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#838503 01/30/21 8:27 am
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I've been experiencing some difficulty lately with finding a shop that I trust to line ream the timing side bush on a "70 Lightning. This has got me to considering possible alternatives, to wit: adjustable reamers with pilots.

It appears that a suitably sized reamer is available to cover the necessary dimensions, this journal is on the 2nd regrind. Since I don't have any experience with these type reamers I'm hesitant to jump right in without first seeking some advise/insight from someone who may have already been there.

Questions arise such as:
1) if set up with a mic, will they (adj. reamers) hold true when used for fairly precision jobs like the timing side bush?

2) If a suitable "donut" is machined to fill the roller bearing outer race on the drive side (or perhaps use the roller bearing inner race
itself) to act as an end point for a pilot, can the bush then be hand reamed to the appropriate dimension with any expectation of
required accuracy?

Seems feasible but then again theory and reality often clash.

This bike had oil pressure problems ( unheard of regarding A65"s grin ) and after exhaustive efforts with OPRV's (both types), various oil weights, gauge readout locations, etc. a final teardown revealed uneven wear in the bush (approximately 80 mi on the engine). Bad job on the original line bore...?
Crankshaft possibly tweaked and wobbling....? Questions, Questions.
Any thoughts or information regarding the above are highly appreciated.

Thanks,
Phil

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If it’s worn out after 80 miles I’d be wondering if there was enough flow from the pump? Is there any discolouration to the crank? Blueing?


Now let’s all have a beer beerchug

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Quote
1) if set up with a mic, will they (adj. reamers) hold true when used for fairly precision jobs like the timing side bush?

No, adjustable reamers tend to cut tapered holes and with what in the UK is called threepenny holes, ie like a hexagon.

Send your cases to someone who knows what they are doing.

Such as Site Sponsor EdV

https://www.shopevengineering.com/

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Have a look at this YouTube video - Here which shows one way to line bore the timing side bush.

Note that careful measurements are made with the cases assembled to check the drive side housing is Concentric, then the drive side is removed and the timing side is also checked for concentricity.

By using a mill with the cases bolted down the result should be that the timing side bush is perfectly Concentric with the drive side once bored.

There are other ways to do this but using a solid mill seems best.


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With care, the bushing can be sized with a sharp reamer and a proper alignment bushing


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I think that CBS were selling piloted reamers for Triumph cam bushes, Maybe they have the same for a Lightning.
If you are in So Cal, I think they are in San Diego.

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Originally Posted by S-NJ-W
I think that CBS were selling piloted reamers for Triumph cam bushes, Maybe they have the same for a Lightning.
If you are in So Cal, I think they are in San Diego.

I think the Ts bush is a little more tricky than a cam bush. Reaming the A65 cam bushes aren’t too tricky.


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Sorry, misread the original post. Gunner has it right.

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It seems the timing side bush will always be the Achilles Heel of of the A65.
When done right, with precision (& a certain amount of plain luck) they can, and often do, hold up very well.
However, when things aren't "just right".....well...hello low oil pressure.

For the amount of miles I tend to put on my rider every year, I always considered the bush to be more than adequate. The needle/roller conversion is certainly
a good way to go, I just never considered it totally necessary. BUT that was before finding experienced machining services for things such as "line bores"
started to become a problem. Right now I believe Ed V is the only shop ( in the U.S.) that's doing the bearing conversion. I spoke with Ed a couple months ago and he indicated he had roughly a one year back log of engines waiting for that treatment. So it would be a case of getting in line....of course Ed may be able to do a line bore considerably quicker.

The '70 engine I've referenced is not from my rider. The bush in my rider was done back in the Nineties by a very experienced automotive machinist who has long since retired....never had a lick of trouble with it. I will add this caveat however: my rider has a "66 engine, so no oil gauge port. To paraphrase something I read early on in my A65 education: "Want to make yourself crazy? Start monitoring your A65 oil pressure." This '70 engine has so far proven the validity of that statement!

Thanks for the replies and input gents, very much appreciated.
Thanks also for that video Gunner....good stuff.

Phil

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Best done on a mill, not that difficult but you should clock up from the parting face
and the drive side bearing..

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If your journal was worn out after only 80 miles I would check the oil pump especially as its a 66 engine.

The A65 oil pumps evolved over the years becoming better each time, see THis link for a history of the pump.

Hopefully you have one of the DD or iron pumps fitted, if not I would buy the SRM or new Hepolite pump.

Also worth reading the installation tips on the E&V engineering site Here. Ed suggests fitting the pump and spinning it over with a cordless drill attached to the tacho drive with a rubber pipe. With oil feed connected and pump spinning it should be possible to hear pressure build up and the OPRV blow off, there may be some leaks visible around the pump.


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Originally Posted by gunner
Have a look at this YouTube video - Here which shows one way to line bore the timing side bush.

Note that careful measurements are made with the cases assembled to check the drive side housing is Concentric, then the drive side is removed and the timing side is also checked for concentricity.

By using a mill with the cases bolted down the result should be that the timing side bush is perfectly Concentric with the drive side once bored.

There are other ways to do this but using a solid mill seems best.

Yes that is the right way as long as you are completely confident that the split face and the outer face are dead parallel ....by the look of the gear the guy in the vid has i would say he didnt miss that point.

However the question i ask is "is it necessary and why is it necessary? "

back in the day all you did was get an undersize bush and grind the crank to specified sizes and shove the new bush in and guess what it worked.

The internet has turned this whole thing into some kind of back art!

