I decided to add brake lights to my 39 EL today. For 18 years I have been riding the shit out of that thing and never had brake lights or a brake light switch on it.
I decided to utilize the two marker lights that were already mounted to the fender, neither was hooked up and only one had a lens. The tail light itself has no accommodation for a brake light.
Now working on this particular bike is fun and challenging. It is absolutely filthy and covered with 70 years of grease, grim, oil and crap. Adding a new part is especially challenging. It must match perfectly...but then again that's what I do. I opened a parts drawer that contained brake light switches and low and behold there was the perfect one staring up at me. The grease and grime so thick you could barely make out the screws. The old cracked wires were still connected and hanging off it! In fact one of the wires was the exact length to reach the coil terminal.
I tested it with my meter and of course it worked. I dug up the proper spacer and bolt, and it was time to get dirty. It went on like it belonged. I ran a longer wire back to the lights, dug around and found a couple of bulbs and lenses and just like that I had brake lights! Beautiful!
They look orange in the picture but they are red. The switch looks right at home but a little dry. The first ride down the road will take care of that.
Maybe next I'll treat it to a front wheel bearing over haul...way overdue!
The Good - I borrowed a gas shut off alignment tool from my friend Paul over in Jersey.
The Bad - I figured if my shifter pivot was that far fucked so was my shut off alignment. I tested out the tool on the tanks that for whatever reason just won't fit the frame. I them reworked the shifter pivot and bolted up a shifter and gate...looks usable. I set out to align the tanks with the tool, everything was going OK until I got to the part where you set the spacing and the instructions said if the tanks are compressed you must add pressure when tightening the tool until the sleeve bottoms out.
The Ugly - Well I had my son hold the tanks down to the kitchen table (work bench) and apply pressure I did, until I heard that sickening "pop" and everything went limp...(not what you're thinking). The fuckin' stud in the top of the tool snapped! Well there goes a 100 plus dollars! I really love breakin' a loaner...not good!
The tanks were OK and I set up a shut off and all worked fine. My son is in High School Tech for Machine Technology and I sent the broken tool with him to make a part in the shop...we'll see. The boy seemed offended when I insisted the tolerances be exact..."That's what I do all day!" he insisted...OK, OK enough said.
Well I thought I was ready for paint! Upon closer inspection I found that the shifter pivot bracket on my tank was bent in! Well I grabbed another tank and the shifter gate screws were not budging. So I drilled them out and ran a tap through, Problem solved, off to the painter...NO. I figured that I would bolt the tank onto the frame just to be sure. The friggin' front tank mount hole is like 1/8th inch off! WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I uploaded the pictures in reverse so check it out from the bottom to the top.
Fit the trans in to make sure everything was on the up and up and all the hardware fit... looks good but still too shinny.
Getting ready for paint. I pulled another cut down fender out to see how it looks. Maybe... I think I am definitely gonna go with the skirts on the sides rather then the opened look. I think I have the scallop design figured out. Still toying with color combos. I gotta try to stay away from RED I have used it a lot.