This is my first post since joining the Club last week, so apologies if it's in the wrong place.
I have recently purchased a 1960 Domi 99 that was stored (badly) for over 30 years. My initial excitement has been slightly tarnished since I started opening up the engine. The barrels are already on +60 and the bottom spigots have two large lumps broken out of them (one lump out of each cylinder - how do people do that?). The pieces weren't in the crankcases, thank goodness. The broken out areas in the spigots reach right up to the underside of the base plate and are about two inches wide at the bottom. I have two questions:
1. Is it ok to get these barrels sleeved (probably back to STD size)?
2. Should I get the remaining areas of spigot machined off before sleeving? If so, will the cam follower tunnels be ok as they will not then be supported by the spigots?
I haven't managed to find any replacement barrels that aren't similarly damaged or worn out - I even spent yesterday at Stafford bike show trying to hunt some down - are they really so difficult to find? (This is my first Norton since I was a lad (yep, I'm doing that 'I want to have a bike like I had when I was a kid' thing). I'm more used to '60s and '70s Triumphs now - it's so easy to pick up barrels for those that this lack of good Domi barrels has come as a bit of an unpleasant shock to me.
Any help and advice (and a source of decent barrels) would be greatly appreciated.
Tony... can you post a picture? Whatever you read here or anywhere else can only be an opinion...
If it were mine I'd probably check very carefully for any potential cracks likely to make things worse, clean it up and leave as much as you can. But the new sleeves will themselves help to support what's left.
....are likely to be the result of a bottom end seizure. This happened to me on a Commando when it lost a pipe off the oil filter so deposited all its oil over the back end. The big end on one side seized solid, bending the con rod which took a chunk out of the spigot, probably similar to what you've found.
As I was desperate and impoverished at the time, I just stoned the sharp edges off and reassembled with new con rod, reground crank etc. The Norton then happily took me to Frankfurt a couple of weeks later and continued to give good service till it was stolen.
The fact that there were no bits in the crankcase suggests that whoever sold it to you rebuilt it. They should have told you about the damage.....
Thanks for the replies. I’ve attached a photo (hope I’ve got the procedure correct). My biggest issue is regarding the cam follower tunnels - will they be adequately supported if I remove the spigots?
That's much worse than mine was, especially the left hand side. You won't get away with just cleaning it up I'm afraid.
It does look rather as though a previous owner has thrown it together and passed the problem on to you.
I can't help re the sleeving I'm afraid as I've never had that done.
The damage is well away from the cam followers. But there will be quite a lot of quite thin liner with nothing behind it. Maybe speak to whoever might reline it and see if they are willing...the worst bits are the side well away from the machined cam follower holes, so maybe it could be welded or brazed since it won't affect the followers. Looks pretty specialist.
Hello I do cast iron Arch welding and mig and sif bronze welding and can get alloy welding done local and to members only I do welding at cost to me and do not charge for my time other then this there is a set of 99 barrels see ebay Norvil motors but not cheap or see my email firstname.lastname@example.org for welding service your anna j
Thank you to all who posted replies.
Now that I’ve heard all the contributions, I’m tempted to agree with Ian - it looks like the previous owner sold the bike because he knew the problems and potential costs involved. I guess this is my first ‘Important Norton lesson’ - be suspicious of anything that doesn’t run and hasn’t been run for several years.
I paid a high price for this bike and had hoped it would be a relatively quick job to restore the engine and get it back on the road but I think this will now be a ‘slow burner’ that will come together slowly over a few years.
Anna, thanks for the offer of welding - I’ll continue to look for a ‘reasonable’ set of barrels but will ask for your advice and welding skills if I can’t find a replacement set, if that’s ok with you.
Thank you all again.
I have a set of Dommie 99 barrels with small parts of the top fins missing on both sides and a bit off the second top fin on the offside. I am sure that fins can have bits tacked on and shaped with less risk than repairing the skirts, which are quite thin and have cut-outs for the con-rods. Pics attached.The bores are surprisingly good. My inexpert measurement in the sideways and fore-and-aft planes gives 2.6715" in the former and 2.6705" in the latter. I don't have the data for barrels to hand, but no doubt this post will bring you answers. I don't imagine the bores will need much work. I hope they're what you need to get another old Dommie on the road. Mine is a delight...
