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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been working on my BSA project a little bit over the past few days...because I managed to buy a running '69 Thunderbolt motor for it off of ebay a couple of days ago. That got me pretty jazzed, so I've been hitting it pretty hard lately.

Up first, I started making a new tank. I bought a fiberglass Sportster peanut style tank at a swap meet a while back, and I really liked how it looked on the frame. The thing that's cool about it is that it's shorter and more narrow than a stock Sporty peanut. I liked the size and shape, but I wasn't too fond of the fact that it was 'glass. So I decided to cut up a beat up old Sporty tank I had and make it fit the frame kinda like the 'glass one.

Here's the beat up tank after I'd cut it apart...the rust in the bottom is not as bad as it looks, by the way. (I should also mention that before you start cutting on a gas tank, make sure it's not going to blow up in your face.)



Here's where I marked it to cut it:



I also cut about an inch off of the bottom edge. Here it is cut, and ready to tack together:



And finally, here it is hammer-welded back together. I still have to weld in the filler cap bung, and put the bottom and tunnel back on it. It fits the bike WAY better than a stock Sportster peanut now.

 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
As I was welding the hardtail section on the frame, I also re-welded some stuff to make it a little cleaner and a little stronger while I was at it.

Here's one of the axle plates as an example:



And here's a picture of the frame with the hardtail fully welded and the new tank mocked up...I'm not sure if I'm going to use the Triumph disc brake wheel yet...but I am going with an 18" for sure. I have a new Firestone on the way for the back. I've still got to make a few more mods to the frame and add various brackets.



After I got it down off of my welding table, I started to mock it up again...and I decided that the tank looks better mounted up high. It'll just cover the top tube when it's done.



I was originally going to go with more of a race bike look with this bike, but the more I get into it, the more I want to stick with the traditional chopper look. I was also going to build a leaf spring springer for this bike, but I think I'm going to save that for a future project.

I bought the springer on it in these pics at a swap meet. It's of course way too long, but I think shortening it will be exponentially easier than building the other springer I had planned. With the tank mounted up high, this springer just seems to make sense to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Here it is mocked-up a little more completely:







The motor will set level in the frame when it's all said and done. This motor is just serving as a dummy motor now until the new motor comes in. The Hunt mag and side cover (thanks to johnnygringo) will of course go on the new mill.

I've still got a long way to go, but I'm starting to get excited with the way it looks. Thanks for looking...

-Brian
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks....Well, here's the pile of shit I started with as a reference point...



Yes, that is the same frame.
 

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Bass, nice project ! I'm not that involved with Brit customising (yet...) but finally a BSA or Triumph Hardtail frame that has the right dimensions front to rear...! On most of them the rear hardtail section is waaay to long...I would shorten them about 2.5"-3" in a snap...I believe a compact engine should have a compact frame around it and that's what you got ! Keep us informed ! Dan.(By the way ...what's the size of that 21" front tire ?...)
 

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GREAT job man, that bike will be COOOOL!
 

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51rat said:
GREAT job man, that bike will be COOOOL!
I would use a "sprocketbrake" in the rear Bass! (they work, I used them many many times)Thay way the right side of your 18incher will be clean and open...
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Danny, that's a 3.00-21 Goodyear ribbed tire on the front in the pics. I might use the 2.75 Avon I have on the front of this one. Thanks for the compliments!

That's a piece of handle bar with a grip on it welded to the top tube in the before pic. Weird, huh? I guess it had a deep tunnel tank mounted up high on the backbone, and that's how they spaced it up.
 

