Author Topic: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde  (Read 413 times)

Online Canuck750

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Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« on: September 17, 2021, 08:56:59 PM »
I have been interested in the early 60's Aermacchi European models for a long time, prior to Harley Davidson aquiring the controlling share of Aermacchi in 1960 the Italian bike builder had a range of 175cc and 250cc models all based on the same horizontal single four stroke.
Prior to the now familiar single Aermacchi produced a range of small discplacement bikes under the design lead of none other than Lino Tonti.

After Tonti left for FB Mondial it was Alfredo Bianchi that designed the familiar horizontal single. The first motorcycle to carry the lovely single was the futuristic 'Chimera'



as cool as it was, described as a jet engine with a wheel at each end sales were dissapointing. Bianchi redesigned the motorcycle by stripping off the futuristic cowling and ditching the single sided swing arm to offer the 'Wing' range of bikes, 175cc Ala Rossa (red wing), 250cc Ala Azzura (blue wing), 250 cc Ala Verde (green wing) and the over the counter race bike 250cc Ala d'Oro (gold wing).

In 1961 Harley Davidson imported the Ala Azzura (blue wing) under the name Wisconsin, in 62 it was sold as the Sprint



The Ala Verde was not imported to North America, it had a long steel tank, clip on handle bars, 17" wheels and a sporty hump back seat.

I am building a replica of the early Ala Verde, as c;lose to stock as possible. Ala Verde parts are very hard to find.



I am starting with a 1966 Harley / Aermacchi  frame and swing arm, this bike had been in a fire and came with no engine and a rear wheel from a 350cc moto cross model. I won't be using the original Sprint gas tank, the big rear wheel or the flat wide seat pan.

I found a H motor for a 1965 a couple years ago and fully rebuilt it, found the correct carb and heel / toe shifter. I am on the hunt for an engine side cover that has 'Aermacchi' cast in the side along with 'Harley Davidson', I saw one a year ago on Ebay and should have bought it then :thewife:



I was lucky to find Leslie Bull of Moto Italia in California, Leslie supplied me with an Ala Verde gas tank, the foot pegs, a rear wheel from a 61 Sprint and the lower forks castings uniuque to the 61' . I found the upper fork shrouds and tripple clamp on UK Ebay.

These forks are not correct they are off a post 67' Sprint and are for an 18" front wheel.



These are the correct forks and tripple and are for a 17" wheel,I put them together this afternoon



I cut down the 67' forks by 32mm in my lathe and re-cut the lower snap ring into the tubes and bored out the base of the tubes for the damper rod stop. I made new replica chrome lower shrouds from 304 stainless steel thin wall tube,

Trimming the stainless tube over an aluminum slug and a wrap of copper sheet to protect the stainless surface





the stainless slid perectly over the fork lowers and a wee bit of epoxy will permanently secure them once the parts are painted.

The headlight is NOS and model crrect from Santo di Motorcycle, the Benelli go to guy on Ebay,



I found a used Aermacchi Ala Verde seat base on Italian Ebay this week and I had previously sourced a correct repro seat cover from Italy as well. I found a repro Ala Verde header and muffler in Italy and the correct decals for the tank and tool box.

The rear fender I have is not quite correct and will need to have the brackets repositioned and some holes filled in, new ones made. The front fender is very hard to find, I am going to start with a Benelli front fender of similar vintage and style and rework the fixings.

I don't realy like the handle bars bars I found, too narrow, I will cut them in half, weld in a slug and widen them.

The front hub is off a Honda CB450 Black Bomber 2ls brake and a popular upgrade in the day for racing an Aermacchi, I will have Buchannans supply spokes and a new rim.

Many, many things to find, build and repair, its going to be a slow process.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2021, 03:12:22 PM by Canuck750 »
48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Offline cliffrod

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Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2021, 09:03:27 PM »
I'm ALL in for this build, Jim. 

Those early Aermacchi bikes are a real special soft spot for me.  A friend in Knoxville (the one that got my old HD Sidecar body) had a complete 61/62 that drove me nuts for years.  He would not let me own it.   Maybe your bike can bring me some vicarious resolution.  I know it will be fantastic.  I'll be watching.....
1973 V7 Sport  "Now THAT'S a motorcycle!"-  Master Sculptor Giuliano Cecchinelli
1967 V700 Corsa Record
1964 Ducati 250
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Online Michael Moore

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Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2021, 09:34:13 PM »
You might enjoy a couple of photos of my friend Jim's Tony Foale-framed 350 racer that were taken at Willow Springs

:








share images free

Online Frenchfrog

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Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2021, 06:25:20 AM »
Lucky man ! I love those machines but sadly nearly everyone that comes up for sale over here is well above a reasonable price. I'm going to follow this rebuild like all of you previous immaculate ones !

Wildgoose Chase Moto Guzzi

Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2021, 06:25:20 AM »

Online Canuck750

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Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2021, 09:13:03 AM »
You might enjoy a couple of photos of my friend Jim's Tony Foale-framed 350 racer that were taken at Willow Springs

:

Wow that is one special Aermacchi, amazing frame on that red rocket! Thanks for the pictures.
Jim
48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Online Canuck750

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Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2021, 09:16:51 AM »
Lucky man ! I love those machines but sadly nearly everyone that comes up for sale over here is well above a reasonable price. I'm going to follow this rebuild like all of you previous immaculate ones !

