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Another 1400 project.....


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Whilst of limited interest to most here I thought I'd gauge whether anybody would be interested in a documentary of a single spark 1400 Nuovo Hi-Cam build?

I've just acquired a 'Repairable write off' Griso that I'm going to use as a test platform for final development, (I've already built two 1400 single sparkers.). I'm not willing to have my old warhorse off the road while playing silly-buggers with the motor so the idea is I do the build, iron out any problems, then fling the final product in the 'Green Horror'.

This will be my swansong. I hope to be retired within a year. 

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On 3/3/2021 at 10:06 PM, pete roper said:

Whilst of limited interest to most here I thought I'd gauge whether anybody would be interested in a documentary of a single spark 1400 Nuovo Hi-Cam build?

I've just acquired a 'Repairable write off' Griso that I'm going to use as a test platform for final development, (I've already built two 1400 single sparklers.). I'm not willing to have my old warhorse off the road while playing silly-buggers with the motor so the idea is I do the build, iron out any problems, then fling the final product in the 'Green Horror'.

This will be my swansong. I hope to be retired within a year. 

I hope you are indulgent of the ignorant knuckle-draggers and shaved-apes (me :huh: ) about these later (than V11) motors. I thought all the Griso were 3 different 1200s and know zero about the "1400".  Two totally different animals?

And what of this "hi-cam" talk? I thought that was all V10 stuff . . . :huh2:

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Griso was made in three sizes. 850, 1100 and 1200. The first two used versions of the venerable two valve per cylinder design, the 1200 used a four valve per cylinder design and a Hi-cam in each head driven by chains from an idler shaft running in place of the camshaft on earlier motors.

It is possible, although not easy, to enbiggen the 1200 to 1400 using 1400 pistons from the Cali 1400. It's far from a simple 'Drop in' conversion though. I've built two now. Approaching it from different ways both times. This time I'm going about it yet another way. The biggest issue being differences in the galleries and drains for the cooling oil supply as the 1200 and 1400 motors are completely different in this regard.

From 2008 the old 2V motor was phased out and the CARC series bikes all went to the 1200-8V which besides the Griso was used in the Norge, Stelvio and 1200 Sport platforms.

Sadly the Piaggio bean counters insisted that the original 8V should use flat tappets. This was a huge mistake as the system failed miserably, ruining the reputation of what is in fact a fine engine. It wasn't until 2013 after three botched attempts to get flat tappets to work that the change was made to the bulletproof roller tappet system then used until the series and engine was discontinued. It's my belief that the motor was originally designed with roller tappets and this penny pinching measure of attempting to use flats seriously undermined the credibility of what could of been a game changer for the Guzzi marque. Sadly, because of this the series never got the sales they deserved and Piaggio decided that Guzzi was not to try and produce interesting and novel bikes and should in future produce toys for hipsters and underpowered and unthreatening mid-weight ADV bikes with uninspiring 2 valve pushrod engines that have the charisma of a dry cow-pat and the performance envelope of a housebrick.

Pity.

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Thanks, Pete! More clear to me now, that you are not shoe-horning a 1400 into your Green Horror. I recall very clear images and explanation you posted that the 1400 is no performance engine due to its head design and port configuration (I paraphrase).

The "Hi-cam"  configuration is a surprise to me! So, like a V10, but with chains instead of belts?

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The 1400 motor is, dimensionally, nearly identical to the 1200. The reason it looks so much larger is that the cylinder heads have rocker cover 'Covers' that are purely cosmetic. Block, cylinders, timing system etc. are all pretty much identical but the 1400's cooling system is very different and it uses a different phase sensor and phonic wheel among other things. Biggest difference though is the 1400 uses twin plugs. 1200 only a single, central, plug. Hence the 'Single Sparker' description.

And yes. The 1400 I'm building is destined for the Green Horror. As I said I've already built two. The first in in 'Beetle's Griso, the second went into my Stelvio that I have since sold. Filling it into the bike isn't an issue. All the difficulties are 'Internal' as it were.

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35 minutes ago, pete roper said:

The 1400 motor is, dimensionally, nearly identical to the 1200. The reason it looks so much larger is that the cylinder heads have rocker cover 'Covers' that are purely cosmetic. Block, cylinders, timing system etc. are all pretty much identical but the 1400's cooling system is very different and it uses a different phase sensor and phonic wheel among other things. Biggest difference though is the 1400 uses twin plugs. 1200 only a single, central, plug. Hence the 'Single Sparker' description.

And yes. The 1400 I'm building is destined for the Green Horror. As I said I've already built two. The first in in 'Beetle's Griso, the second went into my Stelvio that I have since sold. Filling it into the bike isn't an issue. All the difficulties are 'Internal' as it were.

So Pete if you removed the rocker cover covers from a 1400 engine would you be able to eliminate or reduce those hideous fuel tank cutouts on the 1400 Californias?

Ciao 

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Yup. A whole load of stuff on Calis is purely cosmetic. The sides of the tank that the cutouts are in are themselves cosmetic add-ons. Almost everything about the Cali 14 is retrograde and weighty. It's almost as if the design brief was to produce an overweight pig!

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10 minutes ago, pete roper said:

Yup. A whole load of stuff on Calis is purely cosmetic. The sides of the tank that the cutouts are in are themselves cosmetic add-ons. Almost everything about the Cali 14 is retrograde and weighty. It's almost as if the design brief was to produce an overweight pig!

The tank cut outs are in my view a styling abomination. I fail to understand why in the hell you would do that as a styling exercise. It makes the bike look like a parts bin, backyard, don't want to invest in proper design, we are broke and can't afford to do it right exercise. I assumed they were an unfortunate necessity.

Ciao  

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34 minutes ago, Lucky Phil said:

The tank cut outs are in my view a styling abomination. I fail to understand why in the hell you would do that as a styling exercise. I assumed they were an unfortunate necessity.

Ciao  

Gosh, I love the old loop fame tanks - so sensuous. I complained relentlessly about the "teardrop" tank that Guzzi then used for the "EV" series (or whatever they're called) hoping for an exciting replacement.  Then the 1400 cut-out job appeared. Sheesh, not at all what I had in mind! At least the tear-drop job finally looked good to me on the CaliVintage . . .

IMG_0017.JPG

 

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What you refer to as the 'Tear drop' is more commonly known as the 'Flaccid Whale Penis'. I've never really understood this particularly American obsession with Loopframes? To me they have always been ugly, overweight, under braked nightmares. I just don't get it.......

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Well, it's funny, every time I think, "Ooh, there's a nice V7 Loop Frame! But I'd like another gear. Maybe a bump in the displacement. Disc brakes. More horsepower. A better gearbox. A more rigid frame. Bigger brakes. Fuel injection. Modern wheel sizes. Better suspension. Clip-ons. Rear-sets. Better lighting " .  .  .

I always start with an early loop and end up right back where I am!

IMG_3040%202.jpg

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11 minutes ago, LowRyter said:

great shot Docc

Thanks, man! I look at that and think, "Would a P.Roper Roller 1400 Single-Sparkler  fit-up in that?"  :sun:

Pete should post up an image of The Green Horror as she sits now. A "before", if you will . . .

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The engine will look no different. I can try and post a pic of Mark’s 1400 if you like. Mine will look very similar. 

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