Author Topic: Tough BSA's  (Read 498 times)

Offline stevejs

  • Moving Up
  • **
  • Join Date: Nov 2017
  • Posts: 32
  • Karma: 0
Tough BSA's
« on: 02.06. 2019 20:52 »
I think we sometimes forget how tough our bikes were, and presumably can still be, providing they're in good nick. I've just finished reading a book called 'Tracking Marco Polo' which is a story of three Brits who rode two A7's to India in the 50's. Both bikes had sidecars, but these were abandoned after accidents, and then one of the bikes was also left 'in care' after a problem many thousands of miles into the journey. The final 2,500 mies were completed three up! The picture shows the intrepid team on their arrival in Delhi. The man at the front is Stanley Johnson, father of Boris. I wonder how well a rebuilt version would cope today?

Online muskrat

  • Global Moderator
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • **
  • Join Date: Jul 2009
  • Posts: 8027
  • Karma: 106
  • Lake Conjola NSW Oz
    • Shoalhaven Classic Motorcycle Club Inc
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #1 on: 03.06. 2019 21:05 »
Nice one Steve.
I got booked for that in the 80's, the 1st pillion didn't have a helmet. We had to ride, none of us could walk  *eek* *beer* *countdown*
Cheers
'51 A7 plunger, '57 A7SS now A10CR, '76 XT500, '77 AG175 '83 CB1100F, '81 CB900F project.
Australia
Muskys Plunger A7

Offline triangle

  • Active
  • *
  • Join Date: Oct 2017
  • Posts: 3
  • Karma: 0
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #2 on: 08.06. 2019 11:09 »
Another story about how strong the plunger A7 was is the book by Norman Vanhouse Where BSAs dare. The story of the Maudes Trophy attempt by BSA in the early 50s

Online RDfella

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2017
  • Posts: 586
  • Karma: 5
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #3 on: 08.06. 2019 13:41 »
Friend of mine used to go touring on his A10 with wife on the pillion and alsation dog on the tank.
'49 B31, '49 M21, '53 DOT, '58 Flash, '00 Firestorm, Weslake sprint bike.

Offline BSA_54A10

  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: May 2008
  • Posts: 1876
  • Karma: 31
    • BSA National
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #4 on: 12.06. 2019 09:54 »
I rode my 56 from Jamberoo to Sans Souci , about 100km on one cylinder with the other con rod locked tight so as it came up it smashed the spigot off the right cylinder.
All of this debris was being ground & smashed up in the cases but it was still running , I had no car and had to get to work  latter that night.
This ride included going up Bulli Pass ( google earth it ) .
The bike only stopped when the rod, now bent like a bannana had managed  to rip the entire flange off the barrels, apart from a single bolt.
Note the engine was still running at this point, but I was on the top of Captain Cook bridge so could almost roll home from there.
The main reason for shutting down was the right muffler had broken its mount and was flailing around into the lane next to me as the barrels lifted & fell.

A pair of used rods from old Joe & Allparts & the spare barrel that came with the bike & I was back on the road within a week.
I was really lucky because according to Joe they were "the last set left in Sydney"
THose of you who knew Joe will remember that line, just before he quoted you a price that was way too expensive.

That bike took my backside to Uni, to work, on holidays , up to Queensland & hooning every Friday night.
I sometimes tend to think a lot of people over think & under ride their BSA's
Bike Beesa
Trevor

Online berger

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Nov 2017
  • Posts: 849
  • Karma: 5
  • keith from chesterfield 500ss cafe morris 8
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #5 on: 12.06. 2019 12:28 »
I have not been to the pub, in the seventies I was worried about a trip of about 200 miles,my mate said come on we do that every couple of days joy riding around for the sake of it.one trip did break it but it was still running ok. sorry greybeard!!

Online duTch

  • Ricketty Rocketty Golden Flashback
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Oct 2011
  • Posts: 4519
  • Karma: 40
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #6 on: 26.07. 2019 10:05 »
 
Quote
Another story about how strong the plunger A7 was is the book by Norman Vanhouse Where BSAs dare. The story of the Maudes Trophy attempt by BSA in the early 50s

 The pic in stevejs post obviously wasn't a Plunger model, but irrelevant....