People go on incessantly about "line boring or align reaming" which by the way are totally different operations, and few seem to be able to explain what they involve, For those who think u can support a reamer from the ball/roller bearing and it will magically make the reamer line up the bush , you cant! ...if you don't believe me just put the crank into the bearing and see how much lateral movement there is over that distance, A reamer will follow the hole , the only way to make a hole "shift over a bit" is with a single point cutter ..

it is only necessary to do the milling thing as per vid if the bush hole has become oval or hammered out of round or if the cases have slightly warped by 50 years of hot cold cycles , but generally they haven't perceivably "shifted" ....other that that , well ya know.... racing guys shouldnt bother cause they are going to blow the things up any how ,

Example:

I dropped a rod on my A10 on the timing side it blew that side of the case to bits, i didnt lose my case numbers a VERY GOOD THING!

MAN did the experts in the club have a fielded telling me what i had to do if (as i did) i got a half case ( obviously from another motor) and fitted that . you MUST GET IT LINE BORED ETC .........i told them i would if it was necessary . IT wasnt! ....i made a new bushing to match the crank (which unbelievably was still ok) and with a bit of careful hand fitting reassembled it ........the bottom end is perfect. 5k miles and counting

I did not spend thousands and wait 6 month for some prema donna to do it.

man that ecercise shut a few mouths, fact is BSA did a very good job on making therir cases uniform and doweling insures alignment




but having said all that i would advise someone who isnt an engineer to just go with the latest trend and get it done , finding someone will be the hard part as will paying for it , doing that sort of work takes skill and a lot of gear and i dont grudge what they charge for a second ...its the lengly wait i object to.and if you get a comedian they will stuff it up big time

Just saying ....but ive only been a fitter turner for 40 years so what would i know?

now i will sit back and wait to be howled down hahhaha ive got sore figures after that lengthily post with probably no one will read anyhow ROFLMFAO


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You got lucky and I didn't, so the engine bottom is back with machinist for line boring this time.

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Originally Posted by Ignoramus
For those who think u can support a reamer from the ball/roller bearing and it will magically make the reamer line up the bush , you cant! ...if you don't believe me just put the crank into the bearing and see how much lateral movement there is over that distance, A reamer will follow the hole

you don't use the bearing on the drive side to guide the reamer, you use the bearing race, which is held tight in the case and cannot move. Turn a bush to fit tight in that race with a Concentric bore to fit the reamer pilot and how can it be out of alignment?


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Whilst i agree to a point my main objection to 'just fitting another t/s bearing' is that
yo only get two undersizes and very often the crank only needs a couple of thou to
bring it back to round. Re-lining the steel backed bush is the best way but takes a while.
I tend to agree about the line boring with the proviso that the bush housing has not
been flogged as they very often are after running with a knackered bush for a long
while.
As the 2 case halves have only a single dowel it's normally possible to move them
around anyway so the bearing alignment is never that brilliant. Plus, as you bolt
the barrel down, unless the faces are spot on (which they seldom are) that will move
things as well. This is the case on lots of makes not just beezer. As an example i've just
put a replacement cam in an a65, you couldn't turn it without the cases being bolted
together all round and the barrel nipped down. Once done, it turns beautifully. The
crank has a needle race main so that ran nicely anyway.
Don't rely on the timing side area being flat or true, the parting faces are the ones to work from.
The cases move around all over the show as they heat up and cool down anyway.

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Originally Posted by Adam M.
You got lucky and I didn't, so the engine bottom is back with machinist for line boring this time.

It had nothing to do with "luck" what it had to do with is that I worked in the engineering trade for 40 years and was able to access if doing what i did was the right way to go.

Originally Posted by Thunderlizard
Originally Posted by Ignoramus
For those who think u can support a reamer from the ball/roller bearing and it will magically make the reamer line up the bush , you cant! ...if you don't believe me just put the crank into the bearing and see how much lateral movement there is over that distance, A reamer will follow the hole

you don't use the bearing on the drive side to guide the reamer, you use the bearing race, which is held tight in the case and cannot move. Turn a bush to fit tight in that race with a concentric bore to fit the reamer pilot and how can it be out of alignment?


pretty simple , a reamer taking out only a few thou will follow the hole that is there , a reamer wont just take a whisker off one side of a hole , thats how it works in practice anyway., that is why i said that if it needs more removing from one side of the bush than the other you have to use a single point cutter as the guy in the video did

Originally Posted by NickL
Whilst i agree to a point my main objection to 'just fitting another t/s bearing' is that
yo only get two undersizes and very often the crank only needs a couple of thou to
bring it back to round. Re-lining the steel backed bush is the best way but takes a while.
I tend to agree about the line boring with the proviso that the bush housing has not
been flogged as they very often are after running with a knackered bush for a long
while.
y.


Yes i should have said thats what i did ....relined a steel housing ...making sure obviously that it was a good one and only gave the new bush sufficient interference to not "grow the od " there fore make it too tight in the case . I left a few tenths on the id to give a bit to hand finish to give the desired clearance ........ from faltering memory i think i gave it 8 or 9 tenths clearance maybe a whisker more all i know is that there were no sparklies in the oil after a 100 miles or so , but remember we are talking A10 with a smaller diameter bush ID than the A65

Material choice is also pretty important to make a new lining

and yeah always take as little off the crank as you can to just clean up and make new bush to suit .......i know its not like back in the day where you could just go get an undersize bush off the shelf THEN try to find a machinist to grind the crank to the factory specified sizes specified sizes

But honestly there is so much rubbish talked on the internet about the necessary engineering required , most of it from those who have zero understanding of the trade

and yeah making sure barrels sit flat is pretty much a given ...

many so called tradesman engineers theses days cant even read a mic (unless its digital) even then they think its a precision G clamp no feel at all just from what ive seen let alone hit a size within only a few tenths on a grinder


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Many different ways to skin a cat

On my 350 motors, I made a custom pilot that takes place of the ball bearing and used a shell reamer to ream the crank bush