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Danny F. said:
Bass, nice project ! I'm not that involved with Brit customising (yet...) but finally a BSA or Triumph Hardtail frame that has the right dimensions front to rear...! On most of them the rear hardtail section is waaay to long...I would shorten them about 2.5"-3" in a snap...I believe a compact engine should have a compact frame around it and that's what you got ! Keep us informed ! Dan.(By the way ...what's the size of that 21" front tire ?...)
many hardtails for the BSA fronts are, in the real world of actually building them, too short.......

seat ends up crawling half way up the rear fender and not much room for things like oil tanks or electrics

the looks of such........ well I suppose some do and some don't

now granted..... I don't care anything for some I've seen at 8 and 10 over...... save that for the dragstrip

and I'm not really sure what that's about since I've built 4 and 6 over Brits for guys as tall as 6'5"

but they can get too short

and the tiny wheel base rigids do tend to beat your brains out..... suspended seat or not...... I like to actually ride my bikes and although we do have some incredible roads to ride here...... bumps happen and some of them aren't so pleasant

a prime example is a factory Triumph rigid with say...... two under forks

comes in under 52 inches of wheelbase....... and that's shorter than many tiny GP bikes

and some of their inherent very fast handling is easy to sacrifice for a bit of stabilizing additional wheelbase

especially when an inexperienced rider/builder...... has no idea he's just built a bike that can be challenging for even an expert rider....... in the handling department

that's my two on hardtail lengths
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The hardtail that I used is one for a OIF Triumph that I cut to fit.

The wheelbase is pretty close to stock, if not slightly (1" or so) longer. My Triumph is almost exactly the same length, although the BSA has more rake...due mostly to rotating the hardtail up on the frame to get it low.
 

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Bass said:
The hardtail that I used is one for a OIF Triumph that I cut to fit.

The wheelbase is pretty close to stock, if not slightly (1" or so) longer. My Triumph is almost exactly the same length, although the BSA has more rake...due mostly to rotating the hardtail up on the frame to get it low.
Looks good Brian. So since you rotated the hardtail up a bit, are you planning on changing the motor mounts to keep it level in the frame? I imagine you would have to lower the front mounts and raise the rears?
 

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Very cool ! Would like to see it with the leaf spring front end though.It looked so bitchin' when you posted pics on the HAMB.Of course the springer on there right now is cool too.Every Sportster tank should look like that,well done ! I'm glad you gonna mount some Firestone rubber,way cool tires.

I believe you don't will use a sprocket brake like Danny F. suggested.Cool stuff but not on this bike or am I wrong ?

The front part of the frame and the way it sits reminds me of my XS 400 on which I extended the swingarm by 5" and shortened the rear part of the frame,although no hardtail.

Look forward to any progress.Thanks for sharing !
 

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thats shaping up to be a nice BSA Bass, looking forward to more pics, I need to get off my ass and finish my zb34. Tank looks cool, nice welds on the frame too....
 

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Bass..!

I really like what you did with the tank!

That Hunt set up is wicked man!! It rules.

Why don't you use a Triumph drumbrake/sprocket hub like I do... You'll also have the clear right side then... Please don't go for a disc..




Oh yeah.. My Trump is 6" over (like your old one Bass..??)... It looks allright on my bike. And it handles awesome.

This BSA should stay nice 'n short though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Flyin' Dutchman said:
Why don't you use a Triumph drumbrake/sprocket hub like I do... You'll also have the clear right side then... Please don't go for a disc..
Thanks Maurice...that's my other option. I have a good '60s 18" Triumph rear wheel and brake that I may end up using instead of the disc. I'll mount the tire on it when it gets here (where the fuck is it, Coker???) and try it on the bike to see how it looks. I think I'll probably end up with the drum because I do like having the open right side on the wheel...although I don't think the Triumph disc necessarily looks all that bad.

Hudson...I'll probably have to remake the motor plates in the back. I don't know what I'm going to do with the bottom bolt that goes all the way through the cases and frame yet...I'll know a little more when I get further along.

Frenz...I'm still going to do the leaf spring springer on one of my projects, it just may not be on this bike.
 

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Looks killer! I like the mock up with the tank higher on the frame. What bars are you gonna run?

Keep us up on the progress.
 
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