Author Topic: So. Why an A10 or A7?  (Read 2269 times)

Offline tombeau

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So. Why an A10 or A7?
« on: 28.11. 2008 13:03 »
Come on then!
A few of you even have several of them, some of you have other makes, or models.
So why/how have you ended up with an A10 or A7?
Do you see yourself continuing to own them or is it just another in a long string of different bikes you have played with over the years?
Cheers,
Iain

Richard

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #1 on: 28.11. 2008 15:20 »
The A10 for me it has to be a bike to take my weight (16 stone)
They do not rattle as much as an A65
They are more reliable than the A65
They look better than the A65
They have more history than the A65 (cafe racers etc.)
Richard

Offline fido

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #2 on: 28.11. 2008 17:24 »
I got my first A7 when at college, around 1984 if memory serves correctly. A mate on my course got an A10 basket case and I got the bug from him. I had been interested in old bikes from when I first started riding in 1976. Again, I was influenced by a mate who had a Royal Enfield 350 Clipper, followed by a Triumph Tiger 90. I went on the back of the Enfield a few times and was impressed by the lovely exhaust sound and the safe handling, imparted by it's low centre of gravity. My A7SS was complete but had sat in a shed for 20 odd years so needed restoration. When it was back on the road I really enjoyed riding it as it had so much more character than my usual Japanese bikes. It was also rather more economical at about 70mpg. I would probably still have that Shooting Star but it got stolen and was never recovered. I did have a couple of different classic bikes in between, a 1960 BMW R50 and a 1954 BSA B31 but I knew one day I would get another A7. The longstroke rigid is perhaps a better engineered bike than the A7SS but not such a comfortable ride so one day I might think about exchanging my 1948 model for a newer one.

Offline LJ.

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #3 on: 29.11. 2008 11:45 »

Well I guess as I was a latecomer to Motorcycling I owe my thanks for my choice of bikes to my Parents. They were big motorcyclists back during the mid to late 1950s, Dad being a police motorcyclist, riding Triumph 500s with the local force.

I grew up hearing the many tales of their adventures whilst holidaying across Europe on their BSA Shooting Star; they went as far as Italy, France and Spain on a number of occasions. This was a brave thing back then as like today there were no spares for Brit bikes on the continent. Europe was still in recovery mode from the last war.

My problem was as soon as I turned 16 I turned down the chance for a 'moped' yuk! Because it was not a *real* motorbike and I thought I may as well remained turning pedals on my pushbike. As soon as I turned 17 I got my 4 wheels licence and since then and up until about four years ago I never bothered with two wheels, BUT I always took an interest in Brit bikes! And I supposed deep down I hankered after one like what my parents had.

It was not until six years ago that the opportunity arose while we were in Scotland and I saw an old Brit bike go past... The chrome shone and the bark from the silencers sounded good. I was hooked! Along with my mid-life crisis, *lol* I easily persuaded the wife to get one. Ebay was the first and obvious place to look and although there was some good looking machines there, for example an A7 Shooting Star just like my parents bike back in the later fifties, we decided to go and look elsewhere and not purchase on ebay.

The fool and his money are easily parted or so they say. *doh* An excellent example in my case, although I have been extremely lucky because my A10 has been a real joy with no problems whatsoever. I knew NOTHING about bikes back then, wet sumping meant nothing to me either. But it has been an excellent learning process because it?s such an easy bike to work on. I am unlikely to be rid of it for a long time because of the joys it brings. My kids when younger loved riding with me and will have long lasting memories of their adventures of being on the back riding with me, something that I missed out on in my youth.

I chose an A10 because of what I had always thought? ?Bigger means Better? so initially missing out on purchasing an A7 Shooting Star like that of my parents. It is only recently with the purchase of a 1949 Star Twin, this being a much earlier A7, that I realise what a fine and smooth bike the A7 is to ride. Of course I?ll always keep my A10 being my first bike but I no longer go along with the thought of ?bigger being better?. My second bike came about to keep me on the roads and riding while the A10 was awaiting parts or being serviced. I wanted something completely different but still being loyal to BSA. I chose a 1947 Girder/Rigid frame 600cc M21. Totally different to the later Swinging Arm A10 and is also a great joy to ride and even easier to work on than the A10. A second A10 I have, being of the same year and same month as the first one, came the following year after the M21. This was a purchase from a friend who wanted instant cash to pay for a Suzuki Cruiser. I wanted him to keep the A10 as it would be difficult to find another in such good condition, this one being far better than the one I already have. I purchased it and found it to ride and behave in a completely different manner to the present one. ???