I also mounted my TS crankcase on my milling table and bored the crank bush inline with the opposite side

Keep your options open


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Originally Posted by C.B.S
Many different ways to skin a cat

On my 350 motors, I made a custom pilot that takes place of the ball bearing and used a shell reamer to ream the crank bush

I also mounted my TS crankcase on my milling table and bored the crank bush inline with the opposite side

Keep your options open


I must admit that with a properly supported SHELL reamer you would be in with a chance on a soft material like bronze . I maintain however that with one of those adjustable ones with the long blades or a standard length machine reamer no way .

here's the thing , you have to have some clearance between the pilot end and the bush , Even at at absolute minimum sliding fit clearance on something only maybe 3/4 long you will still get lateral movement over the length of the crank . Unless you make your custom support collar dam near as long as the crank in which case it will likley tip in the bearing housing when it is force to cut unevenly

Buy the time you have done all that it would have been quicker to do it on a mill , i maintain that the only way to cut off center on an existing hole is with a single point cutter

IF you are doing many cases probably making some custom fixture is an ok compromise using a shell reamer OR an adapted "David Brown" style adjustable reamer (not the floating blade type those will DEFINITATLEY just follow the hole no question at all ) the ones where you adjust them with a grub screw in the point with split blades that can move a few thou ,,, i used those extensively and man you sure can get accuracy with them and they repeat! but how many machine shops will have or make the required special support fixture without charging 1000s ? Most machine shops dont even know what a "David Brown" reamer is !

Just out of interest , shell reamers arnt adjustable ( unless its a terminology thing and what you mean by shell reamer isnt what i understand them to be ) so how do you use them for more that one size ? unless you have like 400 of them all made to specific sizes?


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I think rigidity is everything

The pilot I am using covers a good part of the shank

Honed to approx .0005" working clearance

The shell reamer arbor has a tapered end and key, with only removing approx .002-.003" off the ID I don't see any reason of how my set-up would follow an existing hole

If you look at the original Triumph 350 / 500 arbor, you will see they locate off the ball bearing from the opposite side of the case (timing side through the drive side)

Now talk about lateral movement...

My cutting reamer is a specific size, then I have the crank from standard ground down -.001" from the I.D. of the bushing once done

Talking about 350 / 500 motors BTW

Last edited by C.B.S; 02/01/21 6:08 pm.

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Originally Posted by C.B.S
I think rigidity is everything

The pilot I am using covers a good part of the shank

Honed to approx .0005" working clearance

The shell reamer arbor has a tapered end and key, with only removing approx .002-.003" off the ID I don't see any reason of how my set-up would follow an existing hole

If you look at the original Triumph 350 / 500 arbor, you will see they locate off the ball bearing from the opposite side of the case (timing side through the drive side)

Now talk about lateral movement...

My cutting reamer is a specific size, then I have the crank from standard ground down -.001" from the I.D. of the bushing once done

Talking about 350 / 500 motors BTW


my x used to say that about rigidity being important, perhaps thats why she is my x

Yep as per my previous post "damm near as long as the crank " for the pilot .........obviously u are set up to do many of them ....i was more talking about the engine rebuilder down the road who wont have specialized gear as u do so will just feed the unfortunate customer a whole load of BS about how they will do it


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Just curious, have you tried using an expandable reamer on a BSA timing side bush? have you watched someone else try it? or are you speculating that it won't work?


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There are many A50 / A65's on the road today, and many built as we type / read this

Surely, there are more than 1 way to do the job, or at least how I look at it

I saw the comment about an expanding reamer

With a 6 flute adjustable reamer, I do not see any issue, just making sure its rigid and inline

Reamers can be tricky, take small cuts and measure as you go


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I have tried the reamer solution. I bought a piloted adjustable reamer (size K IIRC), made a target piece to accept the pilot, and then tried it. It was very hard to start reaming and impossible to do it without chatter & grooves. So I decided that I'd bought a crappy reamer & bought a better one. The results were still very poor.

After months of wasting time (& ruining bushings) I decided to learn to do it on my buddy's mill. Once I figured out the setup & oversized a few bushings, I find that it's a 1 hour job to size the bush just like Ade in the youtube video. Doing it without a DRO would not be much fun.

I'm just too impatient and am done with trying to ream a timing side bush. Milling is easier and you'll learn if you timing side is Concentric to the drive side.


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Originally Posted by Thunderlizard
Just curious, have you tried using an expandable reamer on a BSA timing side bush? have you watched someone else try it? or are you speculating that it won't work?

nah im just speculating based on 40 years as a fitter and turner .........but way back in the dim distant past i did take one to an engine rebuilder ...he totally stuffed it up using an adjustable reamer ...exactly as Ray Elliott ha described above

he then proceeded to go round the open end of the bush and bash in some center punch marks to make it seem like an ok fit ......then when i inquired regarding the appropriateness of this "remedy " he said "oh well its only a motorbike" ....the id was chattered and oversize . What an expert , then he wondered why i wasnt so keen on paying him.......gee i dont know perhaps i was just being churlish

funny thing is this guy had a good reputation so he must (or his 1st year apprentice must have) been having a bad day


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Interesting examples but neither one sounds like the reamer was the problem


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Originally Posted by Thunderlizard
Interesting examples but neither one sounds like the reamer was the problem

well what else was the problem? when you can see parallel gouges/chatter marks running through the lenght of the bush it sure looked like reamer problem to me......but i only saw it myself


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by your description, the guy trying to use it was the problem


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have it your way ........but single point cutters dont chatter dig in like that ... you dont use a .22 cal buffalo shooting do ya....... occasionally in engineering it pays to use the correct tooling , an adjustable multi flute hand reamer is not the correct tool , not in my experience anyhow... im sure some guys have managed using a razor sharp or new adjustable hand reamer and got away with it ...but even a blind squirrel gets a nut sometimes

oh and by the way ........if you try a hand reamer on the original mystery alloy which is very soft you WILL have a problem.. it will deform rather than cut ...its a bit like trying to thread copper it can be done with the right tooling but only with the right tooling


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well I have used one on both the original babbit bushing and a bronze replacement and it did not dig into either. If you know how to use the tool correctly, it will do the work for you


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Originally Posted by Thunderlizard
well I have used one on both the original babbit bushing and a bronze replacement and it did not dig into either. If you know how to use the tool correctly, it will do the work for you


just out of interest how many years have you worked in the engineering trade ? you know using machinery for a living ?


