OK Bantam Build Time.

Colin Dommett in action,

This is what we are setting out to build?? Well something like this.

Starting point, a D 14 frame.

One day Later. from delivery by DPD.

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I am now going to fit the frame on the jig before removing the bottom tube section.

I have decided that this will be replaced with two under-run small tubes, this is the next job.

Tubes under engine like Jims bike.

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OK. Sunday the fifteenth.

 Today has been good and we have made some progress, unlike yesterday, just gave up. You have to walk away sometimes before you make mistakes.

OK, You can see the progress!! I have filled the holes in the steering head where the tank mountings were. removed the top frame casting, and lifted the engine plates. New plates will be made later.

We now have the bottom frame tube removed, and a plate bronze welded on for the sump shield

I have bent one of the belly tubes and cut and bent the alloy plate.

OK < Has you can see, I have made the pivots for the swinging arm, and the new spindle and center spacer, the pivots will run on four sealed roller bearings, that are cheap enough, to replace when necessary. The footrest spacers are ten mm wider both sides , and make more room for the swinging arm and better width for the foot pegs.

 swinging arm is to be similar to the SM design.

Thanks Tony, "Black Cat Cub".  I hope you don't mind me using your picture.

 Nice Cub's by the way,love the things.

 

 

This is what we are aiming for, and we know it works because of the mud.

 Thanks Andy for all of your help. appreciated. Bike now with new forks I might add.

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17 Sep 2013.

OK this is where we have got to now.

Monday not a good day. things did not Just look right .so a good look at the pictures last night,made me alter things today, and after a bout of frustration, they seem now to be right,

Bearings now in the swinging arm pivots, and Paul has advised me how to make a swagging tool to decrease the headstock size to 47mm for the tapered roller head bearings. He also said that we could make new bearing tracks, out of EN9, at 47.6 mm has an alternative.

 

I was just reading about the works BSA Bantams, Red T1 and 2, and one of the bikes had under run rails like this, until the management stepped in ,has they always did ,and made them return to a more production looking frame. I did not realize until I cut this frame apart that the tubing used is ERW, and 14 gage. But then it got Mr Bloggs, to work most days? when it would start.

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We today made a swagging tool and carried out the operation on the headstock, and now have two perfectly fitting taper roller headstock bearings.

The two part tool we made, firstly swagged the bearing housing and then when reversed opened it out to the near size of the bearing race. this was repeated on both faces, and then the bearing its,self was pressed in.

 

There you go !!! a good days work. start on the sub-frame tomorrow.

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Well by Saturday the 21st, it seems has though we have had a couple of days off?

 But the fiddly bits always take time? and there is not a lot to show.

 

It may not look like a lot to you? but I have spent several hours at the lathe, and made tools to drop forge the ends of the tubes ETC. And I can tell you that Reynolds tube is not one of the easiest of things to work with. New S/A spindle and spacers for sub frame tubes to be attached too. Nylon thrust spacers, back seat loop bent. Engine plates and spacers modified, and made.( I am working on a train has well at the moment??)

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This picture is what gave me inspiration for the build.

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Mr IOM at play, Thanks JM.

11/Oct/2013.

Back on with the Bantam this week.

I have now got most parts for the engine build, a big bore piston from Rex Caunt has been fitted nicely into the new barrel, by Coventry Boring, just has good as they ever were way back in the sixties, thanks guys.

I am waiting for a eight spring clutch conversion from the next batch by Peter Savage.

clutch mods are being done by Paul and myself.

A D7 clutch cover has been purchased, for just looking better when you don't need the points. Electrex you see. I have a primary chain adjuster and 12 tooth sprocket to fit. A full set of engine bearings have come via my Old mate Ken O'Brien, from the Oxford Ixion club.

I have the pick of three compleat engines for my build so just hope I get it right.

 I have this superb picture on my I Mac that just inspires me to build this bike, the late great Dave Roland's.

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15/Oct/ 2013.

 Well we seem to have made a bit more progress today ,should have stayed home yesterday, weather appalling cold very wet and a mood of despondency, but at least I took some photos ,and when at home I could see what was wrong with the sub frame, And I think I have corrected my errors today. 

It is so easy to just plough on with a first build and not know if you are right or wrong.

 Just proved to me how much effort is put into an original piece.

 It is then easy to buy a frame jig for said frame and produce a salable item.

 but no one knows the work that went into the original item, hey Rob???

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Finish up on the sub-frame tomorrow then, sort the swinging arm.

 I have to widen the rear Bantam hub and build the Ex Suzuki hub into a rim for the front wheel.

Engine bits now ready to build.

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20/Oct/2013.

The winter months have shown an early entrance this year, that has already put pressure onto this build.

It was always meant to be speedy, and a gap filler, while waiting for the parts to finish the Honda Cub project. That sits in pride of place in my front room? and is getting too comfortable living there.

Well we have kept the pace up this week all be it slowly.

The sub-frame is now virtually finished. and I have today got the swinging arm onto the jig.

 Yesterday was spent (3 hours) turning the bottom suspension mounts. More turning today to make parts for the swinging-arm jig.

 The front hub bearings are being replaced with 12mm, over the 10mm standard, has I consider this a better option to fit into the Triumph forks(four stud) that I am now using.

