Author Topic: Handlebar and knee grips  (Read 8615 times)

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Offline Killipso

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Handlebar and knee grips
« on: 11 Sep 2011 at 22:17 »
I'm in the process of getting one or maybe even two Marks back together - a Mk I and a Mk III. I believe I have all the original parts and maybe even some spares. However, in anticipation of missing bits and pieces I'm trying to source potential suppliers. Within the forum I've already found some useful leads, but so far for rubber components like handlebar grips, and more especially tank knee grips, I've not got a clue. I'm hoping for replicas should I need to buy replacements. Can anyone point me to a UK supplier or maybe an overseas one?

Offline Doug

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #1 on: 13 Sep 2011 at 00:52 »
Killipso,

Mark series knee grips (and possibly handlebar grips) are available to London Douglas Motor Cycle Club members via their post-war spares scheme.

-Doug

Offline Killipso

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #2 on: 15 Sep 2011 at 10:38 »
Thanks for that Doug.

In the interest of anyone unable to access the LDMCC spares scheme I wonder if anyone can clarify the make/model of knee grip found on the MKIII. Is it for instance the John Bull No.19 advertised on websites like these:


Offline Doug

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #3 on: 16 Sep 2011 at 00:41 »
Killipso,

The Mark 1-5 series did indeed use the John Bull pattern #19.

-Doug

Offline Killipso

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #4 on: 16 Sep 2011 at 09:20 »
Thanks Doug. In that case can I advise that from my research so far the knee grips currently on offer via various websites are not all of equal quality or necessarily of indentical design. I'm told by http://www.vintage-motorcycle.com/ that there are both UK and India manufactured versions. They have slightly different dimensions though not profoundly so. The UK manufactured ones sold by British Only Austria are more robust and have the correct profile in all dimensions. Those sold by http://www.classicmotorcyclespares.com/ and some others possibly, are described as flat on their back surface and not suited to the MK tank.

The difference of price is quite significant - roughly 15 Vs 80. I wonder if anyone knows a UK source for the knee grips where the price for the UK ones is less than 80?

Offline Dawn

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #5 on: 16 Sep 2011 at 12:45 »
As you are in UK, you can get a good price when looking around the autojumbles.  Again I have seen them for 15 going to to over 50!  You just need to shop around.

Regarding twist grips - I've got modern ones (shock horror) on mine (with an older looking pattern) & got other half to cut them down at what would have been the gear switch end.

Good Luck.

Offline Killipso

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #6 on: 16 Sep 2011 at 21:47 »
Dawn, It sounds like you are a member of the LDMCC, have you not tried the spares scheme?

Sadly the  chance of me getting to an auto jumble is very slim :(

Ps. I don't know how my posts have come across, but if it seems I'm the sort that's far too picky, it's because I'm on a mission to complete a restoration job my father started twenty years ago and I want it to be just as he would have wanted it. Also, being a tech type I just can't help myself...

I did use to ride a Honda CB250RS in the late 80's and wasn't so fussed that I wouldn't put a Motad pipe on that  :)  Cut down grips I'm sure are just fine, probably more in the spirit that bikes were originally maintained.

Thanks for the Good Luck, I'm gonna need it...

« Last Edit: 19 Sep 2011 at 20:27 by Killipso »

Offline Doug

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #7 on: 17 Sep 2011 at 01:05 »
The knee grips should certainly have, and require, some curvature to the back to fit nicely up against the petrol tank. I do not recall if I got my 'grips through the LDMCC or Vintage Rebuilds, it was over twenty years ago. They are made from room temperature cure urethane. Inferior to the original vulcanized rubber, but short of finding un-perished original stock at an autojumble, the only thing that was available on the market at the time. The issue with the urethane is it is much more prone to tearing then the alternate room temperature vulcanizing silicon rubber would be (but far more economical.) You had to be very careful when stretching it over the backing plate, it would flex but definitely did not like to stretch. This is also the reason a lot of the reproduction foot pegs are prone to splitting. The other problem was after combining the two parts of the liquid compound the manufacturer did not pull a vacuum on it, so it they have a lot of small pinholes from the air bubbles entrained in the mixing. My Mark 3 is no prize winner, so it matters little, but the ease of a tear starting was a nuisance. Fortunately the tear did not continue around to the front.
-Doug

[fix typos.  17Sep11, -Doug]
« Last Edit: 18 Sep 2011 at 02:45 by Doug »

Offline Killipso

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #8 on: 17 Sep 2011 at 13:15 »
That's interesting to know Doug. I'm advised that ones sold by the LDMCC under the spares scheme, are made here in the UK but I wonder if they are rubber or urethane? They are priced reasonably.

Offline Dawn

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #9 on: 19 Sep 2011 at 10:01 »
"Dawn, It sounds like you are a member of the LDMCC, have you not tried the spares scheme?"

Am indeed a member - I'm the one who writes LNL news in the Conrod.  I don't actually need grips, just more time to do things with my Douglas. I was just replying to your query as its hard when you are new to the Douglas world.

I found twist grips at Autojumbles but didn't like the pattern.  Found some I liked at a local bike shop (were similar to the ones already on the bike) & were half the price hence why I went down that route. 

