What Did You Do With Your Commando Today?

Mart UK

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Yes, I know about XCP, but I have a cupboard full of ACF50. I've used it successfully for years, so I'm happy to run these stocks down first. The muc-off is to help me wash off the salt, before I reapply the ACF50.

It's a pain, but in winter I spend a couple of hours washing my bikes down, blow drying and reapplying corrosion protection after each ride. They get to spring without corrosion. But previous bikes have always been less than a few years old. Hope the Norton copes as well. (My driveway is pretty clean too!)
 
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The old saying " If it ain't broke , don't fuck with it " likely works , however ... a ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and after 22 years i have put the bike up on the lift to replace the fully functional spragg bearing with the AliExpress 18 roller bearing ... I am also taking apart the gearbox ( in the bike ) to replace all bearings and seals ... A new learning experience for me as i have never been into the gearbox other than to replace the pawl and that was 21 years ago .. For both these jobs it is all about prevention .. The starter works great and the gearbox couldn't shift any smoother but i know that if i don't ................... this story will be written around July 2022 about a gearbox that shredded itself at speed ..
Riding is over for this year ... snow arrived sunday night ..

Cheers
I'm not pulling the battery out until around X-mas time.
 

Starvingphotog

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The old saying " If it ain't broke , don't fuck with it " likely works , however ... a ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and after 22 years i have put the bike up on the lift to replace the fully functional spragg bearing with the AliExpress 18 roller bearing ... I am also taking apart the gearbox ( in the bike ) to replace all bearings and seals ... A new learning experience for me as i have never been into the gearbox other than to replace the pawl and that was 21 years ago .. For both these jobs it is all about prevention .. The starter works great and the gearbox couldn't shift any smoother but i know that if i don't ................... this story will be written around July 2022 about a gearbox that shredded itself at speed ..
Riding is over for this year ... snow arrived sunday night ..

Cheers
Ron, this is pretty inspirational. I should probably do the same thing with my Combat. I have no idea what's going on in the trans. I haven't ridden it yet since getting it in January and it sitting in my office till today. I plan to ride it in the spring and see how it runs. The engine fires and purrs nicely - I started it up in the office with the porch door and side window open. Ran nicely. Never did get to get it on the road quite yet. As it's sitting in my office still I could do like you and strip the gearbox and do some preventative maintenance since I'm thinking that it's all original in the gearbox. But, I'm very nervous. I didn't know that this type of service could be done with the gearbox still on the bike intact. Good to know. Maybe this would be a good learning experience for me too over the winter.

By the way, The Hip are my favorite Canadian band. I wish I would have been there to see Gordie and the fellas for their last concert.

Cheers,
Rob
 

BERT

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The Tragically Hip's last concert was live broadcast on CBC television so it may be available to view somehow. I saw it and it was totally awesome.
 

Starvingphotog

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The Tragically Hip's last concert was live broadcast on CBC television so it may be available to view somehow. I saw it and it was totally awesome.
yeah, I saw it as well online. First time I saw the band was back in '92 when I was first year at Western in London. They played on the "Hill" and they were just youngins like me. Did you guys see the movie One Week yet? If not, you've got to get it and watch it. It's a Canadian film about a guy road tripping across Canada on a Norton, and Gord makes a cameo. I won't tell you when, but you'll know.
 
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yeah, I saw it as well online. First time I saw the band was back in '92 when I was first year at Western in London. They played on the "Hill" and they were just youngins like me. Did you guys see the movie One Week yet? If not, you've got to get it and watch it. It's a Canadian film about a guy road tripping across Canada on a Norton, and Gord makes a cameo. I won't tell you when, but you'll know.
I went to that show.
Awesome.
 

baz

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Yes, I know about XCP, but I have a cupboard full of ACF50. I've used it successfully for years, so I'm happy to run these stocks down first. The muc-off is to help me wash off the salt, before I reapply the ACF50.

It's a pain, but in winter I spend a couple of hours washing my bikes down, blow drying and reapplying corrosion protection after each ride. They get to spring without corrosion. But previous bikes have always been less than a few years old. Hope the Norton copes as well. (My driveway is pretty clean too!)
I stopped riding right through the winter two years ago
I think the salt/grit they use on the roads is far worse than it ever was
I made the mistake of riding on a wet gritted road and leaving my commando under cover over night when I got back
A few days later I was shocked how bad it was !
I put the bike on my ramp and I could see individual chunks of salt stuck on the engine cases
It took forever to clean it
 

Mart UK

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I stopped riding right through the winter two years ago
I think the salt/grit they use on the roads is far worse than it ever was
I made the mistake of riding on a wet gritted road and leaving my commando under cover over night when I got back
A few days later I was shocked how bad it was !
I put the bike on my ramp and I could see individual chunks of salt stuck on the engine cases
It took forever to clean it
Yes, there's a timing sweet spot. The engine cases need to cool, so the water doesn't dry off too quickly and react with the salt. But you can't leave it to the next day.
 