COST: I want no money myself but I will want the purchaser to send me a cheque for me to forward to one of two charities I approve of: Either Medecins sans Frontiers or Oakhaven Hospice, Lymington SO41 8ZZ. So, make an offer!
Transport: If you buy them, please make the necessary arrangements for carriage.
Tom McEwen. email: email@example.com
Thanks for your offer. Luckily I've managed to find a set of STD barrels with just a small section of one fin missing.
Well done. I'm sure we all look forward to the day you fire her up. Keep us posted!
I successfully managed to arc weld fins back onto 3 sets of broken barrels that I needed for engine rebuilds. My local welding supplies shop sold me a set of Dissimilar Welding Rods that worked out at just 25p each. These special rods are amazing and will weld almost any metal to anything. A good welder will know how to use them and get good results.
There are a few golden rules to observe when using these rods.
1) you need to really clean up the area to be welded as any flakes of rust or rubbish may poison the spot where parts being joined together.
2) try and angle the sides of the parts being joined so that a small 'v' shape is between the respective faces. This will fill with weld and form a stronger join.
3) pre-heat the barrels as hot as possible before welding. This will minimize any distortion caused by the welding heat. This is the tricky part as you have to move red-hot barrels to the welding site and then hook up earths and fin clamps.
Attached pictures show results for a 99 and 650 barrels.
Hi Philip. That’s a really nice repair- very neat. I hope the guy who’s going to repair my ones makes as good a job. He says that he MIG welds the fins. Says he doesn’t do a solid weld line in one go but instead does lots of separate spot welds next to each other. He says that he gets a better weld strength that way and there’s less likelihood of the fin breaking off again. I know nothing about welding so I just assume and hope he knows what he’s on about.
Your repair man is quite correct with regard to his MiG method. The short welds prevent distortion and give more strength to the finish. Just remember afterwards not to bounce the barrels around otherwise you might end up back on square 1.
My 650 barrel made it all the way to the UK from America almost undamaged until the delivery man kicked it out the back of his van and it tried to bounce after a 3ft drop. When I complained about his delivery method I got no where on the grounds that the item should have been better protected. The extra pic is this barrel after the repair welds.
I need to do similar to the barrel and head on my ES2 (both cast iron). I'm on the hunt for a scrap barrel to donate some fins (preferably not Norton so as not to waste potentially good stuff)
Can anyone recommend a welder in the West Midlands who can be trusted to do the welding?
The guy I’m going to try is based in Woburn Sands, which is just south of Milton Keynes. I’m going to have mine done in a week or two, so if you like, I’ll report back once I’ve had them done. The guy has old barrels that he uses for donor fins, so that’s a bonus. Whereabouts in the West Midlands are you?
Hi Philip. Bad news about the courier dropping the barrels but you’ve ended up with a really nice repair (if that helps).
Congrats on finding some good barrels to replace your knackered ones.
The labour to pay for welding of the broken lower cylinders and broken fins would be expensive, with sleeving as well. - and that is not always a success
Norvil have advertised a batch of new 99 / 650 barrels. That's a much better idea. Now who is going to make some 500 barrels?
Hi Tony, I'm in Hall Green half a mile from the old Velo works. I have used an old style blacksmith for some work but he had his workshop broken into and trashed last year and I have a feeling he's packed it in. But I must pop over and see.
Hello Phil well I have done better jobs then this pigeon crap welding the weld as not flowed as it should and you need to get the barrels hot in Casting sand or shot blast sand dry and heat in the oven on 200 mark. I use an old stainless big oval roasting dish fill around the barrel with dry sand and heat both to 200 mark. the sand keeps the heat in the barrel as your welding with arch weld to tidy up your weld use a flapper disk it makes and better job of smoothing off the weld, I am Shipyard tort In welding and Hot riveting and I have Gas and Arch and MIG/TIG and Hot riveting tooling along with A forge and A big anvil and tools and Atlas Mill drill and a 10inch swing over Gap bed Lathe and old skills to use them yours anna j