May 2016 - Green Godess to Black Betty

feeling satisfied 2

Tues 31st May 2016

Having re-worked the throttle cable several times I have ordered a bespoke unit from JJ Cables - £16 - Here's the spec

1/4 barrel nipple

Adjust 6" from the barrel

Outer Cable 35-1/2"  Inner Cable 40"  - note: this gives an additional 1 and a 1/4" than the present cable. The inline adjuster can 1" adjustment so I am convinced this will work.... 

Bank Holiday Monday 30th May 2016

getting close web

Spent the first half of the day doing small jobs, struggled to complete many, due to the small fiddly nature of many of the tasks. I will have to order a new throtttle cable as I am not happy with the workings of the old Amal throttle. Expected to make better progress today, but after the appaling lack of sleep the previous night it went okay. 

Sunday 29th May 2016 - Jobs to do.

So I wrote the list below, the day before. I did not forsee my best Pal Stu S turning up for a chat. Filled him with Battenburg, and sent him on his way. I spent a lot of time adjusting the back wheel, then attempted to start the Bantam. As soon as I did it revved itself to bits. Throttle body housing simply didn't allow the cable to return fully home. I tried to search out the old one, but spent the next hour trying to find the adjuster cable nipple. The only way I will get this new throttle to work is to order a new throttle cable with a longer inner cable. Looks as though I will be speaking to JJ Cables on Tuesday morning. 

Battery - Locate and wire into the loom.

Headlight - Assemble and connect.

Side Panel - Assemble the toolbox side.

Loom - Tidy and move wiring where appropiate. 


Saturday 28th May 2016

Evening - Popped to the Garage, and set the headlight assembly up. Not 100% happy with the Ebay sealed beam unit. Will have to monitor the situation carefully. It has a Pegeout type logo on the lens. Anyways the expensive chrome trim looks good, but that lens....... 

Afternoon ( mornings report below ) 

20160528 143359

Built the rear wheel up, had forgot that the rear hub assembly had been stripped. Took 40mins to compare all the washers, and correct build order. Jonathon next door helped me, however it was soon apparent that I had done something wrong. It had to come off again, eventually I succeeded to position the wheel.

20160528 153304

BB can now roll freely. I will have to adjust the chain in the morning as it's too tight. Only planning to do a few small jobs on the bike in the morning as I need a day of rest. 

Saturday Morning

Slow start this morning, the General Anathestic, and the last several days have caught me up. Sat studying the rear wheel assembly and the battery box, for these are the last two major items to do. I have bitten the bullet and ordered a new rear light assembly. I'm hoping to get the rear wheel mounted, and the number plate today. I'll be removing the rear brake rod, as it's grotty.  Onwards and upwards!

rear wheel bsa bantam



Friday 27th May 2016


Having had my tube removed I was able to slowly proceed with the rebuild, firstly the rear swinging arm, shocks, then the rear mudguard. In the evening I mounted the rear number plate onto the mount, and will continue tommorow. Slowly black betty is taking shape. 



Thurs 26th May 2016

Powder coated parts arrived back, lovely job. Stainless nuts and washers have also turned up. Looking forward to being better. I now have all the parts to complete the rebuild. I am hopeful of getting the tank badges tommorow, with the Bank Holiday weekend I stand a good chance of making significant progress this weekend. 

Wed 25th May 2016

Recovering from yesterdays Op, managed to trim the number plate down. Will need fine sand papering before fixing to the holder. Arrived this afternoon, some M5 washers, and the expensive chrome surround that'll enable me to finish the rebuild on the front end. Not very comfortable at the mo with tubes etc.  Can't decide how to fix the plate to the holder. Do I use the modern black plastic screws or stainless screw heads and nuts. 

Monday 23rd May 2016

Called triple S - 88.20 for the rear swinging arm, and the chain guard. Includes £25 for delivery back. I was a little taken a back at the price. But lets hope this puts an end to the big spend items.  Might have hit a snag with the rear number plate as the powder coated rear plate holder does not appear to fit the rear guard. I am going to get the green tin work, and offer it up. Can't beleive the run of bad luck i am experiencing. Bottomless pit. .... oh, on some better news the rear number plate has turned up. Looking forward to fitting it. Evening drilled the rear mudguard as the holes were nowhere near fitting the rear assembly. Had to order a rear reflector as the original had a nasty crack. Have also mounted the front number plate onto the brackets. I will have to tidy up the paintwork as the masking tape removed some of the gloss black paintwork on the number plate. Unfortunately the rear number plate is still too large, and I am going to have to trim it. Also the rear brake light assembly is corroded. So I am going to have to paint / replace this. Not a good night. Spending money I hadn't budgeted for..... GRRRRR.

