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500/600/650 cylinders

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500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Bruce Mitchell at September 26. 2017

The response from Andover Norton when I asked if they had plans to re-manufacture the 500/600/650 cylinders.  Photo was of a cylinder block.  Good news!

 

Yes, see photo. This is a project that was started when Norton Motors bought the spares side from Mick Hemmings. The tooling that Mick had was for the alloy barrels, but the need is for cast iron, after a few attempts we managed to get the cast iron to flow and have machined the barrel with Hemmings drawing which was totally incorrect as it had liners.

In the next few weeks I will be locking myself away and producing an accurate drawing by reverse engineering the mating part drawings to achieve a barrel drawing, then we will trial machine some barrels.

This has highlighted a few issues from the 50’s, as the original casting used then was for 500, as it pushed out to 600/650 the machining highlighted flaws in these barrels, I have had the luxury of having both barrels, 500 and 650 side by side and the problems are obvious, hole spacing and the tappet tunnels are the areas of concern – the Norton engineers of the day must have had known about them, but with the failure rate of machined castings.

 

Bruce

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Barry Carson at September 26. 2017

ive given up trying to find any new /good cylinders.   perhaps it was the same years ago none available thats why they placed a triumph engine in instead.

 

was there a photo somewhere

 

Barry

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by robert_tuck at September 26. 2017

I wonder if they would be spigoted?, those that did not want spigots could have them machined off.What would happen about the dynamo bikes and early bikes with different fin pattern?, lots to think about.

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by robert_tuck at September 26. 2017

I heard that the club had made some enquiries into having some barrels cast, don't know if there was any progress from that?.

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Neil Wyatt at September 26. 2017

If the club actually manages to commission a batch of barrels for any Norton heavy twin I would faint! Maybe even die of shock!

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by anna jeannette Dixon at September 26. 2017

hello  the Original  Norton blueprints from the factory  are  sat on by Peter Holland   And he will not relinquish them  for some reason they're doing No good   in his hands   when the rest of the club needs  them  to make parts   yours   anna j  

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by David Cooper at September 26. 2017

That is so sad, Anna.  But: what man has made, man can make again.  Reverse engineering jet fighters is a big job - but reverse engineering 1950's Nortons ought not to be.  It's not as if they used especially advanced materials.  Tolerances are a big issue (inside and outside fit etc) but for the blocks it sounds (from the above correspondence that they were a bit hit-and-miss anyway.

Was there something missing from Bruce's first mail here?

Regards

 

David

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Bruce Mitchell at September 27. 2017

Previously David Cooper wrote:

That is so sad, Anna.  But: what man has made, man can make again.  Reverse engineering jet fighters is a big job - but reverse engineering 1950's Nortons ought not to be.  It's not as if they used especially advanced materials.  Tolerances are a big issue (inside and outside fit etc) but for the blocks it sounds (from the above correspondence that they were a bit hit-and-miss anyway.

Was there something missing from Bruce's first mail here?

Regards

 

David

 

The only thing missing from my post was the photo.  It was of a cylinder block.  I didn't think it was important.

Bruce

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Skip Brolund at September 27. 2017

It's too bad Andover didn't just make them of aluminum with liners as Mick Hemmings did. One could use them as is, paint them silver, or paint them black.

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by robert_tuck at September 27. 2017

As steel and alloy have different strengths its possible that a redesign is necessary , Dunstall Barrels had problems, You can't just make everything thicker, there is not enough room, and if you beef up just parts you can introduce stress raisers and unequal expansion. Unproven pattern parts can be killers. After they have been well tested and sucessfully incorporated in a production line machine you know you have a reliable spare part. Honda  750 cam chain tensioner anyone?.

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by anna jeannette Dixon at September 27. 2017
Previously David Cooper wrote:

That is so sad, Anna.  But: what man has made, man can make again.  Reverse engineering jet fighters is a big job - but reverse engineering 1950's Nortons ought not to be.  It's not as if they used especially advanced materials.  Tolerances are a big issue (inside and outside fit etc) but for the blocks it sounds (from the above correspondence that they were a bit hit-and-miss anyway.

Was there something missing from Bruce's first mail here?

Regards

 

David

 hello well I think it's time the NOC did something about these factory drawing blue prints  we are in need of parts that are not made now  so someone needs a wake-up call     yours anna j

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by anna jeannette Dixon at September 27. 2017
Previously anna jeannette Dixon wrote:
Previously David Cooper wrote:

That is so sad, Anna.  But: what man has made, man can make again.  Reverse engineering jet fighters is a big job - but reverse engineering 1950's Nortons ought not to be.  It's not as if they used especially advanced materials.  Tolerances are a big issue (inside and outside fit etc) but for the blocks it sounds (from the above correspondence that they were a bit hit-and-miss anyway.