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Fitted new mirrors!! Never a fan of the chrome 'bunting' Norton chose to hang on the front of the Mk3's. Too 'Heath Robinson' IMHO, with those clamped on vespa pennants sliding up and down spindly chrome stems. No sense of design or integration at all..... So, enter Bumm, a quick pass with a die to get rid of those nasty metric threads and voila, I'll never look back!
(Oh yes you will :) )

 

Mart UK

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I had bar end mirrors on mine. 1st ride, the left one was loose and fell off. I looked back in anger :eek:
 
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The replacement of the E start sprag bearing and layshaft bearing has started .. Pretty routine although the crankshaft sprocket felt like it was welded on .. A wise choice to take a look as i quickly noticed two issues that need immediate attention .. #1 the original 14 sprag bearing was broken through on the outer cage in two places .. #2 and more serious , the upper plunger for triplex tension was seized in the near fully compressed position leaving the chain loose at the top . It took quite a bit to eventually remove the plunger from the housing . Lots of WD40 and rotating in the housing .. When it finally came out i noticed that by rotating the plunger it had scored the inside of the housing . Looks like rifling in a barrel . Not sure how much this will affect the operation .. Approximately 1/2" of spring was missing and ground into tiny pieces. The plunger from the good side seems to slide up and down easily in the scored side of the housing so hopefully all will be well . I will be putting in new parts both sides . Primary parts all through the parts washer, racked and dried .. Now , on to the gearbox

Cheers
 

grandpaul

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Very little Nortoning these days. I relocated the Dreer bike to a corner of the hanger and covered it to keep it from getting dirty/dusty.

Sad state of affairs with house addition and ranch prep for a major camp-out; not much riding...

...and ZERO wrenching for quite some time...
 
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Stripped down gearbox today ( in the bike ) with plans to change the layshaft bearing .. Much to my surprise , it has been replaced with a roller bearing. Drive sprocket bearing is good as well .. Some wear on a few of the small bushings so they will be replaced along with all seals . Hole for drain plug is heli-coiled ...Bonus Looks like i will be able to get the Mrs . a xmas gift after all .:)
 
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The replacement of the E start sprag bearing and layshaft bearing has started .. Pretty routine although the crankshaft sprocket felt like it was welded on .. A wise choice to take a look as i quickly noticed two issues that need immediate attention .. #1 the original 14 sprag bearing was broken through on the outer cage in two places .. #2 and more serious , the upper plunger for triplex tension was seized in the near fully compressed position leaving the chain loose at the top . It took quite a bit to eventually remove the plunger from the housing . Lots of WD40 and rotating in the housing .. When it finally came out i noticed that by rotating the plunger it had scored the inside of the housing . Looks like rifling in a barrel . Not sure how much this will affect the operation .. Approximately 1/2" of spring was missing and ground into tiny pieces. The plunger from the good side seems to slide up and down easily in the scored side of the housing so hopefully all will be well . I will be putting in new parts both sides . Primary parts all through the parts washer, racked and dried .. Now , on to the gearbox

Cheers
It's always the top/ upper plunger that seizes or sticks tight. Not the lower. Maybe some brilliant engineer can address that.
 

Mart UK

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I thought I'd do 3,000 miles on my Commando by Christmas. I was 100 short, which I remedied yesterday :D.

I've finally sorted my slight stutter in low gears and sooty plugs. I opened the air pilot screw just over 1/4 turn more than a smooth / highest revs point at idle. Bike ran great and plugs are light brown, FWIW. Hopefully, that will continue next year and puts to bed my concern I might have been burning some oil. Still no oil leaks.... Over the moon!

At the moment, only some minor things to investigate, suggestions / experiences welcome:
- my forks can some times stick down when the bike's on the sidestand, bars turned to the left. Loosening the axle clamp bolts and pumping the bars a few times, hasn't remedied it. Forks move smoothly otherwise.
- I have a crack on my left hand controls housing (on the handlebars). These seem to be unobtainium for a Mk3.
- a 2 second delay before the indicators start flashing.
 
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