Author Topic: Details of "crud catcher" mud flap fitted to front of WW I dispatch bikes?  (Read 2335 times)

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Offline spency777

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Hi everyone,
I've just entered the Banbury run for the first time and am wondering if I should make a spray guard between the front wheel and front cylinder in case the weather is bad on the day.
My bike is a 1924 2 3/4hp TS so not wartime issue but I've seen the following video on YouTube which shows the mudflap quite clearly: "WW1 1916 Douglas 2 3/4 hp War Department Motorcycle".

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=rtHhTW0TOL8&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DrtHhTW0TOL8

Does anyone out there have one fitted? Or alternatively have a sketch/ photo of one?
Basically I'd like to make a replica so I'd need details of how it mounts to the frame downtube and the shape.

Otherwise maybe you might have some alternative suggestions to stop the front spark plug shorting out when it gets wet which is the whole point of the exercise!

Thank you all.

Offline Chris

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Hi Spency
   The mud shield was only fitted to machines used in WW1. I don't believe that they were ever fitted by the Douglas factory but were locally fitted by artificers in the field or base workshops. The material of the shield is usually stiff leather and the shapes vary considerably as does the means of mounting. Some have a square hole, some round for air flow to the front cylinder. In terms of outer profile I have pictures of despatch riders on mounts fitted with shields with both square or radius corners. I have never had problems with normal rain on any of my post WW1 2.3/4hp models none of which have the shield. I have a shield on my 1916 despatch riders mount which these days is for appearance only. In any case even with the shield in place heavy rain would still be carried through the ventilation hole onto the front cylinder sparking plug. I don't think that you need to bother with a shield for the Banbury Run. I won't have one on mine. Chris. 

Offline spency777

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Thanks for the reply Chris,
That definitely explains why each picture I've seen of the mud flap has been slightly different.
Do you take any precautions against rain getting into the electrics or is it robust enough not to suffer?
I'd hate it to spoil my first Banbury run through lack of experience ( I've had the bike for less than a year and it's never seen rain in my ownership ).
All the best,
Richard

Offline Chris

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Hi Richard
   The only precaution I take against rain in respect of the electrics is to have rubber boots over the joints where the HT leads enter the pick-ups. On one occasion with two Douglas 2.3/4hp bikes on an open trailer I drove 250miles in torrential rain for the whole journey and both machines had a good spark on both plugs at the end of the journey. On one occasion on the Isle of Wight I developed a misfire in pouring rain which turned out to be due to water entering the float chamber of the carburettor via the tickler.  Chris.

Offline spency777

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Sounds like a little heat proof sealant around the HT lead ends should do the trick. A lot simpler than making a replica mud flap.
Thanks for your time Chris,
Regards
Richard

Offline Black Sheep

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This is Geoff Brazendale's 1914 2 3/4 hp with crud catcher. Must slow you down in a headwind!

« Last Edit: 15 May 2014 at 22:13 by Dave »