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Hi MM, The oil pump in my Rudge is similar to the Ariel in so much as it is a PD plunger type running in a ported chamber. The method of operation is different though, the plunger has the feed and scavenge plungers at opposite ends with a worm gear driven from the crank shaft axle. The larger diameter obviously being the scavenge pump. The reciprocating motion is created by a hardened peg screwed in the crankcase that runs in a sinusoidal groove in the plunger body. The plunger therefore operates like a shuttle, driven in both directions with no need for a return spring. So the bushes at either end act as guides and pump chambers, bearing the rotating and axial movement of the plunger while maintaining the correct alignment to each other and the worm drive in between.

I have since been advised by a Rudge expert that based on the plunger to bush clearances I measured there is no cause for concern and to leave well alone, so that’s likely what I’ll do.

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Image courtesy of C Chapple, www.rudge-whitworth.com

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Last edited by Bry; 07/26/22 9:15 am. Reason: Image added

1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
British motorcycles on eBay
Bry #891758 09/25/22 9:02 pm
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…I got the bits back from the powder coater - 76 items in total – and after checking everything was there, I made a start on assembling the forks.

I fitted new spindle bushes to the pivot points and line reamed to size using an expanding reamer with a pilot. The existing tubular distance pieces that go between the bushes were quite bent, out of round and were a loose fit. I was not keen on relying on only the friction from the bushes on the ends preventing the spacers turning and misaligning the slot that allows grease to get from the nipple to the bushes. I therefore made replacement distance pieces from carbon steel tube that was turned down and slotted in the mill to obtain an interference fit in the hole.

The unbushed shackle eyes were also line reamed to remove ovality and accommodate the oversized spindles I purchased.

I decided to fit the new bump stop rubbers to the forks before assembling the shackles. This was not that straight forward due to the reverse taper of the holes in the lugs that hold the rubbers in place. I made a tapered insertion tool from nylon and adapted a 2-leg puller that I have. After a liberal coating of P-80 lubricant – which is an emulsion and dries out after assembly – the rubbers went in easily enough.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
4 members like this: gavin eisler, RolandM, royaloilfield, Magnetoman
Bry #892265 10/02/22 3:59 pm
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…assembly of the forks really just involved making up some new Fasteners and using chemical cold bluing to blacken some existing Fasteners, shock absorber anchor plates and star washers.

The existing cups and cones for the steering head were found to be in good condition so we reused with new ¼” ball bearings.

I have not greased the pivot linkages yet as now I know the movement is good I will remove the forks again and chemically blacken the external spindle nut bearing faces where the powder coating was removed. The spring and shroud will be installed on reassembly.

I tried a product for the first time to refurbish the shock absorber hand wheel, called “Paste Polishing No. 5”. This was apparently developed for the GPO for restoring bakelite telephones. This worked well and was finished with a conditioning wipe down with olive oil.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
Bry #892869 10/10/22 4:08 pm
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…continuing with the assembly of the parts returned from the powder coater and associated components.

Most of the steering damper components that were not powder coated were able to be refurbished by cleaning, dressing with a file and cold bluing. I did have to make a new anchor peg from stainless steel hex bar as the original was worn and grooved. This gave me the opportunity to resize the hole in the anchor plate, which was also worn, and size the peg to suit the hole.

The existing Tecalemit grease nipples in the fork linkages and steering head cleaned up with a wire brush and were refitted. A pointed adaptor to fit on the end of my high pressure grease gun was made to fit the hole in the nipple. This worked much better than the small brass hand pump type greaser that I have and believe would have been originally used on Tecalemit grease nipples.

The rear cradle plates and chain stays were assembled to form the rear sub-frame.


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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
2 members like this: kommando, Magnetoman
Bry #892872 10/10/22 4:59 pm
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Great to see a Girder fork project being so nicely restored.

Gordo


The roadside repairs make for the best post ride stories.
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Bry #892878 10/10/22 6:59 pm
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Really good to see so much attention to detail and quality workmanship, looks like the project is progressing well.


1968 A65 Firebird
1967 B44 Shooting Star
1972 Norton Commando
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Bry #893886 10/23/22 8:20 pm
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...assembling the rear wheel hub and brake.
I again used cold bluing to blacken original parts where possible.
The tapered roller bearings and felt seal were replaced, the fixed side bearing required a bit
of heat on the hot plate to fit. The hubs required quite a bit of grease to fill, I did this from the
end - rather than using the nipple - before fitting the adjustable bearing to ensure the grease
filled the complete hub. To check end float on the bearings, I turned the hollow hollow spindle
with an impact gun for a few minutes to distribute the grease, then set to 0.006" using a dial
indicator.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
3 members like this: RolandM, kommando, Magnetoman
Bry #894179 10/27/22 3:40 pm
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…inspection of the front wheel hub components revealed that all of the parts are in acceptable condition except for the LH side bearing cup. I will replace the seals and 3/8” loose ball bearings as a matter of course.