Thanks French, I would never be able to get a real Ala Verde so this is going to be ‘close enough’ and as close as I will ever get to throwing a leg over one of these beauties. Shame that Harley didn’t bring the Ala Verde over to North America.
48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Online Canuck750

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Re: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2021, 05:18:46 PM »
Moto Italia from California came through again for me, a complete rear hub, brake plate and axle for the 1961 Aermacchi 250, for a 17 inch rim, just needs some cleaning up



a half hour of vapour blasting é stripping and more blasting, ready for polishing and then l;aci8ng the new spokes to the new rim Moto Italia provided



The threaded bearing retainer was a bugger to get out, lots of heat from the butane torch and using the right pin wrench helps, the nut had been bashed with a chisel in many spots before, I redrilled two holes 180 degrees apart for a snug fit to the pin wrench 4mm studs



pulled the blind bearings

48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Offline Muzz

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Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2021, 04:23:53 AM »
I am in awe.  What more can I say.

The way you casually fix insurmountable problems (to me anyway) never ceases to amaze me.
Muzz. Cristchurch, New Zealand
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Online Canuck750

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Re: Littel Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2021, 10:31:00 AM »
Thanks Muzz, having the right tool for the job makes difficult jobs so much easier, I never knew there were so many uses for a simple pin wrench, indispensable for opening up shock absorber reservoir caps too.
48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Offline riguzzi

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Re: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2021, 12:36:07 PM »
I'm just putting my 68H back together before I start on my v50's. Nice little bikes!

Online Canuck750

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Re: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2021, 05:36:05 PM »
I'm just putting my 68H back together before I start on my v50's. Nice little bikes!

 :gotpics: :gotpics:
48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Online Canuck750

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Re: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2021, 06:51:10 PM »
A liitle bit of progress with the Aermacchi, I put a new pair of wheel bearings into the rear hub that Leslie Bull of Moto Italia provided,



Polished up the aluminum hub, deglazed the brake shoes



Moto Italia also provided a new Radelli 17" chrome rim and a set of new stainless steel spokes and nipples from Buchanans



rear wheel all laced up, next to true the wheel and then mount a new tire and tube



I need to call Buchanans and find out if they can make a set of new stainless front wheel spokes from measurements I provide or if I need to send the Honda Black Bomber CB450 front hub and the 17" Radelli rim to them.

Anyone know where I could find a new rear sprocket for this 1961 Aermacchi rear wheel?
48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Online Canuck750

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Re: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2021, 05:57:23 PM »
I found a Benelli front fender on Ebay that looked like it might fit, I think it will be ok, the top mount has a single tab rather than the double screw tab that wouldbe on the original



Got the rear tire on the new rim, 17 x 3.00, I think it looks ok



I have a couple Harley 250 Sprint rear fenders but none of them fit correctly or look right. I removed the mounting tab on the 62 ~ 66 rear fender I have to try and massage the location of the fender and mount but its not going to work, the 68 on rear fender alos is too big



I think I will look for a Sears 106 SS Gilera fender, my 106 SS rear fender looks like it will be a better fit, the Gilera also has a 17" rear wheel

I screwed up ordering a natching new 17" rim for the front wheel, I was planning on using a Honda CB450 Black Bomber 2 LS front hub but didn't check that it is a 40 spoke hub and I ordered a 36 spoke rim, I might look for the Aermacchi front hub for the 1961 17" wheel
Looks like 17" rims with 40 spoke holes are very hard to find



48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Online Canuck750

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Re: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #13 on: October 07, 2021, 06:29:24 PM »
I took the big valenced rear fender I have to a motorcycle bone yard today in search of a smaller diameter fender that looked more like the slim Ala Verde fender. The bike wrecker in town is a disaster, two storeys of mostly 70'e Japanese parts stacked high on wood shelving with hardly any identifying marks and parts just piled on top of one another.

My search did go pretty quick, I found a rear fender, Japanese, probably early 70's by the signal light mount bracket that was bolted to the fender and it appears to be from a bike with a 17" rear wheel, much smaller than the Sprint rear fender. It is free of dents, appears to be stainless and was mine for $50

I think this will work with some fiddling, I need to weld up some holes, drill new holes, weld in some backing plates etc...



I had a rear lamp holder and plate bracket that has the bottom 1/4 rusted off, it is of the style that came on the Ala Verde, I cut off the rusted bottom and foled over a lip, the upper bracket holes actually line up with existong hloes in the fender, perhaps some good Karma?



There are many variations of rear fenders on Ala Verde motorcycles on Google, This is one example that sort of looks like the fender I found



I need to fabricate a bracket for the bottom of the plate holder to bolt it to the fender. The seat cover is sitting over top of a smaller Aermacchi seat, I am waiting on a used seat frame for an Ala Verde to come from Italy.

I am pretty happy with how its coming together



48 Guzzi Airone, 57 Guzzi Cardellino, 65 Benelli Barracuda, 66 Aermacchi Sprint, 68 Gilera 106SS, 72 Eldorado, 72 Benelli 180, 74 Guzzi 750S, 73 Laverda SF1, 74  Benelli 650S, 75 Ducati 860GT, 75 Moto Morini 3-1/2, 78 Moto Morinii 500

Offline cliffrod

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Re: Little Green Wing - Aermacchi Ala Verde
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2021, 12:54:17 PM »
It's looking really good, Jim.
1973 V7 Sport  "Now THAT'S a motorcycle!"-  Master Sculptor Giuliano Cecchinelli
1967 V700 Corsa Record
1964 Ducati 250
eccetera, eccetera...

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