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Helping keep British Motorcycles on the road for over 30 years - established 1977

1969 BSA Thunderbolt

Sold 12/01/2020

Dear BSA Enthusiast: I'm going to tell you about this great '69 Thunderbolt I have for sale now.

I bought it with the idea of restoring it 2 years ago from a young guy in TN who told me he inherited it from his Grandfather who had bought it new in 1969. He needed the money and so he sold it to me. I have a clean TN title for it signed off by the guy's Aunt in whose name the title was registered. It should not be a problem to get a new title with this in hand.

The bike had not been ridden or run for 30 years or longer so it needed quite a bit of work. It is a complete and numbers matching original bike.

The main parts that were missing were the mufflers and the steel side covers. I sourced new, correct UK made mufflers from a source I have in England. I got the right side covers from Tim Crawford at Century Motorcycles, an old BSA dealer in San Pedro/LA and had them professionally painted, striped and decaled by Blake Conway, a guy in CA I've known for many years who paints, rides and collects motorcycles of this genre.

The gas tank is all original which is rare; paint, chrome, striping, even the little decal, all original. There are some minor scratches in the paint but, importantly, no dents. The front wheel rim is original and I had it re-chromed due to rust which is very common on these older bikes. I used the original spokes though when I had it re-laced by Buchannan's Spoke and Wheel in Azusa, CA. They're the best.

The rest of the chrome and black "stove enamel" paint is original, including the frame. I added a new seat cover from RK Leighton in England to the original foam and pan and it looks great.

It has a new electronic "set it and forget it" ignition and Lucas 6 volt coils installed and strobe timed by Humble's Vintage Motorcycles in Montrose, CO where I reside. The owner, Marty Humble and his head mechanic, Felix, can vouch for this bike's soundness if you'd like to call them M-F 9-5.

Due to glazing of the cylinder walls and consequent fouling of the plugs from sitting for so long Humble's pulled the head and barrels and honed the cylinders, then fitted new rings and valve guides. The pistons on this low mileage bike were fine so we kept them.

I've run the Thunderbolt 100+ miles on break-in oil to seat the new rings and it does not smoke or leak oil. The oil has been changed now to Penrite low detergent 20-60 oil and is fresh as are all the other fluids. I installed new Dunlop K70 (original equipment in 1969) tires and tubes.

We couldn't get the original, re-built Amal Concentric carburetor to work properly so I recently replaced it with a new Amal Premiere carburetor of the correct size and now the bike runs just fine.

Some other things I've done are: installed a new oil pressure switch, new battery, all new cables, new rear shock absorbers, new rear drive chain, many new fasteners and fittings (mostly American/SAE which both BSA and Triumph were moving to in the late '60's though there are still some British Whitworth fasteners to be found so you'll need a set of both tools to work on it).

The speedometer (no tach on this model) was re-built by Foreign Speedo in San Diego, CA.

And more. See the pictures. A rare and collectible Classic!

The price is $8,250 US.