Author Topic: First AVL ownership/build... tech questions...  (Read 6472 times)

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ringoism

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Reply #45 on: April 22, 2018, 10:34:01 am
....a recovering Himalaya Basher.

Recovering, not quite recovered, but on the road... to fuller improvements and inevitably, additional abuses. 

For your viewing pleasure, a few pics taken here locally today, attached down below:

Looks better, turns better, stops better, runs better, and is more comfy besides.  Still a raw, rude, crude old thing of course, but pretty tolerable. 

Got lightly rear-ended a few days back by a car... smashing the std. Bullet taillight (which I always loathed) and bending the heavy number plate - fortunately not the mudguard.  So put in a new aftermarket light that probably weighs a hundred grams vs. maybe a kilo for the original (every bit helps).

Caught up in other work so just riding it for now.  200km's done thus far.  Rings must be seating, because leakdown is minimal and getting the engine to where I need to for kicking is becoming tougher.  Looking for a couple of missing decompressor parts...

Otherwise hoping above all that the crank will hold up.  If all's well, I could probably be riding this for a long time. 

-Eric


tooseevee

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Reply #46 on: April 22, 2018, 03:36:55 pm
   Interesting. So your dip stick was completely smooth? Must be an Indian thing.
   My Electra X dip stick is flattened on one side with cross hatching. Still a bit hard to read with fresh oil, but workable.
   

            Rub some chalk into the cross-hatching. Instant readableness :) ;)
'08 Black AVL Classic.Extensive ACEhead work/manifold/canister. TM32.Small open bottle/hot tube removed.Pertronix Coil. Fed mandates removed.Gr.TCI.Bobber seat.Battery in right side case. Decomp&all doodads removed.'30s Lucas taillight/7" visored headlight. Much blackout & wire/electrical upgrades.


DanB

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Reply #47 on: April 22, 2018, 07:13:32 pm
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For your viewing pleasure, a few pics taken here locally today, attached down below

Looks good to me!! Nice job and enjoy the ride.
Suppose I were an idiot, and suppose I were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself. ... Mark Twain
2006 AVL Electra


Adrian II

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Reply #48 on: April 23, 2018, 04:19:18 am
The decompressor on the AVL is a joke.

With a bit of work to the cylinder head you can fit the old-style decompressor off the iron barrel models. Works just fine.

https://forum.classicmotorworks.com/index.php/topic,25254.0.html

A.
Grumpy Brit still seeking 500 AVL Bullet perfection! Will let you know if I get anywhere near...


ringoism

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Reply #49 on: May 12, 2018, 02:09:05 pm
Re: the original AVL decompressor, I've actually seen a couple that work - at least they work as well as I'd need them to, just something to get me over the compression "hump" before kicking so it's rotated to where it needs to be...  That said I know the CI decomps work better and have seen one AVL here thus converted, but I just don't feel like cutting into my head or especially removing fins. 

Two questions:

1.  Was wondering what can be done about headlight aim on the original style (I guess 7") models without adjustments (I understood from another thread that the DOT mandated adjustability, forcing RE to switch to smaller reflector in the U.S. to allow space for the screws?).  Anyway, I'm continually blinding oncoming traffic on low-beam, and high beam does me no good, being pointed pretty much up in the trees (this is not related to my tyre-size change btw).  Seems a common issue here, but as a great many Indians don't mind blinding one another, and actually seeing where one is going is generally optional, not many complain and thus solutions are not exactly highly sought after / developed on this end. 

2.  Photos below show two different front shock types.  The second one is used on pretty much every Bullet model from long ago till the present.  The first is (curiously) utilized on the domestic-market "Desert Storm" (military-colored) 500CL (UCE) Classic, and so far as I can tell, on nothing else.  All the other 350/500CL models, as well Std. UCE Bullet, CI's, AVL, etc, etc, have the axle mounted forward for an inch or so of rake/offset.  Why the zero rake geometry was used on the D-S only is seriously mysterious, I don't remember the bike being marketed as having a revised suspension or unique intended use or anything.  Can anyone fill me in on what the export models are using, and what the observed / expected effects would be?  I'm assuming quicker turning (which I wouldn't mind actually)? 

thanks again in advance. 



Arizoni

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Reply #50 on: May 12, 2018, 04:58:06 pm
The "in line" style of front fork with the axle in line with the center of the tubes is not unusual here in the US. 

