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Mono Guzzi Shifting Orientation - pedantic

Discussion in 'MonoCylindrico' started by GTM®, Nov 27, 2018.

  1. GTM®

    GTM® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

    Jul 1, 2009
    Likes Received:
    From our friend P. Hayes:

    We recently had some discussions about internal assembly of the Falcone transmission gears. Some asked and I sent out my translation for that section of the shop manual including internal photos. My instructions only apply to the Falcone meshed-gear transmission.

    I've been studying a wide variety of external pictures for the Falcone and I need to make some follow-up clarification comments.

    First, we all know that the 'year' of any registered Falcone is a crap shoot. Was it the date of production? The date of importation? The date of transfer sale? The date it first showed up at the DMV? I have see Falcone advertised as old as 1931 and as late as 1975 (not a Nuovo). The uninformed often consider any Guzzi single with an exposed flywheel to be a 'Falcone'. Unless you possess the factory paperwork (no longer easy to do) then any date number is suspect.

    Second, parts didn't change much from year to year or even from model to model. It is quite easy to restore a Falcone using parts that were from the previous Astore model or by combining parts from many years within the production range.

    Third, linkage design orientation is different for Sport and Turismo versions. Sports connect a short, nearly vertical linkage rod from the rear of the foot pedal to about the 8 o'clock position on the shifter drum. Turismo connects a longer, 45 degree angular linkage rod from the pivot center of the foot pedal up to about the 12 o'clock position of the shift drum. The older GTV/Astore crash box used a level rod from the center of the shift pedal to the 6 o'clock position of the shift detent drum.

    Now to the shifting. The Falcone transmission has meshed gears with sliding intermediate gears for positive engagement. Guzzi Falcone shifts gears from neutral to 1st gear by stepping down on the back of the shift pedal. Linkage causes the external portions of the shift detent drum system to rotate counter-clockwise when viewed direct on from the outside. 2nd and higher gears are located by stepping down on the front of the pedal which rotates the shifter drum clockwise to
    increase gears.

    An earlier version of this transmission did not have the same design and did not operate the same way internally. The earlier transmission of the GTV/Astore models used a sliding gear cluster and was thus a 'crash box' which required more-careful shifting to engage the spinning teeth. The older transmission rotated the shifter drum clockwise when going from neutral to 1st. The opposite rotation from the later Falcone transmission. Proper linkage alignment provided the same operator function; down and back for 1st gear.

    Guzzi overlapped the production of both the older and newer version transmissions from about 1950-1953. I don't think any true Falcone were released from the factory with the older crash box transmission, but it wouldn't be very hard to introduce an older Astore engine/transmission into a Falcone frame. So, it might be possible to find a restored Falcone rolling around with the older crash box transmission.

    Additionally, the outer-most linkage connector plate for the shifter comes in several design variations to accommodate several styles of linkage and foot pedal design. Holes drilled in various positions as relates to the protruding arm. That plate can easily be installed upside down, backwards, or swapped from an alternate model. Such changes might produce backward shifting sequence.

    Study the following photographs. Think about the action dynamics. When the shift pedal is pressed down at the rear, the shifter drum should rotate counter-clockwise if it is a correct meshed-gear Falcone transmission. These two attached pictures clearly show that the drum will rotate clockwise. In such condition, 1st gear would then be down in the front of the pedal. If it is your bike and you are used to it or prefer it that way then so what. However, if you have the opportunity as I do to ride several Falcone models or if you plan to sell your bike then such a backward transmission would be quite confusing. These backward shifting orientation would be appropriate for the older crash box transmission which requires clockwise shift drum rotation from neutral to 1st.

    https://oldmotodude.blogspot.com/2015/09/1957-moto-guzzi-falcone-on-display-at.html -- or here; https://www.flickr.com/photos/44366233@N02/14032695770

    Note the multiple holes drilled in the outer plate for the shifter drum. That is not original. Someone made more holes so as to mount the plate differently and alter the linkage and rotation.

    Some additional helpful transmission images can be found here: http://www.ingegneriadepoca.com/pagine.web/inglese/trasmissione.htm
    Note that the Falcone uses the 4-speed 'racing' transmission.

    So, just be aware that it may be possible to have a crash box in a Falcone. If you find a Falcone that goes down in front for 1st then you need to live with it or look for re-aligning the outer plate and link rod to correct it.

    I found another picture (on my own, no less) of an erroneously installed Falcone foot linkage. See attached. Note that stepping down in the back is going to make the shift drum rotate clockwise (wrong for a meshed-gear Falcone). Note also that the foot shift lever is not level, but angled down toward the front. I don't know if the owner did it this way on purpose because he wanted it to shift that way, or because he was unaware of the proper linkage connection, or if it was just quickly thrown together for the purposes of the artistic photo.


    In your mind, disconnect the linkage rod, remove the outer plate of the shift drum, and flip it so that its extended arm is up vertical at 12 o'clock. Now move the connecting rod up to rejoin that outer plate. The result will be a connector rod at a roughly 45 degree angle and the foot shift pedal will now be level with both the front and rear rubber pegs at the same level. The shift drum will also now properly turn counter-clockwise when shifting down and back from neutral to 1st.

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