Well, it's taken a while what with the Electra engine top end disassembly, checking the right head for cracks, waiting for parts from across the pond, replacing the head gasket, reinstalling the heads, carb, coils, and frame supports, resetting the vales, etc. etc. etc. But the bottom line is no more head oil leak nor any others for that matter. I must give thanks Peter Holland for his RH article on Electra engine work. I trued up the new valve covers I bought and used Peter's suggested double gaskets and sealer/grease on all four which probably stopped the leak I had. I wish I had know about his article before I stupidly pulled the heads.
The motor runs pretty well now with my previously installed Pazon electronic ignition and a complete electric redo - harness and all. But I do have a backfire at high revs after a warm up. I think I need to set the ignition with a strobe light now since I've only set the Pazo statically so far. Since I've already put on new tires, changed the fork oil and all cables, and installed some new clutch plates I think I'm now quite close to my first ride.
Thanks again to everyone who has replied to my questions as I've moved this project along.
Jack, well done with the heads, perseverance and attention to detail paid off.
I used a strobe to check my Pazon setting using a timing mark set on the rotor using a timing disc. See the threads on this with good advice from others about how to do it.
It is hard work but worthwhile for the peace of mind.
Thanks for the info Dennis. Using the rotor is bit of a pain on the Electra do to fact that it's covered by the sprag clutch mechanic used by the starter. I took that off for the static setup of the Pazon though and could do it again for fine tuning the timing after a kick starter fire up.
But what about the suggestion in the link you supplied of using the red dot on the Pazon (used for the static set up) as a timing mark? Would that work?
Sadly the red dot approach is not as accurate as the timing disc method as I found when having centred the red dot as well as I could, as per Pazon instructions, and then checking it with the timing disc method and strobe. I was about five degrees out. From this I judge the red dot setting to be a little bit hit and miss. It is probably OK for an initial set up but not that precise. To be fair Pazon do suggest checking the initial set up with a strobe, presumably using a timing disc after locating TDC.