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Does it really matter? Every apprentice is taught not to blame the tool for the ignorance of the operator, aren't they?

Last edited by Thunderlizard; 02/02/21 2:40 pm.

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Originally Posted by Thunderlizard
Does it really matter? Every apprentice is taught not to blame the tool for the ignorance of the operator, aren't they?

Tell ya what dude im done with this pissing contest , its pointless . I was happy to discuss the matter with a previous poster who clearly has a trade background , now go on back to google sonny

Tradesmen are generally proud of their trade and dont give evasive answers when asked about it bye


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“just out of interest how many years have you worked in the engineering trade ? you know using machinery for a living ?”

Seems this was the initial throwing down of the gauntlet in any urination championship.
Until then most of the posts were based on information, rather than relying on kudos or time served.

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Originally Posted by koan58
“just out of interest how many years have you worked in the engineering trade ? you know using machinery for a living ?”

Seems this was the initial throwing down of the gauntlet in any urination championship.

Until then most of the posts were based on information, rather than relying on kudos or time served.

perhaps so
t
but the comment that i viewed as the commencement of the casting of offensive matter challenge was
"Just curious, have you tried using an expandable reamer on a BSA timing side bush? have you watched someone else try it? or are you speculating that it won't work?"

I had already made it clear amongst my rambling that i have a lengthy trade history so "just speculating " did annoy me a little , but as i said now done with the ablution comparison

then the comedian backhandedly implied i didnt know how to use a reamer ...well thats how i took it anyhow


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BUT to get back to the point I was initially trying to make :

I recon most of the time "line boring, align reaming " call it what you want isnt necessary (other than in situations i mentioned) ...it has just become the "done thing"" incurring vast expense and lengthy waits for hapless owners.

I recon it would be money better spent to get a suitably qualified tradesman to access if it is necessary first , then by all means do that if that is the advise upon examination of alignment

As i said after blowing my case on an A10 to bits and finding a half case i assessed it to see if it needed "the procedure" it didnt , so i just spun up a new inner bush and it worked out very well .many the club have commented on how good the bottom end sounds

so yeah i saved $thousands and had the bike back on the road in 1 month ( the guys in the club were a God send helping me find parts , couldn't have done it without them! ) We bikers must stick together you know!


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You are faced with the situation that blokes are trying to make a perfect , or what they think is perfect
setup from a mass produced piece of gear that was engineered to allow for imperfections and priced
to suit. These old crates were built by blokes who were payed by how many they made, not if they were
within 3 tenths of a thou. The a65 is a rugged motor if put together well, not a precision motor, it was
never built as a Brough or similar it was equivalent to a 'detroit dustbin' of the car world. The fact that
they enjoyed huge success when used in sidecar racing proves that they were rugged. It's also a note
that most of that sidecar success was on motors with standard bottom ends not needle race converted
motors.
Just my 2c.

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dont even start me on those needle roller conversions .......as i said decades back when they first became the flavor of the month ......what are guys going to do when THOSE wear out the crank (and they do ) ........bet a few motors have been scrapped when they discovered this ... but i did say i want going to comment ,, and as for the black box ignition ... at least i have a chance of fixing my points on the side of the road

but i recon the much maligned A65 bottom end was actually pretty good .......50 years latter what can i say .... regular oil changes is the answer , not reinventing the wheel


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End fed needle roller timing side evolved for a good reason, so did EI.


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Yes Gavin, the needle roller conversion evolved for good reasons, i won't argue that,
it's just that the main reason was to compensate for people's inability to get the standard
job done properly. When 'hotting up' the engine, fitting different cranks etc, the quality
of earlier oil pumps not rebuilt properly etc. All these reasons made the needle race
an attractive option. BUT all conversions are not equal, i've seen many that are poorer
than the old bush setup in terms of accuracy and engineering, bad welding and distorted
cases and covers etc. Not a job for an average diy guy as a mill is a minimum requirement.
When done properly the needle race uses an inner which is pressed onto the crank so no
wear on the actual shaft takes place.
Electronic ignition is a pet subject with me, like many, i would never go back to points by choice.
I understand the roadside failure thing but once again, i've never experienced a failure of EI.
I do admit that i have a 'get you home' box in the side cover though, it takes about 3 minutes
to just swap the leads over. No advance/retard makes starting a bit more difficult but as i said
it will get me home. I suppose with a background in the field, electronics doesn't frighten me.
These days if you look under your car hood/bonnet so much is electronic, why worry?

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how on earth has my A65 ever lasted 50 years with neither modification. And the A10s even longer ?

besides all the technical reasons for either it is simply NOT ORIGINAL! , but i suppose I dont have rubber tires i have compound ones , thats bad enough!

Nick fact is these days you don't really have to look under a cars bonnet ..........you cant do anything anyway so if it wont go call the towies , I am not intimidated by electronics at all its just that i simply dont understand it ... I can do basic electrical stuff but thats about it... if i put a screwdriver across my points i know i have power , I can SEE IT !

