Alfred’s Motorcycle Workshop

In a recent visit to Munich an aircraft engineer and manager of a major maintenance facility saw the images of my motorcycles on my laptop. He asked if I was interested in seeing his “collection.”

I will let him tell you the story of his bikes.

My blue Moto Guzzi is a California 1100i, from 1996. Except from beefing up the saddle for my weight, the installation of the two sidelights, and the installation of a modified and high quality camshaft from HMB Guzzi (great investment, worth every penny) which adds 9 horsepower and is built for eternity, the bike is absolutely stock.

However it went through a thorough inspection and fine tuning lately, including manufacturing of bronze bushings to minimize slack in the gear change mechanism and the foot brake lever.

The Enfield is a Royal Enfield built 1995 in India. The mods on this one are a little bit more extensive.

Cylinder head gas flowed, all dimensions checked, milled down to increase the compression ratio (now 8.9:1) and to allow the head to be installed without head gasket, valve springs changed to a more durable and lighter spec, cylinder head and cylinder bored and honed out to accommodate a larger piston from a FIAT automobile giving about 540 ccm displacement and eliminating oil consumption.

I then installed larger valves and European spec hardened valve seats, reworked and lightened the rocker arm, and polished all parts to reduce stress from nicks and dents still left from the manufacturing process.

I modified the original ignition system by changing the original bearings to roller bearings (part bought by EGLI in Switzerland.) Other modifications include: installation of a rev counter, improvement of front brakes by proper adjustment and use of softer brake linings. I also installed a shorter (and louder) exhaust system.

Front engine mounting plates were replaced by self manufactured stainless steel items. I changed the gearbox ratios of the first three gears, blueprinted all dimensions and reworked to ensure minimal wear and improved function, as well as changing bearings and seals to enable the use of modern gearbox oils rather than grease for basic lubrication.

Improved clutch by installation of different bearings, springs, and pressure plate reworked to reposition the location of the springs to improve friction as well as harder springs installed. To enable increased flow the carburettor was rebored to increase all internal fuel passages to 3.5 mm, the carb re-jetted to enrich mixture, and the fuel tank cock replaced. All this worked to increase fuel flow to the carburetor. After being quite a while unhappy with the marginal results of my carburettor modifications this made me smile again.

Installation of a high flow oil pressure pump and oil return pump (available from Hitchcocks in England)and modification of the engine air intake and air filter to allow better breathing were two more satisfying modifications.

To change and modernize the basic look I installed a Hella taillight and installed Hella handlebar blinkers called “Ochsenaugen” (bulls-eyes) which are both very typical fifties.

Additionally I installed a British made Enfield aftermarket single racing seat (not that I really would need a racing seat, but…)

Finishing touches include reworking of the electrics to fit into the LH tool box, installation of an improved H4 headlight bulb, installation of slimmer tank kneepads and lots and lots of cleaning, polishing, fiddling, and time wasting here and there.

The result are about 36 to 37 horsepower, and usually!!!! the engine starts at the first kick.

In the moment I have the red and beige 1000 cc Moto Guzzi California on my lift. As that still has carburettors I am just wondering whether I should do some “minor” improvements ……humm?

Alfred’s Workshop

For all images of Alfred’s workshop visit Travelographer.

Alfred’s Munich Motorbikes

About John S Goulet

Air Transport Pilot, consultant, writer, blogger and photographer with 40 years in Professional Aviation.
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