MV Agusta 350B – a little bit of work

It’s been a few years since I have ridden this little gem of a bike, I recon probably 3 or so years. The last time I rode it was probably the 2017 Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride. During that ride it again ran out of electricity, just as it did the year before and was stuck in a corner of my fathers shed since then awaiting a bit of attention.

Ron moved into an apartment Easter 2019 and the bike has since been at my place languishing. At some stage over the last few years we have taken a look at it and thought that perhaps the regulator had failed. We had pulled the enclosure off the old Bosch regulator and, not finding the problem there, had not started it since. Over the weekend I thought it was time I pulled my finger out and do something about it and so I did.

First I pulled the regulator off and had a good look at it, I didn’t really have a means to test it so I just cleaned up the terminals where the various leads attach to it which were all badly corroded and I also cleaned up the crimps on the leads in the blind hope that the contacts were just not making a good connection.

Next on the list was to drain the old fuel which must have been about 3 years old – well past its use by date. I then pulled off both carbi’s, stripped them, cleaned them with a carbi cleaner spray and put them back on the engine after reassembly – just as well I did this as one of the jets was blocked.

Next on the list was to clean the commutator on the dynamo (this thing uses a dynamo to produce 6V DC which is used to charge the battery)which charges the battery and so without the battery the engine will not run. This need for a charged up battery is a real bummer and is the reason for my two episodes of failing to proceed on the 2016 and 2017 Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride.

I found the commutator to be fairly badly burnished/dirty from the carbon brushes so I’m hopeful that the good clean-up of the copper commutators with an abrasive pad (no steel wool) will have restored conductivity and hence charging of the battery.

Next on the list is to give the thing an oil change and a freshly charged battery, some fresh fuel and a good kick – should start pretty easy but we will see how it goes charging.

Distinguished Gentleman’s “Ride” 2016

We went for a ride on our MV’s today.  Ron’s was fine, mine didn’t get to the actual start. It was the 2016 Distinguished Gentlemen’s Ride.

Here is a pic of us both at the on the way to the start line in Kings Park, the start was in City Beach.

Didn't make it much further for me.
Didn’t make it much further for me.

Electrical issues again; bike stopped in Subi and then, after I decided to carry on again, in Perry Lakes.  It wasn’t raining when I broke down so all good but bike recovery services are always expensive on a Sunday.  I suggested to the recovery driver that he should hang around the ride today, about 1000 bikes means at least 1 more will break down.

Turns out the 350B isn’t charging.  I rode to Kings Park with lights on which drained battery.

New blog – new blog!!

I have created a new blog just for the Milan – Taranto that I and the old man are in this July (actually, in a week!).

Check it out at…..

MV arrived in Italy

I have today been advised the MV arrived in Italy and is due to be inspected sometime this week which will be great. Hopefully nothing wrong and it will clear Italian customs without a hitch.

My old man will be in Italy tomorrow week so it has worked out to be very good timing.

Today is the last day of study for me with my final exam ever (I hope) at uni tomorrow at 9am. Its on Torts law and I am so sick and tired of studying. Wish me luck!

MV350B on its way to Italy

The bike left in its crate today bound for Italy.

Its one of the final steps of a project that has turned out to be a little larger than I thought it was going to be – however, its al a learning experience.

Anyway – here are some pics of the bike in the crate.

I expect it to actually leave on the ship next Saturday with a transit time to Italy of about 40 days which should give us a few weeks of the bike in italy with out me there which is very decent indeed.

One of the things I did to get the bike into Italy is to get a Carnet de Passage. My only concern is that when they get it in Italy no one will know what the heck to do with a bike arriving on a carnet de Passage and procede to make life uncomfortable for me in getting the bloody thing out of customs – fingures crossed.

Pics as always.

In the crate - on ts way
In the crate - on its way

MV made the trip home

Well the long weekend showed that the MV is reliable enough to take part in the MI-TA.

The 250km trip from the Southwest back to Perth went without a hitch (save for loosing a foot peg rubber somewhere around Bunbury). All up now I have put arpound 700km on it over the last month and all if

The bike went well, no oil usgage, no funny noises (save for tapets that are now in need or re-adjustment) and not a single hickup.

So, in a couple of weeks, assuming all goes well the bike will be packed into a crate and shipped off to Italy. The trip is comming together!

MV Agusta 350B – Update 5

I picked up the freshly painted tank on Saturday, its looks really really nice and promptly installed the fuel taps to then mount on the bike, fill with fuel and take for its maiden ride – it didn’t happen quite as expected.

Having fitted the fuel taps I thought it prudent to fill the tank a little with fuel, swish it about and then empty again to get rid of any bits and pieces that may have found there way into the tank, I was shocked to see flakes of grey paint flowing out when I tipped the tank up-side-down.

It would appear that the cleaver chap that chemically stripped the tank thought it a great idea to not only spray the outside of the tank but to also stick a bit of paint inside then role it around inside to ensure it doesn’t rust – he shouldn’t have gone to so much effort. Its obvious his thought process didn’t include “This is a fuel tank, I should not put paint that gets stripped with flurocarbons inside”. Dim wit.

What a complete mess, after trying with a chain to scrap it off and multiple petrol swill-outs its still in there and its going to be a job to get it all out.

We will have to resort to a tank sealer kit I think with the hope that it will form a seal over both the bare metal and the still painted portions of the inside of the tank – my only fear is that the sealer will strip the paint as well causing all sorts of fun. If this fails it may need to be stripped again and repainted – something I don’t want to dwell on too much at this stage.

Wish me luck during the week.

MV Agusta – Update 4

Well after many, many hours of putting it all back together, yesterday I ran the engine for the first time. Its would be very interesting to know how long it has been since this engine last ran, I dare say 20 years. It started in about 4 kicks and ran very well, idling fine and making no strange noises.

Just need to get the tank back from the painter now which should be next weekend then take it for a run – can’t wait!

MV 350b – Update 3

Well things have moved along since last month.

Engine is all back in one large lump after replacing all bearings, oil seals and gaskets. We only have a parts manual to assist in the re-assembly but I’ve been there before.

Engine is now back in the bike and the majrity on bits now back where they should be.

the new exhausts look very nice but only the left side fits weel. The right side pipe appears to be missing and bend to get it hug the fram a bit which results in the exhaust sticking out at an odd angle.

Bought a battery for it today, will test for spark tomorrow night.

Tank at the painters getting white applied to knee cut outs along with decals and a clear top coat.

Hope to fire up this weekend assuming we sort out the exhaust.

Pic below from a week ago. Updates to come.

MV 350b – Update 2

A few late nights this past week….

Rebuilt the wheels after the rims and hubs were polished. New stainless spokes and nipples (ohh err).

Fitted the rear suspension swing arm.

Restored the front and rear brakes (lots of cleaning of aluminium).

More work tomorrow painting nuts and bolts and other stuff.

New pipe and exhausts on there way from Italy. Other parts I expect will be posted to us mid to late next week assuming the supplier provides us with his banking details.