Two more jobs done – 15 Mar 2015.

Moto Guzzi is 94 years old. Founded 15th March 1921 in Genoa, Italy.

The side stand.

Six months after my accident I’m back riding and enjoying this new beasty. I have been struggling a bit with the side stand which snaps back up like a rat trap as soon as the weight is taken off it. I understand why this is done but know that not all loopframe Guzzis have a stand like this. I’ve found that deploying the stand while astride the bike is difficult. I can push the stand out but can’t keep holding it out properly as I lean the bike over because my other foot is nearly off the ground and my right wrist is too weak to hold the bike up. On absolutely level ground I can do it but, if there’s any slope, I have had to put the bike in gear and get off it to deploy the side stand and with that weak wrist it’s only a matter of time before I come to grief.

I decided I would make a modification, which could be undone later, so that the stand will stay down when deployed. I can then lean the bike over and get off without taking any chances.

Here you can see the original stand with the bike’s weight on it.


The top anchor point for the spring is behind the stand and so will always pull it up. I have seen other bikes where the anchor for the spring is on the stand bracket in front of the stand. This was what I needed to change. I didn’t think this would be particularly difficult but, in the end, it took me 15 hours to do!

The new spring anchor point looked like it needed to be exactly where a bolt passes through to hold a complicated plate with the existing anchor point on. I made up a special bolt to fit in the hole. This worked in that the stand would now stay down but when retracted it didn’t feel secure. I was concerned that I could go over a bump and the stand might flip down!

Second attempt involved welding a bent stud to a replica of the original spring plate. The bend would bring the pivot point up as well as forward so that the spring would go over centre both when the stand was up and down. This worked but the spring was now too short so a tab was fashioned to extend the length of the spring.

However, this plate wasn’t quite right and so a final version was fabricated this time using 2 bolts with their heads chamfered then welded together and to my replica of the old spring plate. Here the old arrangement is below my new version.


Now the stand both stays down and stows away securely.



I’m not sure if it would flip up if I rode off with the stand down and it caught on the ground. I’ll just have to train myself to make sure I remember to check it’s up. I didn’t have any problem on the S3 with a Cali stand and no interlock switch.

The only thing I might need to change is to cut the extra length off one of the threaded sections as I can see it will get in the way of removing the sump.

A luggage rack.

The Big-Red-One came with the police type panniers fitted but these are not very big and there is no top rack. I’m aiming to go to a rally at the end of the month so I needed the extra luggage capacity. I managed to find a suitable rack at TLM in The Netherlands.


It’s fitted to the top shock absorber mounts and shares the rear seat mounts on the frame with the pannier frame. It looks ok.


There’s always something else.

I had hoped to be able to just ride the Big-Red-One now and to get back to work on the Racing Rhino but it hasn’t worked out that way!

I went to the Borders and Mid-Wales Guzzi Club meet. At 60 miles each way it was the furthest I’ve done so far. When I got home and put the bike in the garage I found this.


It looks like the big seal has let go in the drive box. I’ve had 3 Guzzis with 4 drive boxes and this will make 4 times I’ve had to do this job. Replacing the seal’s not hard but, it’s usually failed because there’s a rust spot somewhere on the drive hub. Out of the 3 I’ve done before – 1 cleaned up with a scotchbrite pad, 1 had a pit filled with epoxy filler and 1 was so bad it had to be replaced. Wonder what I’ll find this time.

It’s a nuisance but it’s what you get when you run a bike that’s stood unused for quite some time.


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