The LH side bearing cup had some minor pitting in the radial contact track, the angular (axial) track was fine. I was unable to get a new replacement bearing cup so decided to refurbish the existing one. Referring to the part drawing showed that the ground ID diameter was on the lower limit of the 0.005” tolerance. I reground the ID until it reached the tolerance limit, which cleaned up the contact track and removed the pitting. As I had also likely ground through the surface hardness, I re-hardened the surface using the open-hearth flame case hardening method. After cleaning up the part a file hardness test indicated a surface hardness >HRC 65.


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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
2 members like this: George Kaplan, Magnetoman
Bry #894344 10/29/22 11:00 pm
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Hi Bry,
Quote
The hubs required quite a bit of grease to fill, I did this from the
end - rather than using the nipple - before fitting the adjustable bearing to ensure the grease
filled the complete hub.

It is not good practice to fill the hubs and bearings with grease, 1/4 to 1/3rd of the space is more than enough
If there is too much grease inside it will be forced out when the bearings warm up
Excess grease actually causes friction !!
I do not know why manufacturers placed grease points in the middle of hubs? It's not a good idea
If you look inside the seals on a modern sealed bearing you can see how little grease is inside
There are formula online to calculate the amount of grease required for ball and roller bearings if you really want to study the subject

John

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Originally Posted by chaterlea25
There are formula online to calculate the amount of grease required for ball and roller bearings if you really want to study the subject

I believe the correct technical term is "a small dollop".

Those grease nipples into large spaces inside hubs have always amused me.
Whatever were they thinking !
If you actually have enough inside that applying a grease gun will force some grease through the bearing,
then it will start appearing inside the brake drum or externally. And damage the seals ?
And what a waste of grease ?

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Originally Posted by chaterlea25
Hi Bry,
Quote
The hubs required quite a bit of grease to fill, I did this from the
end - rather than using the nipple - before fitting the adjustable bearing to ensure the grease
filled the complete hub.

It is not good practice to fill the hubs and bearings with grease, 1/4 to 1/3rd of the space is more than enough
If there is too much grease inside it will be forced out when the bearings warm up
Excess grease actually causes friction !!
I do not know why manufacturers placed grease points in the middle of hubs? It's not a good idea
If you look inside the seals on a modern sealed bearing you can see how little grease is inside
There are formula online to calculate the amount of grease required for ball and roller bearings if you really want to study the subject

John

Hi John,

Thanks, I agree with this and am aware that greasing a rolling element bearing causes an increase in friction until the grease is displaced and the resultant problems if the excess grease can not be easily displaced and/or excessive grease is repeatedly injected.

This was actually why I turned the spindle with an impact gun to distribute and displace the grease before setting the axial bearing clearance (although I am always wary of running roller bearings for too long with no radial load applied). There was of course some excess grease forced out that needed to be cleaned off. This was easily done at this stage but on an assembled wheel if this found its way to the brake drum then the problems are obvious. I wonder if this was the reason why Rudge changed from felt seals at both ends of the wheel hub to a more substantial cork seal at the brake drum side and left the felt seal on the other side on the cup and cone hubs, post 1933? I certainly observed that most of the displaced grease came out of the non-brake drum side.

From the period Rudge maintenance literature I’ve read, it seems that these hubs were designed to operate full of grease. They do warn about not over greasing and recommended “…a single depression of the grease gun”…”about every 500 miles”.

I like your suggestion of only partially filling the hubs with grease. But if this is done then it is probably pointless periodically adding 1-1.5 grams of grease via the nipple as there would be no pressure communication to move even the required minute amount of grease into the bearings. So is there something else that should be considered? e.g. is there sufficient pressure acting on the surface of the grease from centrifugal force when the wheel is turning at road speeds causing it to migrate along the length of the hub tube and enter the bearing?

I made a rudimentary calculation that determined a relative centrifugal force of 4.3g acting on the surface of the grease at a radius of 15mm from the axis of wheel rotation when the bike is travelling at 50mph. I have no idea if this would be sufficient to cause grease of the required viscosity to enter the bearing and of course in practice the physics of this are much more complex.

