Build a Bultaco TSS from scratch

Discussion in '2 smokers' started by blaine.hale, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. blaine.hale

    blaine.hale Long timer

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    First off, sorry to disappoint ya'll with nothing to bring to the table in this thread.

    Really what this thread will be about is the acquisition of knowledge and a collaborative of minds here on what I'd like to build in the future (after that first time home buyer bill slows down.)
    The basic question would be: What is the cheapest way to piece together a Bultaco TSS racer?
    A REAL TSS will cost quite a bit of change, of course. What I'm looking to do is pull a frame from one of their street models, pull an engine from another (I know the matador engine is close to metralla spec) and kind of piece together a cheap franken-taco to take out to track days.
    So what would be the best and cheapest frame to steal from and what would be the best and cheapest engine to steal? Liquid cooling would be cool but I think only the TSS really ran those engines? That would be majorly expensive.
    We'll throw some pics in along the way!
    Join in on the conversation with thoughts and what not, please!

    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. edray

    edray cascadian

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    i think this is brilliant..
    i,too, always loved the metrallas, lusted after one i saw w/ an america kit on it..now so crazy expensive..as usual was hoping for my lottery dreams to come in,sigh, when kenny roberts's Metralla was on ebay, twenty grand, and of course if i had it i'd do it..jeeeesh.
    air tech has a fiberglass Americas kit available...
    up here in washington state,theres rumors, hopefully true; that you can register anything as long as it has road equiptment on it..
    great idea. i'll be watching,,where's that little popcorn guy??
    #2
  3. pommie john

    pommie john Long timer

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    I don't know a lot about Bullis but I have a couple of friends who race them.
    One has a genuine TSS the other has a road race 'crosser. I think he uses a Pursang engine.

    The TSS has been converted to air cooling because the water cooled one has no water pump and a large volume of water in the radiator. The problem he had was cold seizures 'cos it took so long to warm up. He had to take a tea urn into the pits and fill the radiator with hot water before each race.

    The Pursang seems very reliable and quick.

    I'll see if I can dig out some photos.
    #3
  4. pommie john

    pommie john Long timer

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    Only photo I can find at the moment
    [​IMG]
    #4
  5. blaine.hale

    blaine.hale Long timer

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    So the way I understand it with how the Bultaco liquid cooling works is that it was thermo-syphon...not on a pump system. It normally had to get up to about 70 degrees celsius before you could really get on the throttle. This meant the rider had to watch a little temp gauge and wait for that magic number. The Buls at the time also used electronic ignitions, which I'm really interested in sourcing as well but they range around $300+ area.

    I've read the Pursang motor would be my best bet for power output so I may look at picking up a parts bike pursang or just the engine.
    I think this is all pretty doable on a budget if its a bitsa bike. The most expensive part is, ironically, the body work. That fiberglass isn't so cheap haha. I've already found the place to get the right body work.

    I've got more knowledge and theory to add to this but I need to find out the most practical engine and frame.
    I should give Hugh's a call and get their thoughts too :)
    #5
  6. stainlesscycle

    stainlesscycle Long timer

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    i got pursang bits by the buttload. since you're gonna take the whole thing apart anyways, (why would you do it any other way) i surely have a seized motor and bad top end here somewhere - probably have frames (i know i have 2 model 67 and 2 model 68 and a few 135 i believe.., wheels, etc. a big box o parts to tinker with. motoplat ignitions go for around $100 - $150. femsa's about the same (coil must match stator though)....

    body work won't be cheap. building the motor say $1000 tops (that's new crank, bearings, seals, piston, bore, etc.).


    finding a watercooled motor would be the best for 'wow factor' but they're pretty cost prohibitive..
    #6
  7. PSchrauber

    PSchrauber Been here awhile

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    Good thought's and the Pursang engine was used for the TTS models too, expecially for the 24h races they used the 350 360 370 cc engine???, (have to look up the details). These bikes where called Montjuic and the first ones where also air cooled, so you skip the costly water cooling, (expecially cylinder/cylinderhead and radiator!).

    [​IMG]

    To the fiberglas body work, look up specialists for this, so you really get the good quality in craftmanship and durability and of course the used materials are resistant to the fuel, (expect to pay some money for this). I have ordered and got a custum made gas tank for my Sherpa. I'am very pleased with the outcome, as the man that made this have the right molds. (*) The paint job should be done by someone else.

    Original electronical ignition systems might still be available as NOS parts, but expect a much higher price. There are also replicas availalbe but I don't know if they will fit to Pursangs. (*)

    Very importat the right exhaust system for the engine, this is smething you will have to find an expert too, it's a two stroke and then additional a racing machine, there are some ressources in Europe available, sadly they speak only Spanish. (*)

    The reminig rest is pretty standard, apart from the controls for hands and feet.

    (*) If you are interested PM
    #7
  8. blaine.hale

    blaine.hale Long timer

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    This is all pretty in line with what I was thinking as far as motor rebuild and body work. It seems the Pursang motor is the way to go on this so I'm calling what sources I have around Atlanta and putting up a CL ad to see what crazies I get calling me, haha.
    My question about the Pursang motor, specifically, is what set it apart from the others...the Matador motor, for example? Is there a specific year/model Pursang motor that is most preferred?

