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Author Topic: 1953 Indian Chief Restoration  (Read 684 times)
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Kosmic
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« on: December 16, 2017, 09:34:50 PM »

Here is my 1953 Indian Chief 80 cu. in. Roadmaster, which is one of the very last of the 250 produced by the Springfield, Mass. factory in their final year of production.


The main bearing races were line-honed to the precise final tolerances required for the flywheel shafts.
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dW-L_PxawYU" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dW-L_PxawYU</a>










The connecting rod big ends honed to final size.


Crank pin being installed.


The flywheels were trued to within .005


The rods were checked for straightness, and they were perfect!


After broken cylinder head fins were welded and repaired, the heads were resurfaced.


The chassis is coming along, rebuilt forks and rear suspension.




Wheel alignment checked with a laser.




I've had to invest in some tools, which have been long overdue! They make many things possible!











« Last Edit: December 16, 2017, 10:13:33 PM by Kosmic » Logged

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13 Super Ténéré - 01 Buell S3 - 03 DRZ 400 - 1948 Indian Chief - 1924 Indian Chief - 1953 Indian Chief - BMW R100/7
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« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2017, 02:04:26 PM »

 
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« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2017, 03:40:00 PM »

42 years as a machinist allows me to say that there's some quality work going on here!
 clap clap clap clap clap clap clap clap clap
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Kosmic
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« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2017, 03:41:13 AM »

Thanks Metalcarver and Voltar, I hope to do you proud on this restoration. thumb
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« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2017, 11:46:27 AM »

We are always proud of our RDS Leader.

 
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« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2017, 03:21:18 AM »

I bow to the Master.... thumb

Ouiss, Sensei!

Oh, and Merry Christmas and a Happy Kwanza to you all as well...

Rally on,

Stovey
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« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2017, 02:31:25 AM »

Jes' sayin.....



Fer yer dotage.
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Kosmic
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« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2018, 04:10:05 PM »

Ok, I've bead blasted the major aluminum components (cylinder head, crankcases, primary and transmission cases) it turned out better than I expected.
Here is a comparison of the unblasted surface on the oil pump body.







The most labor intensive part of bead blasting is the cleaning of the blast media from every threaded hole or orifice.
Many hours spent spraying brake cleaner and running brushes with a drill motor through passageways, bushings, threaded holes, followed by intense scrubbing and washing of the parts.


A rough assembly of the major components, checking for a good fit.


I'll have to shim the transmission case mounts for a good fit to the crankcases, this could result in a broken case mount otherwise.


Taking apart the distributor drive gear and shaft, so I can fit a new bushing.


The oil pump gears are in poor condition, so new gears will be fitted.


More to come!
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« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2018, 05:41:30 PM »

 lurk
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Kosmic
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« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2018, 08:54:18 PM »

Here are the guts of the oil pump, with new gears.





This is the distributor drive shaft, which runs in a large steel bushing within the oil pump casting, the helical gear is pinned to the shaft and driven by the camshaft.


Having slipped the new steel bushing onto the shaft, I pressed the helical drive gear onto the generator drive shaft.
The steel bushing is a slip fit into the aluminum pump body and is secured with a set screw.


The final assembly of the oil pump gearbox and distributor drive shaft to the cast aluminum body was tricky.
The oil pump gears in the gearbox  were binding up when the screws holding the box cover were tightened.
After a taking the gearbox apart several times, I found a small metal shaving lodged between one of the gears and the shaft is was pressed on to. The shaving was keeping the gear from running true on the shaft. I also became an expert in installing small 1/8" diameter spring pins that replaced the rivets which held the gears to the shafts.
You gotta go slow and careful with this stuff, because these parts don't grow on trees! Plus your dealing with soft aluminum threads!


Voila! An oil pump and distributor fit for a king!
« Last Edit: January 05, 2018, 09:02:36 PM by Kosmic » Logged

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« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2018, 09:24:17 PM »

 thumb
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« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2018, 06:01:57 PM »

Can you say,   "mad skillz?"

 eek


 thumb

I yield to the Master, Kosmic!

Stovey
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« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2018, 06:13:28 PM »

Keep buzzing my lips and shifting and everything.
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Kosmic
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« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2018, 06:15:39 PM »

Thanks guys! I am glad someone other than me is enjoying the restoration. In the end, I'll print this thread as a pdf file and save it for posterity. thumb
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« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2018, 02:06:04 AM »

I am dry fitting the pistons, cylinders and heads and checking for clearance between the piston and the heads.
The cylinder bolt holes were full of sludge and carbon, so they are all clean and each head bolt goes in properly to 3/4" depth. I want to make sure the head gasket gets compressed properly. I'll shorten a couple head bolts a bit, because they bottom out in the cylinder.


The copper gaskets are .065 thick, which leaves .060 piston clearance (blue clay) .


The crankshaft end play is at .042, so I'll get that down to .015 - .030 with a new thrust washer on the flywheel drive side. Then I'll aim for .005 - .015 end play with the compensator sprocket installed.



The pistons have good clearance at .006 at the piston skirt, the pistons expand quite a bit, so they shouldn't be any tighter than .005.


Still a long way to go, but I'll get there!

« Last Edit: January 10, 2018, 02:12:06 AM by Kosmic » Logged

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« Reply #15 on: January 13, 2018, 02:05:57 PM »

Your are gonna wanna remove that blue tack on reassembly.