Several years ago, Royal Enfield addressed the handling problem we found with the C5 motorcycles by redesigning the front fork.  They also quit supplying the C5 with the smaller, 17 inch (I think) rear rim and changed it to a 19 inch size.

The older C5's handling problem was at high speeds above 60 mph the motorcycle became totally unstable, twitching and moving in unexpected directions.
Needless to say, that was dangerous.
The new "in line" front fork and rear wheel change (and possibly other frame changes that weren't noticeable.) seems to have fixed the problem.

This instability problem was never present on the Electra's which have a different frame than the C5 and the Desert Storm (which is mainly just a different paint job on a C5).
As I recall, the B5 also has a different frame and it never had a problem.

I guess the bottom line is the AVL's don't have a frame like the C5 (and Indian Bullet) so they don't have the instability problem.

By the way, that offset front axle design goes all the way back to 1946, when Royal Enfield first introduced its tubular front fork.
It is one of the characteristics of Royal Enfields that distinguishes them from the BSA, Triumph, and other British middle-weight motorcycles who used the "in line" designs.
Ah!  Traditions !!!
« Last Edit: May 12, 2018, 05:03:41 pm by Arizoni »
Jim
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mattsz

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Reply #51 on: May 12, 2018, 05:09:10 pm
The older C5's handling problem was at high speeds above 60 mph the motorcycle became totally unstable, twitching and moving in unexpected directions.
Needless to say, that was dangerous.
The new "in line" front fork and rear wheel change (and possibly other frame changes that weren't noticeable.) seems to have fixed the problem.

Interestingly: as I recall, not all of those early C5's demonstrated those stability issues... some never showed any signs of trouble.  Others were very problematic.  No surprise there, I guess...


ringoism

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Reply #52 on: May 13, 2018, 11:49:17 am
Photo caption: "Why I never have high speed stability issues"... or, "What roads were like when the Bullet was originally conceived / built"; or "My current daily commute"

Well, they're working on "double-laning" the highway that leads up here but still not many straight stretches where 60mph is safe.  Indian consensus is that Bullets are best in every way around 50mph so handling complaints of the nature described would be rare. 

Wider/lower 18" rear and lower-profile 19" front tyres began with the C5 (I guess CL "Classic" here) around 2011, and all domestic RE models (exc. CGT maybe) use them now, partly for looks and partly maybe because it lightens the front wheel a bit and gives a bit better braking traction out back. 

I'd have thought the zero-offset fork would actually lead to quicker response/turning/"twitchiness?" (which I'd prefer up here) rather than being a solution for higher-speed issues.  Because it'd create a shorter wheelbase and something akin to a lesser castor angle I suppose?  Anyone ridden the two types side-by-side who'd be able to comment? 

And what of that headlight???


Adrian II

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Reply #53 on: May 13, 2018, 11:57:30 am
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And what of that headlight???

For purely cosmetic/personal preference reasons I replaced the casquette headlamp on my old Electra-X with an alloy top yoke and 50's style headlamp brackets from Hitchcocks's here in the UK. This also allowed for full headlamp adjustment, as an added bonus.

I think the answer in your situation would be to use the front end parts off a 2004(?) 350 AVL Thunderbird with the separate headlamp, brackets and top yoke for the screw-in fork stanchions, not the later plain type, plus whatever instrument bracket takes your fancy, as you only have a speedometer and no rev-counter to worry about. The instrument bracket off the old Superstar Bullet would do it.

This is the Electra-XS, only seen in the UK, but with a Thunderbird type front end.



A.
Grumpy Brit still seeking 500 AVL Bullet perfection! Will let you know if I get anywhere near...


heloego

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Reply #54 on: May 14, 2018, 07:40:19 am
Buried somwhere in this forum is a post or 2 or 3 about headlights.IIRC the 7" lamp is available bias toward the left or right, depending on its intended country of destination. IOW which lane is correct for your country, so it aims a bit toward the side of the road, rather than the oncoming traffic.
Is it possible you have an incorrect lamp installed?
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Adrian II

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Reply #55 on: May 14, 2018, 09:05:02 am
If I remember correctly India drives on the left, the same as the UK. If it's a home market bike it should have the correct low or dipped beam which should deflect to the left, but if there's insufficient vertical adjustment to adjust the beam for height, i.e. lower it, it will STILL be a nuisance and possible danger to oncoming road users at night, whether or not it's the correct part.

