I just joined this forum and posted the following on a general forum whereas I should have posted it here.
I have recently bought a 1964 AJS 18, 500 single, and I'm having starting problems. I once owned a 1956 Matchless 500 single (50 years ago) and starting was easy. I realise that by 1964 the AJS had more compression and the Matchy I had was worn, whereas my recently acquired AJS has a tight motor due to it recently having a full rebuild, and it's not easy to turn over.
It also however, has an up-rated alternator, electronic ignition and voltage regulator and a 12v negative earth electrical system. The bloke who sold it to me started it easily, but it had probably already been running and was warmed up. My stepson also starts it easily from cold, but he is of Tongan descent and has abnormally powerful legs and as such turns it over very quickly.
At nearly 70 I realise I'm no spring chicken, but I'm by no means feeble and I feel I should be able to start it if I get the procedure right. I was wondering if anyone out there who is familiar with the bike has any starting tips. I haven't tried starting fluid yet, but surely I shouldn't need it? I'm posting from Australia, and as the temperature is relatively high I can't blame cold weather.