Well assembled the idler drive pulley by welding in a new idler rod. I did not pay attention to what material was for the rod as it fit just fine. Welded it all up and when I went to fit the pulley/sprocket assembly in the frame I had to pry it apart to get in the pulley well as I was fighting the dam thing it went CRACK and the welded in rod broke. Part of it was in the bracket hole so I went to center punch it and drill it out. I could not center punch it or drill it, it was hard like a diamond. The rod must have been stainless. I had to mill it out with a carbide mill bit, I tried a HSS one and it just burnt the end off and ruined it. Ground the back of the other side and used my 20 ton press to push the rod thru the hole and it was straining the press before it popped out. I decided to go with a 3/8 stainless bolt to hold the idler in so in the future replacing bearings or taking it apart will be easier. Got the bars almost rust free now. Pics below are not in order but you can see the first iteration with the welded axle for the idler then the bolt.
Well finally got back to working on this powell. Most of the frame parts are ready for paint or powdercoat. Today I finished removing the outer fork tubes from the trees. Had to bore out the trees to fit the 1.250 DOM tube I bought for the outers. Once I finish welding them in and getting the inners made I will decide if I want the outers/trees and handlebars contraption plated. The lowers I am going to make out of polished stainless tube.
Building it strong Ole. Thanks for the update. My chrome shop also offers aluminum polishing services at a level that exceeds what I am able to do. I believe most chrome shops do, since they have to polish the substrates anyway during plating. Cheaper than all out plating non-ferrous. Lowers in SS is a good modification.
Jigged up the front forks to weld them up only to remember I did not cut the tubes for a retaining ring to hold the guts in. Now I get to re jig them after cutting the grooves. Does anyone know if the bushings are a slide in fit in the outers or a press fit? I ordered oillite bushes from McMaster Carr today. I also have some derlin rod I could make bushes out of but the originals were bronze so I am inclined to go with that.
Ole, those bronze oil lite bushings slid in, and were not pressed. The entire lower fork unit was held captive by ring as you said. Since you have to weld that steel ring on to the lowers anyway, you could make an easier time of it by taping for a set screw in that steel band instead of machining for a ring. Looking good my friend. I posted the guts already on page four or something.
Dave I have all your pics in my Powell folder for reference. Just watched your YouTube Powell video a little while ago to scythe myself to work on it. Thanks for the info on slip fit. Not sure I am understanding about the inner ring? I was going to machine a inside groove 1/4” above the bottoms of the outer tubes for a round snapping like the way it was originally. On the lowers I was going to install bush then short spring then make a ring and weld it on, are you saying to thread it and hold it with a set screw?
I was thinking, instead of using a ring, use a set screw. Just offering that, since you were talking about having to take them apart to machine. You have more tools and skill than I do, so maybe it's no big deal like it would be for me. And I detest that snap ring. Tote Gotes are held in check with a retaining screw, as are some others. The method you are describing is far more elegant.
The lowers would still slide, but a welded-on stop could be added to prevent the entire lower end from falling out during some sweet jumps.
Also, when I replaced the bushings with oil lite I got off an Ebay vender, I had to machine them down to fit. LOL, just disregard if I am not making sense.
I’m interested in everyone’s thoughts on machining Oilite bushings. I did some reading last winter on the topic. The goal is not to smear- in and fill the craters on the surface being machined. The suggestions were to run a razor sharp cutting bit at really high rpm’s and trickle constant cutting fluid. Anything less will reduce the sponge character of the material. And to keep the cutter moving and not pause to inspect. I ran a sharp cutter at 804 rpm’s, my maximum, with a steady trickle of cool tool II. I followed the on-line suggestions for re-introducing oil to the bushing. The details of that escapes me now. I think I used straight 30w and a one pound torch.
The bushing is on our Bird Sears Runabout fork bolt assembly.
Thought this might help.
Powells are kinda hen’s teeth for me in Michigan.
I didn’t think about it. I made a lot of bearing bronze bushes years ago for ATKrider and it cut beautifully but the material came off like powder not chips. The bushes I ordered today were oil lite so I’ll see how it cuts and let you know.
I received the oilites from McMaster and had to turn both inside and outside a touch. I tig brazed on the fork legs after first tacking them with the mig. Finished making the lower forklegs except for welding the crimp and adding a metal thing on one side of the original leg that looks to locate the round bearing side axle. Now I have to see about getting the outer forks plated as well as handlebar assembly. I also need to get snap rings for the retaining grooves. I think I will leave the bushes the current longer length for more support for the fork leg. The stainless thing which is one tube inside another is for the retaining ring for the lower leg to retain the spring and bush. I will weld each end together then cut it and tack it onto the lower leg like the original.