Friday, January 12, 2007

Original Crank

To replace or not to replace -- that is the question. Because the price to replace the original crank with a MeCur repro was a bit cheaper than fully restoring our original crank we opted to replace. Furthermore, there was the potential that the original crank would not be a good mechanical investment in the long-haul. The top photo is the outside and the bottom photo is the inside. The photos are AFTER the crank was cleaned up. It was a rust rock.

We gave Christopher the crank and he is restoring, balancing, and trueing it. If you are in need of an original crank you can contact him (his contact info can be found in the navigation bar under Moto-Rapido).

It was a major pain in the butt to find a replacement crank. It was a timing issue. Repro cranks were not being produced. I called over a dozen shops and I waited for four months before Danell, from Scooter Parts Direct, tipped me off to Garner Classic Scooters. I called Garner and lucked out. It cost me $165 and had been on his shelf for years. Christopher informed me that there was some minimal surface rust which he removed with some extremely fine steel wool and oil.

Restoration: Engine Progress

This post is more of a sneak peak than anything else. The engine will be sealed up this weekend. I am not going to go into detail about all that's been done with the motor in this post; rather I will save it for the "unvailing" of the engine when it is 100% complete. Christopher Markley is a "must keep" mechanic. He has done a great job and has always come to us with solutions accompanying any problems he has come across -- nothing worse that someone who comes and just reports the problems.

Shroud and flywheel covers are powder coated with to look similar to stock as well as look pretty through the engine cowl "grill".

Without a doubt, Christopher's attention to detail did not stop with the internals of the engine. He continued to add little subtle finishing details on the externals of the engine using a "mock chrome" powder coat finish.

Restoration: Kickstand

All in all our kickstand was in decent shape. Originally it was rusted, slightly pitted, and bent -- so that the legs were not paralled. As I said in an earlier post my computer hard drive died and lost 90% of all the original photos I had of the bike; therefore I can not provide you with a "before" photo. It was sandblasted with body and treated with PPG metal cleaner and conditioner, which all sat for over a year in my very dry basement. None of the parts were ever touched by bare hands after sandblasting, even with the PPG product protecting them.

I hired Christopher Markley to powder coat it and the mounting brackets the stock coat with the very slight matted look, as it likely came out with from the factory back in 1967. Before Christopher painted it he used his hydrolic press to bend the kickstand back in place. Pictured above is the finished product at Moto Rapido, Christopher Markley's shop.

Now for the discussion of purity, we know that powder coating was not available until the 1970s I believe (do NOT quote me) and therefore the restoration of this kickstand is inaccurate to what the manufacturer produced. My stance on this restoration is that powdercoating can take a decent beating and this scooter, which is midly customed, will be riden and enjoyed. It is important to me that the bike continues to look good and hold up as it being enjoyed. I believe that the powder coat is the perfect solution, because it will still look "stock", but be able to withstand pebbles and rocks hitting it as the bike is ridden.