1959 XLR TOP TREE

All things K & Sportster

Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby thefrenchowl » Tue Sep 15, 2015 1:24 pm

Hi Paul,

Nothing subjective about the PING of a thin wall chrome moly frame and the PONG of a thick "run of the mill" tube as used in all bikes... You have to hit it lightly and release like drum kit, and with a decent vanadium based spanner.

You can post or send me photos of your frame, I'll soon tell you if it is race or not...

Patrick
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby hennesse » Tue Sep 15, 2015 8:28 pm

Erik asked me:

    Could you up load the XLRTT photo to that 59 XLR TOP TREE blog. It shows trees, K ones, unaltered with key mount tabs intact on the lightweight K frame for the XLRTT. Factory Photo.
The photo is of a 1958 XLRTT.

Dave
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58-XLRTT-001.jpg
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby thefrenchowl » Wed Sep 16, 2015 2:43 am

Hi Erik,

That one 's smaller but a bit clearer ; - )

Image

It is fitted with a KR frame, not a K frame. Prototype, photos filed at the Pohlman Studios on the 28th of August 1957, other side as well same day (incidentaly, the same prototype XLR was moded less than a month later to make 4 photos of XLC and XLCH...):

Image

I am not going to shout all over the place how to make a K frame into a KR frame at this point. It is not just stuff removed, it also has stuff added for good measure...

Patrick
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby sportsterpaul » Wed Sep 16, 2015 8:50 am

Bonjour mon ami, here are the pictures of my 1954 frame stamped "3J". The top tube does have a slight ping, but the downtubes just got "thud" when I strike them with a 5/8-inch wrench. I am pretty sure this is just a stock frame, not a KR, so that means I can use it, instead of trading it to someone who restores KRs.
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_1.jpg
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The frame had this loop for the bottom oil-tank mount-- now that I feel it, there is weld residue at the bottom, like someone ground off the stock mount.

1954_3J_K-model_Frame_2.jpg
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1954_3J_K-model_Frame_3.jpg
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_3.jpg (77.52 KiB) Viewed 11739 times


I have 5 more pictures I will put in subsequent posts.
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby sportsterpaul » Wed Sep 16, 2015 8:54 am

More pictures of my 1954 frame-- yeah, its got a kickstand. I know Harley sold the bracket separately, but I doubt this frame started life as a KR. I may well have been run in races, but not as an original. The rolling chassis was one buy, the engine was a separate eBay auction, and is indeed a 1952.
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_4.jpg
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1954_3J_K-model_Frame_5.jpg
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_5.jpg (78.31 KiB) Viewed 11739 times

1954_3J_K-model_Frame_6.jpg
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_6.jpg (74.59 KiB) Viewed 11739 times


I will put the last two pictures in the next post.
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby sportsterpaul » Wed Sep 16, 2015 8:58 am

OK, last two pictures, I shrunk them to 512px wide, I hope that is enough. I am still building the video studio in the living room. When I get the bank of daylight flourescent lights installed and start using my Panasonic GH3, the pictures will be better. Let me know if you need closer or higher res pictures.

And thanks Dave, for letting us upload pictures to your server, it means the pictures will be here, instead of dead links.
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_7.jpg
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_7.jpg (72.97 KiB) Viewed 11738 times

1954_3J_K-model_Frame_8.jpg
1954_3J_K-model_Frame_8.jpg (73.13 KiB) Viewed 11738 times
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby EKHKHK56 » Wed Sep 16, 2015 3:30 pm

Right Patrick, KR frame, I use `K` for Ks when generally differentiating from XL. Not an `XL` frame. So my main observation is the top tree, with key tabs, obviously a K part. Trying to get back to the tree topic. Being an early KR frame, which trees would compliment that? It obviously has the early weld on rear fender strut supports. Any idea how long they did that? I have 52 & 53 frames made that way. One the 53, has factory horseshoe oil tank. I have raked trees that are my earliest type, with key tabs, -52 before the A or B was added for newer style. Than they changed in 54 again. Just wondering if you may know about them. Were the early -52 Raked trees K or KR? When did they de rake them and for which models? Just a few questions I`ve had in my head for years... ;) Erik
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby EKHKHK56 » Wed Sep 16, 2015 3:36 pm

Looking at the photo it looks like those are raked trees, have to get in my parts and look closer. Erik
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby EKHKHK56 » Wed Sep 16, 2015 4:04 pm

More questions, if the XLR has a 58 KR frame with K top motor mount why does Jerry`s 57R frame have an XL top mount? Is the Factory XLR photo just a mockup for photo session? Or more of use what you have, etc...? Erik
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Re: 1959 XLR TOP TREE

Postby thefrenchowl » Wed Sep 16, 2015 4:55 pm

Hi Eric,

Top tree with 4 tabs for switches can be K or XL. Both available as K (52/E54) or KH/X (L54/58) geometries...

As a quick check, hole for steering shaft is contained within the angle formed by the back edges lines of the top tree on the K and KR/XLR trees. I call these K geometry. Also used on early KH.

These 2 top tree back edges lines converge towards the middle of the steering hole on the KH/X top tree cause they pulled back the hole to bring the fork tubes parallel to the steering axis and changed both top and bottom castings to suit. I call these KH/X geometry

Except on mid year KH when they actually moded/cut/welded the existing K top and bottom trees to KH/X geometry (the new castings were either not available yet or K type moded as penny pinching measure)

You can clearly see on the above factory XLRTT shots that the tubes are not parallel to the steering axis, that's K geometry.

But the frame on this XLRTT prototype is a pre 57 KR frame. When the proper -58R race frame came for the privateers XLRTT and KRs after 1958, they both had the Sportster top stamped steel motor mount.

The rare (I only saw one once...) -57R frame for the KR only is a goose neck race frame with the K top mount casting.

Back to the top tree that started this topic... I can't comment, having no idea what is fitted on the real bike, race or street items...

Guys wanting advise on such rarefied stuff should put photos on... ; - )

Jerry was kind enough to post photos of a frame, and I can date it "post 58" by looking at the thick webbed seat casting and top stamped motor mount, deffo Sportster items, mixed with K geometry front steering casting... You won't see that combination in any K, KH or X street frames!

Paul, yours a street frame... When you repair the oil tank mount bracket, don't braze it, it is actually silver brazed (lower melting temps, better capilarity and stronger than brazing...) like the whole rest of the tube/cast junctions...

Patrick
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