Bringing you up to date. Part 1 – 30 Sep2015.

As I’ve said previously, I’ve neglected my blog a little this summer. I’ve been enjoying the opportunity to get out on the “Fire Bike” but have done a few bits and pieces in the workshop.

This update will cover “Rhino” the V7Sport.


I finally got around to reassembling the original Voxbell horns. I previously drilled out the rivets and sent the grilles away for chroming. The nice shiny bits have been sitting on a shelf ever since. The rest of the horn bodies were given a coat of paint and I used M3 button head Allen (cap head) screws, nuts and washers to reassemble them.

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I wired each one up to my spare battery and… nothing. Not a sound from either of them. I found that, if I loosened the screws they would work. So they just needed adjustment. If you separate the working parts of each horn you have these.

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The way they work is that the electromagnetic coil in the centre attracts the metal plate in the cover. When this happens, the two “ears” of the metal plate push on the Bakelite plate which opens some points to break the circuit and the coil releases its grip on the plate. The points then close again allowing the whole business to repeat itself but, very quickly so making the sound. To the right of the Bakelite plate and points you can see the end of an adjusting screw which is in the back of the horn body.

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I found that I had to screw it in on both horns before I could get a sound. Minor adjustments were made to get the best volume. They are very loud!

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The set comprises of high and low tone horns. Here is what one looked like before I dismantled it.

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Engine Breather Box.

I bought some breather hose and clips to refit the repainted breather box. Another part taking up space on the shelf.

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The first thing to do is to drop the ball valve into the top of the main engine breather.

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Then, of course, I found that you can’t get that breather box back on with the air filters fitted. So they had to come off. There is just enough room then to fit the two lower pipes to the box then fit them to the engine block. The main outlet from the box is routed down and under the gearbox to a bracket mounted to the rear engine bolt. you can see its route in these photos.

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Two small breather pipes go to the vents on the rocker box covers.

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There is also a breather from the gearbox which is routed up and tied to the top frame rail. I’ll have to get some more for this as I’m a few inches short.


I hadn’t refitted the generator because I’ve been painting the rotor with coats of lacquer. I tested the windings on both rotor and stator and found everything was in order. However, the original paper tape around the rotor windings was breaking up.

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I bought a small quantity of clear coil insulating varnish and have given the windings that I can see two good coats of it.

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This has stuck everything back together and hopefully vibration is now less likely to break the windings and cause the rotor to fail.

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I hadn’t fitted an oil seal to the timing case so this was done carefully now.

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The smallest amount of oil was applied to the rotor and this was refitted.

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and the stator fitted back over it. I have the brushes at the top although I know there is advice to turn it so that the brushes are less likely to jump and lose contact when the bike goes over a bump! I’m reluctant to move them from where they have always been. The brush springs seem plenty strong enough and I’ve not had any problems in the past.

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My generator is still the original “low output” version standard on the V7Sport. The higher output version can be fitted if an extra wire is included in the generator loom. However it requires a new stator, rotor and rectifier board. My system still works and the bike was always able to live with its headlight on so, when I do the wiring, I’ll include the extra cable ready to upgrade, if I have to, at some point in the future.

The cover was refitted. I even gave it a bit of a polish!

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and finally

I fitted some wires to support the front brake cables. Rhino has never had any of these. The cables have always been free to clank against the front mudguard. Some V7Sports had holes in the mudguard to take rubber cable guides. I didn’t fancy drilling for these so fitted these cable guides for a Lambretta scooter! They should do the job. If it looks like they’ll wear through the cover of the brake cable I shall take them off and make do without.

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That’s it for now. I’ll be back soon to tell you what I’ve done to the loopframe V7.

V-Twin Rally – 28 to 31 Aug 2015.

Over the August Bank Holiday weekend I attended the Moto Guzzi Club GB V-Twin Rally on the V7 Fire Bike. It’s one of my favorite events and was held at the riverside sports ground in Fordingbridge, Hampshire as has been the case for the last twelve years or so. I’ve been a regular visitor to these rallies for 15 years. Sadly this is to be the last “V-Twin”, at least in its current format. Apart from this year, attendances have been down and running at a financial loss to the club.

Fordingbridge is on the edge of The New Forest and entails a journey of about 200 miles each way from my home in West Wales. The forecast was for showers but I set off without my waterproofs on and got away with it. The sky was grey and the wet roads were evidence of heavy rain at times but it missed me! It was fairly sunny on arrival so I set up the tent in a quiet corner before going shopping for supplies.

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There were probably about 400 bikes at the rally and a large proportion joined the Saturday morning parade around the town. V-Twin motorcycles of all makes are welcome at the rally and on the parade. The majority were Guzzis with Harley-Davidsons next. Victory, KTM, Ducati and Morini were represented as well this year along with some 180° V-Twins from BMW!

Here I am in the parade. It’s not a good photo and is a still from a video of part of the parade.

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The evenings were spent sampling the beer, talking rubbish and listening to the bands in the marquee. On the Sunday I took a ride to Sammy Miller’s Motorcycle Museum which is well worth the trip.

During the weekend for some reason I didn’t take many photos. Here are the ones I took of “my” type of Guzzi.

V7Sport Telaio Rosso Replica.

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A well looked after red V7Sport

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There weren’t any 750S or S3 this year.

His and her V7s belonging to a couple from the Netherlands.

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There were also these two nice loopframe Californias.

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I had to include a picture of this Le Mans outfit ridden from Belgium.

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On the Sunday night awards are given for longest distance traveled to the rally, the concours and best engineered bike. There is also the Mayor’s Choice award which I won with The Fire Bike!

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I woke on the Monday morning to the sound of rain on the tent. It continued as I packed the bike and pretty much rained most of the way back to the Severn bridge into Wales.

I’m really enjoying riding the V7. I’m happy to keep the speed down and to take it easy and it’s such a relaxed ride. You can’t hide with a bike like this. Every time I stop there seems to be someone who wants to talk about it.

UPDATE; Keith from the Squadra Guzzista Forum had a better photo of me on the V7 Fire Bike in the Fordingbridge V-twin Parade .

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