Lugging half a tank of fuel up the hill at Loton and replacing the upright bearings.

After the Midland round at Gurston I spent a frantic 20 minutes driving round Salisbury looking for petrol.  Having found a garage (along with a few other roadgoing competitors) I decided to fill the tank.  Gurston to Witney then Witney to Loton was pretty much guaranteed to leave the tank almost empty as I drove into the paddock for the HSA round.  The mods (for the record exhaust, cam and airbox) seem to have increased the mpg not reduced it; as I drove along the M54, and then the A5, it was increasingly apparent that I’d have over 1/2 a tank when I arrived.  It seemed barely credible. But without any way of extracting the extra fuel I was left to drag it up Loton Hill 4 times. (I know the answer – I’ve got a jerry can and a siphon is on the way from Demon-Tweeks.  I’m also planning the removal of the rear wiper motor and mechanism and some other bits and pieces will get the chop in the name of lightness.)

My first practice run was a 73.75 and my second was a PB of 72.71. The first official run was another PB – 72.32, but I missed a gear (sound familiar) on run 2 and only achieved a 73.5.  But lots to be pleased about; my new PB was 1.32 seconds faster than last year and 6/10s faster than May.  Its all heading in the right direction, even though the points I scored left me behind Geoff Lancaster still!!  The picture below is from the May meeting actually, and was stolen from a Flickr account called “Its Mr Pants”…

May 2016 Loton

Back in the workshop it was time to rebuild the uprights.  I’d repainted the stripped fabrications using smooth hamerite.  Given that it was a spraycan I used lots and lots of light coats, leaving at least 8 hours in between.  The results were pretty gratifying.

Pressing the bearings back into the housings was pretty straightforwards – lots of copperslip as specified by Simon at URS.  My first attempt at pressing a hub in was what could be described as a total failure.  Somehow the hub didn’t seem to want to press in, and when I released the press the hub was about 15 degrees off axis.  Removing it destroyed the new bearing.  Time to order another new one.  Meanwhile more attention to alignment had the second hub in easily.  The moral of the story is obvious.

Removing the damaged bearing from the upright was very easy, almost certainly courtesy of the industrial quantities of copper grease used. The new bearing was easily assembled into the upright..


The only thing to do now is to torque up the central nut and bolt assembly. Sadly the new nylocs I’d sourced were too high for the nylon section to engage on the thread.  So a new set are being machined to suit.  I also managed to fit the pedals…  By the next blog I should have the new master cylinders in, and the front suspension at least trial fitted.








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