A.

A.
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ringoism

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Reply #56 on: March 16, 2019, 12:38:05 pm
Wow, it's been ages since I've been around here / posted anything...

The Machismo's fresh engine got pretty well broken-in over the course of last year; Sometime in Autumn I finally had looked into the starter problem and found it was only the solenoid, which costs about $5 here in India.

Later loaned it to a friend whose 500 Classic (C5?) was in for its own rebuild in the midst of some labor/ management upheaval at the local RE showroom... so it ended up being with him a month or two.  He gave it back one evening, quite impressed with its power/smoothness, but two issues had come up:  1.  wouldn't upshift properly.  He'd thought it was a clutch-related issue and the dummies at the showroom had fooled with it a long while, putting a new cable, adjusting / readjusting, etc.  To me it didn't feel like anything a clutch would do, so took off the gearbox side cover and finally found that the self-locking nut on the end of the countershaft had come loose, allowing the shaft to move axially... tightened up (with Locktite), and all's well. 

Secondly, on my friend's watch it had just started this thing of the engine dying whenever the headlamp was switched on.  Ever since I'd bought it it had occasionally blown its fuse (the main one, there's another up under the seat but not sure what if anything it does), and once when I'd run out of spares I "temporarily" direct-wired it... yeah, not a great idea and though it took two months for it to finally happen, I suppose the raging fire in the left sidebox one dark night was predictable.

That was in December and we were away for the remainder of the winter so got back to it yesterday.  Damage not too extensive, did a bit of re-wiring, also re-locating the starter solenoid so I could reclaim the left sidebox for its original intended (or other) use.

That done, got thinking of the right sidebox, which the big air-filter has taken over in later models.  This Indian AVL has lot of convoluted / leak-prone plumbing between it and the carb besides, and I thought it best to just be rid of all of it. 

And while I'm going to that much trouble, may as well swap in the 32mm carb, too.     

Reason I hadn't done that already is that:

1.  The carb was a salvaged piece from a 220cc Indian bike... figured re-jetting/setup was going to consume a lot of time.

2.  It is one of the few electric-choke bikes in India, though the original manual choke plunger is not very ideally located, I really wanted to keep things simple as possible.

3.  It already ran pretty well with the 28mm and gave great fuel mileage, so on of those "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" things. 

Happily / surprisingly, it started right up without the choke (late winter here), idles fine, and seems to run pretty well across the board, plenty responsive for me - so it seems fine-tuning will not be too painful.   

Real-world performance and economy will have to be gauged as time goes on, but I can't imagine but that the former wouldn't be better... the elimination of all that (convoluted) plumbing alone would have to make some positive difference, even without the bigger carb.   

Conversion was painless - throttle cable is on opposite side but same length / adjuster fits the new carb.  Same fuel line works too.  I modded a manifold from a (223cc) Indian Honda.  Could've used a UCE500 piece too, but this one provides more space for the bigger carb/filter as it's angled outward slightly.  Air filter's paper, possibly a little more flow area than OE, but might try and find a foam one for it.  Fitted to carb with a trimmed junkyard piece of radiator hose.  Fab'd the stainless steel shield over it - mainly to keep rainwater off the paper element, as this bike gets parked outside most of the time. 

If I'd known it was gonna be this easy, I'd have done it long ago. 

If I end up needing a functional choke will probably go with the electric setup / handlebar-mounted switch, which in truth would be a little better than groping around behind the fuel petcock all the time.  The electric start seems to make the whole process of getting it going a lot more flexible / forgiving. 

Anyway, happy to have it running again and running well, and also to have a lot more on-board storage space.  Gonna put together a tool/spares kit for one side and keep First-Aid / and maybe a pack of biscuits in the other... :-)

-Eric
« Last Edit: March 16, 2019, 01:00:59 pm by ringoism »


ringoism

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Reply #57 on: March 17, 2019, 03:45:58 am
Empty toolboxes...

Left side has only the main fuse and the lead for the brake switch... which totally fried in the aforementioned side-box fire...

Right box has rat-sized holes leftover from the air-filter function - so not going to be able to leave my emergency biscuits in there...

I was a bit bothered when I saw that the Classics (C5) had a fake air-filter cover on the right... aesthetically spot-on, but... faux. 