These are to be fitted into the Yamaha TY 250 modified yokes that I now have? (You try finding 1971 Triumph/BSA fork yokes). I think I have come up with a better option anyway.

There you are then, hope to get the bike onto its wheels this next week!!!

Why, is the engine in in the frame? Well I have made the front engine mountings, that are over in the frame by 8-10 mm, but I have not bronze welded them in yet? Why?

Well I had walked away from doing this on Thursday evening, then got home to find an e-mail from John Hooker,(thanks mate) saying don't forget, if using a big bore exhaust  system, the clearance will be tight on the frame down-tube. do you know that had slipped my mind? but I did say the weather has been appalling.

anyway the fixing of these plates is now on hold until i get the swinging arm in and the chain-line set up.

I think it will just clear but it will be close.

Just shows the pit-falls you can fall into without help or a keen pair of eyes. Thanks John.

I need to stamp on to the new plate the frame number as well, could have forgotten that too. Just the little things you don't think about.

 Well I hope to show more progress next week, and I will do the page ,on the the frame jig ETC.

24/Oct/2013.

OK felt like an age this week finishing of the swinging arm (Nearly), I did have to make more bits for the jig. but it still has taken a long time. But finishing most things do. Anyway here it is in the frame,

Looks like I will be using Betor shocks on this build, seems like the item to use on BSA Bantams 360 mm units 40 lb springs??

 Footrest plates next. I was going to use Alloy but now have decided to use steel and send them off to the galvanisers, with a batch of grills we are doing.

`November 3.

Swinging arm now finished, Looks like I will be using Betor shocks on this build? everyone seems to use the so called alloy units with 40LB springs. Footrest plates are now going to be stainless steel! well I think a better job all round?

Sun 10 Nov.

Well as you can see from the New page! the rear hub has been widened by 38mm. I have also made the footrest plates,(now stainless) and today I intend finishing off the frame (mounts etc) so that the frame swinging arm and rear hub can go off to Redditch for powder coat in the morning.Colour? black i am afraid, has I can not find a RAL colour near to the Ludlow-Mist Green ,that I wanted. but the colour will show up on the accessories.

 

I spent yeterday afternoon fiting the parts of the frame back together now I have it back from powdercoat.

I am amazed at the distortion you get from the heat from the powdercoat oven.

Anyway here is a couple of pictures.

Realy must get Mel to tidy up his work bench.!!!!

The hubs are off to Central Wheels next week to have rims fitted, and to lighten my pocket.

Then Build up time.

19/June/14.

Back on the Bantam for a while.

The idea of thinking the BSA Bantam would be an easy project seems to be well out of the window?

 Things looked fine until I started on the engine unit?

Might take a couple of days I thought to rebuild it and do the gear conversion.

 Well two good hours were spent swapping the gears around; you just cannot get circlip pliers down into the cluster. In the end I eventual peeled the two clips out using a couple of very small screwdrivers. The swapping around part was easy then I readjusted the circlips and refitted them.

So I will just replace the engine and gearbox bearings now?

First heat up one crankcase half with my De-Walt heat gun until a drop of water pops, was going to pop it into my new oven but could not bring myself into doing it.

So the old bearings on this case were then drifted out, the bearing surfaces given a wipe, and the case reheated to bring it back up to 170 degrees.

Bearings tapped in gently with the mandrels and on with the next case.

 Same procedure and job done in about an hour.

 When cool the bearings were tested to see how they spun “Not” well the two main bearings anyway. Eventually moving them they did feel rough.

 So I thought anyway, I would see if the crank slid into them and go from there!

 Not a chance, the shafts would not even start into the bearings.

 So I cracked open my spare pack of new bearings to try one of these onto the shafts> No way. It seems the new bearings available are not quite made to the same tolerances has the Hoffman bearings were in the day.

After confirming my thoughts by looking on the net, this was confirmed.

 So a happy three hours was spent with steel razor sheet (Steel Wet and Dry), rubbing the shafts down for a slide fit of the bearings, has is necessary for smooth assembly of the engine and to set up the crank end float.

 So Wednesday, the crank, and cases, new bearings, seals, etc were loaded into the car and the whole procedure of removing and refitting more main bearings was carried out. So we hope the rest of the engine assembly goes better??

20/6/14.

 OK, yesterday was spend getting the crank end float sorted! I think I have it right ? The new oil-seals tend to give a false reading , but has I have found out most engines seem tight on rebuild , until bedded in, has we should know.

 But we do tend to get worried about our rebuilds now a days for some reason ? we never did in the sixties and they seemed to work alright then.

 Well today, I set my task to be, make a new clutch compression tool? well the other Brian has in the IOM.

 So after seeing the reports on the ones you can buy on the market, I thought I better make another for myself.

Here it is, I thought a good afternoons work ? and then worked until eight thirty unloading show jumps.? you see what I am up against!

 

That's the gears in the PG Box , well it was convenient.

 

 And I might add, that the "Pasta and Peas" I cooked at nine thirty was equally has good.

My Recipe is available if you want it.

 

I have just got back from the Isle-Of-Man after the 2014 Classic trial.

And spent some of the week working on the Bantam we have over there .

Brian has built a new air-box for the bike, checked the engine over ,fitted the new footrest's that I had  sent him. and we re-assembled the bike putting a few other jobs right. the bike now sports a OKO carb as-well.