Back To The Future.

The Return of the Original "Foster" Otter Frame Kit.


Carol Foster has agreed to let me have the Original "Foster Otter" frame Jig.

So I have agreed that I should build some Frame Kit's to the Original specification.

As below.



So 28 years after the last frame kit left the Foster Jig, a NEW batch of five frames will be built Initially.

So Yes Back To the Future.



The "BSA Otter Dot Com." "Foster Otter" Frame  reunited in the famous Foster Jig.

"A Match Made In Devon".




The Train is rolling Guy's,

The first Five BSA "Foster Otter" frames, are about to be built on a first come basis, 

So if you think you want to buy a bit of trials History, and build yourself a Classic trials bike that can only become a legend of a build,

 You need to get in touch with me fast, because when the first batch of "Foster Otter" frames are gone they a truly gone.

There may be another five but we will see.




The famous Headstock Badge lives again.




And "Otter" Decals.



Thanks to the generosity of Triumph "Otter" owner and builder Jon Griffin.



Tubes mitred and on the jig.


And steering head ready to tack.





Now we have our own Original Foster "Otter" thanks to Richard above, we can get every thing right on the new frames, and we also can arrange to borrow Ians frame that was built for a Triumph Twin engine, to get those frames right too.


"A Match Made In Devon"


Price in advert is from 1985 so does not apply today.



The above specification will be adhered to.

the only change will be the use of bought in footrests,

and the fact that the frame can be left unpainted,

Or powder coated Black by the best in the business,

For £110.


Price? well an initial guideline will be around the £1200 for the frame kit left uncoated.


Until we have built the first frame,  and priced it according to the time involved and the cost of the materials the price can only be an estimate.

Don't forget they will be built using 16 -and !4 gauge for the swinging arm, T45 tubing, and although this is the best, it is expensive.

Also all frame reinforcing plates will be made of the same compatible material as specified by my tube supplier.

I will be keeping the First Frame, and building it into a bike to be used as a demonstrator.

This should ensure that everything fits on the frame.


After the  second  batch of "Foster Otters"  that Harry built, the Swinging - Arm Pivot point was lowered slightly, this Jig still has the ability to make both first and second addition Frames.


So the start of a New journey for a


"Classic British BSA Frame Kit",

that was born when

it was realized that Scott and Father Sep Ellis had probably built something,

That not only proved the BSA trials brand of 1965 a Major Winning Machine, but something that other BSA Trials riders were keen to have a part of when there was a supply of these frames forthcoming.



If you are remotely interested in one of these frames, contact me from these pages.


It is hoped that the first  "Reborn Foster Otter" frame for Sale may be as early as the beginning of October 2016. 




Photo Courtesy "Otterman" 




You too, Could own A truly Classic,

"Reborn Foster Otter"

Trials Machine.


More detail Later, and estimates are only that, if there is any chance savings can be made they will be.

Update ,

Like every thing,that you think will drop into place quickly ,most times does not happen quickly.

But we have made good progress and it is pointless rushing a project that needs to be right from the off.

I have most if not all parts designed for the New Batch of frames and we can take advantage of the technology that has established itself since Harry made the last batch of frames.

 All plates and brackets for the frame have been templated and are now at the CAD design office being turned into programs for the factory to laser cut the parts.

Supplies for the frame  plugs and bungs has been established and these are now here ready to use.

The distinctive feature of the Original Foster Otter frames was the "Brass engine oil filler cap" and stem at the foot of the steering stem on the top tube, these have been replicated see below.

The steering heads have been machined and are also ready for the Jig.

A mandrill to form the correct rear seat-tube sub frame is under-way, and I have also been offered our friend Ian Ballard's Original Foster frame  to borrow to get every detail absolutely correct.

So we are getting there, and I refuse to be rushed into anything, and not turning out the right and correct item. 

So good progress, made and I hope this has secured the future of the Iconic Foster frame.

More Later.

Well if you have read the other pages you will know that we Now have a Original Foster "Otter" in the camp to  base our new builds from.


"Wow that bike looks right,"

 And this someone that only knows my bikes, and is not really into trials but has to put up with me on occasions.

Thanks Mel.


A Golden time indeed.


Growing something from the Past.


A Genuine.

"Foster Otter".

Just a quick update , the frame jig is now back with us and I will try and work out how every thing works and try some tubes onto it to get a rough idea, I have located someone that can bend the top seat loop which will make sure we get the bends right.

Now I have the  "Foster Otter" striped down I just realise how Harry got this frame right.

No unnecessary steel was used and most is slightly thinner gauge than the copies. this means the frame is lighter of coarse.

