This page is being created to document the building of my 1952 Ariel Square Four.

Here is the story.
I purchased my Square Four as a basket case.  I was really very excited about this purchase.  It was something I've wanted for a very long time.  I procured a bunch of new parts and I cleaned parts and sorted parts and it has been languishing in my shop for way too long.  As I write this it is January 16, 2005.  I acquired this dream in 1999 from my very good friend Rick and in the process of buying it I promised I would do right by it.  Meaning I would finish the project he started.  Well four and a half years later I feel as if I have let Rick down.

Rick purchased this bike as a rolling non-running mostly complete motorcycle.     CLICK HERE FOR ALL PHOTOS FULL SIZE
  Click on any individual photo to see. enlargement
He proceeded to dismantle said motorcycle, placing each and every piece lovingly on newsprint.  All the parts were put on this newsprint in an orderly fashion.  The only thing Rick did not dismantled was the motor, tranny, and some of the chassis, the remainder was taken apart down to every nut, bolt, washer, clip, and tie.  All placed on his lower level floor.  CLICK HERE FOR ALL PHOTOS FULL SIZE
Click on any individual photo to see.
This bike stayed like this for thirteen years!  Now I know what you must be thinking.  Part gone here, bit gone there, lots of important stuff missing.  "Not so", I tell you.  When I went to pick this prize up at Ricks house, it was exactly as he placed it 13 years previous plus about one inch of cat hair.  During this time Rick had sent the motor off to someone in/near Los Angeles to be rebuilt.  The guy had the motor for a very VERY!!!!! long time.  Upwards of ten years.  The great earthquake where the twin decked bridges collapsed happened during this time.  For a time after this earthquake Rick cannot contact this guy.  He tried for months to locate the gentleman he sent his precious motor too.  Rick finally did track the fella down and low and behold he still had the motor. So it was sent home still in the same packaging my friend sent it in, no work ever done.
Below are the photos I took when I brought it home.  CLICK HERE FOR ALL PHOTOS FULL SIZE

Click on any individual photo to see.

The first thing I did was remove the paint from the fuel tank.  Notice the photo below has no badges or even holes for badges. 
Click photo to see.
So after I stripped the paint I found where someone had done a very nice job leading in dents where the badges should be.  This is what the tank looked like before and after I removed the lead.  The one side isn't too bad, but the other where the lead still remains in the photo was a considerable dent.
  Click on any individual photo to see.
After finding the dents I started looking for another tank.  Well, I have to say, that is a difficult thing to find these days.  A very good friend gave me the phone number of a guy he said might have Ariel parts.  I immediately called the number.  This gentleman says, Yes I HAD a bunch of Ariel stuff but just sold it all off to Baxter Cycle".  I said, "Oh darn, I am really in need of a gas tank".  Well come to find out the had held back a really nice gas tank and was willing to part with it.  CLICK HERE FOR ALL PHOTOS FULL SIZE
  Click on any individual photo to see.
Needless to say this was the find of the century.  It is clean inside and the finish is still quite nice.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

I took the motor to my friend Dale Matteson who will do the majority (all
really) of the re-build.  Dale is a well renowned British motorcycle
restorer specializing in Triumph.  The bikes he builds are some of the
finest I've seen.  I trust him to do the very best work.

Click photo to see.

Notice the crank shafts are still in the case half.

    Click on any individual photo to see.

We couldn't determine how to remove the crank gears without the correct  extraction tools.  So I came home and wrote the Ariel list asking if anyone had any ideas.  Then I went out in my shop to look at all the parts I  purchased 4 years ago after first buying the bike.  Well, wouldn't you know it?  I had purchased the correct tools already!  It had been so long I'd
forgotten  It was like Christmas looking at all the shiny goodies I had purchased so long ago.

Here we are all caught up on the story of what will become a whole, running,  beautiful piece of art.......soon......hopefully.  The story continues, please check back from time to time to watch this pile grow into the fine
machine we all know it can be.

Thanks for looking.

Chuck Stults

HOME Last Revised by Naomi on: 02/24/2007 06:50:10 AM -0600