4 days to go and I’m ready but it hasn’t been easy.

Speaking as a reformed pessimist, I’ve made good progress. The engine is running well following the re-build. There are no unusual noises, it doesn’t drip oil over the floor and more importantly, the blue cloud of exhaust smoke that followed me (and sometimes passed me) has gone.  So the exhaust valve seals are doing their job and I can be confident the engine internals are as good as I can get them.

But I had doubts about the oil pressure relief valve and in particular the pressure relief spring that had been over stretched. Few things will kill a good engine as quick as low oil pressure and nothing makes the engine leak oil like too much pressure. So after too much calculating and measuring, I fitted a new spring, attached a pressure gauge and was delighted to find 60 psi at the camshaft – perfect (I think).


And then, after a short ride I noticed the smell of petrol. It could have been a leaking gasket but no; the petrol tank had split on the underside.

Crack in LH side of tank.JPG

And then I realised I was legging it when pulling away uphill, like a 3 year old on a scooter, who’s just heard the ice cream van has pulled into the street. (those of my age will understand). No option but to reduce the teeth on the engine sprocket and no option other than to make one – old 18T sprocket for the hub and new 17T for the teeth – a cut and weld job that turned out well.

Race plates fitted and ready for action.


It even runs quite well and rides even better.

Now it’s off to Bologna for the start of Motogiro D’Italia 2018 and with luck, I may even make the end; riding that is and not in the back of the support van.

I’ll post my progress over the coming days – stay tuned.






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