What’s your experience with this, do simply partially fill the hub with grease and just leave it in there?

Bryan


1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
Bry #894437 10/31/22 12:32 am
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Hi Bryan,
Many years ago I greased the rear wheel bearings on my 31 model Rudge Special before a rally, first day out riding down from the top of a mountain pass I lost braking on the rear wheel. The extra grease had found its way out and contaminated the linings !!
I worked in an electricity generating station 1985- 2009 and repaired many many electric motors of all sizes
On strip down most motors that had greasers were stuffed with grease inside!!.. It did not seem to me that the bearings lasted any longer than the motors with sealed bearings ???
A few years ago I replaced the hugely expensive matched pair of spindle bearings in my milling machine, I researched how much of the again very expensive little tube of grease to lube them with and the tiny quantity required really surprised me

Modern lubricants are vastly superior to those from the 1930's, I have adopted the practice of only checking and lubricating the wheel bearings on my bikes at tyre changing time! rightly or wrongly I lubricate the bearings but do not put grease in the hub???
Here in Ireland the most trouble from bike wheel bearings comes from water getting in if the bikes are used in heavy rain and then left sit unused for some time

John

Last edited by chaterlea25; 10/31/22 12:34 am.
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Bry #894440 10/31/22 1:16 am
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Those lube points into the large empty hub are actually a hangover from the older days of OILING the bearings. ?
A drop or 2 of oil would run about, and lube the bearings. Usually a loose set of balls.

My old military Enfield has a flip up oiling cap on the centre of the front hub.
I don't actually know why - the bearings are a sealed pair of ball races ...
Bit like tits on a bull maybe ??

And I see it needs a bit of a clean ...
I'd think it would have never been used. Ever ?
https://i.postimg.cc/50DhXCdh/Oil-flip-up-cap.jpg

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If you have ever taken one of the seals from a double sealed bearing you will see how little grease is packed in by the bearing manufacturer--- and that is it for the life of the bearing.
In our applications there is movement from rotation of the wheel, there are shock loadings when the wheel goes over bumps and most importantly there is heat.
Heat from rotation because the bearing is not frictionless and the friction turns into heat.
Then in a wheel bearing heat also from the friction of braking.
The heat makes the grease move because of the lower viscosity and this has the effect of over time moving grease in and out of the bearing run.
So-- no extra grease needed---just use the recommended amount and the bearing will look after itself in use.
Just my two cents worth of course.

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Originally Posted by chaterlea25
... I have adopted the practice of only checking and lubricating the wheel bearings on my bikes at tyre changing time! rightly or wrongly I lubricate the bearings but do not put grease in the hub???...

Hi John,

I was considering doing the same thing as I already do this on my other bikes that either can't be or have not yet been converted to use sealed wheel bearings. No problems foreseen with the tapered roller bearings in the QD rear hub. I was concerned that a grease retainer would need to be fitted behind the the loose ball front hub bearing (similar to the arrangement on my girder fork Velo) - but, your experience seems to indicate that this is not really necessary?

Bryan


1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
Bry #894492 10/31/22 5:11 pm
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Hi Bryan,
I think that a lot depends on the quality and temperature rating of the grease used as to whether a retaining arrangement is needed ??
I have been using "Rocol" high temp bearing grease in the bikes with non sealed bearings

John

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Thanks John, that makes sense.


1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
Bry #894762 11/04/22 9:46 pm
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...the existing gearbox mounting bolts were a bit chewed up and one of them was not the correct specification, it actually looks suspiciously like a repurposed roofing bolt. So I made up new ones from the factory drawing using high tensile (EN16T) steel bar. The bolts were finished with cold bluing.

An update on the piston, the Rudge Enthusiasts Club's spares scheme got in their new stock of forged pistons, I ordered a 86.5mm (~0.060" oversized) and the barrel is currently away getting rebored.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
2 members like this: kommando, Magnetoman
Bry #894901 11/07/22 11:27 pm
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…the hex on the end of the gearbox adjuster crank was rounded, so was reclaimed. First the adjuster crank was held between centres and the flange faced to remove a high spot caused by a ding on the outer edge that had deformed into the flange face. Then using this face as a reference on the side of the mill vice and a nut tightened onto the thread as an orientation guide, the faces of the hex were cleaned up undersized to fit a smaller spanner size.

