Author Topic: Advice on first project bike  (Read 306 times)

Offline Fraser Norton

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Advice on first project bike
« on: May 20, 2021, 05:22:33 PM »
Good day, all,
I have a couple of old british bikes which run well and don't need much special work to them.
I am now thinking of a first restoration project and came across this bike, a 1932 BSA Blue Star
so, if any Restorers could give me their point of view on whether this is a good choice, I'd be very grateful

She ran up to 10 years ago, has good compression and not too many bits missing
The present owner thinks a few days work should get her going, but I'd like to strip and rebuild entirely

Any advice ?

Offline Rex

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2021, 06:42:57 PM »
Great bikes. If the price is OK for you then snap his arm off..

Offline Fraser Norton

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2021, 07:55:00 PM »
Thanks Rex
Have you any idea of availability of spares for this age of bike
for my 50's and 60's Norton and Triumph it's no problem, but for a 30's bike ??

Offline Rex

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2021, 10:00:32 PM »
I had a '36 Empire Star back in 2012 and most engine parts (within reason) were available either second hand or from places like Draganfly etc. They're simple enough bikes and you can usually make/adapt/repair things to keep it running.
Good strong bike with loads of that indefinable character. Always a good demand for BSAs so easy to sell on if you don't get on with it. I'd have it for the right price... ;)

Offline Fraser Norton

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2021, 10:25:49 PM »
Cheers Rex, i'll see what can be done...
start putting your pocket money aside :)

Offline R

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2021, 11:26:33 PM »
Blimey, what a superb original looking bike.
It would be a shame to fully restore that ?
It would just be another shiny new bike with its soul gone. !

The owners comments have merit ?  What is needed here is a "sympathetic" restoration. ?
Making the paint good on the oil tank and clutch cover and giving the rest a good polish and shine
would make that a lovely example of an original 1930s BSA. And how many folks have one of those ?
My 2 pence worth...

And I'd be putting new tubes in those tyres at least. As long as the rubber hasn't gone hard on the tyres..
The seat leather you'll have to think about. It has that lovely well used look about it as is.
Some of those magic leather potions may make it more blacker ....

Offline 33d6

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2021, 01:17:41 AM »
Iím going to be blunt.
Leave the bloody thing alone. The last thing that bike needs is to be ďrestoredĒ. It is living history and will be tired and worn in places but it eminently rideable as is.
By all means make it roadworthy before riding it but if you ride it as is for a few years you will really get to know both the bike and hopefully accumulate the knowledge and skill to keep it in fine fettle as well.
This is an entirely different order of bike from 50ís and 60ís Norton and Triumph. They are good beginners bikes but now you are getting serious.

Besides, itís an absolute little sweetie, a complete crowd drawer as is and a proper Clubman's bike of its day.

Offline cardan

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2021, 02:22:17 AM »
Very nice, but the bike in the photos is not a 1932 Blue Star, which was a 500 with oil in the sump.

More like a c1938 B22 (250cc) Empire Star, arguably an even nicer machine? https://cybermotorcycle.com/gallery/bsa-1938/BSA-1938-B22.htm

Easily identifiable from engine and frame numbers.

Mechanical restoration - yes. Cosmetically, I'd leave it as is.

Leon

Offline cardan

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2021, 03:09:42 AM »
The advert on leboncoin says it's a "1960" 350 Empire Star, in which case a B24. https://cybermotorcycle.com/gallery/bsa-1938/BSA-1938-B24.htm There were two 350s in the BSA range in the late 1930s - this one is the "scaled up 250", and the other was a "scaled down 500". Lots of differences between the two models, with the B24 nicer than the heavyweight M19, in my opinion.

Advice? The price looks OK, but, as usual, be careful.

Leon

Offline Fraser Norton

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Re: Advice on first project bike
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2021, 08:24:46 AM »
Thanks to all for these great views
Sounds like the general consensus is to get it running fair and keep it's "patina" as much as possible
I like this as much as I am not a painter, more mechanic
Thanks all for your help, I'll let you know if it goes forward