Sunday 22nd May 2016

Spent the late morning, building up the front end of the bike, dissapointingly I got it wrong first time and had to take the lower stays off the bike. Never mind, once set-up I made quick progress. Unfortunately The retaining brackets fabricated by workshops came up a little short. I will ask Geoff to re-do them with slighlty large tangs on. I will then drill my own holes. I have ordered a new headlamp chrome trim as I am not happy with the one as shown in the photo below. I have also temporarily mounted the front number plate, using the old holes. TBH I think its a little too far forward. But it saves drilling another two holes into the Tin. I may re-visit this later. I also noticed and was dissapointed to find that the BSA badges are different in each side. Again had to buy some new ones. .. it's these last finishing bits that always catch you out. I am hopeful that I can finish the rebuild this coming weekend. I have an extra day as it's a Bank Holiday. I am hopeful after a shakedown that I can get over to Stilton the following Wednesday, health and weather dependent. 

new front eng



Sat 21 May 2016

Ordered a new headlight rim, at £28 not the cheapest part to replace, but simply not confident the replacement unit i tried last night will fit, or look correct. Grrrrr.

Friday 20th May 2016

To Do ... .. .

  • Battery Centre Panel. 
  • Bolts - Shorten.
  • Cabling for the rear brake light.
  • Check headlamp rim, and fit. 

    Had a half hour in the garage, and the shed, cutting bolts down. Need to get some washers as drilling them out is NOT fun. Little concerned about the headlamp rim. It's not locked into the outer rim. Will Google it. The Lucas I ordered is simply the wrong one. 

Thursday 19th May 2016

Collected the rear wheel, sorted. Fitted the new Throttle on the handlebar. Challenging. Called it a night, not 100%.

Wednesday 18th May - Wheel

Dropped the rear wheel off at verities, along with new rim tape. Will collect tommorow. Throttle assembly arrived. Will fit that on Thursday night as well. Another night of tinckering down the garage.

Tuesday 17th May - Parcels shipped !

Blimey, didn't expect £25 postage on my two parts, I reckon I could have driven them. With a ten day lead time it'll give me time to sort all the other bits out.

Monday 16th May  - Rear Swininging

Dropped a mudguard bracket off for fabrication, into stainless / alloy. Have spoken to SSS, and their prices are affordable, so this evening I am going to try and remove the rear swinging arm. Some real horror stories of them being removed. Let's hope that it's not that painful. With my current luck...... Evening. managed to remove the swinging arm, and the chain cover, packed them up for posting to triple S powder coaters ( bingley). Then rebuilt the rear wheel. Will take to Veritys once the rim tape arrives. All in all another step in the right direction. 

Sunday 15th May 2016 - Turning a corner.

Havng been up most of the night, I spent the late morning, and the rest of the day rebuilding the bantam. From the photos below you'll see I have made significant progress. I have ordered new rear shocks to compliment the new front ones. Not 100% satisfied with the parts I'd had powder coated I am going to use triple S for the chain guard and rear swinging arm. Gloss Black - what else ? 

Saturday 14th May 2016

lets get started on putting the front end back together again ! Up early recevied several confidence boosting posts on the BSA Facebook page, off to toolstation to buy a set of centre punches. and some wet and dry. Can't beleive that I damaged the fork leg last night. Grrr. Hopefully it'll clean out. Grrr. 

WHAT A DAY ! - From 10am until 4pm 

After purchasing some wet and dry and a set of centre punches I set about recovering the damages leg. Soon came up okay, and I quickly proceeded to build the first fork leg.  I butcherd the offside fork leg to recover the stud that mounts the fork to the spring restrictor. Thankfully this worked and I soon had my second leg built up. Fitting them alone was an art as the Nacelle assembly had to be made up. Once this was loosley fitted, I had a mad half hour wondering how the speedo clamp assembly works. Sussed that, cleaned up several connections, and proceeded to wire the front end up. Managed AGAIN to puncture the rear tyre tube. I am going to pay someone to do that for me, as I simply can't seem to work it out. Have ordered some rim tape. So hopefully on Tuesday I'll take it somewhere to get fitted. Tommorow will hopefully see the end of the front end rebuild as I start to work towards the back of the bike. All in all a testing day. Thankfully I did not break anything...


