Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The mother load: everything a mechanic needs to know about Guzzi Eldorado

This is a shout out for Gregory Bender, the awesome guy who created and maintained the most impressive and extensive collection of data about maintaining and restoring a Guzzi Eldorado (and others). Here is the entrance to Paradise
Thanks to Gregory I found the clearance numbers I was looking for for the connecting rods and the crankshaft and soon I will know if I need to replace the bearings. Fantastic.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Soda balsting and molasses baths

An old trick from hot rodders is to soak your metal/engine parts in a mix of 9 part water and 1 part molasses to take off the grit and the rust with little to no effort. Well it works indeed, the molasses bond with the rust releasing sulfuric acid and the parts come out clean. I have been soaking a few parts for a week now and I am amazed. The air box, for example, was dark red it was covered with so much rust. I just checked it today and it is almost metal gray, most of the rust was eaten away by the bath. Love it.
before soda blasting
after soda blasting. Still need some work but it is clean
Today I have also started soda blasting some of the engine parts like the push-rods and the heads. They just have crud and some surface rust so soda blasting works great. Here some before and after photos, enjoy. More soon, I just cracked the engine open, stay tuned!

this is the inside of the engine, I guess if you have spider web it is truly a barn find? Ugh. Poor thing!

Friday, March 21, 2014

The delivery

A few shots from the delivery. The so called crate I paid for was a joke, sigh. At least she is here now and the restoration can start.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

U-joint ready for reassembly

Here it is, ready for two new cross bearings...oh, right, need to order those ;-)

Update: parts came in. Here is a sneak peek at the first cross being installed. The fit is perfect and reinstall is a breeze compared to disassemble. It feels nice and tight, ready for thousands of miles of fun I hope!
and finally, the piece de resistance....fully rebuilt u-joint

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The trip starts, well, almost

I finally managed to book a trucking company. The seller and I agreed on him building a crate. A money saving measure that also optimizes the space needed to transport it all. However it seems that the non-standard dimensions turned away lots of trucking companies. Eventually I found a couple that are willing to load the crate on the back of their truck. Ms Elly should be on the road next week, the second week of March. Finger crossed!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Restoration starts: u-joint

Ms Elly is still in Florida but I managed to find a u-joint on eBay for her. The u-joint and a few more parts are the only critical parts missing for the project so I figure I'd get a head start. Once again eBay comes to the rescue, I found an old one for about $80 Vs. $330+ for a new one. Will it need to be rebuilt? You bet but that is the whole point, I have skills and I will make the time, what I lack is money since this is really a side-project and I already own a motorcycle and let's face it, nobody needs one, let alone two, it is a hobby :-)

I just took apart the first of two crosses of the u joint. Yep, it definitely needs replacing, look at some of those groves in the cross pins', wow. They are supposed to be smooth!

Will post updates once I make more progress on this....

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Who (what) is Ms Elly

Ms Elly is the nickname we gave to our 1972 Moto Guzzi Eldorado. My wife is from the south where it is common to use the suffix at all time and from there it was easy to go from Eldorado to Elly. Ms Elly it is.

Ms Elly is coming from Italy via Florida via North Hampshire via who knows? I bought her on ebay as a project bike in dozens of well organize pieces.
The gentleman I bough it from is a guzzi enthusiast himself.

Here is a preview of Ms Elly getting ready to travel to California.