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500T Restoration

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Just joined the club and my first post. I'm about to embark on a rebuild/restoration on a 1952 500T and thought it best to ask a few questions before I get started.

The first thing is that the bike is complete but hasn't run for about 15 years. As far as I know it was running ok (apart from bad wet sumping) and had no major problems. Quite a bit of work would be required to get it running (tank/carb cleaning, oil changes, etc etc) but I'm wondering if i should get it running and check things before starting to strip it. But then I wonder if it might be a waste of time and actually do more harm than good?

Next is any recommendations for a decent book on Norton single engine. All I have at the moment is a little 'Motorcycling' book of Nortons and a parts list booklet with diagrams. I've worked on Triumphs and BSA's from the 50's and 60's but not the big Norton. I've ridden the bike once but it was about 30 years ago!

My only other question at the moment is about the frame/engine. With it being an 'open' frame is there any special procedure for removing the engine? I don't want to damage anything just as I get started!

Thanks for any advice, I'm sure it won't be long before I'm asking more questions!

John

 

 

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Hello John,

Glad to see you`ve joined the club and have decided to rebuild the 500T. 

Regarding the start or strip question, it all depends if there is any chance the bike has been stored where damp could get to it and do it`s devilish work! Our friends 36 Tiger 90 had a rebuilt motor but had sat in a shed for 25 years, only for a main bearing to pick up and smash the crankcases when run, probably due to a speck of rust forming on the race. That alone convinced me to strip the Model 19 engine before running it after it`s 25 year sleep despite it having also been rebuilt before lay up. It`s just peace of mind that you can check everything is ok. Had no issues with removing the engine from the frame.

 

Regards, Al.

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Hi and Welcome

I’d probably strip it first or at least take the head barrel and timing cover off to have a look first, but if I recall correctly it’s hard to get the head of a 500T with the engine in the frame?

The club has good videos here: https://www.nortonownersclub.org/nocshop.  And manuals an books come up at the usual places from time to time.  

If you don’t want to do the engine yourself, Mike Pemberton (club singles specialist) is a dab hand with singles! 

These are my books that I refer to from time to time

Books

 

 

 

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Thanks for the replies and suggestions, very good points, I'll just get started on stripping down then.

Al, I'd forgotten you were a Norton man, good to know I've got some local knowledge available!

I've already contacted MP regarding a rebuild, I usually do things like that myself but I don't want it to drag on too long so I might just bite the bullet and have it done by Mike.

No doubt I'll be back soon with more questions and updates.

Hi John

Nothing complicated about these engines so no excuse not to get stuck into it :-)

Plenty of experience on this forum so help is readily at hand & I would also be only to glad to help in any way I can.

Regards, Al.

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Cheers Al, you'll probably see me at a LCMC soon to pick your brains!

I think you're right about getting stuck and doing myself, a fairly simple engine and probably not much wrong with it in the first place. Its also going to be a fairly sympathetic restoration so I don't need it looking like a factory rebuild.

Tank and carb came off tonight and starting to take lots of photos of everything.

 

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