I have just got this 74 Interstate 850. It does not have a tool kit with it, but it also appears not to have a suitable place for one to have been. Was it discontinued, or am I missing something obvious? I perhaps expected the left hand side panel may have been a suitable place, like on my T100C, but the plain fibreglass panel has nothing to accept one. Thoughts?
New Norton Commando Tool Box Oil Tank Side Panel Kit Red Painted Left Right GEc 8903558182117 _ eBay
Commandos were developed and modified from year to year. More than first meets the eye
If yours is a mark 2a with the large plasic airbox they had a simple plasitc tray fitted loosely on the frame, in the space behind the battery. It had limited capacity but worked better than it looked..
The Mk1 850 and others with the ham can air filter had the pocketed side panel.
So if you want, an earlier panel can be fitted but it turns into alot of work as the ignition switch needs to be consired as well as the air box. Andover parts manuals will illustrate the scope.
This is a tool tray listed by Andover Norton that sits behind the battery and rests on the mudguard.
Part No. 06.5616
Listed for 850 Mk3 but it fits earlier models and I have one on my 1972 Roadster to give a little extra capacity for tools and spares.
It works well although limited in capacity.
I purchased a zip-up fishing reel bag from a tackle shop to house the tools on my Commando. It sits on top of the mudguard much the same as the tool tray suggested by Andrew. Just something else to consider.
Ah, yes. Mine is a mk2a with the larger mk111 style air filter assembly. I can see how the plastic tray could be utilised, whether it’s large enough I don’t know until I see one in the flesh. I think a zip up bag has its merits.
my 2 caliper pistons and end cap arrived today, good service from RGM. I’ve ordered an ultrasonic cleaning tank which should be with me early next week so I’ll do my carbs and other stuff. I refitted my oil tank after welding up the broken rear bracket - what a pita to fit the lower bolt!
The lower bolt is the source of other issues, I leave it off and use a rubber pad stuck to the bottom for the tank to rest on. I also increase the size of the 2 upper rubber buffers. If you continue to use the lower bolt eventually the insert in the tank gains a crack and the contents of the tank slowly leak out. That's happened to me twice, the first time I left work and found a pool of oil under the bike and non in the tank.
OK, I’ll bear that in mind, clearly it was designed by a sadist.
Convert it to a Fastback; you can cram an unbelievable range of stuff into the tailpiece.
Had a little bit of spare time and took some pics of the tool tray to give an idea of how it fits and capacity.
I find this just gives enough additional capacity in combination with the side panel slot for the tools and spares I need to carry.
a picture speaks a thousand words as they say. I wonder if I’ve still got some old Whitworth, BSF, cycle and AF spanners tucked away? I’ve got a spare pair of metric adjustables, they should work.
You'll only need a 3/16" x 1/4" whit spanner on a Commando...The rest are unified (AF). Best to carry a gearbox pawl spring under the seat too...
The Mk3 plastic tool tray moulding reprofiling on the right hand side compared with the Mk2A tray to clear the seat lock, reduces both capacity and rigidity. My previous Mk3's tray cracked and also would not hold everything I needed it to For my present Mk3 with a Mk2A seat and no seat lock (for pannier clearance), I intend to use a Mk2A tray, as in Andy's photos.
Andy, curious (nosey) as to why you have green tape on your tools? Nicked from a company colour coded tool kit?
No not nicked from a company toolkit!
The reason is sadly more prosaic. Or maybe just sad.
Green tape is simply there to remind me to return these items to the tool tray if I use any of them for working on the bike in the garage.
These are different from the items with red tape which are to remind me which are the bike tools in amoungst by general tools.
Yes I know...perhaps it's an age thing.
I also suffer from a mild case of Dartmoor garage pixies who occasionally hide tools and parts only for them to reappear later in plain sight.
Well those same Dartmoor pixies visit me regularly. I have just found the tacho light bulb that mysteriously disappeared when I repaired the outer wiring sheath 3 days ago. Where my Phillips screwdriver has gone that I was using last night is beyond me.
Since we're drifting onto what tools to carry, as opposed to how to carry them, the Andover Norton toolkit strikes me as good value for money (part number 06.7268; £79.90 + VAT).
The open-ended spanners in particular are very high quality.
As far as possible I like to have appropriate tool kits mounted on each bike ready to go, in addition to workshop tools.
Very tempting, but not just for now. I’ll see what I’ve got stashed away in my old tools selection first of all.