Oops – I did it again!

Couldn’t resist …. like one of those ugly puppies that just stands there with it’s sad eyes and yards of drool.

Would transpire that as soon as we started pulling the bike apart to check it over … that the engine is made up of all manner of types of the model. We did wonder why there were two sizes of carburettors to start with and so sought advice from the fella who sold us the bike who very kindly sold us some later K68 carbs as the 301’s were mullered anyhow and not the best design. …. strange how the bike ran so well….

Whilst awaiting the carbs the front wheel was stripped, new bearings and brake shoes and a bit of shed engineering to get the cable to sit in an adjuster that didn’t slide through the drum housing. Josh hit the electrics (all six wires) – but more to do on this …. when the sun actually shines and everything isn’t covered in snow …. It’s great to see some of the antique / agricultural technology on the bike …. like the cable on the handlebars to the headlight … that operates the high / low beam ….. brilliant.

Rear wheel checked and greased …. it was then that we realised that all the wheels (presumably on a side car too) are the same with drive splines in the hub …. make perfect sense really .

The K68s had horizontal bolt patterns and the 301’s vertical so a set of adapter plates were aquired …. however on putting the new ones on we saw that the cylinder heads also mismatched. Photos on a ‘Soviet steeds’ forum suggested that one cylinder is from an MT- 9 and one from a K650 – both having different valves and compression so swopping one or both was a no brainer….. this of course then rang alarm bells as to why the exhausts didn’t sit right …….. time for new exhausts.

New exhaust acquired – came in bare metal so treated to lashings of VHT paint and are now stored up awaiting the cylinder heads to arrive from Russia.

In the mean time the tank has been cleaned of 50 years of rust courtesy of some dodgy industrial strength chemicals (Thanks Heisenburg) and an internal coating of tank sealant. …. what to do next?

How’s about some panniers?? Shiny Givi jobbies wont do on this bike (with so much ‘Patina’) so onto ebay …. two used jerry cans for 17 quid posted, a couple of hinges, a clamp and some edging and hey presto a pannier. Not sure whether i’ll do two or just mount this one for now… who knows.

Got my “new / Old stock” cylinder heads from Russia today …. Wrapped in a thick layer of some orange grease and 50 year old grease proof paper. Now this is real shed therapy …. sitting for half a day with a toothbrush and some petrol cleaning orange scum reminiscent of six month old ear wax out from between the cooling fins.

Unfortunately whilst unwrapping one cylinder hear it became obvious that a lower fin had not survived the trip back from Russia … hardly surprising given the state of the box it arrived in.

Well after some weeks of Sh1t weather my boy and on seized the opportunity to take advantage of the sunshine and crack on with the project.

New heads on, torqued down properly (two of the bolts were finger tight when taking them off) both heads now have valve caps (none on before) and the valve gaps sorted. Oil in (after removing and cleaning the sump as below) and it seems to be staying there to avoid any further arguments over the pool of oil on the patio.

Carbs on, new fuel lines with filters (as the tank had to be cleaned and sealed) but I will need to get some new rubber hoses as these no longer marry up due to the new carbs. Exhaust on and treated the girl to a new set of rubber boots as the old Russian ones were a little tyred and pickled (see what I did there?) Bought some 4.00 instead of the 3.75’s which look great but were a bitch to get in the rear as you now have to rmove the nearside shock absorber so that you can wiggle the wheel back onto the dif. Looks awsome!

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