Subject:RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: Chainguard Date:Mon Aug 17 20:58:23 2015
Response to:20705
Hello Mr. Dave

The die cast covers are very smooth with no grain and the
vast majority of the time, have no imperfections. Sand cast
covers are just that. They were cast in the sand and MCC
didn't even use a really fine grain sand, like PetroBond. If
that wasn't bad enough, whatever foundry Harley switched to
in 1960 (I'm sure it was to save a dime) many of the
castings were horrible, have a look at just about any 60 and
later cylinder, some of the fins didn't even flow out into
the mold all the way)

Next time I open up the container that holds all the NOS
parts for my 53, I'll take the cover out and take a pic and
post it.

Some people ,like myself (and Les and Anna right now) are
anal about being correct (and them for good reason, seeing
how they have the very first 56 ST model). I know most people
could care less how correct their ride is, as long as they
can ride it and look good doing it. The bikes still turn
heads and gets tons of looks. But I have to try as hard as I
can to be "correct" when people are counting on me to do so.
Horn stamps,speedo stamps and even some of the later tail
light bodies that have a 6v stamp in yellow paint, bi-colored
Diamond and Duckworth chains, galvanized coil brackets and
speedo conduits, cloth cable conduits from 48-59,etc, were
there when they left the Factory, so they should be there
when the bike is restored. This is only if your are wanting
a really correct restoration. I don't knock any one for the
way they restore their bikes, as the bike is their baby.

The cases and mag cover are impossible to obtain the correct
sand cast finish, as they tend to have a very light oxide on
them when they get shaken outta the sand mold so ya got to
try and get them atleast close to that. Just blast the cases
with some fine abrasive then roll up your sleeves. Send the
ol' lady to get a pedicure or something (if she's anal about
her kitchen). Blow the dust off the cases after blasting and
blow out and run taps thru all the holes and get them clean.
Turn on some hot water, get a jug of Pamolive dish soap and a
box of SOS pads and start scrubbing. Every nook and cranny
that you can possible reach. Scrub until the cases are shiny.
Some cases are VERY rough and you can scrub all day and it
still looks pretty crappy, but atleast it's clean. Same for
the magneto side cover.

on a high point restoration, the die cast covers we hand
sand the scratches off of them, then polish them on the
buffer. Then run them thru the glass bead cabinet and knock
the mirror polish off them with fine glass beads at 20 psi,
then give them a light scrub in the sink with the soap and
SOS pads.

If ya look at Mr. Jerry's Factory pictures (here)

you can see that they are some what shiny, but not to the
point of a reflection. Over time, even the NOS die cast
covers end up getting an oxide on them.
This is just my idea of what they should look like. Others
might have there own ways too, which is fine. Some folks
really don't care about spend multiple hours working on a
side cover or cases, but some people do.


I bow to your superior knowledge. Please describe the die-
cast finish v. sand-cast finish.

As a restorer, given 50-year-old dirty, filthy, oil-stained
crankcases and similar condition engine-case covers, how do
you refinish them to "factory finish"?

What do you do to the engine cases?
What do you do to the engine covers?

We want to guide people in the right direction. If I'm
wrong, just tell me. I'm a big guy, I can admit when I'm
wrong (I quite often am), just tell me - and everyone else
who is reading this - what is right.


Dave , only the cases and magneto covers were sand cast the
generator covers and primary covers are die cast. I have a
NOS generator cover. These are "as die cast" Nothing is done
to them after they come outta the dies.