Postwar KSS tank

Ah! Due to the fact that the bike came with an MSS tank (right shape and date, but definitely ‘wrong’ underneath!) the buyer ‘hapened’ to have a ‘correcter’ tank at his place and sent it to me free of charge! Thanks for that, Robert!

A nice post-war KSS tank, in fairly good, very solid condition. This has been repaired at least once and is missing the petrol tap attachment on the right hand side (which will have to be added again, of course).

This tank was fitted to bikes with the telescopic forks and is a bit narrower at the front, to avoid the stanchions on full lock and as such, has a slightly different profile and capacity compared with the earlier models. It does have a few fitment issues, as follows, but nothing drastic!


OK, when the mounting holes at the front are placed over the centre of the holes in the front mounts of the frame…


The rear mounts don’t line up with the frame holes. Not drastic, can be re-drilled and the ‘ears’ re-filed to a suitable shape if necessary!

It is only like this that there is enough clearance for the forks on full lock, without an enlarged stop mounted to the frame…a definite plus for low-speed agility, especially when parking. Prerequisite for this is mounting the tank about an inch above the frame-mounts, otherwise the tank base slopes down to the front, looks strange and the tank would foul the forks.


Lined up at the rear mount, things look definitely different!


The whole tank has moved forwards and fouls on the forks, whatever you do…so a stop would be the very minimum necessary to avoid damage and mounting at the front would be ‘interesting’!


The amount of ‘travel’ still available before hitting the stops, but after hitting the tank…not good, not good…

Here is the underside of the tank, showing the repairs, the missing tap-‘ole and the size of cut-away needed to clear the OHC head of the KSS… I think that this has been ‘remade’ to fit the KSS from an MSS tank, originally?


Below, the holes under the cross-bar are visible to allow for the length of the mounting-screws, so that the tank is not damaged by them!


Again below, the ‘cable-cut-outs’ in the front of the tank are also quite plainly visible.


A certain Mr. Wayne (thanks, Wayne!) is helping with the identity and tracing the ‘meaning’ of some of the parts and modifications and it’s great fun learning! My KSS, way back then, never needed anything ‘doing’ to it, apart from the expected oil changes, chains and occasional clutch adjustment (I lie, it was one clutch re-adjustment in 17000km…) Let’s hope that this one will run as sweetly!

I am already preparing myself to take the forks and frame and some of the other parts to the painters, so there will be a strip-down soon, showing what is necessary (in my mind, at least) as preparation for painting, in order to maintain the ‘fit’ of the parts and that blasting-abrasives of any sort don’t find their way into any parts that they shouldn’t… Very important for the forks! (At least this one isn’t an oil-in-frame model!)

©peter gouws 2012

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