   I told my youngster about this and just noticed 'Severin' in the pic name and realized the adventure and book was done by the famed adventurer Tim Severin (and companions-before BJ was a squirt in Stans pencil)....(disclaimer/ doesn't give credibility to haircut fails)
Started building in about 1977/8 a on average '52 A10 -built from bits 'n pieces never resto intended -maybe 'personalised'
Have a '74 850T Moto Guzzi since '92-best thing I ever bought doesn't need a kickstart 'cos it bump starts sooooooooo(mostly) easy
Australia

Online metalflake11

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2012
  • Posts: 579
  • Karma: 9
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #7 on: 26.07. 2019 12:32 »
I rode my 56 from Jamberoo to Sans Souci , about 100km on one cylinder with the other con rod locked tight so as it came up it smashed the spigot off the right cylinder.
All of this debris was being ground & smashed up in the cases but it was still running , I had no car and had to get to work  latter that night.
This ride included going up Bulli Pass ( google earth it ) .
The bike only stopped when the rod, now bent like a bannana had managed  to rip the entire flange off the barrels, apart from a single bolt.
Note the engine was still running at this point, but I was on the top of Captain Cook bridge so could almost roll home from there.
The main reason for shutting down was the right muffler had broken its mount and was flailing around into the lane next to me as the barrels lifted & fell.

A pair of used rods from old Joe & Allparts & the spare barrel that came with the bike & I was back on the road within a week.
I was really lucky because according to Joe they were "the last set left in Sydney"
THose of you who knew Joe will remember that line, just before he quoted you a price that was way too expensive.

That bike took my backside to Uni, to work, on holidays , up to Queensland & hooning every Friday night.
I sometimes tend to think a lot of people over think & under ride their BSA's

I think there's a lot to be said for that. A few summers ago, I had plenty of free time, and averaged 250 miles a week over a six month period, but never went further than about 150 miles away from home.

Apart from oil changes and the odd rear chain adjustment all I did was wash and polish it. Once you get it right, the more you use it, the less you fix it.
England N.W
1960 A10
England

Online Greybeard

  • Jack of all trades; master of none.
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Feb 2011
  • Posts: 5684
  • Karma: 30
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #8 on: 26.07. 2019 13:36 »
Quote

Once you get it right, the more you use it, the less you fix it.
I hope, I'm in that phase!!

Online Black Sheep

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Apr 2017
  • Posts: 604
  • Karma: 6
    • Where black sheep live
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #9 on: 26.07. 2019 20:24 »
My plunger A7 has clocked up 40,000 miles since the last overhaul with no significant problems. In all the years I have had it it has never failed to get me home. It is currently being a pain with a misfire which I  am quietly tracking down (Changed all the ignition side, so it has to be the carb which looks just fine...). Still very usable just the same though.
2 twins, 2 singles, lots of sheep

Offline Topdad

  • bob hebdon
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: May 2011
  • Posts: 2215
  • Karma: 32
  • l
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #10 on: 30.07. 2019 15:47 »
I like that phrase " the more you use it the less you fix it "

Tough indeed , I went London to the Bike show in 1966 on my first plungerA10 , on the return in pissing down rain all the way back to liverpool ,on that trip I lost a gearchange lever ,sorted by mole grips , the front bolt that holds both ex pipes in  ,had to keep kicking 'em back in with my boot, the studs on the carby loosened off giving a miss fire below 20 mph ,I was so exhausted and wet I didn't dare stop her ,she got me home I went to bed with a prayer of thanks and 2 days later put her back together but She never stopped ,every bloody bolt was loose but she didn't let me down, tough indeed!  *respect* *clap*
" rules are made for the guidance of wise men and the blind obediance of fools"
United Kingdom

Online muskrat

  • Global Moderator
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • **
  • Join Date: Jul 2009
  • Posts: 8027
  • Karma: 106
  • Lake Conjola NSW Oz
    • Shoalhaven Classic Motorcycle Club Inc
Re: Tough BSA's
« Reply #11 on: 30.07. 2019 21:06 »
G'day fellas.
For quite a while in the 90's my 51 plunger A7 was also my trail bike. On a ride out to Longfellas Pass about 10 miles ( https://tinyurl.com/y2w7x9zl ) with two mates & their girlfriends on XT600's. On the way home one XT broke down so the BSA towed it and two passengers home with only road tyres and my blue dog on the tank.
Cheers
'51 A7 plunger, '57 A7SS now A10CR, '76 XT500, '77 AG175 '83 CB1100F, '81 CB900F project.
Australia
Muskys Plunger A7