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Comet Handlebar Control levers PR14, PR15, PR16

craig

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I have rusty, chrome, ball end control levers (brake, clutch, lifter) that look like 1960's era replacement items.
The front brake has .875" pivot to cable
The clutch has 1.094" pivot to cable
The lifter is right side with 1.094" pivot to cable

As i view another Comet, with no ball ends (pointed end levers), the pivot to cable is 1.094" on all 3 levers.

When i go to look for new, non adjusting, stock OEM type , steel. chrome levers, are there issues that i should be aware of? Besides wanting a solid PR15 lifter lever.
I am to assume all 2010 control levers are 3/8 cable barrel ends?
Is there a best supplier for these Vincent levers?
Amal turned into Doherty?
Do I want Amal clip straps? Anyone repros these Amal clip straps?

These control lever pivot dimensions do not appear to be discussed at any suppliers website, including Vincent suppliers!
PR14 - Vincent clutch lever
PR15 - Vincent lifter lever - solid lever
PR16 - Vincent brake lever

Is the lever ratio a situation of early technology versus later technology? Early being the 1.094'" and later wanting a more power going to .875"?
Does a Vincent series C really require the extra travel associated with 1.094" ?

Thanks for any help
Craig

link to picture - http://www.trialsbits.co.uk/images/...d.jpg?osCsid=6d1f850f891aa0182fc3cd62b1971c1c
 
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timetraveller

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I'm not a Comet expert but on twins which have had a multi-plate clutch fitted this distance has bee an issue for some time. It seems that the larger this distance the better, as it gives more lift on the clutch and hence more clearance between the clutch plates when lifted. Good luck.
 

chankly bore

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
Non-VOC Member
You are better off with the larger centre distance on the Comet clutch,as it needs all the help it can get to overcome stiction and untrue steel plates.I believe the 1 1/8'' centres were original.I have gotten away with 7/8" centres,but everything needs to be flat and true and you need to spend some time adjusting your spring tension.For this job you need to make or buy a special little tool wot straddles the 1/4" BSF threads that the spring caps screw on to.
 

Howard

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I'm not a Comet expert but on twins which have had a multi-plate clutch fitted this distance has bee an issue for some time. It seems that the larger this distance the better, as it gives more lift on the clutch and hence more clearance between the clutch plates when lifted. Good luck.

I've found on a twin with a multi-plate, that the levers in the gearbox often limit the travel, so a longer lever travel can't always be used.

H
 

timetraveller

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Hi Howard, I am not sure that I understand what you mean by 'levers in the gearbox'. If this is the long arm in the kick starter cover (G91) into which the cable nipple fits then you should be able to find a position by first slackening the cable adjuster, then screwing in the adjuster in the lower part of the kick starter cover (ET27/1AS), in which the cable abutment is not the limit of the movement. This should give you the maximum amount of movement on the lever which is then controlled by the distance between the centers on the handle bar lever.
 

Howard

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Hi Howard, I am not sure that I understand what you mean by 'levers in the gearbox'. If this is the long arm in the kick starter cover (G91) into which the cable nipple fits then you should be able to find a position by first slackening the cable adjuster, then screwing in the adjuster in the lower part of the kick starter cover (ET27/1AS), in which the cable abutment is not the limit of the movement. This should give you the maximum amount of movement on the lever which is then controlled by the distance between the centers on the handle bar lever.

Hi

Yes that's where I mean. The lever in the kickstart cover can only move from up against the kickstart cover to hard against the tapered sleeve that the cable outer fits into (sorry I don't know part numbers), nomatter how much travel the handlebar lever provides. If there's more travel at the handlebar end it puts strain on the nipple at the other end every time you pull the lever to max travel.
I think my memory's right on that, it's a few years ago, before I changed to my present clutch.

H
 

nkt267

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
On a Comet you need the larger pivot/cable dimension as others have mentioned. If you use the 1.094" lever on the brake you get more travel but less leverage so the 0.875" is correct for that..John
 

craig

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
John, Howard, Chankly and all, thank for input on the Vincent control levers, i find myself more confused after this voc session on levers than before. I have a few questions on PR14, PR15, PR16
1) did C series Vincent come with Amal brake, lift and clutch levers?
2) if so, what were the Amal part numbers of the items during the era of Vincent manufacture ?
3) did Amal levers morph into Doherty lever? if so when?
4) is the correct terminology for these two different pull ratio levers - 7/8" and 1 1/8" rather than my .875 and 1.094
5) Is there a 1950 Amal catalog for lever components? anyone?
thanks
Craig
 

timetraveller

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Dear Craig, welcome to the world of the VOC (Very Old Children) and of the terminally confused. Now you know what it is like for the rest of us. I do not know the answer to all of your questions but will do the best that I can until nurse comes to tidy me up. I have no idea which company made the handlebar levers which were used by Vincents but what you need to know is that the clutch and front brake levers were folded steel plate items and the valve lifter was a cast bronze or brass item. There will be people in the Club who will not only have more detail on this but can probably tell you the name of the chap who made them, the colour of his hair and their adventures with his mother. I do not think that Doherty were ever involved and in the time interval between 1947 and 1955 I think that there was only one supplier. The figures which seem to have confused you, 7/8" and 1 1/8", are what you already have, 7/8" = 0.875" and 1 1/8" = 1.125". Those are the distances between the pivot point and the center of the nipples. Use the levers with the larger value for the clutch lever to give you the largest amount of movement on the bottom end of the cable. In my opinion it does not matter which you use for the brake but it is certainly true that the shorter distance will give you more leverage. It will depend upon whether you have the brakes set up properly or not as to whether more movement or more leverage will be best for your bike. It is highly likely that either the VOC Spares Co or Kemps can supply levers which are near or exact matches to the original but Vehicle Wiring Products (with whom I have no connection) also supply some levers which are similar to the originals but have adjusters built in (a good thing if you do not want originality) and with ball ends. I do not know the distance between centers for these levers. Nurse is now here with the two large gentlemen who hold me down so must close now.
 
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TouringComet

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
VOC Forum Website Administrator
VOC Forum Website Moderator
To throw more into the mix, I have an original Shadow built in Nov '52 that came with Bowden levers, all three. The valve lifter is 7/8" from center of pivot to center of nipple, while the clutch lever is 1 1/8".

The offset from pivot to cable is more important for leverage, like for your front brake. For distance your clutch rod will travel, isn't it equally important how many degrees your clutch lever can swing before it hits your handlebar? I can't speak for Amal levers, as I only have Bowden and Doherty, but the post that the Bowden lever rests against is at a much wider angle relative to your grip, compared to the Doherty post. So my Bowden lever can swing a wider arc than the Doherty lever. To get the most lift at the clutch, wouldn't you want both a wide arc, plus a longer radius (the pivot dimension)?

How does an Amal post compare to a Bowden, when measuring the degrees the post is canted, relative to the handlebar?
 
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