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The story of the Superpan

Part 2

After machining the front head..

Ronny started with the rear head. This time, armed with the experience gained machining the front head, he decided to do one thing differently: the rear head was made with a separate block containing the rockers.
As you may have guessed by now, RB was not going to stick these high-tech heads on a stock engine: RB started with an EVO crankshaft in a set of Delcron generator crankcases.

The bike he sold to buy the milling machine

He added an Andrews EV27 cam and a set of EVO tappet blocks which he had to modify to accept the panhead lifter angles. The cylinders are 3 5/8" big-bore bringing the displacement to 88 cubic inches, or 1442 cubic centimetres for us metric guys. The compression ratio was calculated at about 10:1. For carburation he used two 41 mm flatslide Keihin downdraft carbs (from a Ducati) with separate intake manifolds


When the engine was finished, RB bolted it to a homemade rear primary plate, together with a 4-speed gearbox. RB had already decided to build his own frame, so he started by constructing a welding jig (the tablelike construction used to align and position the various components for welding) In the photo on the right he has aligned and mounted his engine and gearbox to the welding jig

In the picture on the left you can see RB has positioned the rear wheel. The rear hub is a homemade aluminum part (more about this later), the rear drumbrake is also homemade and is built in to the rear pulley of the secondary belt-drive. RB used a 170x15 rear tire on a 6J rim, bringing the total width to 185 mm

Using a pipe bender, RB fabricated the different parts of the frame, making a complicated job even more complicated by running the cables for the forward controls through the frame and by letting the frame double as an oiltank. Most of the oil goes in a compartment under the gearbox, the center pipe of the frame is the filler tube.


Why, you ask? Well I guess RB is a perfectionist and the result of all this work is that there are no more than a few inches of oilline on the whole bike and all cables and wires are very hard to find also! Most bikebuilders will tell you that when building a new bike, the bike usually looks best when all the main compo- nents are in place, but all the cables, wires and other messy bits have not been attached yet.

This is the look that RB has managed to keep, in his completed bike, pure and simple and very very clean.

The inner primary plate, homemade ofcourse, serves as the mounting point of the support bearing, oil filter, rear brake caliper and rear brake fluid reservoir.


Now I promised I would tell you a bit more about the wheels; to save weight RB machined both his brakedrums and hubs out of solid lumps of aluminum, beefing up the bearing areas so the hubs would accept modern bearings. Then he drilled 40 holes under the correct angle in each hub, and laced up his rims. Sounds simple enough, eh?


The fork consists of a set of homemade aluminum triple trees, 2" overstock fork tubes and a set of 50's style FL lower legs

The gastank was made by welding together a set of 6 gallon fatbobs, leaving a large opening in the bottom for the two downdraft carbs, the rear fender was made to follow the radius of the rear wheel exactly by cutting and welding and cutting and welding etc.....


The 2 into 1 exhaust pipes were welded together using stainless steel bends and pipe sections, ending in a Supertrapp muffler.

Next week: Starting the Superpan for the first time, the paintjob and tons of details

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