Was there something missing from Bruce's first mail here?

Regards

 

David

 hello well I think it's time the NOC did something about these factory drawing blue prints  we are in need of parts that are not made now  so someone needs a wake-up call     yours anna j

 

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Barry Carson at September 27. 2017

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by john_hall1 at September 28. 2017

These places here do accomplished work!

http://www.uk-racing-castings.co.uk/

http://www.mfcpatterns-castings.co.uk/page3.htm

Surely any new venture in manufacturing should use modern materials. The barrels ideally should be using suitably aluminium alloys and lined!

There is an accomplished foundry in Sittingbourne or on the Isle of Sheppy, that casts parts for Motorcycle and old cars including the Racing variety!

If they can make barrels  in Doncastor for JAP engines what's the big problem about Norton's, except the will to do it and a lack of cohesiveness and planning of the individuals concerned!

Oh! Hang on purists...

Cheers

John H

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by john_hall1 at September 28. 2017

Oh! They can scan stuff now 3D model it make a hologram type thingy, improve things/design, shove it in a Computerised machining robot and bang you have your stuff, if they can make a Human arm, what's the big problem with an inert set of engine parts?

 

Cheers

 

 

John H

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Barry Carson at September 28. 2017

great theres your answer. someone already in the know. no experimenting with metal types and suitability ect

 

Barry

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by john_hall1 at September 28. 2017

Previously Barry Carson wrote:

great theres your answer. someone already in the know. no experimenting with metal types and suitability ect

 

Barry

I presume you mean the "Specialist", all I personally know, is that firms exist that have been doing this kind of stuff for maybe yonks!

On the Vintage car side, stuff is being re-engineered and re-manufactured from obviously, modern metals and using modern production techniques all the time all the time.

You can I have on good authority make things better than the original components with 55-60 years of development available to metallurgists and the like!

Though about constructing a "Home" foundry though as a future thing to do!

Cheers

 

John H

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Barry Carson at September 28. 2017

 John. thats what i meant the companys you referred to. they already have the systems in place . it seems daft the club doesn't at least inquire about manufacture of some barrels/cylinders.

 

Barry

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by ian_cordes at September 28. 2017

Previously Skip Brolund wrote:

It's too bad Andover didn't just make them of aluminum with liners as Mick Hemmings did. One could use them as is, paint them silver, or paint them black.

plus 1 on that, Skip. Why bother with cast iron barrels any more?

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by richard_hudson1 at September 28. 2017

We worked with MFC Patterns for many years, Mike the father could make a pattern for anything if it was at all possible. The last time I was at his works he was making a pattern for a replacement armrest for Concorde, it was almost finished when they pulled the plug. Send him a sample and get a price.

 

Regards

 

Dick

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Neil Wyatt at September 28. 2017

Why has no one from our EC been on here to update on the abysmal spares situation and pre Commando barrels as a case in point?

My current project, a 57 Model 50 was 8 years doing nothing until a member from Australia had some engine plates made for me. (Thanks Ian) Skip B got hold of a very rare bracket for me and the rear mudguard and headlamp shell came from NZ. (Thanks lads)

The shortage of barrels as mentioned above has been going on for years.  About time the club explained themselves.

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by anna jeannette Dixon at September 29. 2017
Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

Why has no one from our EC been on here to update on the abysmal spares situation and pre Commando barrels as a case in point?

My current project, a 57 Model 50 was 8 years doing nothing until a member from Australia had some engine plates made for me. (Thanks Ian) Skip B got hold of a very rare bracket for me and the rear mudguard and headlamp shell came from NZ. (Thanks lads)

The shortage of barrels as mentioned above has been going on for years.  About time the club explained themselves.

 

 
Hello All We do know that the EC team  Are all volunteers and in most academical circumstances  they can short thing out But  The Hard to Find Parts Now Desperately need looking at  I will volunteer my time if the EC give me the authority and financial backing  and I can keep them updated as we go , but it's up to the membership and the EC to do something But the Noc EC team  seems to put the Cart before the Horse,   Has  I now am only working part-time some 20 hours a week and only paid minimum wage So this means I am  restricted to how much I can do,  with my finances, But still willing to try help out the Club                               yours   Anna J  

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Barry Carson at September 29. 2017

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Neil Wyatt at September 29. 2017

Joe S of Andover mentioned on these pages about new parts needing to be commercially viable and that is not always going to be the case with regard to much needed non available bits for old Norton's. Not much use then. Sorry Joe.

