View Full Version : triumph push rods being a bitch

06-04-2012, 10:36 PM
As you british cycle people know, when these things won't seat properly the bike tends to do lame things like not start.

any advice on getting these puppies to seat? I'm having a bitch of a time with these things either not sitting right or slipping out on my intake side. A lot of play in there too.

specs for my bike are 71 top, 68 bottom, big bored to 750. any tricks would be appreciated

06-05-2012, 3:25 AM
Have you tried putting a dab of grease on the ends? When they're properly seated, the grease creates a bit of suction on the rod, giving it a bit of resistance if you try and lift it.

Won't help you get them seated, but will let you know when they are...

06-05-2012, 8:09 AM
On my pre unit engines, which are a total effing bitch to do, I remove the rocker arm tappet adjusters.

Then I lower the arm so the ball is all the way down.

I also use zip ties layed flat on the head to space the push rods into where they're supposed to be.

Then I slowly lower the rocker box into place. The push rods seat and I slip the zip ties out of the bottom.

I'm kind of a dork, so there may be a super cool secret to this that I don't know. But I found keeping the pushrods in the proper location while seating the rocker boxes makes this a one try deal.

06-05-2012, 8:25 AM
Thats a good idea. I was trying to c -clamp a piece of steel between the push rods while lowering the box. But I'm definitely losing them with the gasket touching them as I lower the rocker box. They just fall over the slightest bit because I'm getting tappet clearance but I can tell it varies as the engine turns over a couple times so the little bitches are moving on me.

I'm waiting for some new gaskets as if I touch these they will crumble. I'll give the grease and zip tie trick a try when I can stand to rip it apart again

06-05-2012, 8:32 AM
loosen up both tappets a bit
then turn the engine over until both push rods are an equal the height up,
then holding the tappets up with your fingers lower the whole rocker box down on to the head and put a head bolt in place,
then adjust the tappets up until they touch on the valve.
spin the engine around and do the tappet adjustments.

and the blob of axle grease thing really helps too.

tappet adjustment....(forget the top dead center thing)
in each rocker box...turn the engine until one valve is all the way down, adjust the gap in the other valve, spin the engine over until that valve is all the way down and set the gap on the other one

06-05-2012, 8:37 AM
Pushrod seals also come in different thicknesses. You should check to see that the ones you're using aren't different than the ones you previously had on the motor.

06-05-2012, 10:25 AM
Yup. They don't seem to fit right at all. I had the same problem with the exhaust side last month. They lean at a nasty angle sitting in the seat Plus as I'm rolling them it's looking a little bent. I used the grease and got em seated but they aren't lining up right as I lower the box and the angle I need to lean one of those Rods is making it pop

The top end was rebuilt (not by me) and I know that the guy who did it has about 10 British bikes he scavenged from that motorcycle graveyard in Lockport ny before it was demolished.

I can get these to work probably but I haven't had a chance to even break in this top end. I called a guy in the boons out here who is good with old trumps and has the parts too. Luckily he is not busy at all and is taking it in tomorrow. Or the fact it's probably an easy fix and I'm just not so good at it. Either way I need the time and frustration saved at this moment. And this has been a constant problem since I got the bike.

I'll let you know what he finds out. Thanks for the tips

06-07-2012, 6:31 AM
my gaskets from lowbrow have holes you put the push rods through that with a little permatex and put the gaskets on the head rub em down then let them set up a bit for a hour or so come back put your rockerboxes on sumwhat cafefully and boom. done.

06-07-2012, 12:10 PM
Yea, instead of getting my own ups account to lowbrow as I was getting three packages a week. With the death of my ironhead's generator, the initial fiery death of that triumph, and it's constant problems I gave up and yielded it to some guy 2 hours away who used to make old triumph racers.

I will see his findings and advice. At this point I don't even feeling like changing the plugs.

06-08-2012, 1:16 PM
So it was a slightly bent and a bit too skinny of pushrods in general. Also the timing gears apparently were off hence why it was always breathing fire when it did run.

All is well now for now. Please stay tuned for my benefit thread when my front end snaps in half at 70 mph or something