The Aermacchi Project, Part 2: The Tank Follies and How to Apply Red-Kote

Reader Contribution by Margie Siegal
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It’s a bit hard to see, but a close look inside the Aermacchi’s gas tank shows the red-colored Red-Kote tank sealer. Photo by Margie Siegal.

This is the second installment of an ongoing series detailing Margie Siegal’s restoration of a 1973 Harley-Davidson 350 Sprint. You can read the Part 1 here.

“I’ve got bad news for you,” said Dave Kafton. Dave is a longtime engine builder, with a specialty in prepping Harley engines for Cannonball contestants. He had volunteered to mentor me through my Harley-Davidson Sprint project. The first item for his ment-ee (me, that is) was to get the tank and side covers off and bring them to him so he could get these items, all needing some touchup painting, to the painter, Steve Turnbeaugh. Dave sends all his sheet metal to Steve, as do a lot of other people in the Antique Motorcycle Club.

The bad news was a rusty seam in the bottom of the tank. Ouch. A major reason I had bought the bike was the really nice robin’s egg-blue custom paint job, complete with silver pinstriping. The work had been done in the 1970s by a Rhode Island pinstriper. Was this lovely paint now history? Much angst.

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