BTW- Blue tack is a wonderful product for the shop.  It can hold anything in place temporary.   I use it to hold wires and pins in place when I solder.  Holds decals and other stuff as well. 
https://www.amazon.com/Blu-Tack-060968-Reusable-Adhesive-75g/dp/B001FGLX72/
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« Reply #16 on: January 13, 2018, 06:10:45 PM »

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Kosmic
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« Reply #17 on: January 14, 2018, 02:53:39 AM »

I've been determining the end play in the camshafts, one is tight the other is loose. So I'll shave one bushing down, and shim the other.
I'm waiting for an order of crankshaft shims, camshaft shims, clutch basket shims, and assorted special nuts for the clutch and compensating sprocket.
I'll be lapping the valve seats and painting the cylinder barrels soon too.





I verified that my camshafts are the higher lift "Bonneville" cams which should give a bit more performance as the name implies!
They require an additional set of valve springs that fit inside of the standard valve springs.

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« Reply #18 on: January 14, 2018, 05:14:39 AM »

You've done this before.

Just sayin'.
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« Reply #19 on: January 14, 2018, 12:39:56 PM »

I wanna see!
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Kosmic
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« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2018, 07:59:42 PM »

The 53 Chief started life as a basket case, and the basket had no generator. I was debating whether to run an original Autolite 6 volt system or a modern generator which comes in both 6 volt and 12 volt. Finding this beautiful original Autolite on eBAY helped make the decision to run a stock unit. The bike will be more authentic with it and I can still upgrade to a solid state regulator which is externally an exact copy of the factory original regulator.
This is a sweet generator, no junk here!





My clutch hub is pretty nasty because of the rust which has eaten away at the splines where the clutch plates run, also the tapered hole where it mounts to the transmission main shaft is not good either. So, I found a new replacement, but its not quite as tall. I think I can use it though... I'm researching that.



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« Reply #21 on: February 02, 2018, 06:01:22 PM »

Progress has been slow, because I don't have an inventory of shims for the crankshaft, drive sprocket, clutch basket and transmission mainshaft. The endplay for one part impacts the endplay for the next part... and so on. While waiting for shims to arrive, I try to find other assemblies to work on.
So, here is the transmission cluster gear with a whopping three speeds. The indian transmission did not change much from 1916 to 1953, Harley Davidson was far more advanced than Indian in this regard!


The cluster gear installed in the transmission case:

 
Checking endplay on the transmission mainshaft, in order to get the shims to set it to .005 - .010 play.


Measuring shims that are used to align the clutch basket sprocket with the motor drive sprocket.


Using a straight edge to check the alignment of the clutch sprocket with the motor drive sprocket, these have to be within .010 of each other.


This is where it lies, until additional shims arrive!
In 1950 Indian increased the Chief motor displacement from 74 cubic inches to 80 ci, so they made the drive sprocket a spring loaded affair in order to smooth out the power pulses to the transmission.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 06:06:40 PM by Kosmic » Logged

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« Reply #22 on: February 03, 2018, 05:31:39 AM »

Cannonball Run next year?
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Kosmic
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« Reply #23 on: February 03, 2018, 11:57:55 AM »

Cannonball Run next year?
I have dreams of riding it to California to visit my Antique Motorcycle mentor, who did the motor machining work, which allowed this project to get off the ground!
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« Reply #24 on: February 03, 2018, 10:32:31 PM »

With all that really cool sheet metal on there, what colors?  Brown sides black center... IMHO
« Last Edit: February 03, 2018, 10:38:53 PM by Metalcarver » Logged
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« Reply #25 on: February 03, 2018, 10:40:58 PM »



Isn't Department W the same as Group W that Arlo was singing about?
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Kosmic
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« Reply #26 on: February 04, 2018, 12:44:49 AM »

With all that really cool sheet metal on there, what colors?  Brown sides black center... IMHO
Thank you for that cool advertisement! It is weird to think that Indian was going bankrupt and soon to be out of business, despite all the excitement over the 80 inch model. It was too little, too late for Indian. Harley came out with an overhead valve motor in 1936, and the Indian Chiefs had evolved little since the 1920s! But I actually like Indians more than Harleys because they were lighter and more nimble handling, and better looking.

Color wise, I am very partial to a solid colored bike, and the traditional Indian Red is a color that never gets tiring to look at.


But I may step out on a limb and go with some sort of coral color or this factory color "Seafoam Green"...
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« Reply #27 on: February 09, 2018, 02:25:05 AM »

It's beautiful!
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Kosmic
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« Reply #28 on: February 09, 2018, 06:46:04 PM »

It's beautiful!
If only it was that easy! There are so many moving parts to the project that I can get lost or forget something!

To set up the transmission main shaft endplay, I had to install thicker thrust washers. The washers needed a bevel cut on the inside diameter in order to clear a radiused edge on the shaft and fit squarely against the shaft splines. Good thing I have a carbide die grinding bit!





The thrust washer sits properly against the splines, the shaft uses two: one on the clutch side, the other on the drive side.


This is the washer in action!


The clutch basket must also be shimmed in order to line up with the motor drive sprocket. Shimming here does impact the main shaft endplay, so it is a juggling act to get good clutch basket alignment without introducing too much main shaft endplay. This is where it pays to have a large assortment of thrust washers in different thicknesses, which I don't!


I've got the main shaft endplay at .007, but I am going to increase it to .012 in for better clutch basket alignment.


I was able to get the flywheel end play to .006 with a new thrust washer behind the drive sprocket. This is good!


Having the motor in the frame with the countershaft sprocket and kicker arm installed allows me to work on mounting the chain guard and exhaust system.
The clearance between all three items (chain guard, kicker, exhaust) is really close and everything has to be just right in so these items do not clash against each other.



more to come...
« Last Edit: February 09, 2018, 06:52:51 PM by Kosmic » Logged

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« Reply #29 on: February 10, 2018, 04:16:24 PM »

 lurk
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