Friday 22 March 2013

Spotted this '48 Manx Norton TT Racer with Norcal history up on the MidAmerica Auctions website, what a beauty!

the ad reads- "This Manx TT racer is being offered in current unrestored condition. Magnesium engine cases with northern California history. Perfect runner. Sold with a Bill of Sale."

I've particularly been digging this bike as I've been experimenting with using molasses to stain the frame and some of the tinware on my '46 B33 and '49 M21 projects. A lot of the parts I have have unrestored or poor paint and dull chrome which I really love, the problem is trying to match sandblasted or new parts with the older ones. My recent trip to Japan gave me a few interesting insights into the way many builders there use vinegar and acids to fake patina on painted parts and surfaces by taking off thin layers of cheap rattle can paint and flash rusting what is exposed with beer and even urine. I don't know if I could piss on magnesium crankcases but this Manx certainly has me chomping at the bit.


Thursday 21 March 2013

BSA B33 'Howlin Wolf' custom 654cc single.

I was honoured that my BSA was part inspiration for this amazing bike build. I have copied the text from Frank J Bott Photography site. All photos by Frank J. Bott
Howlin Wolf
By Emmanuel Dumigron "Bee"
Additional work by Jake Hall of HCV Motorsports.

How does one build something classic, something stylish and yet a beast?  I started this journey with 100 years of motorcycle history before me with a affection toward pre-WWII era motorcycles and racing.  There were two bikes that influenced this build.  The first was this ratty, rusty and rude BSA B33 built by Max of Corpses from hell and the 2nd was a BSA Goldstar racer built by the HCV Motorsports (family affair .. built and raced)

So how do you harvest the rawness of both a race bike and a ratty bike?  Do you add a bit of dressing and build the heck out of the engine?  So finding a BSA B33 seemed like a good choice; one big piece of iron (Cast Iron) not a alloy cylinder like it's big brother the Goldstar but none the less part of its history too.  Ok, so lets take a BSA B33 and make a stroker .. as big as we can from a 500cc.   The end result is it ended up being a 654cc single.. so with Jake Hall from HCV Motorsports and BritonBees.. a madman French designer and 2 stroke builder a bike was born. 

The project started it's long journey with the excitement and promise of a great fun build; design and body work would be easy enough.   However, getting parts from the 1940s and 50s would prove to be a lot more difficult.  Along with this challenge a stroked engine is not something for a 1st time motorcycle builder for this  type of bike needed another prospective.. that of a racer and a builder.. 

The Hall Family has a heritage of building and racing motorcycles.  Stuart Hall was the mentor for Jake Hall passing down his knowledge and skills .. the guide and teacher to his two sons Rob a sharp racer and Jake a  humble attentive craftsman (two nicest fellows you will ever meet).   The Halls turned out to be the perfect solution to this complicated yet simple build.  After three rebuilds and numerous issues, both known and unknown, this old Single Iron came back from the dead and roared like no other BSA B33.. ever.  Period!

Most important, I started this project in honor of my dad who passed away.   Never did we ever think that we would come up with a bike that was born in our minds.. would be as perfect as this bike.. 

Emmanuel "Bee"