I recon we should go back to Model As ..they had 3 wires going to the engine , that was 2 too many in my opinion


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Hi

I might as well add my tuppence worth. I'd say if you timing bush is shot, then for the time and cost involved, I'd recommend upgrading to the needle/ball end-feed for the timing side.
I agree with Nick that it has to be machined correctly, but when done it all fits together straight off every time. And as you pointed out the Brg run's on the inner race and NOT on the actual crankshaft, plus, once fitted unlikely to wear out in your lifetime.

Pre 67 engines do require a little weld on the crankcase to bring the oil-way transfer to the inner timing case if going for the integral system. Again I'll agree with Nick in that its not a good idea to weld on the timing cover due to the potential chances of distortion, however its easy to make a seal carrier block which can be bolted or held in place with modern metal adhesives, the plus side in end-feeding the crank is that you have gained at least an extra 25% oil supply to the big-ends which wasn't available with the bush. So your old oil pump is good to go, I'm assuming it's been rebuilt correctly.

As for the EI, well I'll leave that to better qualified people to comment on. But I think it'll be something else that will break or fall off when you're out on your "Old Crate" that will stop you getting home. Sorry Nick couldn't resist steeling your description.

In advance, sorry if I've hurt anyones feelings.

John

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I’d agree with that John. The next motor I do will be end fed. The guy that does the work for me does a good job of the bush and I’ve seen engines he’s doing e cover over 20k and still no oil light flickering on at tick over. But for the cost and more so when you start putting A10 cranks into A65 cases etc, the bearing conversion cost is negligible in comparison to the work involved when setting it with a bush.


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For what it's worth, I agree with both sides on the needle bearing conversion!? But I haven't done it. I have had two Trispark units fail on the Tbolt. Love the simplicity but apparently too much heat in the points hole. If the third one fails, I have a Boyer in a box.


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Well, as the OP of this thread I guess I feel somewhat compelled to comment on the wealth of input that it generated. One thing's for sure...I think I definitely got my money's worth!

A few observations:
I'm inclined to believe that an adj. reamer can work. However I think there are certain requirements necessary for this to happen. Among these are: a quality, sharp ( preferably unused ) brand name tool, an extended pilot to the drive side race and ( most importantly ) large amounts of patience and dexterity on the part of the operator to not rush the operation. Certainly this process worked for Thunderlizard. His bike's bottom end doesn't make strange noises and does make good oil pressure.
I tend to agree with Ignoramus regarding reamers though: "they want to follow an existing hole". So if the alignment isn't too far off to begin with, you'll probably be alright. The use of "shell reamers" as mentioned by CBS may be an exception to the above rule as well.

As pointed out by Nick, if using a mill, indicate off the parting face rather than relying on the timing side outer surface to be dead flat.... good info. He also makes mention of the fact that the hole (for the bush) in the timing side case may be knackered from 50 yrs. of use and abuse. This is definitely true of the hole in the case of the '70 engine I'm working on right now. I suppose it could be cleaned up with a light "kiss" from a cutter as long as you're dead sure of concentricity with the drive side bearing race (seems to me this is one place where an appropriate sized reamer might be ideal ).
Nick's comment that these bikes were basically the Fords and Chevys of their era is worth remembering. They employed good engineering practice for mass produced machines that probably no one working at BSA ever dreamed would still be on the road +50 yrs. later. As such, they don't require that a person be a "rocket scientist" to work on them when competent mechanical/engineering skills should be more than adequate. This leads me to seriously contemplate giving this operation a go on the mill myself. Thanks to Ray Elliott's post, if I manage to go through several bushings before getting it right at least I know I'll be in good company!

I also still feel that the end feed bearing conversion is a good way to go. But as I mentioned early in this thread Ed V is the only shop doing it in the U.S. that I’m aware of and he’s got a fair back log of engines awaiting that conversion.

Regarding EI, I don't have anything against it....but there was that ONE TIME when I fried the primary on my A65 and was still able to successfully complete the 100mi. trip back home by virtue of/thanks to the points/battery system; of course this was before cell phones, so there really wasn't much alternative….

Many Thanks to all who have contributed their knowledge and thoughts....as always, very much appreciated.

Phil

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Quote
But as I mentioned early in this thread Ed V is the only shop doing it in the U.S. that I’m aware of and he’s got a fair back log of engines awaiting that conversion.

Ed does great work, but so does Frank Deihl. Frank has been doing them for years. Classic Cycle Works Georgetown SC [email protected]

A lot of people who fit new timing side bushings finish sizing the bushing so as little material has to be removed from the crankshaft. They bore/ream hole until it cleans up and then have the crankshaft ground to give it the required .001" to .0015" clearance. They don't grind the shaft first and then size the hole. It is far easier to grind the shaft accurately as it is to ream/bore the bearing in the case. Also you only have to remove only the amount required from the crankshaft, and not go in increments of .010". There is no law that you have to go in .010" increments.

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John,

I knew that Frank Deihl used to do these conversions but it's been some time since I last saw his name come up with regard to still doing them.
Good to know he's another possibly available source. I'll try getting in touch with him.
Thanks for the tip and the additional info regarding the timing side bush....appreciate it.

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I have not worked on a twin with a bush for many years. When I last worked on my A10 the main bearing bush was a steel housing with a steel backed bush of similar composition to a big end shell. Putting a reamer anywhere near it would have ruined it.
My Aprilia has plain bush main bearings, these are split shells like big ends pressed into the crankcases
Has the idea of reaming come from after market solid bronze bushes?


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Originally Posted by Andy Higham
I have not worked on a twin with a bush for many years. When I last worked on my A10 the main bearing bush was a steel housing with a steel backed bush of similar composition to a big end shell. Putting a reamer anywhere near it would have ruined it.
My Aprilia has plain bush main bearings, these are split shells like big ends pressed into the crankcases
Has the idea of reaming come from after market solid bronze bushes?