The frame is also one inch narrower than the copies and the swinging arm box is not so deep,

This helps with the chain line.

One other thing is the steering head is not so complicated and this again saves weight.

So now we have the detail that was missing we can forge ahead with the first frame.

Watch this space.



Well this part is for me. as a reference library.

If you look on the top frame tube you will see I need to make one of these.





And One of these for forming the engine mounts.

All Three of them.




Top frame seat loop is the only thing not sorted yet but I may have found someone to bend these for me  so that every one is the same.




I have today fitted the frame from the "BSA Otter Dot Com" Otter, into the "Original Foster Jig"

And I must say the frame fits into it very well indeed. and has all the bracket mountings etc in the right place.

The swinging arm fits into that jig even better.

I am amazed that Harry's chalk measurement marks are still visible on the jig as can be seen. so it looks like all systems go.


Front Down Tube 17 3/4" spot on.



Top tube 23" Correct.

Just to remind me that I have a flypress and I can make tooling to make the Stand and Footrest bracket's

I used my Flypress a lot for the "Otter-On-The-Cheap",


And I was just trying to work out how to make these rounded bottomed brackets, Now I know.

I always use a Blade tool to make degree angles on it like in this Video.




OK now that I have posted the SideCar-e of to the TSB Conference.

 I now find that I have TEN days to build a "Foster Otter" frame. for the Telford Show. so again No Pressure then.

 Start tomorrow with a Scrapbook of the build just like the SideCar-e Project .

So you can keep a check of progress on most evenings.


 More tomorrow.




Today I started on the "Foster Otter 00" "Second Edition", frame build,

I have decided that it is the best option to just build a frame using the old principles that Harry used, and make every-thing-by-hand.

 For the first frame back out of the "Original jig".

 This will give me a better feel of the way to go with these frames , and it is the last thing I want, just to churn them out. like a factory would.

So today I took my cardboard templates and spent a freezing afternoon at the workshop, cutting most of the frame plates on the steel bandsaw, and finishing them on the old "Massy Ferguson" factory linisher.

This even took me "Back to the Future,"

as I know that the factory in its last days, could not afford the heating bill for the plant and just bought the guy's bigger winter coats to put over ther overalls, so I was told.



Tomorrow I plan to finish the plates and machine the one or two items on the lathe that need doing.

 and even start on the bending machine to make the subframe top tube bends.




Yesterday I finished the plates for the frame and also did the machining necessary to fit the headstock to the frame jig.

 I am waiting for a new 2" Starratt hole-saw to finish the swinging arm box, spindle plates are done. I have also ordered a rear seat tube loop from Tube-Bender, as he say's he will take a look at bending these, for me.

 So snow permitting I will start to get the frame together on the old Foster Jig on Monday. | will spend tomorrow profiling the tubes.



"All planed things and that" can't remember the saying, how I am feeling at the moment.

Last week Thursday, I ground a piece of steel that had been galvanised, and it was late in the day and I was rushing and never put on a mask, so the next day I awoke with a sore throat, and blamed the Galvanise.

To be  honest I struggled with the pains in my body all day,but just put it down to the Fibromyalgia condition that I have. so I have to blank out this pain on a daily basis.

Saturday I was always having the day at home to catch up, as I have done seventeen days on the trot in the freezing cold of the workshop to get the SideCar-e project done for its deadline.

Sunday came and I still had this sore throat and pain so I decided to take that day off too.

but did sort the Foster jig out at home.

Monday and the Starret 2" hole saw arrived at ten, but by twelve I just could not face travelling the sixty miles to the workshop, so a plan B came into play, and I managed to use the old Bosh 2" hole saw in the battery drill to finish the swinging arm box.

And a good job it turned out, so I now know this trick doing that part for the future.

 Oh yes sorry, I have caught the flu, and no I did not have a jab.(do they do any good?)

so today Tuesday  I fixed the new Starret saw onto the "Olde Joint Jigger", and set up the top-tube onto it and in ten minutes I have that tube fitted to the  steering head tube just wishing to be Bronze welded.

 And this was done in my old shed at home, so that has saved another journey and the time it takes.

The thing that did not work were the shots I took of the operation on my phone, the flash has stopped working and it was nearly dark.

I will set it back up in the daylight tomorrow and take some more.

 So we are moving forward with Foster Frame "00", and the best thing, I am learning the tricks with the jig, and the operations.

I must say that virus is hard to shift feeling recovered for a week then it comes back, and speaking to someone last week who as also suffered the same one they were told it takes about four months to get over it! Thanks.


Anyway as you see at the top we are progressing.

And moving on with getting parts made for the first batch.


Don't forget if you are interested get in touch.














More later.