Posts Tagged ‘Project’

Waiting in the Wings…

Posted: October 18, 2016 in Just Me
Tags: , , ,

A little while ago a couple of friends in the US uncovered a barn full of BSA’s in Arkansas, one of which, this 63 A10 Super Rocket, was offered to me, just 10,000 miles, fairly rust free, and full of faded glory. At this time it is located down in Georgia (along with my Guzzi), waiting on me getting it shipped over here to the UK. The motor is not seized, Compression is good, the chrome is in fantastic condition apart from the rims, and the inside of the tank is still fresh, such a cool looking bike.

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1963 BSA Super Rocket

Extra chrome, round tank badges, and bars, are all West coast standard equipment, and as you can see from the brochure below, no ball end levers. East coast bikes had a tear drop tank badge. one of the last A10 Super Rockets. It really is a cool bike, and even better up close and personal

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BSA Sales

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Waiting in the Wings

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And another unexpected bike joins the group.

The lightning seems to have taken up residence on the bench right now, the whole front end is out, the head is away at SRM having a full on valve job, I was hoping the head may have been completed this weekend but not so. As can happen sometimes, I managed to break a piston ring fitting the barrel, and the broken piece of course dropped into the crank cases, and could not be seen. But some fishing around with a telescopic magnet found it in the bottom of the cases. So after again fitting a spare ring to the piston, and some help from Paul, I managed to get the refinished barrels in place, bolted down.

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A65L new +20 pistons all fitted.

Next it was time to fit my new SRM magnetic sump kit, after removing the old studs I offered up the new gauze filter, only to find that it did not fit! it seems that SRM sent me out a kit for a B50 or other single, as the hole in the gauze was too small (8.5mm instead of 11.5mm) to go over the scavenger pipe. Luckily my old filter gauze was in very good condition, so I decided to use that rather than wait for a replacement from SRM.

Then it was just a case of bolting it all up to the underside of the motor.

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SRM magnetic sump

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It won’t stay shiny for long.

Vincent Comet…

I had a call from a mate in the US, telling me to go look over a Vincent Comet with a view to buying it, well a long story short, I did, and so I ended up with a Comet. I never thought I would ever own a Vincent, so getting this has come as a real surprise to me.

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Vincent Comet

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The Vincent

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Vincent 500cc single

Pulling it all apart, putting it all together.

I have now for the moment taken the motor as far apart as I intend to go for the time being. I have drained and flushed through the crank cases, and was pleased to find no metal in the drained oil after letting it stand in the tray for a week, and filtering it off over a strong magnet.

The cylinder head has gone off to SRM in Wales for full refurbishment, which includes lead free seats, new guides, valves, springs etc. This work wasn’t cheap by any means, but it should last me out, and make for a good top end. I am looking forward to getting the head back so I can button up the top end.

Last weekend I cleaned off all the old base gasket material, and fitted the new pistons, I also honed out and painted the barrels ready to be fitted. I would have fitted the barrels but the supplied base gasket in the kit I bought was for the 1/4″ stud version cases and not the 3/8″ as required on the later cases, so again I find myself waiting.

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New +20 pistons

Next I turned my attention to the front end and dropped out both fork legs, water had got in through the torn gaiters, and was evident in both legs, water came out of the right hand side, but the left hand stanchion is at the moment seized solid. So I have left it soaking in some penetrating oil for the week, I shall see how it does this weekend.

The Lightning Project… part six.

Posted: September 30, 2016 in Just Me
Tags: , , , , ,

SRM.

I just ordered and received this new SRM magnetic sump plate assembly for the BSA Lightning. The quality is outstanding as I hope you can see from the pictures.

I also sent my head off to SRM to have new valves, guides etc. It is right about now that I hope the bottom end is all ok! everything seems fine but I won’t know for sure until I fire the bike up. A scary thought.

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SRM sump kit.

http://www.srmclassicbikes.com

 

The next step is to remove the head, so we can check the condition of the combustion chamber, the valves, the bores, and of course the pistons. Somewhere in here is the reason for the low compression in the right hand cylinder, it is just a case of checking out the parts as you see them.

The valves seem fine, and have no leaking, so that really only leaves the piston or rings.

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Valves

Now we get the heart of the matter, the first look at the bores, and piston crowns, there was a fair bit of carbon build up, which I have started to clean off the pistons. There is slight scoring in the bores showing signs of previous trouble, a minor nip up, or a ring broken in the past.

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A65L barrels and pistons

The barrel just needs a light hone, and will be good to go, the piston crowns show +20 so there was a past problem hence the signs of previous scoring, and with the barrel removed we find the cause of low compression, the rings are all stuck solid in the right piston, nothing too major then.

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+20

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Stuck rings = low compression

Right time to strip and clean all the parts, hone the barrels, new piston kits, valves, valve guides etc, and start building it back up.

People Are Strange…

People are strange when you’re a stranger
Faces look ugly when you’re alone
Women seem wicked when you’re unwanted
Streets are uneven when you’re down

When you’re strange
Faces come out of the rain
When you’re strange
No one remembers your name
When you’re strange
When you’re strange
When you’re strange (The Doors)

So said the Doors…. And in some cases it seems to be true, especially when you start looking at old bikes that have an unknown history, and just when you think you have seen it all, up pops something new that makes you chuckle to yourself, whilst at the same time makes you recoil in disbelief as you wonder what other little surprises await as you dig further into that “new” old bike!

Today I started pulling the top end apart to try to discover the cause of low compression on one cylinder, so the first thing that needs removing is the tank, which as had already been noted had the wrong fuel taps fitted….

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Oddball fuel taps

but what I discovered here left me speechless, in an amused bewildered sort of way!

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No it can’t be?

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Yes it really is, a Coaxial cable joint?

Yes, that is an ariel coaxial cable joining piece!

Update…

I have been informed that this is not a CoAx fitting, but is in fact a type of fuel tap specific to the USA, with a ball valve that runs on the nylon liner, but I was also told the flow rate was pretty bad, so they were often replaced.

It was a good day walking around Kempton Jumble today, I managed to get a few things for the Lightning, so I can now start to get this thing headed back towards the road where it belongs.
The first things on my list were the handlebars, and the Lucas rear light, well as you can see I found some new Triumph western style bars, and I also found a genuine Lucas rear light unit. These two items alone have transformed the look of the bike.

Before…

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Old style West coast bars, and smashed rear light.

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New bars, and genuine Lucas rear light

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Lucas tail light

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Triumph style western bars

I also have new gaiters to fit, new fuel taps, and fuel line. but first tomorrow I will be pulling the head to see what the top end looks like, due to the fact the bike has low compression on one side, maybe a stuck valve?