However, I had a chat with Roger at RGM a couple of weeks ago and surprisingly he was upbeat about supplying to demand, regardless of the viability. This is called providing a service.

In reality, club officials should be having this chat with the likes of RGM, armed with a list and  templates where possible, if not; drawings.

When are they going to get started?

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by anna jeannette Dixon at October 01. 2017
Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

Joe S of Andover mentioned on these pages about new parts needing to be commercially viable and that is not always going to be the case with regard to much needed non available bits for old Norton's. Not much use then. Sorry Joe.

However, I had a chat with Roger at RGM a couple of weeks ago and surprisingly he was upbeat about supplying to demand, regardless of the viability. This is called providing a service.

In reality, club officials should be having this chat with the likes of RGM, armed with a list and  templates where possible, if not; drawings.

When are they going to get started?

 

 Hello  Never is the answer to that,  But when it comes to a new Spares Van £20k is a mediately set aside,  But the more important things like saving a very rare  Norton Or getting near impossible to get, part made  is overlooked by the EC  And they tell us in there Add join the Norton owners club  we can help you, yes right  when I have ever needed help with parts you cannot get  its others outside the club that helped out,  and they say this club all about  restoring  Nortons and their history   now what a laugh that is,  Us members are on our own mate,  we have do things our selfs  has this club seems to have little or no interest in us members !    yours   Anna J 

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by David Cooper at October 01. 2017

I wonder where the main costs lie?  Firms like:

http://www.mfcpatterns-castings.co.uk/index.htm

can obviously do it.  I wonder where the costs lie?

There are various stages:

drawing (which would need to be done from scratch based on measuring an existing barrel - but is not all that difficult to do privately)

pattern making.  Is that done nowadays quite cheaply by 3-D printer direct from drawings?  Or more expensively the old fashioned way by a skilled craftsman in wood?  An existing barrel cannot be used as a pattern because the casting shrinks as it cools down.

casting - probably the simplest bit of the process in that castings might be made as part of a batch of other simultaneous products

inspection (don't want too many flaws - maybe the original manufacturer did not bother much with inspection, but allowed guarantees to fix any problems that arose?)

fettling and final machining - maybe the most expensive bit?

Of the above, the casting/inspection/fettling/machining should be much the same per casting for small or large orders, shouldn't it?  But the pattern making is probably a major one-off cost to begin with.  On the other hand - it's the bit that a skilled home craftsman can do by himself.

Of course there would probably need to be at least a few out-of-tolerance prototypes before the pattern is refined.

But how big is the market?  That's a really big unknown in any business case.

We cannot expect Commando owners (who must be the majority of the club) being happy to see thousands of pounds spent ("invested") in a project to provide half a dozen barrels, can we?  But can any parts of the investment (expenditure) be short-circuited by amateurs or ex-professional club members?

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Neil Wyatt at October 01. 2017

You said it, David:  A Commando Club.

I do have a Commando but what about support for my (Our) other machines? They are all Norton's. (In my case)

Still no comment from the EC. Frown

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Barry Carson at October 01. 2017

Re: 500/600/650 cylinders

Posted by Barry Carson at October 01. 2017

Previously David Cooper wrote:

I wonder where the main costs lie?  Firms like:

http://www.mfcpatterns-castings.co.uk/index.htm

can obviously do it.  I wonder where the costs lie?

There are various stages:

drawing (which would need to be done from scratch based on measuring an existing barrel - but is not all that difficult to do privately)

pattern making.  Is that done nowadays quite cheaply by 3-D printer direct from drawings?  Or more expensively the old fashioned way by a skilled craftsman in wood?  An existing barrel cannot be used as a pattern because the casting shrinks as it cools down.

casting - probably the simplest bit of the process in that castings might be made as part of a batch of other simultaneous products

inspection (don't want too many flaws - maybe the original manufacturer did not bother much with inspection, but allowed guarantees to fix any problems that arose?)

fettling and final machining - maybe the most expensive bit?

Of the above, the casting/inspection/fettling/machining should be much the same per casting for small or large orders, shouldn't it?  But the pattern making is probably a major one-off cost to begin with.  On the other hand - it's the bit that a skilled home craftsman can do by himself.

Of course there would probably need to be at least a few out-of-tolerance prototypes before the pattern is refined.

But how big is the market?  That's a really big unknown in any business case.

We cannot expect Commando owners (who must be the majority of the club) being happy to see thousands of pounds spent ("invested") in a project to provide half a dozen barrels, can we?  But can any parts of the investment (expenditure) be short-circuited by amateurs or ex-professional club members?


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