It states on your profile - that you are from the Nottingham area, like myself.  Why not pop along to your local section.  We meet at The Fox @ Kelham nr Newark on the A617 on the last Weds of the month (except in December).  Usually meet up around 8pm officially but some members meet around 7.45 (cos their so excited).  Hope to see you there sometime. 

Dawn



« Last Edit: 19 Sep 2011 at 12:33 by Dawn »

Offline Killipso

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #10 on: 19 Sep 2011 at 19:51 »
Thanks Dawn, Believe me, everyone's replies including yours, both Posts and PMs, have been a big help - they've put some important parts of the puzzle in place. I only hope that all the other questions that will inevitably arise as I restore the Mark, wont be too much. At some point hopefully I can give something back.

Regarding the local LDMCC section; at some point I'd very much like to come along to a get together. Unfortunately I'm hard pressed to get out at the moment, but when I do get chance I'll be sure to head over.




« Last Edit: 19 Sep 2011 at 20:27 by Killipso »

Offline Killipso

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Knee grip retaining plate bolts
« Reply #11 on: 05 Oct 2011 at 05:51 »
Can someone let me know bolt length and thread type of the bolts that hold the retaining plates for the knee grips on the MK III tank? I've ordered some new grips from Jeff Hunter Engineering, urethane replicas (I'm advised are pretty good), and will use them to assist in getting the paint lines correct on the tank.... but only if I can bolt the securing plates in place.

Just a note: The new bits are certainly not cheap by mail order, though not unfairly priced. I'm currently dreaming of the chance to go to an autojumble (as a result of several kind suggestions by post and PM) where maybe I could save some cash. Consequently wondering when the kids will be old enough to take along, allowing me to do the same...

Thanks for your help everyone.

Offline eddie

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #12 on: 05 Oct 2011 at 06:43 »
Raif,
         The original screws were dome head 1/4"BSF x about 3/8" long. The spares book lists 2 washers per screw to space the plate away from the tank. Using the kneepads will not help in getting the tank lining correct as the lining did not follow the shape of the kneepads.

                         Regards,
                                         Eddie.

Offline Killipso

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #13 on: 05 Oct 2011 at 21:57 »
Thanks for that Eddie. I was able to get some bolts/screws as you describe, from a friend today - they fitted of course. Regarding the paint layout, my concern was to establish the uppermost point for the line that sits between blue and black at the sides. Photos I've seen of the bike, now mine, previously my Dad's,  don't make it clear, but now I'll be able to fit a pair of knee grips and be able to mark the line. My contour lines will be based on the observation that the line should pass next to the top edge of the grip, while at the bottom of the tank the line can be overlapped or not depending on the fit of the knee grip on the securing plate. As you say however,  the layout doesn't actually follow the shape of the knee grips. Old photos from NCR and elsewhere seem to confirm all this. So, now I'm confident I'll get the layout right.

There is some paint from the 1970 restoration my Dad did, but not enough in itself to avoid the necessity for my research.

Anyway, I have an extra tank that is currently primered so I'll draw the lines on it and this I'll hand over to the guys restoring the tank so they can copy the layout accurately.

Hope that makes sense.

On the subject of knee grips, are left and right grips exact mirrors, i.e. of similar curvature and dimension? I ask this because the original pair I've been looking at this evening are not exactly the same. One is slightly larger than the other so that I'm thinking I may want to look through the boxes of spares to see if I can find an exact match... or not depending on what members say here.

Cheers,


Offline Dawn

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #14 on: 07 Oct 2011 at 15:10 »
Hi Raif,

Yes both knee grips shouls be the same size & dimension & as you say mirror image of each other.

Regards,

Dawn.

Offline Killipso

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #15 on: 07 Oct 2011 at 21:14 »
Thanks Dawn,

I have some new ones on order, but when I get chance will look to see if I can find the matching knee grip. Your response also goes some way to explaining the asymmetry I've found in the layout of one of my tanks and the knee grips thereon.

It is interesting though that two original John Bull knee grips could be so similar yet different. If one is a No. 19 what is the other? If it is also a No.19 then that means John Bull were either turning out knee grips from differing molds under the same product name at the same time, or, when they made new molds they took them from new forms that were not true replicas of their own original.

I've also found the two securing plates I've been working with are of different gauges of steel, which causes it's own problems.

Curious.


Cheers,


Offline eddie

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Re: Handlebar and knee grips
« Reply #16 on: 08 Oct 2011 at 06:30 »
Raif,
         If the kneegrip rubbers you already have have been stored on top of each other, the lower one will have spread under the weight of the other one, so will appear larger. The thickness of the retaining plates will have no effect on the fitting of the rubbers as the lip only hooks over the plate - the rubber does not have a groove that neatly fits the thickness of the plate.
       Regarding your comment about the asymmetry of the tank panelling - these tanks are now 60 years old, and in the days when they were made, they would have been hand finished by various operators in the paint shop, so are not likely to be exactly the same either tank to tank or even side for side. This sort of detail difference should not be regarded as a fault, but is what used to be classed as 'character', and made each machine unique.

      Regards,
                     Eddie.

 

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