The original A10 bushes were steel housing filled with white metal ... you are dead right ( as i tried to explain earlier) a reamer would tear super soft material like that to bits The Original A65 bushes were steel with some mystery liner with a very thing copper colored coating. a reamer would also be the wrong tool

reamers are only ok for comparatively hard materials like bronze in bushes .


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Originally Posted by Ignoramus
Originally Posted by Andy Higham
I have not worked on a twin with a bush for many years. When I last worked on my A10 the main bearing bush was a steel housing with a steel backed bush of similar composition to a big end shell. Putting a reamer anywhere near it would have ruined it.
My Aprilia has plain bush main bearings, these are split shells like big ends pressed into the crankcases
Has the idea of reaming come from after market solid bronze bushes?

The original A10 bushes were steel housing filled with white metal ... you are dead right ( as i tried to explain earlier) a reamer would tear super soft material like that to bits The Original A65 bushes were steel with some mystery liner with a very thing copper colored coating. a reamer would also be the wrong tool

reamers are only ok for comparatively hard materials like bronze in bushes .


With that in mind... if you used one of the solid one piece phosphor bronze bushes.. would the reamer be ok then?


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yes Alan a reamer will cut ok on bronze (in fact very well either dry with no lube or a drop or 2 of kerosene) , My issue all along hasnt been with using a reamer for sizing just the trying to make a reamer cut elliptically


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I think the a65 original material was VP23 a type of leaded bronze i believe.

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I am turning my own bushing out of SAE 660 ( also known as C93200) which is a lead/bronze alloy.
You can buy it on line here, minimum of 12 inches of thick walled tubing. Should last me what's left
of a lifetime. I can't remember exactly what outside/inside diameters I chose, but can go measure
the lump in the garage if anyone cares.

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Originally Posted by NickL
I think the a65 original material was VP23 a type of leaded bronze i believe.

The VP23 was a steel outer with an inner steel backed bush with VP10 leaded bronze material, a sales dept way of differentiation. This had a lower lead level than the big end VP2 and so did not need the overlay plate to protect the lead from acid leeching. VP10 bushes are very popular as a small end bush material.

To replicate the VP10 you need the following bronze.

Pb 10% Sn 10% Cu 80%

VP2 has 23% Pb, 1.5% Sn and 75.5% Cu

As a fully Bronze bush you lose the strength of the steel backing, so it will not have the same properties especially likely to have a lower fatigue strength. In a main bearing this may not matter but there is also greater risk of distortion from loading.

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But to the point made by Ignoramus, you don't want to be stuffing (technical term) a reamer through that, to try to re-size it or change the axis of orientation. The only bush you should do that to is a solid bronze bushing and even then, you should be using a boring head to machine the bearing surface. A reamer to adjust the sizing by a very small amount, if you think it needs it. Better to have the crank journal ground by a few thou to fit the bush.

Clearly, the factory thought you should just whack out the old bushing and beat in the new with a lump hammer, after waving a big hairdryer at the cases.

PS the timing side main in my cases doesn't look like that photo. Mine has the 'ears' on it that locate it in the case casting.

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Kibblewhite offers crank bushings with no steel liner...

https://shop.kpmivalvetrain.com/c/british_bsa_a65-1971-1972_bushing-crankshaft


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Originally Posted by Hillbilly bike
Kibblewhite offers crank bushings with no steel liner...

https://shop.kpmivalvetrain.com/c/british_bsa_a65-1971-1972_bushing-crankshaft

I think those are superior to the brit bike bits bush in the link that NickL posted :

Because you can machine them to fit. Buy an undersize and bore/ream it as required.

But what ticks me off is the 'blurb' on the Britishbikebits web page :
>BEWARE OF PATTERN BRONZE/BRASS BUSHES!!

Why is that? No reason offered. Just 'scaremarketing'. But here is the catch-22 :

>Procedure as per workshop Manual, Old bush to be pressed out and securing pegs removed.
>New bush to be pressed in and line reamed to suit crank, then pegged to stop it turning in the housing
>Please note that this is only suitable for standard size

You have to 'line ream' to suit the crank, but the bush is in standard size only. So, unless your crank has magically
expanded in diameter, you can't ream a standard size bush to fit a used crank. Even if you could, the reamer would
rip out the wafer thin bearing material. Unless you have a brand new, unused crank, this bush is useless to you.
This is the kind of supplier BS that just irritates the heck out of me.

"Oh, you followed our instructions and your big end seized and the con rod poked a hole in the crankcase? Yes sir,
we stand right behind our product. We will refund you the price of the bushing."

[/rantoff]

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Just looking at that burton bike bits bush, it’s a split bush like the swing arm bushes on my oif. Interestingly for those the Manual does state do not resize the bush (swingarm) however when they come sized that the inner section won’t fit when the bush has been fitted then what can you do. So I placed an expanding reamer through mine. Worked it out in small increments and kept cleaning and trying the centre piece till it was spot on.

The defining factor though between these two systems is the bushes are less than an inch apart on the swing arm. Not the case on the crank casing and the crank setup is subject to more wear and other issues than the swingarm.


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this may have been answered, but frak deihl goes to work every day. ‭(843) 520-0481‬ excellent wrk.
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Exactly the same material I make my crank bushings from


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Originally Posted by C.B.S
Exactly the same material I make my crank bushings from

Kyle/Malcolm - That is a bit ambiguous.
You mean items like this ?

I bet you a dollar to a doughnut, that is made out of SAE 660.

