Here's the story.

Discussion in 'Classic Models' started by Yard Dogg, Mar 10, 2010.

  1. Yard Dogg

    Yard Dogg Member

    My dad has a 1959 FLH 1200 Panhead. He's had it since 1977, the same year I was born. He says that was his best year, had his son, got his Harley, and bought his 56 Chevy. Anyway. I grew up riding on that bike and trying to help him wrench on it and all of that good stuff. It ran until I was about 9 yrs old then started going down hill so he tore it down to give it a restore. Well, mom divorced him things took a turn to (EDIT) and the bike stayed down until 2005, almost 20 years. I remember the bike fever he would get, now that I've owned a few bikes I can imagine the anguish he must have felt not being able to ride.
    In 2005 he finally was able to ride it again and it turned out gorgeous. Unfortunately it didn't last long. It was making way to much valve train noise, pre igniting, and eventually the front piston burned a hole right in the top of it. Now that I have been steadily wrenching on bikes I realize it was definitely the jetting, and it didn't help he adjusted the valve lash wrong. So it sits again. He ordered new pistons, honed it out and got it running, but the compression was way too low. We had tried to replace valve seats due to how worn out they were from all the previous rebuilds but it turned out to be (EDIT). Well now, the jugs have been sent off for a fresh bore with new pistons, the heads will be cut to accept new oversized valve seats and all should be well with the top end, fingers crossed.

    My main question is where is the best place to get parts for these old bikes? They are hard to find, very expensive, and machine shops seem to be afraid of the old bikes. Our local Harley shop wouldn't even bore the cylinders, what kind of (EDIT) is that? Right now he is searching for new lifters and pushrods.

    Also I was hoping to get a few of you master mechanics on my friends list so I can message you when these tuning issues come into play. He switched to a S&S Super-B (however you say that) and I would like to make sure it gets set up right this time. I haven't messed with that carb yet, but I've been getting plenty of practice on my bike so I know I can help out this time. I know how useful these forums can be, that is why I am here.

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    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 10, 2010
  2. Chopper

    Chopper Senior Member

  3. Yard Dogg

    Yard Dogg Member