Feb 2016

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Monday 29th Feb 2016

Ordered the badge for the Tbird  - postage was more than the badge. Grrrrr. Researching a torque wrench, fearful of not getting the head bolts sorted correctly.

Sunday 28th Feb 2016

Never a boring day with old classic bikes. Had an invite to the Sherwoods ranch for Tea and tiffin, lovely ride there. Although I did think at the time the engine tone sounded different....... 


 FFS after one too many bits of cake I had to stop, Bike was making an awful racket, sounded as though it had no exhaust. Managed to limp home, lifting the head, I feared the worst . Turns out a £2.85 head gasket has blown. You can see the gas vapour trails on the head and barrel Grrrrr. Guess what I'll be doing next Saturday morning. ..... Prior to this the bike ran lovely. ..... doooh. I think I'm probably to blame post the aqua blasting, I don't believe I tightened the head up properly. Guess what I'm doing next Saturday morning. ... 


Saturday 27th Feb 2016

What a busy day..... Started well, the sun was out but flippin eck I think the high was +2 having just started to recover from a cold I found it simply too cold. But I changed the old engine casing on the Thunderbird, not too difficult. Need to top up oil, took the Tbird out for a run, not far just around the block. I then sprayed the new rear footbeg, albeit sprayed it in engine matt black. Juck ! Really only done to protect the bare steel. Tommorow I will cut off and fit the new BSA Rubbers. Later in the afternoon I attempted to build up the universal engine stand. Turns out it was anything other than Universal. I struggled with the rear bracket. I need to seriously modify the rear bracket for the stand to work correctly.

Tuesday 23rd Feb 2016  

Engine Stand turned up, and I've emailed Bournemouth Bantams and they have some resonably priced engine parts. Stator housing £15 and £3 postage.

Sunday 21st Feb 2016

This day last year I was servicing the Thunderbird, this afternoon I decided to ride the Bantam rather than drag the thunderbird out and replace the Alternator cover.  The wind was extremly strong never the less the temperature was heading towards 14 degress so I just had to ride. With no obvious threat of rain I was undecided on my location until I turned right at the entrance out of the estate.  Below is a link to my route, I have to say the clutch held and it was a real pleasure to bimble around the villages. 



Saturday 20th Feb 2016

Overnight spot, bought a socket set from amazon prime. Turns out the bolts holding on the rear sprocket of the Bantam was 5/16th and once I used the correct tool they came off no problem. Used the carb cleaner i bought from toolstation to degrease the hub. Packed it up with a covering letter and rode in the very light rain to St. Ives on the Bantam ( of course ) to the post office. Bantam broke the 52mph GPS reading and ran like a dream. Must remember to fit the rear peg as last night Matt had nowhere to put his feet. Bless.

rode into st. ives on the bsa bantam to take the hub to be painted.


Friday 19th Feb 2016

wrapped a rubber glove over the shaft of the rear hub axle and managed to loosen several parts. I am however struggling with the rear sprocket. I used carb cleaner to degrease the hub, more attention to detail will be needed before posting off on Monday. I have ordered a cheap socket set. Hopefully this will contain the correct size to remove the sprocket.

Thursday 18th Feb 2016

Just Rang CWC they have received my front hub, and it's going to take around four weeeks. Hybrid Silver is the name of the paint work.

Wednesday 17th Feb 2016

Wow - received the following images from Jason at Cambridgeaquablasting.co.uk - before and after photos of the Bantam Engine casings.



Tuesday 16th Feb 2016

Well this evening, I sorted out the Aquablasting site, and their email issues, trading my time for their time in the blasting ovens. Took the engine casings down. Jason was confident that they would come up quite well.  Later this evening I bought an Engine stand to hopefully prevent the engine doing a dance around the work bench. 

engine stand 2


Monday 15th Feb 2016

A rather unusual package arrived from India, best wrapping I have ever seen, it actually had a nylon sock stiched around the packaging. Turns out that it was my front number plate holder. On close inspection their are slight imperfections in the casting ? of the alloy shroud, which initially dissapointed me. However having thought about it ( how sad is that ) these would not have been computer CNC produced items, and I've therefore come to the conclusion that it'll add to the look. Considering this item is over £50 in the UK plus postage, I reckon it was a bargain.

custom BSA Bantam number plate holder

Sunday 14th Feb 2016

What a day, unexpectedly I saw an engine for sale - D7 believed to be complete for £200 - close to Nuneaton. So I made contact with the seller, and drove over to collect it. Turns out it's an early 59/60 D7 although the engine numbers mark it up as a battery model, the wipac unit does appear to be from a much earlier model. As I believe it to be from a direct start unit. If you look at the photos you will see that their appears to be an HT Lead in the photos. Needs a few bits, but I think I have spares enough to see if it sparks.  Bought as a spare. I also bought a 1966 set of crank cases. Will see if I can get these aqua blasted. Received the following information from Bournemouth Bantams via the BSA Bantam FaceBook page, fascinating. 

