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Sportster Motorcycle Air intake, Carburetor, EFI, Fuel, and Exhaust Problems, advice and/or how tos for Sporster and Buell motorcycle carburators, Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI), Air Intake, Fuel and Exhaust.

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  #11  
Old 4th August 2020
JonesL JonesL is offline
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Bendix w/ insulator pictures.
Had to put longer studs in the carb flange.
A view of my "Plumber's Nut" clamps made from oversized nuts that used to hold a street light mast down. Bored them out and split them then added threaded sleeves so the nut halves will clamp down
Got everything buttoned up. It started and runs and didin't have any parts left over so I figured the job was a success.
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Looks good!
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One can buy the phenolic sheets and make their own to suit.

It is how I roll when I don't have them fancy S&S aluminum spacers.
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  #14  
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I'm getting a little off track here but the above mention of S+S spacers reminds me that S+S uses an O ring to seal between carb and aluminum manifold, or carb then aluminum spacer then manifold. So there's solid contact between all aluminum parts that have very good thermal conductivity. I like the O ring idea but maybe the heat thing is one disadvantage.

The thick gasket that HD uses between carb and manifold has at least SOME insulating properties and many stock ironhead manifolds are cast iron, not aluminum.

I don't think I've ever had a problem with an over heated carb. Or maybe I have but just didn't know it.
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That's a good point.

I wonder how many do have a heating fuel problem and don't know it.
I've seen reference to only finding out by using a clear fuel hose or a clear fuel filter.
Unless gas is coming out the carb or the tank is gurgling, it just may not be noticeable.
I wonder if the reason the insulator was pulled from Sportsters only was the engine size and/or manifold material.
Installed on 86 - 1100 but not 85 - 1000.
86-87 had an aluminum intake. In 88, they went to a rubber intake.
No need for the block then.
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there is nothing wrong with wood.
when they made the first merlin 750cu/in chevy engine, there was no manifold for it so one was made out of wood, oak i do believe, and it turn in tremendous numbers.
as far as spacers, heat maybe one reason but is it possible that the extra induction volume helped, done all the time.
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Yeah, in a pinch, there are many options.
My experience (not professionally) is the thicker planks are sometimes more dense.
Hence cutting a 2x down to 1" or smaller with a planer, router or even a sander would work.
Anybody remember using an empty milk carton for a 4 barrel carb gasket?
I once used a Pontiac air cleaner on a Chevy and needed a spacer to attach it.
The options were 1" and 3" I believe (too short and too long).
I cut a section of 2x and made the hole with a jigsaw. Problem solved.

Here is the S&S spacer needspeed mentioned.
XLF member biknut did some testing with it to see if it helped with pinging and improving mid range performance.
http://www.sportsterpedia.com/doku.p...lk:ref:carb01p
Results of testing;
The effect on piston ping was noticeably positive.
Compared to before the spacer was installed it's very difficult to make it ping.
Not quite impossible, but there was a very noticeable positive effect.

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Old 6th August 2020
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hippysmack, you're right, wood is a great insulator. But since it's porous and organic, it does have a tendency to swell up when moist and dry out and crack when it dries out. Sealing the grain slows that from happening. Hardwoods are better since the grain is tighter.
Marketing and customer perception are very important so getting some people to accept that some mechanical parts of their car or truck or motorcycle are wooden might not be an easy sell.
Phenolics are a pretty good man-made material for the insulating end of things. Maybe even better than aluminum since metals can still pick up and transmit heat. If it wasn't true, they wouldn't make pots and pans out of aluminum.
Regardless of the material, it's possible to get spacers so thick that they may start to act as intake runners.
Back in my drag racing days, short and long ram manifolds came and went when they showed they produced lots of horsepower, but in a pretty narrow RPM band.
For my specific application, a 3/8" thick phenolic insulator block gave me everything I wanted from it.
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Yeah, I'm just rambling on.
As for appearance, a wood block might have sold better back when station wagons had wood side paneling.
At one point, the MoCo added a Sportster gasket to the phenolic spacer on BTs since they originally didn't install one.
I see you wrapped both sides of the spacer as well.
Only makes sense to me.
It's just interesting to see progressions the factory went through over time.
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