Usually I'd shy away from a project pictured as such, but looking around at what was there it looked pretty complete, and the price was such that there was minimal risk in taking it on, even if there wasn't a title. I called the guy immediately and told him I wanted to take a look at it as soon as possible, which turned out to be the afternoon of the next day.
This is what it looked like when I got there:
Looking more like a bike, looking more and more complete. I was checking out the Dell'orto SS1 Carburetors (which was the first clue this was really a 1967 model instead of a 68), the the Borrani record rims (free of bends and scarring), the engine that seemed to be free (or at least it moved a little when I put the driveshaft into the transmission and pulled a little), and was trying to hide my excitement at what I was seeing. Apparently the bike has undergone a top-end rebuild back in the 70's and for one reason or another the guy started to disassemble it in 1976 to chrome the frame and repaint and then just let it sit for 40 years!
I checked out the numbers and found the frame to match the title (again a major plus), but the engine was different. I know this isn't as big of a deal with motorcycles as it is with cars, but I wanted to do a little more research on the numbers before pulling the trigger. I told the guy I was really interested, his price was fair, but that I'd call him a little later after I checked out the issue with the numbers and some other things like working out delivery if I was going to buy it. I was warned there were more people interested and I thought I was going to lose the bike. Long story short, the numbers never matched from the factory (common on early V7 Guzzis apparently), based on the numbers it really was a 1967 model (and early 67 at that) and was just titled as a 1968 (likely when it was sold instead of when it was manufactured), and when I called to say I'd buy it, he said he'd deliver it if I paid the tolls and paid cash - no problem. Honestly, getting to that point was a little difficult because he was afraid of turning up and me robbing him, I was afraid of leaving a hefty deposit and him never turning up, in the end we both decided to trust each other and make it happen.
All the bits and pieces upon delivery. 3 seats (1 solo, 1 stock bench seat, 1 3/4 seat off of a Honda or something), fairing, Wixom saddlebags, tool boxes, side covers, all the tins, complete engine and trans, brand new gasket set, a VERY COMPLETE bike.
This was the icing on the cake. Like I said before, I was told the bike had undergone some top-end work in the 70's and was parked shortly thereafter. Well, the registration and inspection tags confirmed the latter, and this stack of receipts from the 70's confirmed the former. Complete top-end job, new con-rods, new pistons, this guy spent a lot of money and I can't believe he never really used it thereafter. Note: there is nothing on the receipts about the chrome-lined cylinders. Those will definitely need to be inspected before any start-up attempts on this bike.
Rockers look nice and clean. I was expecting a rusty mess and was very pleasantly surprised to find not even a speck of surface rust.
This is what the inside of a carburetor that's been sitting for 40 years looks like.
This is what it looks like after an overnight bath in B12 carb cleaner. Still can't get the idle jet off, or the jet carrier (which doesn't look like any others I've seen on an SS1 carb), but I'll get them, and then dip it all over again. The other carb is currently taking its turn in the chem bath. Also, the main jet looks nothing like anything I've ever seen before. you can see it in the middle of the picture at the bottom (to the right of the mixture screw/spring)l it had a spring attached to it leading to another jet with 4 outlet ports that sat up in the jet carrier. I'll have to see what the other side looks like when I disassemble it, but things don't seem quite right here...
I'm going to have to take some measurements and fabricate an engine stand before I finally move the engine and trans out of the milk-crate storage - then the real fun will begin.