And finally the fourth bike in my ownership, the 1949 Star Twin, came about because of its bargain price. It is fast becoming my best bike, although having said that? when I have been out on them individually I have always enjoyed their unique individuality. Great Stuff! *wave*
Ride Safely Lads! LJ.
**********************
1940 BSA M20 500cc Girder/Rigid- (SOLD)
1947 BSA M21 600cc Girder/Rigid-Green
1949 BSA A7   500cc Girder/Plunger Star Twin-(SOLD)
1953 BSA B33  500cc Teles/Plunger-Maroon
1961 BSA A10  650cc Golden Flash-Blue
1961 BSA A10  650cc Golden Flash-Red

Offline flatdeck

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #4 on: 30.11. 2008 20:07 »
Hi,
My father rode an AJS and an Ambassador in the fifities during National Service and then moved on to vans and cars when us family came along. Later, in 1976, he suggested we go look at a bike that an acquaintance of his had restored since it was for sale for 400 quid. We went, we saw, we bought ... the 1949 A7 Star Twin ... I've still got it! I hope I might pass it on to my son. Dave
Dave
NZBSAOC
1949 A7 Star Twin
Kent, U.K. then Auckland, N.Z.

Offline stratcat

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #5 on: 02.12. 2008 17:08 »
When I was a teenager I bought Bob curries classic motorcycles of the sixties and I practically read the print off the page, especially the RGS road test. Something about that tank and that timing case anyway a few years later (about 1987)and my test passed, I sold my tiger cub to buy an enfield bullet.The sale fell through and I had a fistful of cash I was told about an A10 up for sale. It was a bit of a dog and took me a good few years to pretty it up as I was at college and really only got any money during the summer when I worked through the holidays.
The day I bought it

Anyway I rebuilt it as a cafe racer and did my courting on it.

I sold it to buy a car, but always regretted it (even though it was a leaky rattly wreck it looked a million dollars). 

Other bikes have come and gone but I've always fancied the A10's performance with reliability. I've actual gone off the RGS (must be getting old!) and I think given the choice would go for a flash (or better still an A7) rather than the sporty versions, having said that I bought a super rocket! My current bikes are keepers, I've got to an age where I can afford to keep them and will not say I wish I'd kept it ever again.


Offline snowbeard

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #6 on: 02.12. 2008 21:52 »
always wanted a motorcycle, my old man rode a T120 in the seventies, but someone took it for a "test ride" when he was trying to sell it, and never came back.

I hadn't had any motorcycle ever, then I got a GS650 (suzi) from a friend at work, it had been thru four guys at work after one's father in law had bought it new.  I got it not running, but paid nothing for it.  that got me started, and taught me a lot about working on bikes.

then last year my wife took a teaching position short term at UCDavis, CA so I needed a project, since the suzi ran so well. 

my A10 came to me as I perused craigslist late at night, despite the pleas of my wife to go to bed.  It had just hit the list and I replied immediately.  "Pair of Fresh Barn Finds" was the listing.  an old mis identified "58 super rocket" and a 72 lightning.  turned out to be the 57 Spitfire Scrambler and a 71 Thunderbolt, but either way they both became mine!!  along with a trident T150 rolling frame.

the 57 cleaned up nicely, had it running in a week, titled in a month, then the mag got up and shat.  Got a 54 mag from Don Madden in CA for a very friendly price, all built up and ready for the old gal.  Once I figured out how to time an A10, I was hooked!!n  I've put a lot of time and blood into her, and as sentimental as I am, I doubt I could ever bring myself to let her go now!!

Just purchased a 389 carb for the thunderbolt, and hopefully she'll run for me soon too!!

funny how I barely knew of the brit scene before I bought these guys, and now it's just about all I think of (after skiing, kayaking, and mtn biking of course)
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Spitfire Starting Video
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\1988 BMW K100LT in Lisbon!!

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Offline fido

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #7 on: 03.12. 2008 15:54 »
Hi Snowbeard,
I also had a GS650 shaft drive at the time I was restoring my first A7. Since a few youthful spills as a teenager I have become a bit of a chicken when it comes to lean angles on a bike but that Suzuki had such poor ground clearance that I still managed to scrape things. It tended to suffer from damp in the ignition so on wet days it would often not start and I would have to use the BSA instead. In those days I had no shed or anything so the bikes lived outside.

JDFitz

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #8 on: 07.12. 2008 17:15 »
I've always thought classic motorcycles were cool. I've always liked BSA for some reason. As luck would have it a good friend of mine knew this and gave me the remnants of a '56 Road Rocket that he had found abandoned in the woods not far from his home. I like the A10s because they are much less common in magazines, on TV ect... than say a Triumph, Norton, or even the A65s.

Offline A10Boy

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #9 on: 18.12. 2008 13:44 »
When I was a lad in the late 60's, a bloke across the road from me, [my mate's older brother], had a Flash with an ally head, short megas and Apehanger bars. It was a cool beast, and I loved it, he rode it for about 3 years, then parked it under a tarp in his garden and left it - in fact its still there but he wont sell.

