin's Cave of Rudge and Norton singles parts and engines. I remember a beautiful old Internatioal down there with the "Cat's eye" headlight over in the corner. He had a couple of bronze head Rudge Ulster engines on the go on his bench too. He didn't even have a garage, only a tin shed from K Mart in the driveway. It was Crammed full of old bikes, one of which was a Triumph single with carbide lighting.
That's all I know.
His name was Bob McCoy and he lived in Windsor Ontario, right across the river from Detroit. Wonder what ever happened to all those bikes? Anybody remember him? He was well known by Rudge and Norton fans way back then.
Don


1965 Royal Enfield Interceptor
1969 Triumph Tiger 650
#591590 - 03/24/15 9:34 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
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MikeG Online content
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MikeG  Online Content
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New Hampshier USA
No lubrication on the valve stems and what looks like very short guides assuming those bronze blocks the springs hook into double as guides?


1960 BSA A10
2007 Suzuki Bandit
1957 A10
(Used to be a Triumph here)
71 Norton Commando
#591593 - 03/24/15 9:59 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Jul 2001
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Lannis Online content
Life member
Lannis  Online Content

Life member

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Central Virginia
Do you just have to dope out the construction and methods for yourself, or does any sort of manual or service sheet exist for these old bikes ..... ?

Lannis


OK, I admit it, I'm addicted to brake fluid.

But I can stop any time I want.
#591610 - 03/24/15 11:37 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Dec 2013
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kevin roberts Online content
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kevin roberts  Online Content

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ohio, usa
when future archeologists unearth one of these from the ruins of ancient birmingham, it will be cited as proof that space aliens with unfathomable technology visited our planet in the prehistoric past.


Into the distance a ribbon of black
Stretched to the point of no turning back
A flight of fancy on a windswept field
Standing alone my senses reeled
A fatal attraction is holding me fast how
How can I escape this irresistible grasp?
#591611 - 03/24/15 11:39 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: kevin roberts]  
Joined: Jul 2001
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Lannis Online content
Life member
Lannis  Online Content

Life member

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Central Virginia
Originally Posted By kevin
when future archeologists unearth one of these from the ruins of ancient birmingham, it will be cited as proof that space aliens with unfathomable technology visited our planet in the prehistoric past.


Yep! And for any culture that could design THIS thing, building a big pyramid would be a doddle!

Lannis


OK, I admit it, I'm addicted to brake fluid.

But I can stop any time I want.
#591673 - 03/24/15 6:07 pm Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,791
Kev. Online sick
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Kev.  Online Sick
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Royal Berkshire.
RF, I hope you don't mind but this seems a good place to drop these pictures....

First let me apologise for the poor quality of the pictures, I only had my work phone with me....

A couple of days ago I caller round to see my mate Terry, he is building himself a Black Lightning, he does all his own work, in his little shed in the garden. When I say build himself, his engine etc is genuine Black Lightning, but he is having to make many of the parts himself.







http://kevindean.zenfolio.com/

http://backstreetthunder.wordpress.com/

1950 Vincent Comet
1952 Norton Special
1963 BSA Super Rocket
1970 BSA A65 Lightning
1973 Moto Guzzi Eldorado x2
2009 Triumph Bonneville (now sold)



#592044 - 03/26/15 9:10 pm Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: PhilM]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 11,110
RF Whatley Online content
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RF Whatley  Online Content
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Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 11,110
North Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By PhilM
Am I right in thinking that trying to determine which blind vernier holes matched between the exhaust and inlet cams was the reason for the 20-30 assembly/disassembles?



Yes, you're correct. The intake was by far the worse. With the exhaust you could slide the pin out and visually see the next available hole, in both plus and minus directions.

However on the intake, since both pinning holes are blind, the next available hole was never visible. It took a lot of guessing and fiddling. Luckily I hit the correct combination on about the 6th try.

bigt


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

RF Whatley
Cornelia, GA

"Shop Boy" at Rodi British Bikes
#592045 - 03/26/15 9:11 pm Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: Kev.]  
Joined: Oct 2003
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RF Whatley Online content
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RF Whatley  Online Content
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Joined: Oct 2003
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North Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By Kev.
RF, I hope you don't mind but this seems a good place to drop these pictures....



