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Girder forks

I am helping a friend rebuild a 1939 Triumph Tiger. My friend has been dealing with Jake Robbins of Vintage Engineering. Has anyone had any dealings with him? Is he still in business?

email (option): goodbell@ripnet.com

Re: Girder forks

He did some good work for me a few years back...However, the job done by him more recently for Darren (a contributor here) was well below an acceptable standard IMO...

Some people have had problems with delivery times as well..

As far as I'm aware he's still in business....

Saying that avoid Percival Brothers and Webb if you'd like to get the bike on the road befort you draw your pension... ...

Unfortunately when it comes to girder forks the options are limited...Depending on what exactly you want done in some cases a Toolmakers Shop might be an alternative.....

I have UK produced replica steering damper knobs and replica tank panels for these models if needed....Ian

email (option): ian@wright52.plus.com

Re: Girder forks

Hi Ian. Could use one of those damper knobs.

email (option): unpob@yahoo.com

Re: Girder forks

I endorse Ian's comments........NO personal experience but close friend(s)........

Jake Robbins has been in business for a fair time, but seemingly changes in the workshop staff/arrangements have impacted upon quality in recent times........I don't know for certain but that is what I've been informed............

As for Percival Brothers, they had my mate's Paul's G3 Girders and frame for a year or so.......massive price at the end of the day for dubious alleged work carried out...........he told me thereafter that he wished he hadn't bothered and wasn't entirely happy that all the stated work had actually been carried out either........again, I don't personally know but I trust what I'm told from close friends..............

Ian is right........many of the jobs required on girder forks can be achieved either by your own efforts if you have access and ability to a workshop.........and if not, by any reasonable engineer or toolmaker, present in any area even today........probably cheaper too at the end of the day and far quicker........

Re: Girder forks

My friend sent him a lot of money and I dont think he well see anything if he does not put up a fight (not a good way to stay in business)A bad word will go a long way today. I hope this is not the case

email (option): goodbell@ripnet.com

Re: Girder forks

Some years ago, he sorted out forks for me at a very reasonable price.I had no problems. I hope that things aren't going wrong.

Re: Girder forks

I heard from friends plus some Forums that things aren't as good as they were Rik..........I hope I'm wrong..........

Re: Girder forks

This has been going on for two years I have sent them an email on behalf of my friend as a member of the canadian vintage motorcycle club I hope this will do some good but I doubt it

If someone is friends with him could you mention this conversation to him

Thanks

email (option): goodbell@ripnet.com

Re: Girder forks

Some years ago Jake re-bushed the forks on my M20 and also repaired a broken link. The job was fine and I really liked Jake. But about 3 years (maybe 2000 miles) later the bushes were completely worn away, because he had used the wrong (sintered) bronze. A mistake that beggers belief from a fork restorer
I now get any fork work that I can't cope with myself done by local engineers. Ron

PS. Those pre war Triumph heavyweight forks will be worth over £2000. Does he admit or have you got proof that he received them? If so I think some legal action to retrieve them is required. Better that they are not even worked on if you ask me. I know where to buy spindles and bushes......... Any re-tubing is another matter however.

email (option): ronpier@talk21.com

Re: Girder forks

I am surprised he is still in business after the awful rip off botch job he did on my forks. I am looking forward to meeting him one day. When I do, I will ask for a refund. Obviously.

email (option): dwrudd. at. lineone. Dot net

Re: Girder forks

I have sent him two emails and he got back on the last saying the forks will be made in feb or march we will see this has taken 4 years

email (option): goodbell@ripnet.com

Re: Girder forks

Steven Bell
I have sent him two emails and he got back on the last saying the forks will be made in feb or march we will see this has taken 4 years


Somethings not quite right here..........

We're all pretty patient but this is seriously taking the piss...........is he providing a service as part of his business or not ? And what happened along the way to customer service ? Even Les at Russell's isn't this bad and he can't really be arsed anyway much of the time !!!!! Four years is pretty poor service.........realtionships fold in less time and I've had both cars and bikes in my time that have lasted for less..............if kids, from birth they'd be due to start school in this time frame....!!!!

I'd give him a week and then either extract my forks back by a personal premises visit, that or a solicitor's letter and with a bill for those costs............thereafter County Court and bailiffs.............I hate individuals like this...remind me of how things often were 30-odd years ago with no consumer protection, etc...just be honest and say you can't do the job/can't be arsed and/or offer a decent service either so others don't fall into your trap............and then f&*$ O£$ while your at it.......!

Re: Girder forks

I would just go and get them back before he does any work on them, I remember the pics of Darren's forks and what a mess he did of them. It will be even harder to put them right if he gets them in his brazing hearth ( thats if he has one)
The last thing you want is that he as unbrazed the tubes from the castings. Sure i read somewhere last year that he was about to make a batch of these Triumph forks, maybe he is using yours as a pattern. Either way go and get them as soon as possible before he buggers them.