In the 70's I rode the usual Japanese stuff, and always wanted an A10 but they were getting older, and didn't seem like "everyday transport bikes" for the miles i did and I couldn't afford to have a second bike on my wages at the time.

When I could afford it, I bought a Z1, its a great bike and I still have it, but I still wanted a BSA and for me it had to be an A10, and I found a beauty. I don't ride the Z1 more than about a hundred miles a year, but the A10 gets good use because its more fun.

I can see myself selling the Z1 one day soon, maybe that will fund a nice shiny red Super Rocket.........
Regards

Andy

1960 A10 - Black Golden Flash
Plus
1974 Kawasaki Z1a
Yam XJR 1300

Online bsa-bill

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #10 on: 18.12. 2008 20:16 »
I started my bike experience on an NSU Quickly ( Quiiker than what ??? ) my parents bought it so I cold get to work as an electrician, that job dissapeared in what we would now call a downturn.
I got another job on the farm we lived on so did not need transport which was just as well as the Quickly had not faired to well due to 100%  full throttle work.
I made friends at work and as they all had bikes I bought a sports Arrow new on the never never, it was a great little bike, handled so good on corners I could keep up with my friends who had A7s and a Norton dDominator 500.
But then as we ventured further a field on longer straighter roads the Arrow was lacking in straight line top speed, so it was part exchanged for a 61 Gold Flash, can't explain in words but they have something.
I sold it after a couple of years for something that would pull birds better ( don't laugh it was a Reliant Robin and it worked birdwise)
It was thirty years later that the bug bit again and I bought a Flash to restore, finished it to more or less stock condition and now busy with number two which will definitley not be stock.
One thing I have not mastered is cornering, I dont get to ride enough; I remember throwing the A10 around so easily perhaps I was a stone and a half lighter and probably a lot stronger in those days, however I am now retired so should get out and about on either of my A10 a lot more and maybe regain some of those skills.

All the best - Bill
All the best - Bill
1961 Flash - stock, reliable, steady, fantastic for shopping
1959 Rocket Gold Flash - blinged and tarted up  would have seizure if taken to  Tesco

Offline LJ.

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #11 on: 18.12. 2008 22:46 »
The difference is the tyres Bill... I'm wholly convinced. One of my A10s has the Avon speedmaster squarish rear tyre and the other identical A10 has Dunlop TT100s. A huge amount of difference!

Great stories though... Keep em comming!
Ride Safely Lads! LJ.
**********************
1940 BSA M20 500cc Girder/Rigid- (SOLD)
1947 BSA M21 600cc Girder/Rigid-Green
1949 BSA A7   500cc Girder/Plunger Star Twin-(SOLD)
1953 BSA B33  500cc Teles/Plunger-Maroon
1961 BSA A10  650cc Golden Flash-Blue
1961 BSA A10  650cc Golden Flash-Red

Offline A10Boy

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #12 on: 18.12. 2008 23:34 »
I agree, I have a speedmaster on mine and its Ok for touring around, but you can get far better handling with rounder profile tyres. you can get some good looking tread patterns if you look around too.
Regards

Andy

1960 A10 - Black Golden Flash
Plus
1974 Kawasaki Z1a
Yam XJR 1300

Offline Lannis

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #13 on: 08.01. 2009 17:11 »
1)  I like BSAs, and enjoy the club activities.

2) I've been riding an A65 as my main bike for years.  However, they are about 1.5" on average shorter between the axles than an A10, and higher-revving into the torque band.  I wanted a two-up vintage bike that would be relaxed going down the road at 55-60 MPH.

3) They're really pretty.

4) You can still get all the important parts for them.

Lannis
1961 A10 Golden Flash
1969 A65 Firebird Scrambler
1955 M21 Commodore
1935 Matchless Model X Project
1990 Moto Guzzi California III
1983 Moto Guzzi 1000SP
1986 Yamaha TT225 trail bike
1966 Morgan 4/4

Offline snowbeard

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Re: So. Why an A10 or A7?
« Reply #14 on: 13.01. 2009 17:35 »
Fido, I can scrape the added pegs on the case guards if I'm not careful, but I still didnt' find much scraping before those went on, and I have only about a half inch chicken strip on my Elite II!  I like the feelling of a big lean, but for me big must be pretty tame in other's standards!!

it's funny, I have had the two suzi's for a few years, and unfortunately they do live outdoors. But when I got the A10 the garage got such a cleaning I found things still left from the previous owner 6 years ago!!  she lives in the garage where she's earned her spot by years alone.  *smile*

and yes, there have already been times when the 650 wouldn't start that the A10 got to play!
__________________
\'57 BSA A-10 Spitfire Scrambler
Spitfire Starting Video
\1960 Super Rocket (basket)
\1981 Suzi GS650
\1988 BMW K100LT in Lisbon!!

=