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Interesting historic picture
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Author:  Richard Simpson [ Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:52 pm ]
Post subject:  Interesting historic picture

http://epapers.bham.ac.uk/557/

That huge factory just built motorcycles in the post-war era, and not the other BSA products. In the 1950s BSA dominated world motorcycle production "One in Four is a BSA" the advert said.

But two of the four motorcycles in the pic are Hondas...the pic was taken in 1968.

The factory closed in 1972.

Author:  greenmachine [ Tue Oct 03, 2017 9:15 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

Great picture, the original 3 floor factory, much of which was behind where the photographer was standing was indeed huge. I remember passing it occasionally on the train in the late 60's early 70's as a kid and asking my mum what BSA meant.
I was there last year and stopped of to have a look, and some of the tall building on the left still remains, and beyond that a lower Victorian building still bares the BSA name and is where they make air rifles I understand.

Author:  Richard Simpson [ Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:04 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

Yes, the air rifle factory is still there...it was the 'original' BSA building.

The large buildings were, I think, built in the 1930s when the Government realised that BSA was the only company in the UK that could still make army rifles.

What's left of the big building is a car breakers, I think.

Author:  greenmachine [ Tue Oct 03, 2017 1:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

I read recently that there is an effort to get the last bit of remaining building listed, not only for its history, but because it is a very rare example of early steel reinforced prefabricated structure.
On the same day I visited I dropped by the old Triumph Meriden works.... Or "Bonneville Close" and "Daytona Drive" as the present day residents prefer to call it. Sadly all gone but I think Norman Hyde has the main gates outside his premises in Leamington.
INext time I'm up that way I'll seek out the old Norton works on Btacebridge St. The building is still there and in use as a printers or something I think

Author:  John Harvey [ Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

The far building in the picture is the original factory built in 1866, BSA production finished due to bankruptcy in 1973 and the final bikes to be made there were Triumphs until closure in 1976 when the last batch of T160's were built.

Here's a couple of pictures of a 1972 BSA B25 Victor Trail bike I restored recently.
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1972 B25T.jpg
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With transfers & mud :D
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Author:  rdchair [ Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

Birmingham Small Arms for those wondering.

Author:  timofee [ Wed Oct 04, 2017 9:56 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

Nice job John!

Here's a couple of pictures of a 1972 BSA B25 Victor Trail bike I restored recently.
Attachment:
1972 B25T.jpg

Author:  greenmachine [ Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:07 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

Lovely bike, nice job.
I can identify quite a few parts that are the same as my own 1974 T140V that is half way through a complete nut and bolt restoration.

Author:  John Harvey [ Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:48 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

Cheers Guys, so far I'm well pleased with it, but then it's been in bits for the best part of 16 years ;) so I'm dead chuffed to get the old bike going again.

I have always liked the style of these bikes as a kid and although they were short lived you can see the influence they had on later bikes like the Yamaha XT500 and TT500 that came along a few years after.

Here's a couple of pictures I found a while ago of the 500 version that I kept referring to, for inspiration to help keep me focused on finishing mine....it worked!
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Author:  Richard Simpson [ Fri Oct 06, 2017 7:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Interesting historic picture

Great pics John,

Triggers some very mixed memories for me. I had a 1971 250 Gold Star when I was in my teens: not the most reliable bike, but as you say a bit of a trend-setter in some ways.

Are those tanks ally, or chrome? My tank was all painted, and I had the 'dove grey' frame which was supposed to look like nickel-plating (al la Rickman). Apparently a cost-cutter at Small Heath got hold of a job lot of ex Royal Navy grey paint at a good price, and they thought it would look like a plated frame in the black & white press handout pics!


I believe the last B50s of the lot were built from surplus parts and sold as Triumph Avengers in the USA in about 1974. Trivia fans note...this is why if you look at a BSA-engined CCM, it may well have Triumph logos on the crankcase area where the engine number would be stamped. Some people think that Triumph Meriden actually made engines for CCM, but they didn't.

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