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Friday, December 29, 2006


As you can see Gordon's all 'Naked' - but at least he's on his wheels at last!
Now comes the time consuming process of building a race bike; there are several major hurdles to overcome - but with lots of luck, and some serious work, I'll be on him for some Spanish testing in February!
Gordon and I are borrowing Simon's van (again) and nipping off to Uncle Peter Day's in Cambridge next week; where hopefully he will let me help (or hinder) him to make so new body bits. Sub frame, footrests, oil tank and try and modify the swinging arm to allow the fitment of Gordon's new rear shock absorber.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Santa Claus

Well, you wouldn't believe it, but Santa has called today with some presents for Gordon.
Steve and Sarah Jordan from Jordan M/Cs have sent what looks like a set of forks to me!
Oh, and uncle Phil from 'Dunlop' thought some new shiny boots would look just the job.
Then the Auto Restorers 'Frost' gave me a parcel for Gordon, full of 'goodies' to start his season off just right.
"It must be nice to have special friends like these" I told Gordon!

Friday, December 22, 2006

In the frame...

Just before I started Gordon's re-build I compared his frame to another 'special' frame I have.
This one is really 'top shelf' stuff; it's another project that I've had on the back burner for a while.
It would suit a KTM or BMW motor having the chain on the right side.
The main differences are the weight and the steering head angle. The head stock and swinging arm pivot points are machined from billet alloy not cast, not to mention that Gordon is about 3 kg heavier and £20k cheaper!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

That'll be the Day - Peter Day to be precise.

The swinging arm pivot spacer was very badly corroded to the point that I had to replace it, however, the budget said "NO".
But after a phone call to Peter Day he offered to machine Gordon a new one.
What a star, he turned it round in a matter of days.
Now I can start the re-build and with lots of luck get him back on his wheels before Christmas.....

Monday, December 18, 2006

Shaving and saving!

Before I sprayed the frame and swinging arm in lacquer I sawed off as many unwanted lugs, clips and assorted bits as possible. Mainly to tidy up the frame making cleaning easier, looking at the mess on the floor of the garage I collected as many of the bits as possible and adding a bit for filing/swarf it added up to approximately 200g in weight! Yes I know I probably lost more weight in sweat doing the job but all these little bits of weight add up.
I'm looking forward to weighing Gordon and see what he will end up at.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Wheely good start with an excellent paint finish.

I'm really pleased on how the wheels have turned out - they're great; and the frame and swing arm are lacquered now - top job this weekend!

The products I bought from www.frost.co.uk have done the job brilliantly.

However, I am still looking for a motor to borrow so I can start the rebuild whilst Gordon is having Christmas at his Uncle Martins.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Gordon's going to get a 'make over'

I've been looking for a paint product to use on Gordon's frame and swinging arm, I wanted to try and keep the natural finish that got after I had them shot blasted at Guysons the other week.
A clear laquer that would protect them but not add too much weight, plus I wanted the wheels satin black (easy to keep clean...Hee Hee).
I found a company called Frost, they specalise in vehicle restoration and associated products.
After a phone call and some sound advice I have found just the right paint for the job!

I want to get the wheels, frame and swinging arm done this weekend ready for the re-build next week (with luck).
Got the wheels warming up on the front room radiator as I type - optimum temperature and all that - the Missus ain't too happy though...

Tuesday, December 12, 2006


I knew Gordon had done 23,000 miles and expected a certain amount of seized bolts, worn out bearings etc.

I naively thought "they won't be that much to replace" - Wrong! The bearing at the bottom of the shock was £36 plus vat, swinging arm spacer £54 plus vat..... and so on.
It's begining to look like I'll be busy on a lathe turning down new spacers etc.
Next job is painting the wheels and going to get the engine and forks back from Gordon's "special friends" where they have been tuned and fettled.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Just got a letter from Slipstream..

Hi Mike,
Just wanted to let you know Gordon is doing well and is coping without his other bodyparts, he was a little upset when you left, as all kids do when they first go to school. Well since you've been away Gordon and Martin have bonded and a great friendship has blossomed, I think we will all miss him when he's gone. He's always messing around and he makes us laugh all the time, he's really happy now he's found a new family and we're all taking good care of him. The operation will take place soon and he will of course be tranquilised before we give him a heart transplant. Here's Martin and Gordon yesterday, Martin won't put him down for 5 minutes, trying to get any work done around here is a nightmare! Well better go I can hear everyone freaking, must mean Gordon's done another number two over the work-bench, muggings here has to go and clean it up….

Mark - Slipstream Tuning

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

More wining and designing...

Getting desperate now to get weight off Gordon without spending any more money.
I've bought some files and drill bits so I'm going to see just what I can do - within reason and budget.

The wine helps me think less clearly - it's got to help!

Had a quick saw and file with the frame over the weekend and then weighed what I managed to take off - removing just some lugs and lumps I managed to save 600g! The rear caliper mounting plate is quite heavy so I'll be interested to see how much I can save here. The rear disc is also heavy so that's going to receive the 'big drill' method too!

The motor should be ready mid December with luck then I can start the build for real. Long term friend Peter Day has offered to spend some time with me making various components (sub frame, battery box, oil tank etc) at his workshop as soon as Gordon's back up and on his wheels.

Monday, December 04, 2006

More bits and pieces...

Most of the components have now been bead blasted, courtesy of Tim at Guyson; once Marc had explained stuff, they let me have the use of their demonstration room and all it's facilities.
So as soon as I get the rear suspension linkage seals and bearings I can start the rebuild.
The next thing I need to work out is the wiring loom, I just CAN'T wait.....Not!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Sneaked in from the garage...

After a couple of hours this afternoon at the Guyson factory in Skipton, Gordon is now even allowed in the house.
The frame and swinging arm were a bit scabby to say the least, and there was no way of tarting him up without him looking scruffy - so it was 'down to the metal' to start with.

I was hoping that if the finish was smooth enough I would be able leave him unpainted; however, the blasting did it's job, taking all the paint and debris away but has left the surface a little rough - thinking about it - I'm going to paint him again.

Not sure what colour yet, any ideas? Anyone got any tartan paint?