Author Topic: C15 rebuild dilemmas  (Read 677 times)

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moodubz

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C15 rebuild dilemmas
« on: 18 April, 2019, 19:09:46 »


Hi all and thanks for allowing me to join the forum. Of the several bikes I have, my latest restoration on the go is (amongst others) a BSA C15 pile of parts. The parts as collected are a complete C15 frame, forks, front wheel and back wheel, chromed fuel tank that needs rechroming and oil tank, the bike frame number is C15.447** and the engine number is C15F 7**. From the records Ive looked at I believe one is a 1965 and the other is a 1966. The frame has had the centre stand lugs removed and the rear foot peg tubes removed just after each side casting.

My dilemma is ...... do I return it to original (I have the necessary skills to manufacture everything) or do I make a trail?custom version cheaper and quicker (as I have other projects on the go)?

If I go down the custom?trail route does anyone have an alloy trials tank to swap for my chromed std tank that needs re chroming?

chaz

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #1 on: 19 April, 2019, 08:21:08 »
Hi, welcome to the forum.
my point of view.... after 40+ years of Brit bikes is my view as a worker on a budget rather than a 'professional' restorer. Entirely up to you and your budget. many will look for total 'concours' resto's or an oily rag daily user.
I did up , complete strip down and rebuild, a pair of A65 Thunderbolts. these were done using my work contacts and used daily . our tooling rep I always had disputes with. His restorations were 'concours' , better than when left factory, he trailered them everywhere and won prizes but never rode them.
I now have an A65, A7 and Triumph T100. All are chops/bobbers. It would cost me more to put them back to original and would rather ride than leave them in the garage where things can fall on them!
Entirely up to you.
As for the chrome tank, Indian modern replicas are poor quality. modern chroming is bright nickle not chrome. Its not as deep  and from experience subject to rusting from under the layers. Our chrome is outlawed as it contains cancerous chrome, our engineering company has had to change its plating needs due to this.as someone who has had neck and thyroid cancer and regularly used chromate and di-chromate plating I can understand why!

entirely up to you and what you want to use it for.

DEAN SOUTHALL

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #2 on: 19 April, 2019, 09:17:44 »
Hi pal and welcome to the forum.
In my view there is one overarching rule regarding bike restorations: its yours so do what you want. The only exception, in my personal view is to take care of rare irreplaceable components. We are after all only the current custodians!

Just to give another expeience of Indian repro tanks. I bought one for less than the price of rechroming one. It arrived chromed and painted within two weeks. It fitted perfectly and apart from minor flating in the polishing was well finished. I am very happy with it.

Chromium is still used by UK platers. The health and safety and envorinmental regulations and enforcement have quite rightly been tighted up considerably. This has added to the costs....but at least workers live longer and fish swim in our rivers again.

The chrome is only a flash covering over, typically copper then bright nickel. A good plater polishes imperfectiosn after the copper has been applied, saving removal original steel material (especially important if the tank has already been re-plated, and the steel can be getting thinner).
BSA: turning ordinary men into mechanics since 1910

B Murphy

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #3 on: 19 April, 2019, 21:42:39 »
Hi

Yes it's up to you, I've done a few restorations and kind of kept to what they would look like when they came out of the factory....but now (don't know if it's an age thing) I want to have a go at doing a bobber or whatever takes my fancy as I go along. The C15 that's on the "what do you ride" started out as a rusty road bike in bits but with just a few changes and new parts and paint it looks the way I wanted it to look. Nothing better than going in the shed with radio 4 on doing my stuff  :).

AdrianS

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #4 on: 20 April, 2019, 17:40:47 »
The C15 is not a particularly valuable bike and any serious restoration will cost far in excess of its market value ( don't ask how I know!)

If it was a Brough or Vincent then you probably would want to restore it to original condition.

Do what you want and feel happy with and use it and get some pleasure out of it. My only proviso would be not to damage or ruin any original parts in doing so.

moodubz

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #5 on: 20 April, 2019, 22:12:01 »
well thanks all, what can i say apart from you guys have guided me in the direction i wanted to go with this build, my problem is that i am a perfectionist  with builds, with this one i can have it finished in half the time at half the price and have something i use most days. I never trailer to shows but appreciate we are all different with the love of bikes.... hope to see you all soon

Bees

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #6 on: 21 April, 2019, 10:04:24 »
I agree with above. It's your bike do as you wish. A good point about taking care of irreplaceable parts etc

It puzzles me a bit when people refer to the value of a bike after the cost if restoration and it not being worth it. I don't do it to make money. It's not my job, its my hobby and I'm quite prepared to spend money on something I enjoy. You don't hear sports fans saying they dont make money out of the cost if their season ticket etc.

Do what you enjoy.

Old Biker

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #7 on: 21 April, 2019, 21:17:42 »
Nicely put Bees

moodubz

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #8 on: 23 April, 2019, 21:41:37 »
Many thanks guys, sat here with a gin looking at the frame and thinking whether to buy the 7/8" tubing and 're-operate the rear footrests. I think I'll regret it if I don't, for the small amount of work it entails.plus Mrs moodubz will be able to join me. Thanks all

Bees

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #9 on: 24 April, 2019, 19:26:48 »
Have the rear footrests been removed?

It's my understanding that if the bike has a pillion seat it has to have footrests to pass an MOT.

I appreciate it doesnt need an MOT but would assume the bike has to be up to MOT standard.

moodubz

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #10 on: 24 April, 2019, 22:09:58 »
Yes that's correct the footpegs have been removed as well as the main stand brackets. Replace I meant not reoperate....bloody predictive text. So for the small amount of turning down some bar and buying some 7/8 tube and tig welding it in its sorted.

moodubz

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #11 on: 29 April, 2019, 22:18:19 »
The build has been delayed by other outdoor projects. I will update asap

moodubz

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Re: C15 rebuild dilemmas
« Reply #12 on: 22 May, 2019, 17:35:50 »
Well thank you all for your advice, I've now bought some 7/8" tube and will be making the rear footrest tubes soon even if i go down the trials route as I think I'd regret it at a later date once shes all powder coated nice n shiny. Got a bit of oxy acetylene heat to straighten out the wheel mounting area on the rear swinging arm yesterday and hopefully all will be going to powdercoat next week. The engines had some oil/kerosene mix down the sparkplug hole to see if it will free up a little, (not sure if the kick start is just slipping or if its stuck in gear or seized at this point).