Tim W

email (option): t.j.walker@btinternet.com

Re: Girder forks

I have to say I'm puzzled by what is going on...

He made an excellent job of a few sets of forks for me...and completed them in a reasonable time scale...

I also got a good look at the first set of Brough Superior forks he made...

They were excellent and I thought the work was a credit to him...especially as, at that time, he was still relatively young....

However, it now seems he has gone completely 'off the rails' both in terms of the quality of his work and the timescales involved...

If asked, I would say he is showing the symptoms of someone who has suffered a nervous breakdown..either that or has partaken of too many mind altering drugs...

Whilst the situation is not defensible it is very regrettable and I hope that if he does have a particular problem he manages to get over it....Ian

email (option): ian@wright52.plus.com

Re: Girder forks

Promise for delivery by December 2013 was never met, sorry to say. I have no way of knowing being so far away but if anyone visits his shop to view progress on his work I would be interested to know if he is indeed trying to reproduce any of the prewar girder parts. I took the chance so he is not to blame.

email (option): unpob@yahoo.com

Re: Girder forks

My mate sent his Enfield 1140 V twins forks to Jake Robbins and waited 8 months and the work was well below std.

Re: Girder forks

My friend gave Jake a call this morning and asked Jake for his money $$$$$$$$ back! We will see what happens. I don't think he will ever see a dime but let's stay hopeful.

email (option): goodbell@ripnet.com

Re: Girder forks

Making the Indian made ones look better everyday!

Re: Girder forks

there is an article on the sump magazine web site about Jake I thing a lot of people are still judging him when he had trouble with a fire next door to his workshop all his stock of pipe fittings and machinery was ruined which put his work back quite a few months or even a year

email (option): roger.beck@node6.com

Re: Girder forks

if you look at his instagram pages there seems to be plenty going on up to this month...............

http://instagram.com/jakevintage

Re: Girder forks

In the older (1940's, 1950's) motorcycle magazines are many articles on reconditioning girder forks.

It seems back then, even when they were on the road and many specialist shops catered to them, the owner/rider was expected to do his own work, even to this extent.

Check some of those articles out when you get a chance. The magazines are not rare, but not plentiful either. I search ebay for them.

Cheers

email (option): britool51@hotmail.com

Re: Girder forks

JAN 31 still no CASH from JAKE how can someone stay open ???

email (option): goodbell@ripnet.com

Re: Girder forks

looking at his page he is doing work on some round tanks and other work I think he has put fork work on the back burner for an unqualified person to do the work it a shame as when he did my girder forks some years ago they were fairly quick good work and a reasonable price

email (option): roger.beck@node6.com

Re: Girder forks

Well lets hope someone tells him about these posts. Maybe it'll make him pull his finger out or maybe he doesn't care about bad publicity

Re: Girder forks

Fred
Well lets hope someone tells him about these posts. Maybe it'll make him pull his finger out or maybe he doesn't care about bad publicity
Left a set of 1936 Empire Star forks with Jake for re-bushing.Drove all the way from Sweden in october 2011.He finally answered the phone after a year and said he hadn't even started yet.Ok,wait a bit longer.He never answered the phone again.Didn't reply to my messages or e mails.I thought he was dead,but his website was being updated all the time.Went to his workshop every year when over on holiday,but he was never there.The bloke at the workshop next to Jake shook his head and said he felt sorry for anyone doing business with him.I finally got an answer on facebokk in july 2019 saying he had sold them to pay for storage.They"re 2 foot long and 8 inches wide!He's a bloody thief!Hope he rots in Hell

email (option): alangrey007@hotmail.com

Re: Girder forks

Selling someone else's property to pay for 'storage' is a very dangerous road to travel.

The conditions surrounding such an action are very specific, very involved and need to follow a set course of action.

I would consult a good solicitor, as if what you say is as it was, then I'd say Theft is involved.

I had a genuine case like this 35 years ago when I had to sell a customer vehicle to recoup my costs of parts and labour, storage did not come into it. I won, but it was a lot of aggro I did not need.

You will have had to have lots of written notice, paper work, warnings of intent and details of costs involved just to start.

Trouble is, at the end you'll still be one set of forks short.:white_frowning_face:

Re: Girder forks

Thanks Ken,but he didn't give me any type of paper work when I left the forks,so it's word against word.He knew exactly what he was doing.Bet he sold them straight away.I will however visit Sussex consumer rights office and show them the ripped off customers on this site.Apart from that,I've just bought M20 forks to fit

email (option): alangrey007@hotmail.com

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