Friday, January 11, 2013

Photo Op

I managed to get into the darkroom the other night and print up some old negatives. This is brother John hanging off the 1938 Elgin that I used to ride back and forth to work at the welding shop. I'm not sure when this was taken but judging from the baby seat, early 70's.  I got a couple of other prints knocked out as well - all from old negatives. I'm going to try and get another night of printing under my belt before I have to start back to work next week. I want to pick a couple from my Italy trip, suitable for framing, as they say.

I received a question about the book that prompted the last post. Well, here it is. It's a reprint from 1906 and if you look closely, the frame is not too far off of that of the Elgin above. The book calls for 28" wheels with balloon tires mounted in a frame predominately made from 1-1/8" tubing. The plans call for castings at the frame intersections, similar to how Harley made their frames for years but nice fillet brazed joints would look good and would be plenty strong. That's how Rickman made their motorcycle frames, Reynard made their Formula Ford chassis and Elgin made their bicycles. Frame construction takes up the first 46 pages of the book - everything is completely detailed. The remainder of the book is dedicated to making the engine, including the carb and the magneto. A guy with a welder, lathe and a milling machine could do this. What the hell? The book is from 100 years ago. If they did it then, no reason it can't be done now. And there in lies the problem, at least for me. Just think how much fun it would be to have one of these rigs that you built yourself. I'll continue to just say no. My copy of the book came from Lindsay but Lindsay is not taking any more orders. Apparently he was swamped at Christmas and just put the lid on everything. So even though you can't order one through him I did a search on eBay and a couple of the books popped up. I saw a couple of paperbacks for less than ten bucks if you want to try your hand at building a motor bicycle. And I wish you would. I'd like to see one of these finished up and running. (Edit #2: book can be found for free here)

Photo From Here
What you'd end up with would be a single cylinder version of this. (I snuck this in after the original post)

The weather's been unseasonably warm the last few days so I've been hitting it pretty hard out in the shop and the barn. It's a good thing because I got a phone call from my boss at the college and he added another class to my schedule. With that and the lab tech gig, I'm going to be dangerously close to working full time this semester. That's not exactly how I pictured retirement but it's not like I'm working hard at that place. That's just going to make it a little harder to get my projects finished in a timely fashion. Nothing new with that, however.

I'm hoping the time I'm spending now on my cleaning and organizing will pay dividends in time and frustration saved later on down the road. Since I'm working on the VW in the new barn and the 900 in my shop, I've been spending a lot of time chasing tools from one place to the other. I bought another set of Metric end wrenches to leave with the VW and I put together a tool box with a few screwdrivers, a hammer, etc. so I would have most everything I needed handy. 

I still need to make a few more holders for TIG/gas welding filler rods. I've got a couple grades of both carbon and stainless steel, a couple types of aluminum, and magnesium and brass. Another three should do me nicely. I moved all of my body and fender tools so they'd be close at hand and while I was at it, polished and oiled them. I still haven't got the trolley beam installed in the new barn yet but I did get the wall mount for the one end put up yesterday. So not much to show on the blog but take my word for it, lots of forward movement these days. 

Looks like one or two more warm days on tap before it turns cold. I'll try to make the best of it. You do the same.


dorkpunch said...

Awesome, thanks for the info! Got a snow day today, guess I'll have to see if I can find a copy for myself!

Shop Teacher Bob said...

No problem, buddy. Happy to do it.

Enjoy your snow day - it's 50 here this morning. Global weirding.

dorkpunch said...

I managed to find a free copy of it in .pdf form on the California Digital library! Here's a link:

Shop Teacher Bob said...

Good deal - nothing better than that. I put a link into the post. Thanks.