Metallic Flake Oil


Five Star Vetteral
In July, I experienced a minor set-back with my 1100. The bolt that secures the rotating member or the charging system to the internal engine shaft, back out and the rotor backed off of the shaft and cracked the rear case of the motor.

I had just gotten off from work, went to the bike, fired it up and started putting my gear on. Luckily, while I was doing this, the motor made a “Tink” sound and then it made a “Clunk” sound and then there was silence. Why do I say luckily? It’s hard to image what may have happened if I was running down the road at 45 mph and 4,000 rpm.

One thing was certain, I was not riding it home, so the next day I rented a trailer and towed it home. When I started to look, nothing obvious stood out, so I decided to try to turn the motor through by hand… using the bolt on the back side of the rotor shaft. To get to that bolt, you need to take off a 17mm cap, so I stuck my wrench in to take off the cap and quickly found that the wrench was too big for the cap… what the hell? I found the problem.


That required the engine to be removed to fix it, so that meant it was going to have to wait for a while… I got back from my trip to Niagara Falls with the wife and couldn’t wait to tear into the bike to see how bad it was. I pulled the motor out and didn’t like what I saw.


So now I needed to replace the rear case, possibly replace the stator, the rotor, and who knows what else! Sometimes you have to pay to play. Well, in for a nickel in for a dime! While I was doing all of this I decided that I was also going to put the single carburetor manifold and the Solex 34 Pict 3 carb on the bike in place of the 4 stock carbs, refurbish the WJ 3 that I have and replace the WJ 4 that is on the bike with the WJ 3, and in the process paint the bike to match the 1200: Black.

So I set about to getting things done. I opened the back of the motor up and found that there was no damage to either the rotor or the stator and I didn’t see any other obvious internal damage…


Maybe I dodged a bullet and didn’t need to overhaul the motor. So I put it back together again with a new rear case, but it back together, installed the carb and got it running and idling fine.

I even was able to get a good test ride out of it. Then the motor started to backfire through the carb and I couldn’t do anything with it. I cleaned/rebuilt the carb, played with the jets, adjusted everything, checked/rechecked the timing and ignition, but it just would not run right and kept on backfiring through the carbs above 3,000 rpm. Then when checking the ignition timing one more time, I noticed something different with the oil coating the crank shaft as I was turning the motor through. It had a shiny look to it


Well, I drained the oil out of the motor – oil that I had just put in the motor about a week ago, and pulled the filter, that was also just put in about a week ago, and I didn’t like what I saw. The oil appeared to be a midnight black metallic flake paint on a 67 Chevy Camaro. I guess I didn’t dodge that bullet after all.

Now I had some decisions to make:
  1. Rebuild the motor I have – bearings are hard to find,
  2. Sell the bike in parts – not even a consideration,
  3. Find a replacement motor – Winner, winner, winner.
One problem: I couldn’t find anything close to me, so shipping was going to double the price of the motor. Suddenly option #2 was looking being considered. But wait, I forgot about #4: buy another bike…

Here on the East Coast, it’s that time of the year where bikes are being sold to make room in the garage to get ready for winter, so while some people are emptying their garages, I’m filling mine up.


The one in the middle is a donor for the one on the left. Yes, I could register it, but there isn’t a piece of plastic on it that isn’t broken. It would require a LOT of work to get it road worthy. No it isn’t a 1100 it’s a 1200, so I will be putting a 1200 motor inside an 1100 frame, and I am still planning on going the single carb route with my C5 ignition system from the 1100 motor. There are a couple of other tricks I could do it, but I am an not sure just how exotic I want to go with it yet… but there are lots of options .

Oh, and the price for the entire bike: less than any 1100 motor that I found on fleabay. So while there are minor set-backs I still have the eventual plan of keeping the 1100 on the road with the WJ 3 in front - it's just going to take a while.

Kynan C.

Country flag
Great story Brain, I was on the tip of my seat the whole time! You can never ever forget about number 4. It really is the only option!