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VLXAFL-5 Build Series Part 8

Almost ready to Wire and Fire

By Bandit with photos by the Redhead and Weed

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 Hang on! My alignment issues through the driveline weren’t over. I even had an issue with the front wheel alignment. This tech may jump around some, but you'll get it.

At least the transmission was in place securely and I could Flex seal the oil tank mount and install the oil tank, run the oil lines, attach the oil filter mount, make a front chain guard, make a kickstand stop, find the pieces for a clutch throw-out bearing, make the proper length pushrod, order a clutch cable from Barnett and almost forget the code for clutch adjustment.


Regarding the alignment I thought I had it nailed until I bolted the Cycle Tech starter in place. The chain rubbed against the starter case. I reached out to Billy at Cycle Tech and asked if I could cake 3/16-inch off the case. He gave the go-ahead and I started to grind until I had a conversation with a construction worker in Deadwood. “Go see Todd at Jerry Greer’s Indian.”
I had to create a locking system since the sprocket was reversed.
I had to create a locking system since the sprocket was reversed.


I hadn’t thought about approaching Todd for anything except buying or restoring an Indian. Todd, a multi-talented motorcycle enthusiast runs machine shop, auto shop and a magnificent Indian Restoration Shop in Deadwood. Put it on your bucket list. He machined the case in less that 24 hours, ready for final assembly.

Again, I messed with alignment all the way to the rear wheel. I changed my rear wheel spacers once more.

 I got the front chain lined up, the ring gear was, spaced properly with the starter jackshaft.

The rear chain aligned after making more space for the Sprotor bolts. Then I bolted up the starter and the chain rubbed. Plus I ran the thinnest chain I could find from D.I.D.

I machined the transmission mainshaft nut down to allow the plate to be moved back 1/16th of an inch, helped some.

Greer’s team strapped my Cycle Tech starter down and machined it 3/16th of an inch. I had it back the next day—amazing.

I received this Paughco tin primary for alternator motors. I sliced and diced it to make a primary chain guard. Plans changed and then came together.

Kent Weeks from Lucky Devil Metalworks in Houston is a talented guy and we discussed petcocks and gas caps. If you have this type of gas cap and it’s flush mounted, you can’t fill your dinky tank. It will leak.

Then we kicked around inline petcocks for our dreaded Fossil Fuels. I bought fittings with a 5/16 ID for better flow to the 93-inch S&S engine. I discovered to my dismay many petcocks have less than a quarter inch hole through the valve.

I dug around and found this little sleek petcock with a solid ¼-inch hole. Carl told me it doesn’t matter because of the float bowl capacity. But, but…

This was cool and brass, but tiny hole through the center.
This was cool and brass, but tiny hole through the center.

So, Panhead John had a problem or two with his tin inner primary. I went to work on it. I told him I had some parts and pieces.

The more I worked on it the worse it got. I even thought about grafting it to the chunk I had left over after building my VLXAFL primary chain guard.

I went digging and found a new, slightly rusty, bare Paughco inner primary.

The primary chain guard for the Knuck started to work out, and then I noted the kickstand smacked the clutch basket. I created a stop off the inner primary piece and made it adjustable.

 Charlie, the local AMCA member helped me with my front wheel alignment issue. When he dropped me off, I pointed out the clutch plate in his car. He sought out a welder to make a clutch drum removal tool. I volunteered.

Charlie asked me if I was going to sign the tool. Here’s my signature on my primary chain guard…

Quirky weather, a shot from a couple of days ago, and then suddenly it’s snowing like crazy. Did you know 8-inches of snow represents 1 inch of rain.

Almost had an entire day in the shop. I made a to-do list and went to work. I needed to measure and order a clutch cable from Barnett’s. It’s coming. I had lots of sparkplug wires and found a length of old school solid wire. Tons of brass coil connectors but not one for the sparkplugs. O’Reilly’s had a kit.


I ran all the oil lines and grappled with the fittings on the oil filter mount from S&S. I was short on 3/8-inch I.D. oil line, so I worked in some copper tubing. I always like to run an oil pressure gauge. I recently picked up some stuff from Tracy Buck's wife who was moving. I dug into a box and a brand new gauge appeared.


My neighbor came over to help with the driveway. A day later it snowed more, but the temps melted it away within a few hours, amazing.

