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  #1  
Old 17th March 2011
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Moon Wolf Moon Wolf is offline
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Default A Forum is a Conversation

I do not mean to do an end-around on a closed thread, but I have given some consideration to what a forum should be and wanted to share a few thoughts.

A few months back we had an ongoing debate about whether or not the transfer valve from the crankcase to the primary on early Sportsters should be shut off, either by welding or with JB weld (this is offered only as an example; I do not intend to re-open the debate).

Informed opinions were offered on both sides. Being somewhat conservative in approach, I sided with the "leave-it-open" crowd, but others, whose thoughts and opinions I respect, continue to believe otherwise, and they can make a reasonable case for their point of view.

With this, as so many other issues, I don't think there is a right and wrong side, merely a difference of opinions. I could go down the line and come up with at least a dozen more examples. I'm not saying there aren't blowhards on the forum--that comes with the territory--but even they have their place.

Clearly, there are forum members whose opinions are more worthy of attention than others. For instance, if Patrick (the French Owl) or Dr. Dick or Pinion Gear disagree with something technical I've posted, I highly suggest you take their advice and not mine. Deciding who you are going to listen to is the price of membership--it's up to the individual member to figure out whose voice has gravitas and whose is a tinkling bell.

Still, I believe I have something to offer. I've been around these bikes for more than fifty years and have acquired a certain amount of knowledge. I've rebuilt motors, clutches, top ends and so on. Most of things I post on the forum are based on my experience. That doesn't make them right, and it doesn't make them wrong. I am still more than willing to listen to wiser voices and to take my licks where they come.

In other words, I will continue to offer my opinion on technical and aesthetic issues, with the full knowledge that occasionally I may be wrong.

Here is just one more example. One of our forum members believes that nothing is sacred, that these old bikes were made to be customized (I won't mention Ivan by name). While others, such as myself, feel that the integrity of original bikes should be maintained.

While I disagree with Ivan, I think that the discussion, and hence his point of view, has value. Frankly, I enjoy his rants. This, to me, is what a forum is all about--the love of these old bikes and the exchange of ideas. I don't believe there can be complete certitude on any of these issues (although there are certainly more and less-informed posts), and the notion that we shouldn't speak unless we're sure we're one-hundred percent sure we're right, even on technical issues, seems not just counterproductive, it seems entirely wrong headed.
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  #2  
Old 17th March 2011
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Default

Well said!
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  #3  
Old 18th March 2011
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Hi MoonWolf,

I'm not too sure I really want the moniker "best advise given here" frankly!!!

I' ve learned a lot on the net since it opened, but I also learned a lot before that, on me own cause nobody rode what I rode and the local Indie did not have a clue either...

Most of this "hands on, see what I can get away with here" comes from owning vintage bikes in France, no NOS bits, so you had to be sort of inventive and think outside the box if you wanted a ride at week ends...

Which means I've done stuff to keep me bikes going that I would not advise anybody else to follow and certainly wouldn't entertain telling here cause of liability laws... Riding the mods also told me after a while what I could get away with, as far as bodging is concerned, since either the mod worked, great!!!,... or I got another break down and thought I'd better find the right part now that the bodge has failed.

With the net come instant replies, and usually a lot of them and most of the time contradictory, but it is at a cost, since if you don't really know your bike, it's hard to tell who's advise to follow... Me, no probs, I can sit down next to me bikes and look at them while I rumage the problem over and analyse what guys told me and then separate the good bits from the not so good bits...

The old cast iron Sporty looks to me just like one of these old vintage bikes I used to have, simple, plenty of scope to mod or improve to suit the owner, and, if looked after with a minimum of elbow grease and common sense, it'll go on forever.

Still, I used to have the energy to contemplate a restoration, but not these days, so, Moon, you've got something over me!!! The only way I'm ever gonna have a resto is to buy one done by others, but that's not much fun really, so it won't happen anyday soon... So back to me dear specials!!!