In the Machismo's case, nothing "wrong" with putting electrical components or air filters in the boxes, but I figure if I can keep a reasonable stock of essential tools/spares/first-aid/meds/etc in there, it frees me from having to pack up / secure such stuff up elsewhere on the bike before taking off on medium/long-range trips. 

Only downside is that I don't get the potentially torque-enhancing stack-length in the intake plumbing that I'd have liked to experiment with.  That may amply compensated for by having everything a lot freer-flowing. 

-Eric
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 03:54:44 am by ringoism »


ringoism

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Reply #58 on: March 20, 2019, 05:45:40 am
Factory tool kit is missing and probably wasn't adequate anyway...

So any travelers/tourers who can advise re: the "essential" tool kit for an Electra (Machismo)?  Like to travel light but then again heading to very remote places several hundred km's from home potentially.

My old Kawasaki (KH125 smoker) could be stripped bare and engine completely opened with a shockingly small set; substantial fastener standardization meant mainly 10/12/14mm and one or two 8, 17, 19 (if pulling the flywheel).  And the sparkplug of course.  Wheel removal / chain adj. were managed with the incredible Knipex Cobra pliers (okay, sue me!).  So four or five combi wrenches and as many 3/8"-drive sockets with a little folding ratchet, and a screwdriver w/bit set (which fit inside the handle!), and I was good to go.   

But Enfields seem to use about every size under the sun, including a few leftover Whitworth in some choice spots... not to mention the special tools for pulling the clutch, etc.

It's obviously not going to be feasible roadside to split cases or dig too far into the gearbox, and I'm pretty in-tune with wear items like clutch, so assuming I'm not going too deep, what all is useful for basic adjustments / cable changes / tightening loosened stuff, etc?  I suppose I'd carry a spare stator / coil with me, though they're not supposed to be that failure-prone.  Can manage the carb easily enough.  Any realistic way to put together a compact kit for longer (500+km) tours on rough tracks?  As per previous post, it's all gotta fit in a side-box. 

Thus far figuring:

1) (the usual) Knipex, Leatherman Wave and Victorinox mini-Champ trio (with which I have managed an astonishing amount of work in a pinch);

2) the sparkplug tool (obviously); 

3) A few Allen(hex) keys - for the clutch housing / clutch cable-end cap, the stator, and (big one) for the steering head adjustment. 

4) Test-light / mini-meter will be there.

5) I've got my tube-patches, a little sparkplug-port adapter tyre inflator, and pair of shorty tyre-irons. 

6) Could get the special bit-set for the Wave or else an adapter so it'll take standard 1/4" screwdriver bits and 1/4' drive sockets, or else stick with the usual 3/8-drive.

7) I suppose something for the valve adjustments would be useful.

Trying to avoid drawing from my regular set, these will stay with the bike full-time, harder each time to forget things that way.   


So what am I missing (and what typically vibrates loose on these bikes)?  It's the bigger sizes that are heavy/space-consuming, of course, so looking for creative/efficient solutions for those (wherever the Knipex won't work!). 

The tour-company guy I bought it from always had a support vehicle along so compactness of kit wasn't an issue.  And most other Indians just take off without a care in the world, can't change a fuse much less a tyre or anything mechanical, they load the bikes in a truck and send it onwards/back to the nearest mechanic if anything "unexpected" happens. 

-Eric
« Last Edit: March 20, 2019, 05:54:05 am by ringoism »


tooseevee

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Reply #59 on: March 20, 2019, 07:01:40 am
But Enfields seem to use about every size under the sun, including a few leftover Whitworth in some choice spots... not to mention the special tools for pulling the clutch, etc.

-Eric

            I found that on my '08 Classic also. All three sizes were found and a few that no socket, box or open end seemed to fit perfectly. It's all just part of the Royal Enfield game :) :)

            You mentioned the dipstick elsewhere: I rub chalk into the cross-hatching on the dipstick. Makes it very easy to read. (Chalk for blackboards. Remember blackboards ???[/img] ).

             The AVL engines will blow out any excess oil. They have a hissy-fit if over-filled  :) ;)
'08 Black AVL Classic.Extensive ACEhead work/manifold/canister. TM32.Small open bottle/hot tube removed.Pertronix Coil. Fed mandates removed.Gr.TCI.Bobber seat.Battery in right side case. Decomp&all doodads removed.'30s Lucas taillight/7" visored headlight. Much blackout & wire/electrical upgrades.