Friday 13th May 2016

Collected the parts from the powdercoater, learnt a few lessons. Powder coating does not hide any sins. The rear mudguard unit will, at some time in the future need changing.  Early evening I have started to rebuild the forks. Having never done this I am taking my time. I suspect it'll involve handling some of the new paintwork for the bike. I am going to cover this in bubble wrap as I work on the bike. Having to research on the internet regarding the rebuilding as it's not as straightforward as modern forks. I was unsure of the ordering of several bushes. Slow and steady progress is being made. fingers crossed that by mid morning tommorow I will have something that looks like a front end. Photos will be posted later today. 


Thursday 12th May 2016

Dropped the last part off for shotblasting, will be going down to the Garage later this evening. . . .. Garage Update - fitted a new tube to the front tyre, sucessfully inflated it. Punctured the new tube in the rear. Repaired two previously damaged tubes so I will use these in the rear tommorow. fitted the new footpeg, and removed the seat, rear rack and took a quick look at the fixings for the rear mudguard. I hope to complete the rear wheel re-build tommorow and strip off the old rear guard and wheel tommorow evening. 

Wednesday 11th May 2016 - Station Workshops

Collected the number plate holder from the Station workshops, excellent job stripping the paint off the old piece. Taking the part to the powder coaters on Thursday morning.

Tuesday 10th May 2016 - Day of Days

Insurance engineer is coming to look at the Bantam. Hopeful that everything will soon be started, and that I can start the rebuild. Well he turned up and gave permission to start the rebuild. This evening I removed the broken front end, and will start to re-build the bike slowly over the next few nights. It'll be slow going as I strip away the tin work awaiting those parts that are away being powder coated. This time next week should see real progress. 

BSA Bantam front forks smashed up


Monday 9th May 2016 - another warm day !

Lovely suprise today, the new number pates turned up simply stunning quality. So excited I immediately went out and ordered the brackets to mount them on the bike. A set of mudguard stays also turned up and they'll be used on Bantam 2. Day was topped off with a call from the Insurance company. They's like to come and inspect the bike tommorow. I am hopeful that this weekend I'll get the nod to proceed. GRRRRRR  - put a tyre lever through the tube, waste of a night. Grrrrr. 

Sunday 8th May 2016 - 26 degrees C !!

Lovely day again, have decided to tackle small jobs each day. Today I drifted ( with care ) new wheel bearings into the CWC front wheel. Taking my time, I used lots of old bearings to act as a drift. Front wheel just needs its rubber and It'll be ready to mount on the rebuilt Bantam. 

wheel building front


Sat 7th May 2016 - 24 degrees C !!

Torture hearing and thinking of the bikes on the road. Spent an hour this morning replacing the cover on the Bantams seat, also made a video showing how easy it is to do. Hopefully give someone the confidence to give it a go !

6th May 2016

Took my parts to the powder coaters, and TBH I'm awaiting a phone call, they have a minimum charge of £50.  I wish they had said that prior to me taking it down. I would have taken a couple more parts to the Station Workshop to ensure I get value for money. 

5th May 2016

Collected my parts from the workshops. Very pleased with the results, Tommorow ( friday ) I'll take to the powder coating. Photo below shows before and after photo. 

blasted forks

4th May 2016

Station workshop have called and my parts are ready for collection. I shall post photos once I've collected them. Parts are turning up daily at home with the hallway looking more like a parcel sorting office. I've bought another set of wheel bearings, and a set of mudguard stays for the second Bantam. 

3rd May 2016

Well the Aqua blasting chap is working in Africa for two months, and his deputy is away on holiday for a week. So todays mission is to track a shot blasting company down to clean the forks and battery cover pre powder coating. STOP PRESS - Station workshops are doing 99% of the blasting in prep for the powder coating. Fingers crossed. 

2nd May 2016

Matt and I carried out a visual inspection of the Bantam, unfortunately the offside front fork was too badly damaged to re-use. For the second time in two days I re-visited Mick, and bought two fork bases. It'll be added to the items that need to be powder coated. Simply can't wait for the Insurance assesor to give me the nod to start the rebuild. 

1st. May 2016 

Went to Bedford Bantams and secured a couple of parts for the post accident re-build. 

£20 for a rear number plate holder needed a replacement one as mine was kinked and bent. 

£10 centre console panel - not damaged in the accident but needed a replacement one for the black panels 

£15 replacement front mudguard stays needed new ones as mine are well bent. 

Started to strip the spare front fork parts down as I need to get the bits to the powder coating company late this coming week. 


Return to the top of the page.

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.