I need 0m - Alton France

I need 0m - Alton France
FANFARE FOR THE COMMANDO MAN PART TWO
ELP!
e / need an
electric starter forg my
Commando!
Riders of pre-Mk3 Commandos can now upgrade their bike with an Alton electric starter kit. Here's
how Keith Emersons Norton was converted. words and photos: Phillip Tooth
MOTOBATI
BR obec Glass Mat Techaoiopy
Classic Bike Guide | May 2012 | 076
Paul and Hervé Hamon of French company Alton
have produced a neat upgrade that will convert
a pre-Mk3 Commando to electric start. It's
simple to fit and no modifications to the original
parts are necessary so you can convert your bike
back to standard if you miss the perverse
pleasure of kick-starting a lusty twin that has
stalled at the traffic lights.
Keith Emerson took his 850 Commando to
Motorcycle Restoration Company (01799 542 323)
where Martin Daniels fitted one from the first
batch of Alton electric starters.
We were there to photograph the job and
show you how do it yourself. You'll need a couple
of hours, a Commando clutch puller and the
engine sprocket puller, all the usual spanners,
Allen keys and screwdrivers, and a thread lock for
the fasteners.
The kit is not suitable for the earliest Fastbacks,
only 1968 and later models. Alton is also
developing a simple, quick to fit kit to replace the
Prestolite starter used on the Mk3 Commandos,
and one for bikes that have been converted to belt
primary drive.
#
“You can convert your bike back to standard
if you miss the perverse pleasure of kick-start-
ing a lusty twin...”
If you are not familiar with the Commando
power unit, read the workshop manual before you
start — or give Martin a ring.
The pre-Mk3 kit is for positive earth electrics
and includes a new inner primary chaincase, the
starter motor and drive chain, shock absorber and
sprag clutch, starter solenoid, AC generator with
a 150 watt output (but more importantly there is
90-95 watts available at ordinary cruising speed)
and heavy-duty cables and fittings.
Wiring for the Alton electric starter kit is
simple — the original Lucas handlebar switch
cluster that carries the direction indicators'
switch has a spare push button. A white and red
wire comes from this button and ends in a bullet
connector under the petrol tank. Simply use a
new wire to join this connector to the spade
terminal on the starter solenoid.
The Lucas ignition switch also has a spare
terminal, and this is connected to the other spade
connector on the solenoid. Heavy-duty cables
connect the starter motor to the battery (you will
need a Yuasa YTX 1485 or equivalent) through
the solenoid. |
Classic Bike Guide | Мау 2012 | 077
Removing the primary chaincase cover will
reveal the original RM21 Lucas alternator,
Unscrew the three nuts and lift off the stator.
Unscrew mainshaft nut and pull off the
magnetic Lucas rotor. Keep it by your pillar
drill and use it for picking up swarf, or put it
in your ‘original parts’ box.
You will need the Norton diaphragm spring
compressor tool. Try to dismantle the clutch
without one and you risk losing fingers or
eyes. Or both.
After using a puller to get the engine
sprocket off the mainshaft you can remove
the sprocket and clutch, complete with the
triplex chain, as one unit,
Inner half of primary chaincase can be taken
off after unscrewing three bolts. Remove the
original chaincase steady bolt and replace it
with the threaded rod.
Tighten the two nuts that secure new
chaincase steady to engine plate. The third
nut will be screwed out to touch the inner
face of the chaincase.
Locate Alton chaincase on crankcase and
threaded rod, centralise sliding seal holder
around gearbox mainshaft. You may have to
move rod in oversize hole.
Remove the Alton chaincase and spread
gasket cement on to crankcase face. You can
use an oil seal gasket, but it is not necessary.
Thread the alternator leads that exit the rear
of the Alton chaincase through the gap
between the crankcase and the engine plate.
10 Replace Alton chaincase; make sure that it
fits snugly on the crankcase main bearing
boss, and secure with the three Allen
screws supplied.
11 Use a long spanner to screw the third nut on
the threaded rod out until it is a snug fit
against the back of the inner chaincase. A
similar fitting is used on the 850 Mk3.
12 The double-gear shock absorber shaft is
designed to protect the starter motor
if the engine backfires. It has a
polyurethane centre.
13 Lubricate the bronze bush in the chaincase
with grease before inserting the double-gear
shock absorber shaft.
14 Position the mainshaft Woodruff key
upwards and fit the engine sprocket, chain
and clutch. Don't forget to replace any
spacing washers behind the clutch.
15 Bend over the ear of the tab washer
to prevent the clutch securing nut
from slackening off when you ride
your Commando.
16 Now you can use the Norton clutch puller
to replace the clutch spring plate and wind
in spring circlip into its grove. Adjust the
clutch as per manual.
17 Push the sprag clutch spacer on to the
mainshaft but make sure the outer Woodruff
key (there are two on the mainshaft) has
been removed first.
18 Turn the crankshaft so that the outer
Woodruff key slot is at the top and tap the
Woodruff key home with a brass drift.
19 The patented sprag clutch assembly
doubles as the rotor and carries 36 powerful
magnets. It fits inside the large starter
motor sprocket.
20 Line up the Woodruff key with the slot in
the sprag clutch holder. Fit the sprag clutch,
double-gear shock absorber shaft, and chain
assembly as shown.
21 Fix the stator plate, complete with stator, in
place with a centre screw and three
countersunk screws. The Allen screws that
fix the stator to the plate are not yet tight.
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22 Use the hard block of plastic supplied in
the kit to lock the lower run of the primary
chain against the engine sprocket. Don't
forget to take it out later!
23 Tighten the mainshaft nut. If you haven't
been playing around with old motorcycles
for most of your life you might want a
torque wrench...
24 Now you can tighten the three Allen screws
that secure the stator to the stator plate.
Check the primary chain tension and that
engine turns over on kick-start.
25 Connect the two wires from the stator to the
two wires that come in through holes in the
chaincase wall. It doesn't matter which way
round they are connected.
26 Bullet connectors join the new stator leads to
the wiring loom ar the same place you
removed the old Lucas stator leads.
27 One end of the heavy duty cable is
connected to the live terminal on the Alton
starter motor. Use the rubber boot to protect
it from damp.
28 Fix solenoid on top of battery with double-
sided tape (a strap is supplied for permanent
fixing) and connect the heavy duty leads
from starter and battery.
29 Handlebar switch has white and red cable
that terminates under petrol tank. Connect
this to solenoid. Run second wire from
solenoid to keyed ignition switch.
30 It's time to turn on the ignition, flood the
carbs and hit the starter button. Let that
smug smile spread across your face as your
Commando roars into life.
31 Have one last look inside to admire your
workmanship before you replace the original
outer chaincase half. Did you remember to
remove the block of plastic?
32 Before you have a mug of tea, remember to
top up the chaincase with clean oil. Now
replace the side panel, tidy up the tools and
go for a ride. You deserve it.
[O] wHo AND WHERE y
www.alton-france.com
www.motorcyclerestorationcompany.com
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