Well, it's been about a year since I have given an update on my 1921 Harley-Davidson replica racer, which I call "Rat Racer." It's always a continuing work in progress, with several changes since I last wrote about it in Episode 29. To start with, it made an appearance in the Rat's Hole Bike Show at Ocala Bike Fest this past July. Teddy Smith, and his staff at the Rat's Hole do a first class job, and were great folks to work with.
Rat Racer at the Rat's Hole Bike Show at Ocala, FL. Bike Fest
Photo by Julius Williams
We were lucky enough to walk away with a win in the Pre 1935 Antique Bike Class and received a great plaque designed by Teddy Smith.
Rats Hole Bike Show Plaque
By Teddy Smith
The Mikuni, being a much more modern carburetor, has several advantages. First they are relatively cheap, especially compared to period alternatives. Second tuning parts are readily available and reasonably priced. Finally, I am very familiar with tuning these Mikuni carburetors from my AMA road racing days. With a little tuning, the engine ran strong throughout the rev range with the Mikuni.
The next problem was a working brake. The rear wheel assembly with the Free Wheel Clutch assembly I am using, also comes with a period style drum brake on the right side of the hub. The trouble is the hub assembly with the clutch and brake, would no fit my racing frame. I opted to use the hub with the clutch assembly, and find an alternative brake for the front end. This required a pretty significant offset in the lacing of the rear wheel to get the tire aligned with the centerline of the frame, but after a few hours of painstaking adjustment, everything lined up.
|Free Wheel Clutch Rear Wheel After Alignment|
|Front Wheel Assembly with Drum Brake|
With all the major problems solved, it was time for a road test.
Rat Racer Road Test - November 6, 2016
Lee Merkel Field - Sylacauga, Alabama
|Rat Racer - Road Ready|