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Pretty sure its Phosphor Bronze


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The steel outer does make the bearing stronger, an all bronze bush is easier to make though.
They are probably stating the warning as so many bushes over the years were turned out by
blokes and made of any yellowish material they had.
Some people reckon that having the shaft hard chromed and ground is a better way to go, if
that method is followed then re-lining the steel outer is great. Beware of the overall fit though,
as the case holes can be hammered out if the main has been bad for a while. I prefer the steel
versions but they are harder to find now and you are stuck with a fixed od so you can only use
them if the cases are good. Lining them with 660 is fine as an alternative. It's more work though.
As for super fine alignment, if you bolt and unbolt the cases a few times it'll change anyway.
Same as if you heat and cool them. Do the best you can, they aren't space ships.

PB1 may not be such a good idea due to it being very hard. But that's only my opinion.

https://mgaguru.com/mgtech/engine/pdf/vandervell_mg.pdf

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PB is too hard IMHO
I always prefer LG 2 or 85-5-5-5
Which al almost as strong and has the added avantage of the lead lubricating the bush should the oil pressure fail.


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Originally Posted by BSA_WM20
PB is too hard IMHO
I always prefer LG 2 or 85-5-5-5
Which al almost as strong and has the added avantage of the lead lubricating the bush should the oil pressure fail.


LG2 (leaded gun metal bronze) is excellent material for this application , as i mentioned who knows how many posts ago on this thread its what i used when i redid the bush on my A10 after a catastrophic failure (threw a rod)

It machines really well and you can raise a really good finish on it straight off the tool when you use zero or negative rake single point cutters. Also it cuts true to size

What i do find quite amusing is how some of the experts who go on about line reaming etc claim you must use a really sharp multi flute reamer ! This is exactly the wrong tooling to use on bronze alloys , Sharp rake tools will dig in and cut oversize , but once again what would i know All the dedicated brass/bronze reamers or drills , particularly spade drills ,I ever used in the manufacturing industry (plumbing hardware etc ) were all ground with a negative rake leading edge


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Originally Posted by Ignoramus
Originally Posted by BSA_WM20
PB is too hard IMHO
I always prefer LG 2 or 85-5-5-5
Which al almost as strong and has the added avantage of the lead lubricating the bush should the oil pressure fail.


LG2 (leaded gun metal bronze) is excellent material for this application , as i mentioned who knows how many posts ago on this thread its what i used when i redid the bush on my A10 after a catastrophic failure (threw a rod)
I've just been back through the thread, and can't find where you referenced the material you used. It's good to have confirmation that LG2 is an appropriate material for this application.
You noted that you made a replacement insert for the original steel shell.
Would LG2 be a suitable material for a one-piece bush to use in a flogged-out timing side crankcase, or would it be better to make an oversize steel housing? Alternatively, would sleeving the case be suitable?

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Originally Posted by Shane in Oz
Originally Posted by Ignoramus
Originally Posted by BSA_WM20
PB is too hard IMHO
I always prefer LG 2 or 85-5-5-5
Which al almost as strong and has the added avantage of the lead lubricating the bush should the oil pressure fail.


LG2 (leaded gun metal bronze) is excellent material for this application , as i mentioned who knows how many posts ago on this thread its what i used when i redid the bush on my A10 after a catastrophic failure (threw a rod)
I've just been back through the thread, and can't find where you referenced the material you used. It's good to have confirmation that LG2 is an appropriate material for this application.
You noted that you made a replacement insert for the original steel shell.
Would LG2 be a suitable material for a one-piece bush to use in a flogged-out timing side crankcase, or would it be better to make an oversize steel housing? Alternatively, would sleeving the case be suitable?


DANG you are right i did mention making a new inner for a good original steel sheel and did think i had said i used LG2 , i though so anyhow . I must have mentioned it in some other similar thread.

Fact remains that its what i DID use LG2 ( lead gun metal) ... the bottom end has come out really well using this material i made it with minimal clearance but obviously enough as it has not shown a hint of nipping up and on first oil change after maybee 100 miles there were zero sparklies in the oil ...

but to your question: i recon it would be perfect to make a solid replacement bush out of ....it is actually a fair bit harder that the standard phosphor bronze the after market bush makers CLAIM they use , but who knows what they actually do use ?

Thing is when you buy material from a trade only engineering supply merchant and specify a grade you can be sure that is what you will get!

without knowing just how "flogged out" the case is its a bit hard (and maybe misleading to offer to much of an opinion . but i would say i would avoid bushing the case it would end up being a very thin bush(more like a shim) and possibly not as rigid as a single case/bearing interface , effectively you would be bushing a bush

if you recon its only say 5 or so thou i would just make a slightly oversize LG2 solid bush and be prepared to spend a lot of time on some careful hand scrapping

Trevor (despite our history of disagreements) is a very knowledgeable metallurgist and if he says LG2 is the best material i would go with that ...the fact myself and Trevor are on the same page says it all IMO .........all i am realy saying is that is what i used and it has worked very well (probably around 5k miles by now)

Trevor can give you the technical reasons its good for teh application , all i can say is i used it and it was great


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I think it was Trev from Newcastle ( TrevinOZ ) does LG2 sleeves shrunk back into the original steel outer which should work even better but is too much fiddleing around for me to attempt .
Thought he may have chimed in but perhaps not as he is a pre-unit twin man so may have skipped this thread.
The only other thig to mention is LG2 comes in two forms,
'Continiously cast solid & extruded tube.
For this application the extrude is by far the better material to use due to finer grain size & beter grain orientation .

LG2 is a universal bearing material.
We used to make at least 1 pour ( approx 6 ton ) a week as SFI .
the only place I would use something different is for valve guides because you want the guide to be harder than the valve stem in which case a phos bronze would be the go, and a leaded phos bronze even better .

