The Koning Zelfbouwdagen of Motoport Hengelo has restored an old tradition: Making your own motorcycle is a party. In the past, that party was easier to celebrate because the RDW then still roamed in twilight areas and because craftsmanship was not as scarce as it has become now. In terms of modern self-reliance, we recently heard from a BMW K1600 owner that he even had the tire pressure of his six-cylinder checked at the dealer. But Moto Guzzi enthusiast Jan Keijzer is the opposite. He is a genetic engineer and adapted his Moto Guzzi to his own taste. Not only appearance, but also technical. Moto Guzzi DIY.
But it is still self-built
And the results of that work range from endearing to very impressive. And nowadays it is even the case that few self-built motorcycles are still driving around on license plates that simply come from the loose trade. That is a good thing. Because although there is still quite some administrative room, an insurer can (after knocking!) Become extremely difficult to do if a license plate has a too loose relationship with its carrier. Again on the plus side: an optically sound and neat impression prevents many questions and doubts.
The Ural / Dnepr / BMW / DAF / Honda construction on the photo would now be very risky on its BMW R65 license plate. Only the front fork and the front wheel came from the BMW stocks. But what is always impressive is the number of hours spent on the projects in question. The making of this year's 'Classic' Motor Guzzi by Jan Keijzer began in… 2003 with a Guzzi with serious fire damage. And on Boxing Day 2019 he made his maiden trip. The result of all work is proof that with good preparation and knowing what you are doing you can achieve a result that the factory would have been proud of.
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Moto Guzzi DIY
As a Guzzi enthusiast and genetic engineer, Jan had tackled motorcycles before. Guzzi's changed to your own taste. But the idea of turning heads had been on his mind for some time. The exhaust channels at the 'back' of the head, the inlet at the front. He saw the approach in classic sidecar races and the reason behind it was clear: Combustion engines simply work best when the intake air is as cool as possible. And in competition sidecar combinations with, especially boxer engines (BMW!), The inhalation side between the 'motorcycle' and the third wheel was very unfavorable in terms of the temperature of the air to be drawn from there.
Cool air is better
That the cool intake side will be at the front of the engine is then an advantage. But of course, according to the Holy Number 14, that also has its disadvantage, just like every advantage that 'hep'. At speed there can be some sort of pressure filling caused by the wind blowing inwards and that excess pressure can also act very strange on your mixture formation due to pressure differences in the float tank. That way your mixture supply can get seriously confused.
For the rest, it is of course a matter of 'mirroring' the cams on the camshaft so that the right valves open at the right times. And that making the new camshaft is, apart from the painting that was done by Jan's comrade Theo Terwel from Vorden when he was working on a Ducati Mike Hailwood Replica. The Ducati correct green is otherwise identical to a Toyota color from the seventies.
The camshaft had to be mirrored
The British did not respond to emails with questions at first because they only responded to questions they answered. Something like that. After Jan finally handed over his credentials, the British took his question seriously. And they could help him. It was clearly not for an Ali Xpress price, but British craftsmanship has its price.
Okay, the entire Guzzi has been firmly tackled
But in principle, Jan remained very loyal to his Moto Guzzi DIY with regard to the parts used. In order to give the wide rear wheel space, there had to be room in the entire drive train from the block. The block is now three centimeters from the center and if the rear wheel had two more layers of paint, the cardan would have hit the wheel. And that was the big job.
Oh yes: the rear frame has also been changed to give space to the exhaust system made by Startwin. Furthermore, there is LED lighting all around. And because direction indicators cannot be small enough, Jan opted for a highly modern approach. Furthermore, the number of technical and detailed solutions is good for a search picture or a quiz. But the idea of building a unique classic free of charge? That was the guideline.
After building up the whole, the Guzzi was allowed to use the computer again. The diagnostic screen only reported that the throttle valve control was turned 180 degrees. That was a matter of converting a few plugs.
The Guzzi started on the first attempt and the mixture provision was almost okay. On his first trip, he only turned out to be a bit too rich in the central area. And the air filters will probably get 'nosecones' to prevent annoying blows.
But whether we have ever seen smaller direction indicators on a motorcycle?
And the key ring? That is a badge for the bumper cars at the fair.
Anyway: for Jan and his classic Guzzi, 2020 seems to be a great year!
Also interesting: Jan's Moto Guzzi: Classic or not?