See the page links below the photos on left to view BSA A10 photos, books, and A10 literature page
Updated: September 22, 2010
I have provided a banner and link here, if you're interested in doing it yourself, and saving a bundle. Whenever I have to service the bike and remove parts, I check the screws, etc. and if they look shabby, I re-plate them. Check it out:
See the "TIPS and TRICKS"
page for photos of my plating setup. It's tip #5
See the "TIPS and TRICKS" page for things I've learned over many years of restoring A10's.
There's also a "books" page for the A10
enthusiasts. There are great books I have in my collection
I am a 61 year old Mechanical engineer, enjoying my BSA British motorcycles. I've been a "motor-head" since I was old enough to know what a Go cart was. We built our own go karts, and mini-bikes using parts from discarded lawnmowers and used go kart frames, throughout grade school. Then in Jr. High, and High school we graduated to hot rods. We'd tow the old '54 thru '57 Fords and Merc's out of the junkyards, and turn 'em into hot rods. Being in a middle class family with 4 brothers and a sister, dad was not expected to buy each kid a car when we hit 17. We built our own. Those were the days the movie "American Graffiti" was tailored after. My friends and I got into Bikes in the late '60's. I've never owned a new one. It was the same story.....You want a bike......put one together! Just don't let Mom or Dad catch on.
We still ride the old British twin motorcycles we rode back then. In fact I've been riding my '58 BSA A10 Golden Flash from 1972 to the present. I bought the A10 Super Rocket to have spare parts for the Flash, but after years of collecting parts, I restored that too. Nothing like twin twins. I also have a great collection of literature and books. See the literature page for many sales brochures, etc. My books include lots of great A10 info such as photos (needed to get things right) and how to books such as the Haynes shop manual SHOP MANUAL 1.
I hope to make this another web site dedicated to the old BSA British motorcycles, in particular the BSA A10 workhorse that leaked oil and required the rider to carry spare parts and a tool kit as well as a good knowledge of repair. It was when the A10 stopped leaking oil that we got concerned. That could only mean the oil tank was empty.
1958 BSA A10 Golden Flash
I bought the A10 in October 1972. It ran but had been typically butchered by whoever owned it prior to me. Apparently it had been owned by the original owner for about 13 years and then went through an interim owner who butchered it, and then a car dealer somehow got it and I bought it from him for $400.00. I was told by a friend who knew Jim Buyers (the original owner) that Jim had ridden it to Daytona for Bike Week many times in the very early Ď60ís.
The original front fender had been replaced with a generic chrome fender. The handlebars had been replaced with ape hangers. The gas tank was held on with a bungie chord. The rear fender had been shortened and the fender support brackets cut and bent to accommodate the shortened article. The original air filter box was missing. Other than other misc. non-original stuff the bike was fairly complete and restorable. But it was only 14 years old and didnít really cry out for a restoration.
I rode it for many years. The biggest trip I took on it was during the winter of 1972-1973. I rode it from the East coast to Southern California. My friend Tom on his Norton Commando and me on the 58 A10. It took us two weeks to cross the country. We camped along the way mostly in National Parks (which were free in the winter). We rode around the mountains and deserts of southern Cal. for three months. Then back to reality hit us.
I rode the bike seasonally until 1982 when I wiped out on loose gravel. Broken pelvis, heel, and wrist, not to mention some sheet metal damage. I laid the bike up in the back of the garage and only looked at it very occasionally until in 1987 my friend Steve took me to Auburn, Mass for the BSA Owners Club of New England (www.bsaocne.org) show and swap meet. After a full day of seeing all those classic bikes in various states of repair, restoration, etc., I decided the í58 was going to come back to life.
It took five years of attending to every nut and bolt, collecting parts etc. With the help of Roy Bacon's book BSA twin restoration, I was pretty much able to get it close to original. In the spring of 1992, I fired her up. Everything had been completely disassembled and re-plated, (many parts done with my Caswell "CopyCad" plating kit, (see link above), re-painted (by me), fixed and reassembled. I used PPG catalyzed acrylic urethane paint. Itís expensive but 100 times better than spray can paint. I color sanded every part and buffed them to a high gloss. The frame and frame attachments were powder coated.
