After about 2 weeks of debating, I decided to drop off the gas tank for powdercoating. My rationale was that this way the color would match the fenders and rims 100%, should be a tougher finish, and the cost was well below that of paint. I was mulling around the idea of painting the tank myself, it worked out somewhat ok with the BMW, but I'd like to hold this bike to a higher standard than my daily rider. I also bought some decals from Moto Macchi to decorate it with.
From the beginning I wanted this to be an "Aermacchi," instead of being labelled as an Aermacchi/Harley Davidson. With that in mind I ordered some late 50's macchi decals (pre-H-D acquisition) for the sides of the tank
Also got a neat race sticker for the top of the tank by the gas cap.
That I did receive in the mail, but it was easier to post the gif from the website. I always loved the look of such things on MV Agusta tanks and Aermacchi does have a race pedigree, in fact Harley's only road race victories were on Macchis, even though they pretend that part of their history never existed.
I should be receiving the gas tank back from powdercoat in another week or so, around the same time I should be getting the rear wheel back from truing out in California. You'd think things would be flying with the bike but small issues keep popping up that put things on hold.
I ordered another seat of bearings for the steering head. Apparently unsealed ball bearings are a rare commodity nowadays, so they came from Moto Macchi as well. Decided just to replace all the bearings instead of waiting till a later date and I now have peace of mind in that respect. However on reassembling the forks I found both seals to be leaking pretty badly. Don't know why the leak is just showing up now, but I have a feeling it has to do with the forks moving so much off the bike that the leaks were always there but just finally exposed themselves to a greater degree. Now I have a set of seals on order (going to be attached to the tank decals once they arrive from Italy) and I guess I'll just do a full fork rebuild.
While I had the triple clamp off I figured I'd lose the battered black paint and polish the upper and lower clamp up. I'm happy with the results. Also applied some touch up paint to the frame and cleaned up this and that. She looks pretty in the nude, going to have to attack that engine with some elbow grease and polish in the near future as well...
Also disassembled the instrument pods again and began digging through the electric. So many damaged wires and aged connections. I wound up cutting most of the splices to expose cleaner copper and resoldering everything. Thankfully there aren't too many wires on the bike. I took a look at the NOS CEV model 8042 horn/light switch that I bought to replace the original one on the bike and found a ton of wiring that doesn't match the wiring on the bike. Looks like I'll have to cut and splice again somewhere, but I'm going to hold off until the handlebars and controls are mounted. I don't want to make anything too short or awkward
So once again it's hurry up and wait. In the meantime I'd like to give a shout out to the shop doing the powdercoating. I've been using GSD Coatings in Keyport (http://www.gsdcoatings.com/cmsms/) and I've been really pleased with the work so far. The prices have been more than reasonable and the parts are coming back better than I'd have imagined. It's pretty cool looking at all the Ducati stuff in the shop when you go in as well. Ducati frames, tanks, and even a whole bike are in the offices. I think they have a race team as well.
Caught this outside the building when I was dropping off the tank... You don't ever see anything like this in my corner of NJ
They must belong to Lux Motorwerks next door to the place. My daughter looked at the R8 and said "oh look, Daddy's car!" I wish baby, I wish...