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Old 27-02-2011, 06:38 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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OK guys after reading Harris' fantastic build threads I've been inspired to do my own diary on the progress of my BSA project. As Ive already started the build ill get everyone up to speed with whats been done so far and then add to it as and when i make progress. First job was to trawl evilBay with a thousand quid to find a suitable doner. As I knew I wanted something old and british it was always gonna be a basket case and this is what I ended up with. Aplogies for the pic quality as its a pic of a pic of the original ebay listing but as you can see its a 1949 BSA A7 plunger with the long stroke engine, no clutch or timing side covers and a horrible mustang tank which is held to the bike by absolutely feck all and full of dints.
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Old 27-02-2011, 06:58 PM
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First job was to take the bike apart and see what was what. As a christmas present my old man offered to rebuild the engine which he probably now regrets as after taking it apart the internals were basically shafted. Luckily my old man can fix up british twins with his eyes closed so once we have all the parts required he can crack on with that. Newark auto jumble turned up the missing engine covers for 30 for the pair. Their in a shit state but nothing some wet and dry and elbow grease cant fix.

The same trip to Newark also turned up a complete sporty front end with wheel, forks and yokes which not only had the beefy look i was after but were also only 1 1/2" longer than the original BSA forks. The chap was selling the bits separate for 250 and i haggled him to 200 for the lot so result there as the chrome is perfect and the forks are mint too!

It just so happens that where i work has a full machine shop and the machinist is a good mate of mine whos into his chops so he soon knocked me up a stem out of an old turbine shaft to mate the sporty yokes to the BSA bearings as well as some sexy ally end covers for the stem.
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Old 27-02-2011, 07:13 PM
xvwannabe xvwannabe is offline
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I'm liking that Pete,i have pm'd you buddy
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Old 27-02-2011, 07:14 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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The previous owner of the sporty forks had drilled some holes into the lower yokes for some reason or other and im gonna use them to mount the headlight. Just to be different Im gonna use a Bates headlight (lol) so another skeg round ebay got me one for bout 25. I found a big sheet of 1/4" ally at work so half hid it under some rags and waited a few days, after nobody complained about its dissapearance it was soon back in the workshop being attacked with a jigsaw to make a headlight bracket. the rest of the sheet will be good for making engine mounts etc later on.

I was just going to mount the light straight onto the yoke but as the top yoke has some threaded bosses i may use them to mount a little speedo housing so by moving the light forward that gives me room for the speedo behind so it isnt stuck up the air above the bars.

Oh and before anyone takes the piss cos the holes in the bracket are on the piss, its because the holes in the yokes are too!
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Old 27-02-2011, 07:25 PM
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COULD YOU USE SOME SMALLER PICTURES MATEoops, sorry for shouting, theyre bit big to take in!!!
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Old 27-02-2011, 07:28 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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Next on the list was bars an risers, the original bars were shagged and after being quoted 20 to re-chrome em it seemed a better idea to get a brand new set for 17 of evil bay (again!) and at least now ive got a set of bars which could be sprayed black for future projects. Whilst on ebay i happened across a guy knocking out risers fairly cheap from his home workshop so i got a pair of short 2" jobbies for about 25-30 if i remember right.

At the mo the risers are just held in loosely with allen bolts, at some point i need to get hex bar in the lathe and whip up some bolts with m12 threads for the risers but 1/2" shoulders for the yokes.
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Old 27-02-2011, 07:30 PM
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suppose thats a no then!!!
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Old 27-02-2011, 07:33 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnr View Post
COULD YOU USE SOME SMALLER PICTURES MATEoops, sorry for shouting, theyre bit big to take in!!!
John id love too mate but im a bit thick when it comes to computermijigs, how do i shrink the photos cos thats what size they are without me expanding them????
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Old 27-02-2011, 07:44 PM
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Use a very simple program, either paint (windows - free) or Gimp (http://www.gimp.org/ - free) both of which gives you option for resizing and manipulation... Gimp is basically photoshop without the cost!!!

Better camera will help or even a vid on youtube!
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Old 27-02-2011, 08:12 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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thanks for that mate, as for the camera the shots were taken on my phone cos my camera is broken, after seeing the quality of the photos ill be investing in a new camera next time im in town.
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Old 27-02-2011, 08:36 PM
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After fitting the bars and risers i stood back and something didnt quite match the picture in my head of how it should look. I wanted to achieve a look of a standard frame and engine etc but with oversized and chunky front an rear end. It suddenly came to me that the bars needed to be wider and the solution is something im actually quite proud of. A moment of inspiration you might say.