And yes Ignoramus is correct about machining,
high speeds with negative / neutral rake
Hand scrapes beautifully if you have some old worn out files that need to be repurposed & the skills to use them.

And that should be WAS a metallurgist, been 40 years since I wore a dust coat .
I find myself needing to whip out the ASM handbooks a bit more often these days.
But yes it is good to be in agreement for a change.

As for the warnings about solid bushes, they should all be fine.
The big problem is most copper based bearing materials look very much the same so it is difficult to tell exactly what materail they are made from visually.
I got some bushes for the M20's box decades ago that were actully cast then machined ( badly ) to ( almost ) size.
A cast bush is highly likely to crack radially and then of course crumble away and I have a feeling that the warnings may have come from that happening.
These things are what you would expect to find unbranded for sale on evil pay or ammo-zone very cheap .
As a rule a good supplier will be able to tell you exctly what alloy the bushes they are selling are made from.
If not go some where else, and by exactly I mean LG 1, or 2 or 3 ( etc ) PB 1, 2 ( same thing ) .
For the USA it should be a 3 or 4 number material code.
If they just say "bronze " then walk away .

Last edited by BSA_WM20; 02/15/21 12:57 pm.

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Nicely written Trev.


There are a lot of good one piece bushes on the market.. heck theres a lot of people putting many miles on them. Just depends who did the machining and who made the bush.

I think this is where companies like SRM (in the UK and others around the world) do good. I don't like everything they do, but I do like most things and wouldn't considering going anywhere else for the "same part" The bush I have recently had fitted is one of their PB ones.


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Steel backed split piston pin bushes are used in diesel engines.

How would one of those work for a T/S bush on a BSA? They come un-sized with about .015" for machining.

This is of course assuming there is one of the right size.

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YEP Trevor im sure you are right about the technicalities of the material, i just machine it ! , i had to learn it as part of my degree but like Maths 3 i took great delight in forgetting all of it !

Only thing i would say about your authoritive post is that you said:


" is correct about machining,
high speeds with negative / neutral rake"

depends what you mean HIGH SPEEDS ? on a bush id of that size i would not go above say 250-300 rpm reaming ( i used spiral reamers ) on a production auto ( although technically not right i would flood it with Ilocut 437 NOT soluble! , feed something like 4 thou per rev , probably just doing a one off on a center lathe i would drop that down even further to say 150-200 using HAND FEED you have a good feel if it starts hogging in and less chance of it heating up

I would do the rest of the turning. Boring at 800-1000 rpm same feeds
I loved doing production work like these on CUSTOMER SUPPLIED material , my line was simple, "there are so many bronzes i dont want the risk of incorrect material and its very expensive so YOU supply"

IN reality i just wanted the swarf hahaha .......had one customer ask for the swarf back so i told him sure but i charge $150 for a machine clean down after brass/bronze (it must be cleaned thoroughly or you get too many slinters next set up! , you still want it ? he didnt and just laughed and said oh well it was worth a try ..i further explained that I dumped at least $20 of ilocut with the swarf ...sure i spin it but you never get all the cutting oil back


PS I love the idea of "sweating " the liner in i thought about that but didt have any silphos but it would be the definitive job...i do pity the next comedian who didnt realize it had been sweated in and tried to get it out .......maybe a note with an engraver on the open end of the bush ?


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Originally Posted by Allan G
Nicely written Trev.


There are a lot of good one piece bushes on the market.. heck theres a lot of people putting many miles on them. Just depends who did the machining and who made the bush.

I think this is where companies like SRM (in the UK and others around the world) do good. I don't like everything they do, but I do like most things and wouldn't considering going anywhere else for the "same part" The bush I have recently had fitted is one of their PB ones.


I have a one piece bush in my A65 , fitted it back in the 80s, - 10 i think so far so good but time will tell..........i have an idea it was silicon bronze, it kind of felt and looked greasy.....I showed it to a top tradesman at some dump i was working at and he told me it was silicon bronze he said excellent material for your bike YOUNG fella DANG young fella ( i was so broke in those days i got the bush in approval and told the seller i wanted it looked at by a top turner and if he said the material was no good i could take it back)

One thing for sure is i bet the cheapskates who spin up this aftermarket stuff wont be using that material! , to them if its yellow its bronze


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Originally Posted by Stuart Kirk
Steel backed split piston pin bushes are used in diesel engines.

How would one of those work for a T/S bush on a BSA? They come un-sized with about .015" for machining.

This is of course assuming there is one of the right size.

These would be VP10 as a Vandervell made Bush or SY if a Glacier bush. Chemically the same, Vandervell cast on steel, Glacier sintered onto steel. Difficulty is finding the right sized bush, Perkins or Cummins would be a good start. The same bronze is used by most steel backed bronze bush makers. Just stay clear of modern car engines which are lead free and the bronze suffers.

Glacier Industrial Bearings do SY bushes in imperial sizes.

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Originally Posted by kommando
Originally Posted by Stuart Kirk
Steel backed split piston pin bushes are used in diesel engines.

How would one of those work for a T/S bush on a bsa?

These would be VP10 as a Vandervell made Bush or SY if a Glacier bush. Chemically the same, Vandervell cast on steel, Glacier sintered onto steel. Difficulty is finding the right sized bush.....
So here's the story behind my question. BTW, thanks to everyone for the very useful comments.

I don't like the solid T/S bushes commonly available these days so I dug around online and found a John Deere steel backed pin bush.

It is too long, but the OD is a nice press fit in the original A10 steel outer. The unfinished ID is about .015" under standard T/S journal diameter.

There is some fiddly work to get it all pinned and drilled but from what I am hearing, it sounds like it should work pretty well. The factory oil hole is a little big though.

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