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Moto Guzzi V-850 California (1972)


  • Kit Manufacturer: Protar (Italy)
  • Major Material: Plastic
  • Model Specifications: 1:6 Scale
  • Work Experience: This kit was built at around 1990. As far as I know it is the only motorcycle kit which has the complete internal mechanisms, including the entire engine, transmission, and the front and rear breaks, been reproduced as the real vehicle and with clear external cover parts to see through. All of the internal mechanisms are supposed to be moveable as the real thing, Portar even has produced a tiny electric motor (sold separately) to activate them. However, as the plastic gear parts are not rigid enough and also are not molded/injected very well, to make them moving smoothly is a real challenge to the modeler, and I have to admit that I didn't do a very good job at that time. Before the pictures on this page were taken, the model has been placed in a somewhat damp and dark glass cabinet without much attention or care for more than twenty years, so you can see that most of the clear parts have been yellowed to the extent that the internal mechanisms are barely visible. Nevertheless this is really an extraordinary kit and had given me a good two weeks of pleasant building time twenty years ago.


Historical Notes:

The following are the main specifications of this motorcycle extracted from the instruction manual prepared by Portar:

  • Engine:
    • 4 stroke, "V" 90 degree OHV
    • Bore and stroke: 83 x 78 mm
    • Displacement: 844.05 cc
    • Compression ratio: 9.2:1
    • Power: HP 64.5 sae / 650 rpm
  • Carburetors:
    DELL'ORTO tyle VHB 20 x
    • Chocke 29mm
    • Throttle: 60mm
    • Max jet: 145
    • Min jet: 45
  • Lubrication:
    • Gear pump, controlled by crankshaft by means of gear pairs
    • Oil filter: in crankcase
    • Pressure: 3.8-4.2 kg/cm2
  • Gearbox: 5 speed with helical gears, constant frontal engagement, pedal with double lever on left side.
  • Driven transmission: Double universal homocinetic shaft.
  • Frame: Double curve with tubular structure.
  • Suspension: Front wheel - telescopic fork with incorporated hidraulic shock absorber. Rear wheel - Oscillating fork with adjustable spiral spring concentric to hydraulic shock absorber.

As the name implied, this motorcycle had been used by the LAPD, the California Highway Patrol, and various other American police departments in the '70s. A comprehensive article about the vehicle by Marty Ray can be found in this page.


More Pictures:   Engine close up view (Left)  |  Left Front View  |  Right Side View
Engine close up view (Right)  |  Rear wheel close up view  |  Front wheel close up view
Dashbord  |  Left Back View  |  Front View  |  Right Handle Close up View |
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