Something else I found during all these years of owning bikes, there's a lot more to a bike than riding it, you should let it grow on you, long term ownership is a good recipy to flush out all this civilisation's bugs and wrongs and I'm not one bit loony if I spend a lot time in the garage on me own just thinking about other things and it gradually merges into what I should do to this or that part!!!

Patrick
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  #4  
Old 18th March 2011
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I think in the other thread I basically said the same.I love reading and learning damn I've been doing it this way for 30 yrs and look here this guy is doing it this way and it's quicker and cheaper and alot easier and better than what I assumed was the way to do it untill I read.
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  #5  
Old 18th March 2011
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my ex called it 'foot-tapping' !!!
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Old 18th March 2011
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I do my best to share my experience, but I also am in the camp of "Don't try this at home". I will never share a corner I cut, because of lack of the proper part or whatever. It may get someone else in trouble. If my unit craps out because of a corner I cut, I may share the experience, so no one else gets in trouble, but I would never suggest cutting a corner. For instance Loctite, I don't use it on my bikes. I take a wrench to the hardware regularly, to check things out. I don't suggest it, or have any disrespect for Loctite. It is my preference.
If I give anybody a bumb steer about anything, I certainly will stand corrected by any other member. Mr. Moon Wolf you do good.
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Old 18th March 2011
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Great post Moon Wolf! I couldn't have said it better. Everybody's opinion should be heard but, only some listened to.
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  #8  
Old 18th March 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefrenchowl View Post
Hi MoonWolf,

I'm not too sure I really want the moniker "best advise given here" frankly!!!

I' ve learned a lot on the net since it opened, but I also learned a lot before that, on me own cause nobody rode what I rode and the local Indie did not have a clue either...

Most of this "hands on, see what I can get away with here" comes from owning vintage bikes in France, no NOS bits, so you had to be sort of inventive and think outside the box if you wanted a ride at week ends...

Which means I've done stuff to keep me bikes going that I would not advise anybody else to follow and certainly wouldn't entertain telling here cause of liability laws... Riding the mods also told me after a while what I could get away with, as far as bodging is concerned, since either the mod worked, great!!!,... or I got another break down and thought I'd better find the right part now that the bodge has failed.

With the net come instant replies, and usually a lot of them and most of the time contradictory, but it is at a cost, since if you don't really know your bike, it's hard to tell who's advise to follow... Me, no probs, I can sit down next to me bikes and look at them while I rumage the problem over and analyse what guys told me and then separate the good bits from the not so good bits...

The old cast iron Sporty looks to me just like one of these old vintage bikes I used to have, simple, plenty of scope to mod or improve to suit the owner, and, if looked after with a minimum of elbow grease and common sense, it'll go on forever.

Still, I used to have the energy to contemplate a restoration, but not these days, so, Moon, you've got something over me!!! The only way I'm ever gonna have a resto is to buy one done by others, but that's not much fun really, so it won't happen anyday soon... So back to me dear specials!!!

Something else I found during all these years of owning bikes, there's a lot more to a bike than riding it, you should let it grow on you, long term ownership is a good recipy to flush out all this civilisation's bugs and wrongs and I'm not one bit loony if I spend a lot time in the garage on me own just thinking about other things and it gradually merges into what I should do to this or that part!!!

Patrick
That last paragraph is right on the money, Patrick. I couldn't have said it better.

And I didn't say yours was the best advice, just better than mine.
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  #9  
Old 18th March 2011
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Well said Moon Wolf.
I myself now nothing of these bikes and that is why I come
here, to learn. And I have learned a great deal since I started reading and
asking questions.
Take everyone ideas, sort them out and try to do what is
best for me or what I can do myself.
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  #10  
Old 18th March 2011
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i feelin this thread is really talkin about wisdom as opposed to knowledge.

after 10 years of puttin food on my table from workin on ironheads dawn to dusk, i knew just about every thing. ----knowledge

at 20 years i learned much more i knew at 10 years. and now i didnt know squat. -------wisdom
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