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royaloilfield
royaloilfield
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I’m trying to find the correct solder type nipple to make up a new clutch cable for my Big 4. I’ve searched and searched online for the nipple type but can’t seem to locate one. I’m not talking about the nipple at the lever, I’m looking for the one at the gearbox end. Can anyone point me in the right direction?

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The gearbox in question would be a Sturmey Archer.
3 speed or 4 speed ?
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_ig-rVjdZcIw/TInP5EyY1YI/AAAAAAAACOk/7KePM429bvo/s1600/csboxpic

We'll probably need a pic of the bit the cable attaches to advise,
there are just too many varieties.

I bought a universal-make-up-your-own-clutch-cable-kit a while ago,
and it came with about a dozen nipple types supplied loose with it ...
All of them itty bitty little things, must have been 10c each from the whole price.

This may use about the same cable as the WD box, it doesn't look that different in detail or layout?
https://i.imgur.com/B0aDC.jpg

Edit P.S. this is the postwar cable and bit it connects to.
I'd think it is very similar to the SA setup, without having ever tried it.
Even the thread on the adjuster could be the same (cycle thread, CEI)

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

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Hi Rohan, I'm not sure how to post/attach pictures on this forum. I've got a 3 speed SA box the same as your first picture and the part of the actuating arm that accepts the nipple looks identical to your lower picture. The nipple on my bike I'd describe as similar to a long pear nipple. It fits the internal profile of the arm exactly - so the change in diameter of the nipple is by way of a 90 degree angle from small diameter to large diameter in one step - rather than a gradual increase over a few millimeters like most pear nipples I've seen. I've seen screw-on nipples with the right profile described as "top hat" nipples but can't find the equivalent solder type. I've posted a link to a top hat nipple with the correct profile (obviously mine is solder type without the screw).

https://beedspeed.com/products/cabl...y-N2T7wIVL4BQBh2FjwEgEAQYAiABEgLc9vD_BwE

I see in your picture the gearbox end nipple is a ball type. Am I getting too hung up on finding a nipple with the right profile? I'm guessing someone could have made the one on my bike themselves?? If I make a cable with the right size of ball nipple will that suffice? I also thought about buying some of the top hat nipples, chucking away the screw and machining them a bit so I can use them as a solder type nipple - can you fault that logic?

Guidance gratefully received as ever.

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I'm not sure what to advise.
The postwar cable I showed could more correctly have a top hat nipple, but the ball nipple fits it fine.

A supplier close to me - BMH - has a clutch cable for a SA, but I see he is out of stock.
https://bmhstore.bmh.com.au/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=26_42&products_id=303

To post pics, you need to upload them to a 3rd party photo host, and post the link here.
I use postimage.org - you don't need to register or sign up or anything.
Just upload your pic and post the link. It needs to start and finish with the [img] thingies,
and the 2nd one needs the / in front (inside the brackets)
I can't type both of them here, or they will try and display something !

Be aware that photo hosters have a history of starting to charge $$, so keep a copy of everything,
and save your links. It might all suddenly disappear ...

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Given the worm mechanism's very short operating lever, it looks to me like the ball-shaped nipple in Rohan's picture is correct.

The operating lever has a radiused seat for the nipple, and that is to allow for some "swivel" as the lever moves. A nipple with a flat face would not swivel, and hence that movement would be transformed into flexing motion at the soldered junction of the nipple and its cable ... and soon the cable would snap.

Old fashioned decompressor levers have the same sort of short lever, and they used the very same ball shaped nipple. A pear shaped nipple as used on longer levers might fit, but I doubt that its extended shank would allow for the needed swivel action. I'm sur eyou could find one locally, but if worse comes to worst I'm sure I have a ball nipple here.

Hope this makes sense and is of help,
.. Gregg


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Thanks Guys, I can see the logic of what say gRegg-k, the way my cable is set up doesn't allow any swivel. I've ordered an array of solder type nipples including ball types of various sizes, I'll make up my own cable when they arrive.

Rohan, I'll have a look into posting photo's and will try a test.......wish me luck!

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I've posted an image of the clutch cable nipple, as you can see, looks like a top hat nipple and the more I look at it now, the more it doesn't look quite right.

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Regarding the clutch cable, you can see from the picture, there is nothing left to adjust out at the adjuster. Is this a case of a stretched cable do you think? I've read up on adjustment of these clutches and the books say move the clutch worm lever to a more convenient position if necessary. Presumably if I adjusted the lever slightly it should ensure I have a bit of in/out adjustment at the adjuster.

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Originally Posted by Burga007
Presumably if I adjusted the lever slightly it should ensure I have a bit of in/out adjustment at the adjuster.


I'd say thats about spot on.
Just make sure it still has enough travel to do the job.
If the cable is out to the limit, there may not be room to lose any travel.
And it needs a trace of free play, so the clutch won't be inclined to slip.

Getting cable lengths precisely right is quite a fine art, I've resorted to snipping away bits of the outer,
if it has surplus length and you need more inner length to get some adjustment.

Pics worked ! Nice old thumper, looks to be in fine form.
Am I right in thinking you may not have the decompressor (valve lifter) components,
there looks to be a fitting between the valve lifters/pushrods for it ??

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I really don't have the technical knowledge when it comes to the decompressor. Although there has been a question mark in my mind over it. As far as I was aware, all the components are there and when I first had the bike, before I started her up, I was experimenting with finding TDC. Pulling the handlebar lever does lift the lever down by the valves but has no effect on how hard it is to push the kick start over TDC, this didn't seem right to me. However, when I started the bike, pulling the decompressor lever did shut the motor down. This didn't make any sense to me but as I can start her up without the decompressor I am happy to live with it.

Can you please let me know what you think is missing?

Some more pictures of the old gal in the following link.


https://postimg.cc/gallery/XpTX6Jw

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Incidentally, I've got a lead on the original handlebars, levers and the carb. The previous owner still has them so hopefully when lockdown in the UK is lifted I can obtain them and get them back on the bike.

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Good news about the handlebars etc.
Having the rijjinal bits 'on the shelf' is good, even if they never get used ?

It looks like there may be a large 'washer' perhaps missing off the exhaust valve setup,
such that that lever can catch it and lift the valve a shade for decompressing.
But I don't know this precise model, and if it works OK as is ....
Someone here may have a similar model, I'll ask.

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Thanks Rohan, I'll have a deeper dig in my books to see if I can identify the missing washer.


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