As a keen mountain biker i have lots of push bike bits kicking around and found a pair of ally handle bar ends. I took the expanders from them (just a slotted tube and a conical wedge tapped out to m5) and using some 1" ally bar i machined two pieces which slotted into the bars about an inch and then had a 2" 7/8" extention on the end. after making some end caps i ordered 2 4" countersunk m5 allen bolts and that was it, instant 4" of extra width on the handlebars.
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Old 28-02-2011, 08:27 PM
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OK guys after getting the front end sorted it was time for a trip back to Newark autojumble to see what other treasures I could find.

The first find was a chrome clutch/master cylinder set. In true autojumble style i picked them up and checked the 60 price tag, grunted and put them back down. When they were still there a few hours later I waved 40 notes at the chap behind the table and they were mine. Happy with that!
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Old 28-02-2011, 08:39 PM
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As the levers were for 1" bars it was time to raid the push bike spares again. MTB bars also come in 7/8" or 1" so I had a couple of shims that came with various bars/stems so I chopped em down to size and fitted the levers.
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Old 28-02-2011, 08:43 PM
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OK The more i stare at those levers, the more i think of orange county choppers! Maybe their just a little too chunky for this style of bike. Any opinions on this would be appreciated guys!
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Old 28-02-2011, 08:48 PM
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Personally i like them Pete,i'm loving this build
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Old 28-02-2011, 09:11 PM
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The trip to Newark also turned up a sportster tank which I got for 50 and as far as I can tell its original Harley as it seems nice and heavy gauge steel.

The original seat was also knackered and i'd priced a new cover at 20 plus the cost of re-chroming the springs and the time cleaning, sanding and repainting the the frame. So when I found a seat for 35 complete with springs it came home with me aswell.

I was tempted to go for a little bobber style seat, you know, scrap of leather stretched over a bit of tin type effort but after thinking about it, with no stretch on the rear seat rails it would have to be tiny to fit between the tank and the mudguard plus i want the bike to be comfy too. Also the original style seat mates up to the back of the sporty tank nicely.

Normally the seat would attach to the pivot on the frame via a small bracket but by redrilling the spring mounts further back and mounting the seat directly to the frame it gives a good close join with the tank.

Also in these pictures you can see a small bracket i started up which would mount parallel to the top tube to mount the choke lever tucked up out the way but having examined the carb i reckon i could make something which sits on top of the body and do away with a cable which would need hiding.
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Old 28-02-2011, 09:13 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xvwannabe View Post
Personally i like them Pete,i'm loving this build
Yeah in a lot of ways i like them too. ill keep em on for now and see if they grow on me.

Im loving this build too mate, its my first and to see the kind of bike ive spent years looking at in magazines etc appearing on the bike stand is amazing.
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Old 28-02-2011, 09:32 PM
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The rear axle had obviously been removed with a mallet a fair few times as the end was mushroomed like an old chisel so again i took it to neil at work to see if he could get more turbine shaft to make a new one. He couldnt but his solution was pure inspiration, to go with the chunky theme he make a big stainless cover for the non threaded end complete with a hole for a tommy bar, and then made over size spacers and nuts to match on the other side.

Im definitely gonna owe that guy a pint after this!

I got hold of a 16" x 4" rim off a harley (i think) again from Newark and set about stripping the old rear wheel. After trying in vain to undo 40 year old spoke nipples i gave up and got the bolt croppers out. 2 mins later i had the hub in my hand so stripped the bearings out and was pleased to see loads of fresh grease packed in there!

Sent the hub to quality chrome in hull and was well pleased with the result, it was pricy but worth it as the finish is excellent.

After getting the hub back it went along with the rim to Colin Thomson at thorton abbey for rebuilding and after a monster f*ck about thanks to central wheels i eventually got my wheel done and it looks spanking!
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Old 28-02-2011, 09:55 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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Right then boys and girls better start on the big 'un. THE ENGINE!!!!!

first job was a nasty crack in the crank case so again it was time to beg favours from workmates, the fantastic Mr Stichell took on the job and vee'd out the case along the crack from the inside and by the time he'd finished welding the crack up you'd never tell from the outside, top job!

the crank was shipped out for a regrind and a new timing side bush was ordered and fitted, however when the crank came back it was obvious the bush was too long as it protruded into the crank case and when the crank was fitted it was binding on the bush. So it went to Neil (again) to work his machinist magic on the bush and get it flush with the inside of the case.

after filling the cases with swarf from machining and sanding back the weld the oil ways were nicely packed with little chucks of metal so it was a case of getting an air line and blow/wipe repeat until no flecks of swarks appeared from any nooks and crannies.
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Old 05-03-2011, 11:54 AM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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Hello again!