The adjuster locking nut had been removed using a chisel at some point and had deep gouges in the flats, so a replacement was made from 303 stainless hex bar. I did not have the required 9/16 x 20 tpi tap so cut the thread in the lathe. This gave me the chance to try out a new tool and procedure for screw cutting. As I need to leave the half nut engaged in the lead screw when cutting imperial threads, cutting up to a shoulder or working close to the chuck requires stopping the lathe motor at just the right time (my lathe does not have a clutch) to prevent a crash. The new method I tried uses left hand thread tooling and running the lathe in reverse. You still cut a right hand thread but the lead screw is driving the tool away from the chuck. This worked well and I will certainly use this method again.

The crank, link plate and existing washer were cleaned and cold blued and assembled with the new nut.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
3 members like this: kommando, gavin eisler, Magnetoman
Bry #895251 11/12/22 11:29 pm
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…when checking the final drive alignment, the sprockets were found to be 2.5mm out of alignment. Various checks using a straight edge and a laser alignment tool determined that the rear hub and gearbox were correctly aligned, i.e. the projected faces of the sprockets were in parallel. The problem was the position of the gearbox sprocket on the tapered splined sleeve shaft. Measuring the engagement of the sprocket on the sleeve shaft showed that the face of the sprocket was 3.2mm from the end of the splines on the shaft. So there was enough clearance to safely move the sprocket further onto the spline 2.5mm without bottoming the nut on the end of the splines, there was also sufficient clearance at the rear of the sprocket.

I decided to make a tapered lap and open the ID of the sprocket spline to allow it to engage further on the shaft and bring the sprockets into alignment.

From the factory drawing of the 4th gear sleeve gear, the included angle of the tapered spline (only the spline root is tapered) is 12 deg., so I set the compound slide on the lathe to 6 deg. -using a sine bar – and made the lap. The lapping brought the spline ID to the size to position the sprocket into alignment with the rear sprocket and also improved the taper surface contact. This was evident as I needed to use a puller to remove the sprocket when it was lapped, previously it just pulled off by hand when the nut was removed.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
2 members like this: Magnetoman, chaterlea25
Bry #895988 11/20/22 8:06 pm
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…there was a significant amount of clearance between the brake shoe operating cam and the cam bush on both the front and the rear brakes. Measurement determined very little wear on the cam spindles (~0.001) but the bushes were worn with an ovality of +0.010” on the front and +0.012” on the rear. The cam spindles and bushes are hardened, so the obvious thing to do would be to make replacements. But I decided to first attempt to bore the bushes out and make thin wall sleeves from phosphor bronze bar.

The bores of the bushes first needed to be ground past the surface hardening before boring. I removed approx. 2mm in diameter to accommodate a 1mm thick wall sleeve.

The phosphor bronze was drilled undersize and the OD turned to give a 0.002” interference fit in the bush. After pressing the sleeve into the bush (the bush was heated with a hot air gun) the sleeve was bored to size.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
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Bry #896086 11/21/22 11:18 pm
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…the brake shoes were relined by Saftek using woven lining material. The brake drum surface condition and roundness are good and just required cleaning.

The recessed washer that allows the brake operating arm to be tightened onto the spline was missing from the rear brake, there is one for the front. The original washers were pressed but I turned one from EN16T bar and cold blued it. This secured the operating arm tight onto the splines on the end of the cam spindle. The previous flat washer was preventing this.

I also got the gear selector and kick start assemblies fitted to the gearbox.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
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Bry #896230 11/23/22 10:14 pm
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Hi Bryan,
I completed a similar "re bushing" job last week on a friends Rudge lifting handle,
an awkward shape to hold to bore out the worn pivot
This was for the same bike I rebuilt the forks on a while ago
John

Lifting handle.jpg
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Hi John, nice job!

The lifting handle pivot on my Rudge was also worn, I took a different approach and reamed the hole round again and made a new oversized pin from hex bar.

Bryan


1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
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...the rear brake rod was worn where it had been rubbing on the brake compensator housing cap. A replacement rod was therefore made from 1/4" dia. stainless bar. New nuts and rear spring were fitted. The compensator housing parts were stripped of paint cleaned, buffed and cold blued. The compensator spring was serviceable so was cleaned, greased and refitted.

For additional security - and safety - I fitted a half nut to lock the compensator spring nut before peening the end of the rod to ensure it stays on.

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1937 Rudge Ulster (project)
1946 Velocette MSS
1955 Triton
1959 Velocette Venom
1966 Triumph T120
4 members like this: George Kaplan, chaterlea25, kommando, Magnetoman
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