Chapter 26

Not much time has passed since I published Chapter 25, but some significant things have happened. I did trailer the Tribaker over to Hugo for the Memorial day Stude show. Unloaded it at the far end of the parking area and drove it over for display with my old Stude buddy Ed riding shotgun. There was a lot of interest and many questions! Didn’t win anything though. I think it was just too outside the box for people to really get behind it and vote for it. The crowd usually votes for the shiny ones.


It still skipped a bit going up the ramp as I loaded it, and a fellow commented on how I should have put a chain tensioner on the top chain run. That’s not the conclusion I had come to, but I decided it couldn’t hurt to add something on top too, so I got some used skateboard wheels from CT and fashioned a slightly adjustable “chain keeper” to sit right above the sprocket…..

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Also this week I pow-wowed with a couple friendly venders I know who will have outside spots at Back to the 50’s and Car Craft. They will let me leave the Tribaker at their booths during the events this summer!

A couple days ago I trailered it up to Royalton (about 80 miles) for an inspection. The inspector decided that I needed a new sticker affixed to the frame, but felt that my documentation of ownership was ok. I then drove 30 miles over to the DMV in Albany, where, after answering the appropriate questions, I was granted a Minnesota MOTORCYCLE license plate! It must be done this way, as the law says that if it has 3 wheels, it is a motorcycle, even if it is made entirely out of car parts. Hopefully, the title procedure will continue on smoothly! What this means is that after a talk with my insurance man, I will be completely street legal!  This was always the big question in my head as I built it…. Will I ever be able to license it???? Yay!

Now, next weekend will be the Blind Lizard motorcycle and bike picnic which I have been attending since the 80’s. The theme has always been to bring the most bizaare and unusual stuff out, and as a “Grand Scaly Lizard” I am expected to lead by example…. The first Morgan “F” type that I ever saw belonged to one of the founding fathers of this event, and the Tribaker was built SPECIFICALLY with the Lizard in mind, so you can bet that I will bring it over.  Before this happens, I intend to add both an automatic chain oiler and a bobbed pickup bed.

The chain oiler will consist of a brake fluid reservoir from a VW bug which drains first into a 12 volt solenoid valve and then thru a little fish tank air valve to dribble about 1.5 drops a minute onto the sprocket. Since I have two valves and two sprockets, I will probably have a small bore hose going to each one. When the ignition is on, it will open the solenoid valve allowing gravity drainage.

The pickup bed is a bobbed remnant from an R-series Stude truck. I have an old Stude tailgate to weld onto it. This set-up will easily unbolt, allowing me to have either a roadster pickup configuration, or a boat-tail or “bobber” look in the back. The verdict is not in yet on which looks the best to me, but anything that extends the back of the body a bit I think will look more balanced. Just finished it today, and I think it looks great!

I went to the Acme Speedshop wednesday lunch and ran into Dave B and his daughter Maya. Maya has been practicing her pinstriping on closet doors, toilet seats and other lightweight objects now for about a year. She is 15 and quite artistic, so I asked her to pinstripe the Tribaker! I am really pleased!

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  1. Dean Stanley says:

    Love it! I wonder how the first three feet of a ’49 Champion hood would look on the back of there…maybe narrowed into a bit of a boat tail….

  2. Dean Stanley says:

    oops…’50 of course

  3. tribaker says:

    I did think about doing that quite carefully about 4 years ago. I had a 50′ Buick hood which I did slice and dice to use that way, and if you go back to chapters 2-4 you can see some pics. Thanks!

  4. Lauri says:

    Pin striping looks great it’s a surprise! Does it tilt a little to the left?

  5. diggerdave says:

    Hi Greg, looks great and I really love the air intake to the turbo/carb. Not to change the subject but I got the supercharged flathead running in the “M” p/u, took it for a test drive and man does it go! Unbelievable!!! Tested without the front dog house on so I can make changes to the front supension if needed.

    • diggerdave says:

      P.S. I think I like the boat tail over the p/u box more. Do you have any more of the headlight fixtures that you would part with? I could use two for my truck.

    • tribaker says:

      Hope I can take a ride with you in that beast! Don’t have an extra set now, but just stumbled over an almost complete 37′ fourdoor Dictator for $925 near me. Let me check that out!

  6. Arak Lea says:

    OK, hopefully that truck bed is for looks only. As a trike expert, I say, never ever load that up. What I’d personally have liked to see is something more 50’s aero-roundish like the Prowler rear trunk look, ‘cept no actual trunk. See my trike on facebook at the link I provided

    • tribaker says:

      Understand. I have it on there for the moment to allow an observer to help me sort out the final drive. Will likely use the modified 50 Buick hood back there after that shown in earlier chapters.

  7. Arak Lea says:

    Yes, IC, cassette is a good idea.

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