Not at all. That's an exquisite piece of work.


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

RF Whatley
Cornelia, GA

"Shop Boy" at Rodi British Bikes
#592046 - 03/26/15 9:14 pm Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: MikeG]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 11,110
RF Whatley Online content
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RF Whatley  Online Content
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North Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By MikeG
No lubrication on the valve stems and what looks like very short guides assuming those bronze blocks the springs hook into double as guides?


The 1/16" diameter oil lines to the valve guides are the last thing you add since they are easily damaged. They were added the next day after I finished my work. In photo #2 (between the bevel gear and the coil of the spring) you can see the brass union that feeds one of the guides. There a 2 of these, 1 on the front side and 1 back.

Oil splashing around in the bevel gear case finds its way into these holes in the case (see photo 3), and then dribbles down the very small pipe (which is simply pushed into a drilled hole in the side of the head) and finds its way to the guide.

The lower spring mount seems to help hold the valve guide in place. So it's a separate part. The springs, while pulling the valve stem up, also seem to push down on the flange of the guide.

bigt


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

RF Whatley
Cornelia, GA

"Shop Boy" at Rodi British Bikes
#592048 - 03/26/15 9:51 pm Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: Don Leaming]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 11,110
RF Whatley Online content
BritBike Forum member
RF Whatley  Online Content
BritBike Forum member

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 11,110
North Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By Don Leaming
Now this is really interesting! About 30 years ago I had the pleasure of watching my father in law's neighbor doing the timing on a Norton in his basement. Can't now recall whether it was a Manx or an Inter.


My understanding is that the Manx and International vary (externally) only in the size and shape of the fins on the cylinder and head. The Manx head and barrel appear massively finned and more squarish, while the Inter is rounder. Obviously the Manx has a LOT more magnesium parts that are cast in aluminum on the road model. So that's not the total difference, but for the person that walks up to one here's the giveaway...

The Manx





However, the cam and cam box is the exact same on both models. So the cam timing photos shown earlier would apply to either.

bigt


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

RF Whatley
Cornelia, GA

"Shop Boy" at Rodi British Bikes
#592103 - 03/27/15 9:14 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: Don Leaming]  
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 920
Don Leaming Online content
BritBike Forum member
Don Leaming  Online Content
BritBike Forum member

Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 920
Ontario Canada
Did some digging on the Internet and found where old Bob McCoys collection went. Seems some are up for sale again.
http://www.bike4sale.co/detail/oLcumFmuu...ARN-FIND-ONE-PR
http://motorcycles.smartcarguide.com/listing/48521454/
http://www.bike4sale.co/detail/oLcumFmuu...ARN-FIND-ONE-PR


1965 Royal Enfield Interceptor
1969 Triumph Tiger 650
#592240 - 03/28/15 3:21 am Re: In The Shop This Week - Mar 20, 2015 [Re: RF Whatley]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,791
Kev. Online sick
BritBike Forum member
Kev.  Online Sick
BritBike Forum member

Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,791
Royal Berkshire.
Originally Posted By RF Whatley
Originally Posted By Kev.
RF, I hope you don't mind but this seems a good place to drop these pictures....



Not at all. That's an exquisite piece of work.


Cool, I have a few more pictures, this motor was raced at the IoM TT, before the size limits came in, and the engine is stamped by G Brown in the casting of the cases. It is hard to believe, but Terry bought this from out of a farmyard, and it was encased in a load of concrete, he had to chip the concrete off a piece at a time, before he knew what motor it was.
It should be on the road later this year, as a road going version of Rollie Free's Bonneville bike.


http://kevindean.zenfolio.com/

http://backstreetthunder.wordpress.com/

1950 Vincent Comet
1952 Norton Special
1963 BSA Super Rocket
1970 BSA A65 Lightning
1973 Moto Guzzi Eldorado x2
2009 Triumph Bonneville (now sold)




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