Motorcycle: Singles - Model 5-35 Singles, 1913 - 1918
Date: Sunday, October 31 @ 15:56:22 UTC
Topic: Motorcycle, Motorcycles, Motor Cycle
Model 5-35 Singles, 1913 - 1918
The second-generation single-cylinder machine, produced from 1913 to 1918, housed a refinement of the earlier engine rather than an all-new design. Although the bore remained unchanged at 3 5/16in (84.1mm), the stroke increased from 3 1/2 to 4in (88.9 to 101.6mm), giving a capacity of 34.47cu in (565cc). The new engine was known generically as the 5-35, signifying 5 horsepower and 35 cu in.
Many lessons learned during the troubled development of the first twin were incorporated in the new single's design. Valve layout was still inlet-over-exhaust, although now the inlet valve followed the revised V-twin practice of mechanical operation via a long push rod on the motor's right-hand side. The camshafts — one exhaust, one inlet — were driven by a chain of gears, ending with the Bosch magneto (replaced by a Remy instrument from 1915) which provided the sparks.
As before, the iron cylinder head and barrel were one-piece, accommodating a steel three-ring piston. The crankcases were of aluminium, in which a high-grade steel crankshaft ran on phosphor-bronze main bearings, with the whole crank assembly balanced. Lubrication was still total-loss, engine oil being metered by hand from its own compartment in the tank slung beneath the frame's top rail. A sight-glass below the tank gave the rider some idea how frequently to deliver drops of oil. As well as manipulating this, the rider was required to adjust the degree of ignition advance (in other words, the precise point at which the spark plug ignited the mixture), by means of yet another control lever. In those days, getting the best out of an engine was not a simple business. It demanded considerable awareness from the operator.
Perhaps the most obvious difference between these early singles was the replacement of belt with chain as the drive medium, eliminating the wet-weather slip that plagued all leather belt drives. On early examples, the drive was taken direct, via roller chain, from a sprocket on the left-hand end of the crankshaft to another on the rear hub. The same hub also contained a type of rudimentary clutch operated by a long lever on the left side of the machine. Starting involved placing the machine on its stand, which lifted the rear wheel off the ground, then vigorously rotating the bicycle-type pedals. These same pedals, when rotated backwards, engaged the "coaster-type" rear brake via a chain on the right-hand side. Lever-operated brakes did not appear until 1918.
A "step-starter" and Harley's first two-speed rear hub arrived in 1914 (also in the V-twin), offering increased flexibility with maximum speeds of around 54 and 65mph (87 and 105kph) in the two ratios. Within a year, this deceptively intricate device had given way to three-speed transmission with a true sliding-pinion gearbox on better-specified models. Nonetheless, single-speed and even belt-drive models continued to be built for some years.
Chassis refinements included a more robust front suspension offering around 2in (50mm) of travel. The rear, of course, would remain rigid for many years. However, a degree of consolation was provided by Harley's patented "Full Floteing" seat.
As well as the paired springs common on other motorcycles, this seat featured a hinge at the front and a coil spring inside the seat post to cushion the rider from the worst of the bumps.
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