Classic & Vintage - Dating my BSA - late 1910s - plus GREAT on-line BSA archives
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For 18 months I have wondered how old my BSA is.
I have posted on it before, then followed a mild forum debate on 'what is a Path-racer?'.
The 3 numbers stamped on the frame are easy to read, but there is no database of BSA serial numbers that I can find.
I have always thought it was 1920s, but with no strong evidence. I did come across a comment on the net that BSA had gone away from bolt-on seat-stays by 1932, but there was no documented proof of this.
Then last night I stumbled on this fantastic site - http://bsamuseum.wordpress.com/
the photos and old BSA literature on this site have enabled me to narrow down my bike to approx late 1910s - end on World War 1
(pics in next reply - I am having problems attaching photos)
178643My BSA as acquired, with a top-tube Sachs shifter and 1938 3 speed Sachs coaster hub (presumably a later mod)
178644My BSA after my rather-naive 'Path-racer' makeover. Note the sloping top tube.
178645a 1919 BSA Military Roadster from http://bsamuseum.wordpress.com/
It has identical-pattern seat and chain stays, and lugs, to my bike, but no nickelled cap to the fork crown. Also no sloping top-tube.
these fantastic old BSAs are from the 1917 catalogue, courtesy of the website.
Being a NZer, I am tickled that my bike is closest to the 'All-Black' cycle, which shares the shape and the 28" wheels, but has no plated cap to the fork crown.
It may also be a 'Road Racer', except that lists 26" wheels, whereas mine is 28"
So none is an exact match.
But the photos on the same website show the stays on a 1926 BSA and my bike are different.
So, given the close similarities to the 1917 brochures, and photo details of the 1919 Military Roadster showing the same seat and chain stays, I think mine is from that late-1910s era.
I am still planning a custom frame build at some point, and I am tempted to do a recreation of the Pathracer in the above brochures. However I suspect this would require custom lugs because of the severe top-tube slope - this would be either financially prohibitive or practically impossible. But I guess I'll never know if I don't try..
11-17-10, 02:22 AM
I just sold my BSA for $9.99 US.
178653 178654 178655
11-17-10, 06:20 PM
Pretty interesting bikes. 75 gear inches on a single speed ... for manly men!
01-06-12, 03:31 AM
I would say the bike is BSA touring bicycle from the 30's to the 50's - it does not have the traditional BSA fittings from before 1920. Also the chain wheel is chromed which would put it after 1930. The bolted seat clamp was used on touring BSAs even in the 30's to 50's. Only the race and sports models had brazed on seat stays.............
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