Hi Dave all the Wipac electric engines up to the GD7 engines have an ignition coil at the top which is a seperate system from the lightin/ charging coils, if you have two further coils at the bottom, one at 5 o'clock and one at 7 o'clock then the engine is a direct electrics bike ie no battery if ther is a third coil at the 6 o'clock position it is a battery engine. From the numbers the b at the end of the prefix indicates a battery engine.

ED7 would indicate a 1960, the other is a 1966 GD7 engine which would not have the same ignition coil as it would run using a remote coil mounted on the rear mud guard. The ERS number stands for Engine Replacement Services,  which was a service provided by BSA.  You could send your engine back to them and they would supply a re-manufactured engine on an exchange basis. - Bournemouth Bantams ( via facebook ) 

BSA Engine Replacement Service Brochure


Saturday 13th Feb 2016

Well what a day, drove over to MK, and met Andy from Bedford Bantams, bought a rough rear wheel from him for £40 - included a lovely Avon rear tyre with lots of tread on, I shall use this on the new rims. Needs to be blacked up though. Speedo drive, and all nuts and bolts are present. See photo below. Then I swapped over the rear wheels, and cut out the old spokes ready to send away the hubs for blasting and powder coating. Photos of me cutting the spokes out by Matt. used the petrol generator and the angle grinder to do the job down by the garage, worked well. 

Thursday 11th Feb 2016

Finished a little earlier than expected, managed to remove the Bantam wheel, and re-use the brake shoes on the temporary wheels. Took the bike round the cul de sac prior to stripping, but the temporary front wheel is not fitted. Quite an effort in getting the bearings out, and remembering the threading end bolt is reverse thread. Couldn't find me grinder to cut the old spokes off the hub. Ideally want to post the hubs off this coming Monday to CWC.

BSA Bantam wheel removed for the spokes to be cutting out and the rims rebuilt by Central Wheel Components


Wednesday 10th Feb 2016

Rear foot peg rubbers turned up. Spoke to total Triumph re engine casing for the Thunderbird. They'lloyds be some oil when I remove engine case but engineer recommend I simply top levels up post removal of old casing. Attempted to pay Jem at Cwc for my wheels but they won't take payment until the wheels are complete. 

Monday 8th Feb 2016

Found a chap this side of MK that sells Bantams. will be going on Saturday, and collecting a wheel and brake plate - quoted me £40 I have also fitted the oversize tyre to the wheel I collected yesterday. I will fit these this coming Sunday as I cut the old hubs out and post to CWC for rebuilding. 

Sunday 7th Feb 2016

Well meeting a chap called Ross who responded to my request on the BSA Forums for a Bantam Wheel. £30 on the road towards Bristol, hoping to use this whilst I send my wheel away to CWC for a rebuild. PM - Struggling to find anyone with a rear wheel to sell. 

Saturday 6th Feb 2016

Bath and West show, terrible weather. Not terribly impressed with the stalls, but met a lot of really nice people - bought two T shirts, and a couple of nuts and bolts, oh and a veterans badge for the waistcoat. 

Had a response from my request for a bantam wheel, meeting a chap in the morning £30. Hope to use it as a spare whilst my own wheel is sent away for re-building. 

Thursday 4th Feb 2016

Well after a couple of days "swotting" I'm back on the case, Footpeg arrived from Bournemouth Bantams (£5.50) small zinc plated fuel ( 8-10mm) clips arrrived. And lo and behold I bought a rare Amal inline fuel filter from Fleabay. About £13 with postage, but in excellent condition. Sat making a list for bath and west on Saturday. So far it's not very long. 

1. Inner tube - spare

2. Spark plug.

3. Cheap set of wheels. So i can send mine off to CWC. 

The album below may look daft, but it's to aid me ordering number plates should an offer be on.

Wednesday 3rd Feb 2016

Wow after nearly a year I've managed to buy an old Amal in line filter for the BSA. They rarely come up for sale but I'm geekly excited to have snagged one. Can hopefully make the fuel line look a lot prettier and more age related. Will have to speak to Jason and see if it'll Aqua Blast.  

AMAL inline fuel filter and the more modern inline filter.


Monday 1st Feb 2016

Rang around for quotes for complete wheel replacements, including the powdercoating of the original hub. Bottom line £226 per wheel excluding the return postage.  This was from Central Wheel Components.

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