The Beeza and I have been through a lot of shows (many trophies to show), and great rides since then. As each year passes she becomes more and more of a head turner. Iíve re-painted the fenders, re-plated a few parts, had the magneto re-wound, carburetor sleeved and bored, and continued to find parts ever trying to get it as original looking as possible but still rideable in todayís crazy traffic (northern NJ). I have the original front wheel all restored but sitting in my basement because I canít seem to make the brakes even a small notch above "non-existent". E-mail me if you have any suggestions. Iím using a Twin Leading Shoe brake setup on another wheel most of the time. that's from a later model BSA ('67 I believe)
Through all the years, the Beeza has been very reliable and always gets me from A to B. Carrying tools, spare plugs, cables, chain parts, and a good working knowledge of the machine is a must. Sometimes Iíll be riding and sheíll stop running. The plugs fouled up. Just change Ďem on the spot and keep rolling. No codes to scan, no computers to re-boot, just an unbelievably simple Amal Carb, incredibly reliable Lucas Magneto, a robust engine (as long as itís not beaten up and the oil is kept very clean), and itís a great ride. Remember, the A10's have no oil filter (although conversion kits are available). The gunk the engine creates get caught in the crankshaft "sludgetrap". If that gets filled, the way to clean it out is to dismantle the engine and the crankshaft, and clean it out. Something you don't want to do every 3,000 miles!
WHATíS BEEN DONE TO THE BIKE.
1963 BSA A10 Super Rocket
I bought this A10 around 1980 as spare parts for the Golden Flash. It was a mess. It had been used as a trail bike for many years. It had no lighting system, no horn, some beat up old non BSA seat, no fenders, bent up handle bars, beat up transmission, smokiní engine, etc. etc. etc.
Not to mention the rust, and thick layers of oily dirt encrusted to every part of the machine. But the previous owner had a ball with it in the woods.
It sat in my garage for I donít remember how many years. After completing the í58 restoration, (and about 5 years of enjoying it) I got the bug to do the í63. I had been collecting BSA parts for about 20 or more years and figured I had enough to at least start. And start I did in around 1996. Since I was no longer living in a house, and moving around a bit (renting), most of the work was done in cold broken windowed garages, in winter months. I recall doing the paint work when the weather was warm, and assembly in the winter. On March 7, 1999, I got it to kick over as a freshly restored BSA, along with his sister miss Golden Flash. I must admit, I havenít ridden the Rocket anywhere near as much as the Flash. Perhaps this year.
Even though the engines and frames etc are the same, there is considerable difference when riding the two.
The Flash is docile. 34 HP, 7.5:1 compression, automatic spark advance, 4 speed tranny that shifts like butter. Cast iron head, Amal 376 Carb, mild 356 cam, etc. Itís fun to ride, handles well but will not snap your neck when asked to accelerate.
To start it, you:
The Rocket on the other hand has 45 HP. Hotter cam, bigger carb, aluminum head, bigger valves, higher compression, etc. BUTÖ.it also has a manual spark advance. Why the 60ís hot rods had to have that I donít know.
To start it you:
WHATíS BEEN DONE TO THE BIKE.
So those are the bikes. I bought a í56 A10 Road Rocket basket case about 33 years ago, and have been collecting parts for that. Who knows, maybe a '56 RR is in the making.
Hopefully I've sparked your interest in British motorcycles and BSA's ! Restoring A10's is a lot of fun and rewarding. Everywhere I go I turn heads, (that is, the bikes turn heads). I must admit there are resources I needed to fix, repair, restore, maintain, etc. Among them:
BSA twin restoration This book by Roy Bacon was instrumental in my ability to properly identify parts. Not perfect, since it covers all twins, not just pre-unit (A10). But it's a must for any BSA enthusiast.
SHOP MANUAL 1 The Haynes manual I used for about 25 years thus far. It's well finger printed (greasy ones that is) and marked up. Another must if you are going to ride an A10.
VERY INTERESTING READING In case you're wondering what happened to the once dominant British motorcycle industry, you'll love this read. Did you know that back in the 50's, One in every Three motorcycles in the world was a BSA?
BSA Motorcycles by Don Morley. He's an "authority" on BSA bikes and history, and will give you better insight to everything "Birmingham Small Arms." These links take you to Amazon.com, which has a terrific money-back guarantee and certainly will save you a few dollars over a trip to the mall. I got these great books by trekking all over the place.
Hells Angels 1 Some fun reading if you're in the biker mood.
More books on the "books" page
M1Stang: this is the kit car website of the M1Stang... a Mazda Miata transformed into a really good looking Mustang look alike. Check it out!!
LINKS TO OTHER SITES
The M1Stang kit car website See note at page bottom
|These are full size photos, so they will take time to load. Once the photo pops up, Click on it to view the bikes in detail. (6/5/08)|