The Auriel ex­plained

Old Bike Australasia - - OUT’ N’ ABOUT -

In OBA 50 Out & About we fea­tured a shot of a mys­tery mo­tor­cy­cle spot­ted by a reader in Fox­ton, NZ. The owner, Shorty Cole, also from Fox­ton, has come forth with an ex­pla­na­tion:

I re­ceived sev­eral ex­cited calls the other day about a photo of my bike (OBA 50 Out ‘n About P84). The frame is a 1956 Ariel Hunt­mas­ter, the forks are Nor­ton Road Hold­ers, and the wheels are BSA full width al­loy. Gear­box is off an AMC sin­gle, and the mo­tor…an Austin Seven. Yep, af­ter a few beers last year with some fel­low rid­ers, I men­tioned that I thought this might work, so away we went. It did take a lot of fig­ur­ing out, and re­work­ing a bit, and around Christ­mas I started her up and went for a blat down the road. I am not run­ning a fly­wheel, and with new twin Amals and the four-into-one ex­haust, she re­ally does go quite well. I did re­ceive a bit of stick like” use a Briggs and Strat­ton” that’s 25 hp...when you ride the bike, at around 7-8 hp it’s the torque that does the job. At 2,300 rpm she is do­ing about 85 km/h, and will rev to 6,500, with 4,000 to 5,000 us­able. The drive to the gear­box- the old fly­wheel was turned down as this is not re­quired in its orig­i­nal form. I am us­ing it only to re­tain the oil, and to give the sprocket some­thing to tighten up against. The sprocket was bored out and a thread cut on my lathe, and two flats milled to al­low a large span­ner to tighten it. A large lump of alu­minium was turned/milled to fit neatly into where the starter mo­tor was pre­vi­ously fit­ted, and us­ing three self­align­ing bear­ings, a stain­less steel shaft was mounted, be­ing braced at each end. Th­ese are all slot­ted to al­low ad­just­ment on the driv­ing chain. A ta­per-lock sprocket takes the drive to the clutch, which then com­pletes the whole drive cy­cle. The en­gine was com­pletely re­built, bal­anced, and some small mods car­ried out. Two new carbs were fit­ted and feed the fuel through two long tubes to the in­take of the en­gine. There were a few prob­lems con­struct­ing the four into one ex­haust, but in the end it seems to work ok and sounds great. To cool the en­gine I used a ra­di­a­tor off a Yamaha LC350 cou­pled to a Toy­ota Prius 12volt elec­tric wa­ter pump, wired through a rheo­stat to ad­just the flow to ad­just the wa­ter tem­per­a­ture. So far this seems to be work­ing well.

Start­ing the beast is just like any other old bike, key on, en­sure wa­ter is flow­ing, tickle the carbs, full choke and she nor­mally fires up af­ter a cou­ple of prods (un­less there’s a crowd watch­ing). Once warm, open choke and go. It is a very smooth bike to ride, and ex­tremely re­spon­sive, both when open­ing and closing the throt­tle due I guess to no fly wheel. As you can imag­ine I was the brunt of much good na­tured ban­ter – like use a Briggs and Strat­ton, twice the horse power – it is a re­ally im­pres­sive lit­tle bike, idles around 1500 rpm and will rev to 6,000 . Now just a few things to fin­ish, like a gen­er­a­tor and the front guard… then the next project is...

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