    Thanks for all the info thus far! I'm sure I'll be reaching out to a few of you here that have mentioned having parts around.
    #8
  9. blaine.hale

    blaine.hale Long timer

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    #9
  10. stainlesscycle

    stainlesscycle Long timer

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    the pursang motor at model 135 got bigger ports, and different head. at model 180 (i believe) they got bigger ports again, and a new head with gasket.

    the pursang had lighter primary chain setup which let it spool up faster.

    the port timing and heads are different on matador.

    the pursangs scream at the top end, and are more race oriented- i.e. peaky. the matador is more torque oriented, and has much more bottom. i believe you could make a matador motor into a pursang motor with top end, clutch/primary change, and ignition (and you'd need to open up the transfer ports on the cases to match the pursang top end.)

    in general the sharpa s and pursang were the fast/peaky motors..
    #10
  11. Abdelhub

    Abdelhub Blanco Trasho

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    wow a center port cylinder bultaco.....Id love to get a cylinder like that....A lot of my projects are based on where the exhaust comes out of the cylinder.....Lets you use a full cradle frame.

    Mike
    #11
  12. Abdelhub

    Abdelhub Blanco Trasho

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    Ive got a 104 model cylinder on an alpina....ports are very small for an mx motor...Id go for later models 75'up

    Mike
    #12
  13. Magnum1b

    Magnum1b Magnum1b, yes I had one

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    I grew up in South Texas and there was a hole in the wall bike shop on Highway 83 in McAllen when I was growing up. Sometime in my teens I went in one day to drool and there was a new Metralla complete with the TSS fairing. Years later a friend from New Jersey regaled me with tales of his Metralla. That same year (in Austin ) I wandered into a BMW Dealership and there was a Munch Mammoth and a TSS Faired Metralla in the showroom. The Metralla was fully restored and beautiful to behold. I've never owned, or ridden one, but I have lusted for a couple in my years.

    TCARS
    Jack Ferguson
    Ellenwood

    ps: somewhere I have pictures of the "Austin" bike. I'll keep an eye out for them and post if I find them
    #13
  14. darmst6829

    darmst6829 Been here awhile

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    Fun! The trick is to use a Metralla frame with 35mm forks from any 70's Bultaco off roader. For the motor Bultaco made a 125cc that had a geared primary drive. I would try and find one of those then mate any 250 barrel that will fit off a hot MX bike. My buddy Ralph built one up last year and its sounds incredibly cool.
    Dave
    #14
  15. pommie john

    pommie john Long timer

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    I think they got the spelling wrong. Surely it should be 24 Horrors :evil



    .
    #15
  16. PSchrauber

    PSchrauber Been here awhile

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    I just got two little parts again for my Bultaco project, when trying out if they fit this reminded me on your task building a TSS from scratch. Now after around 14 month my rebuilding is going on, just small parts here and there are missing, (but these details makes the rebuild first complete in my eyes). ...

    Anyway as it is a real sport bike too your task rebuilding a TSS from sratch came again in my mind.

    How original do you want to go with the rebuild?

    There is the frame, then the engine, but in my personal view also very important are the brakes.
    Going fast is all about acclerating and braking so where do you want to go in terms of braking?

    The original standard Bultaco brakes work as long as the chrome plating stays inside the hub.
    If so they work good for trials machine as long it's dry, maybe for dirt bikes too but for a racer a no go.

    Then the suspension here the fork and rear shocks, standard Betors from a Alpina or Sherpa models might be to soft, MX to long and standard road forks (...well do theses for street bikes really work ...?) (May be I'am just spoilt when it comes to suspension, but brakes this is as important as a good working motor)

    Do you have any kind of porposive idea befor I start any bla bla bla?
    #16
  17. stainlesscycle

    stainlesscycle Long timer

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    that's a one year only motor, primary kick and all. hard to come by afaik...
    #17
  18. PSchrauber

    PSchrauber Been here awhile

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    As the OP haven't shown up my bla bla bla statement follows as already mentioned..

    I'am not keen in building a TSS street racer from scratch but I believe this project will take a long time until you will find all pieces you need and then the inset of money, ...

    Why not build a hybrid, using as many Bultaco parts you can get for a priceworthy amount and add newer components where you can't get these rare like hens teeth and there weight in gold worth pieces. This Butaco
    will certainly make likewise much fun then a TSS I believe, (it was posted here a couple of months / years ago I believe):

    [​IMG]

    There are some parts where I would take other materials like the fenders, the forks and the black rims are in my view discussable, but the remaining rest i just fantastic!
    #18
  19. blaine.hale

    blaine.hale Long timer

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    Now we're getting to the right questions!
    The frame and engine were the first points I wanted to tackle with being "original." Those will stay as they are.
    I'm really up in the air as to update the other components or not. The logic in me says yes, the rest of me says "No! only period pieces!"
    I honestly would like to ride it as they rode in the 60s and 70s. Really it's dependent upon what is the right price with the least amount of modification. Which, the above, leads me to the original pieces as they're all pretty ambiguous with what bikes they can fit on in the Bultaco line up, require little to know modification and I can source those bits from a local horder pretty easily.
    So I guess the answer there is original parts haha. That leads me to what is the best in the category. Logic dictates that I'd want some beefier dirtbike forks...so which from their line up would be best? What also had their best drum brakes?
    Clip-ons and such are negligible to me. It's all about frame, engine, brakes and suspension in keep original.
    #19
  20. blaine.hale

    blaine.hale Long timer

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    See, now thats got my other side of the argument thinking. I hate you, sir.

    But really....keep up with these ideas.

    ** I sold my laptop yesterday to build another desktop so I haven't been on to keep up the research and responding heh.
    #20