Not alot to report really, engine rebuild is being held up cos the barrels have a fine score down one cylinder and the barrels have already been bored 20 thou over and no-one makes 40 thou over pistons, BUGGER! The score is minimal and would prob be ok but if the whole engine is getting rebuilt it might as well be done right. I would just re-sleeve the barrels but me and the old man are off to the classic bike show in stafford in april and the auto jumble might turn up a new set for less than the cost of a re-sleeve.

On a positive note I ordered my tyres today. Ive gone for the classic speedmaster/safety milage combo as they have the period look but more importantly the tyre diameters will even out the difference in the rim diameters and get the bike sat level.

Also I measured up the riser bolts and also the front wheel spacers which i needed and was gonna make em up on the lathe but Neil offered to whip em up out of stainless which is a bonus. Our lathe isnt really man enough for stainless as the belt tends to slip and leave a rough finish.

So now its just a case of waiting for parts, in the mean time ill have a look for some suitable stud bar to make some mini spring compressors ready for fitting the plunger springs when the back wheel gets its tyre. then i can get a mudguard mounted
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:38 PM
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Good choice, my A10 used to run on Avon Speedmaster MkIIs

Can you still get clutch corks for them and do you know how to replace them..

John.
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Old 05-03-2011, 06:29 PM
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i dont to be honest, is it a big job?
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:03 PM
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you might have a problem finding the corks, I got my last lot from a motorbike shop in Green lane london a long time ago

ok here's how to do it.

The corks are slightly bigger than the holes they fit in and about 1/2" thick.

Remove the old corks with a screwdriver and hammer, sandpaper to smooth the hole edges.

Place each of the cleaned plates on a sheet of glass to make sure they are not warped.

Put the corks in a bowl of cold water to soak for a few hours until they become soft like sponges.

Squeeze them into the holes in the plates and line them up by eye so they are centered in the holes, from memory about 1/8th of an inch overlap each side.

Leave to dry naturally, might take a few days.

when very dry.

Nail a piece of sandpaper to a flat board.

Rest the newly corked plate on top of the sandpaper and very gently rub the plate over the sandpaper until the corks are smooth, even and level with but still well proud of the plate.

Turn the plate over and repeat.. That's one plate done. the thicker the better, the springs will do the rest for you.

forgot to mention order ten more corks than you need to allow for cracked bits..the job is very easy..Oh and I paid 1/2d each for my corks..

John.
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:35 PM
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OK cheers for that, thats one of the reasons i joined this forum, for handy advice like that. Is there anything special about the corks or could I make my own?
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Old 06-03-2011, 12:32 AM
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don't make your own they are dense and cut so that they fit when wet and dry so they overlap..and I see you can still get them..try google BSA clutch corks.

John
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Old 06-03-2011, 01:28 PM
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cheers mate
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Old 11-03-2011, 03:58 PM
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Well happy today. Had a day off work and loads of shiny stuff came in the post so got some quality time in the garage and this is the result,

Well pleased I've finally got a rolling chassis but why is it that the moment you slap Harley Davidson on summat it suddenly costs double what its worth. Ive just had to spend 10 on 5 set screws to hold the pissing disc on! On the plus side the tyres look mint.
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Old 14-03-2011, 07:35 PM
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Hey guys, not much to report just got the caliper mounted tonight, got the caliper of evil bay along with some new pads. the caliper caliper didnt even have a picture on the listing so i was expecting the worst but when it arrived i was pleasantly surprised, the piston was nice and free and i was expecting it to look haggard but the paint was spot on so hopefully the seals are good too. Only problem was the big Harley badge which had to go. After a little rummage around i came across a lovely little billet disc with a laser cut BSA logo which i think started life as a bung for a goldstar tank mount, anyway out came the araldite and that was the caliper suitably tarted up.

Ive ordered a mudguard which should be here in the next few days so thats next job.
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Old 14-03-2011, 08:12 PM
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nice project liking the look of rolling chassis.. my dad got a bsa 400, which he has since he was 17 lol, its ready for restoration.

you know newark autojumble, any chance its in newark-on-trent around nottinghamshire?
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Old 14-03-2011, 08:45 PM
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yeah thats the one, usually good for picking cool stuff up reasonably cheap.
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