Suddenly I discovered I forgot my regulator mount. I had one notion, but it didn’t work. I dipped into the scrap bin again and discovered a chunk of looped metal I recently used. I went to work and surfaced with success.

Didn’t do too bad this day. I now have Castrol 20-50 non-synthetic for the break-in period. I ordered a single brake-line from Luke at Taylord’s shop in Spearfish. The following week I took on wiring.

 Scratched some time to build my spark plug wires for the VLXAFL-5. I soldered the ends, used dielectric grease and bada-bing they were done with vintage looking wires.

I captured four weapons from the Sturgis police. They belonged to the notorious Sunshine Vickie. She wasn’t allowed near the cop shop. I checked out two of them and this sawed-off single-barrel, 12 gauge was toast. I mounted it on the shop wall with a set of solid brass knuckles from the equally notorious Buck Lovell. I mounted it and bolted it down so no one would get the notion to use it.

Getting close to final assembly. So, I had to drill out the cable lever body for the Barnett Clutch housing.

This Cycle Tech application was the biggest challenge of this bike build, because of the configuration with a 4-speed trans and an alternator motor. I dug around for the throw-out bearing for this trans, then the pushrod pieces to make the length correct. I tightened it too much but caught myself and gave it the proper quarter to half-turn play for the throw-out bearing before adjusting the cable.

After I installed the new Paughco front Springer axle for a Timken Bearing Star hub I ran into a spacing, brake drum issue. The brake drum wouldn’t set in place properly. I tore it apart and started to study all the pieces.

I checked how the brake backing plate fit with the Black Bike Wheel hub. It was golden. I checked the lug spacing, you name it. I called Charlie, the master with these old bikes. I sorta figured it out, but he suggested we compare the new Paughco axle with an old stock one.

Yep, I needed to machine a section of the new axle down and adjust my spacers on the right side of the springer.

I machined an old rear axle spacer to size. Ultimately, I was able to tighten the axle nut and install a cotter key, just right.

My Nash Blackball starter button arrived and was a breeze to install. I’m working on the 8th episode of the VLXAFL-5 project build. The tech should be launched on Bikernet next week

I met an old biker who is going blind. He was the Deadwood Jailer for lots of years and started to tell a friend a wild story about a murder in a streambed. I started to take notes. 
 Check out his story:

I welded this guide before the bike went to paint. Luke at Taylord Cycles in Spearfish gave me a hand ordering a Drag Specialties black braided hose, but it was stiff and would not flex to slip through the guide. WTF?

I went to Randy Cramer’s, Dakota V-Twin shop and asked about extended fittings. No hope there. I pondered a bunch of mechanical maneuvers and then it came to me. I machined and drilled out a spacer. I made a rod to hold all the elements in line and brazed the piece in place. It worked and I bled the brakes. Bada Bing, I hope.
I'm in the middle of wiring and using the Frank Kaisler recommended tool. I made two of them. They come in very handy with soldering connection and act as heat syncs. Just about finished with wiring and suddenly I stumbled into the middle of two real estate deals. Plus, I joined into to help with the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum. I'm also attempting a medal-art piece for a Museum fund raiser. Wiring came to a halt.  

Click to Reach the Master on Face book.
Click to Reach the Master on Face book.

Atomic Dice

Clauser’s Machine Shop
Spearfish, SD

Dakota V-Twin
Spearfish, SD

JIMS Machine

McMaster Carr


Shamrocks Customs
Sturgis, SD



Terry Components
Check on J&P Cycles

Nash Motorcycles
Click for action.
Click for action.



Black Bike Wheels

Custom Chrome

Barnett’s clutch and cable

Dennis Kirk
Click for action!
Click for action!

Flat Earth Paint
Spearfish, SD

TNT Collision and Glass
Tim and Nikki
Sturgis Leather
Sturgis, SD

Carl’s Motorcycles
Aberdeen, SD
Quick, join up. Just click and go.
Quick, join up. Just click and go.


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Reader Comments

I am totally amazed and blown away at your top quality machine work and your never-ending desire to get each part of the project just perfect. And your mind is still sharp as a tack coming up with idea after idea and back up plans on your one of a kind piece of art.

Every section of this bike just screams for attention, and it deserves it.

Shovelhead Dave
South Milwaukee, WI
Tuesday, June 11, 2024
Editor Response Thanks brother. You made my day. I need to get back to work.

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