BSA Gold Star

Discussion in 'Old's Cool' started by Ricardito, Oct 23, 2020.

  1. Ricardito

    Ricardito Been here awhile

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    Is there a Gold Star thread on this website where I can learn more about this legendary British single? Additionally, is there a website elsewhere that someone can recommend as well? Although I'm old and weak and short and weigh below 150 lbs I want to buy one but can't seem to find much.
    Thanks to all in advance for any and all recommendations and advice.
    Ric
    #1
  2. Rich B

    Rich B Long timer Supporter

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    There is no Gold Star thread on this site that I know of. There is a dedicated thread on Brit Bike.com for Gold Stars.

    A Gold Star is truly magical beast. Set up right, they are impressive even on today's roads. But, be prepared to do a lot yourself, there are very few really knowledgeable people left.
    #2
  3. Rich B

    Rich B Long timer Supporter

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    Mine


    [​IMG]
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  4. Ricardito

    Ricardito Been here awhile

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    Rich,
    Thanks for your response AND for the picture of your beautiful example. You are too far away for me (Longmont CO) to even ask to see it in person so I'll just have to keep searching for one closer and hopefully one that's for sale. Again thx for the reply and keep me in mind if you hear of any coming on the market.
    Ride safe.
    Ric
    #4
  5. goatroper

    goatroper Been here awhile Supporter

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    You should have a copy of the Goldstar Buyers Companion by Charles Falco- sold on Amazon. It is too easy to buy something that isn't a Goldstar.
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  6. Ricardito

    Ricardito Been here awhile

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    Just saw that a new (5th ed) of the Falco book has been issued--a bit pricey, just like the bike! Thanks for the recommendation.
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  7. scfrank

    scfrank Old farts riding club. Supporter

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    Beautiful. Hey, I grew up in N. Phila. A friend had a Gold Star in the 70s. Totaled it too, unfortunately.
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  8. spokester

    spokester Long timer

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  9. Rich B

    Rich B Long timer Supporter

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    Like Dave said, you need a book to guide you. There are a lot of less than meets the eye out there. Tho the RGS’s models are likely worse than a GS for fakes.

    A real GS will have GS as part of the Engine S/N. The only valid engine codes are M24 (rare), ZB, BB, CB, DB, and DBD. Frames and engines will not match.

    The most desirable gearbox is RRT2. But short of disassembly, that is a stamping. Reality is, the RRT2 is kinda sucky for real world road use. First gear is way too tall. STDT actually isn’t bad on the road, but it has some odd gaps, mainly 2-3 shift. The very rare DAY T is likely the best, but are hard to find intact or in pieces.

    The cycle parts are pretty much off the shelf BSA parts. Forks, brakes, clutch, etc are common with other models. The forks can be improved a lot with Dow damper rods. I prefer the half width front brake for looks and performance, but a lot have the 190mm brake. I think that brake is way over rated. Rears are BSA QD stuff and just works.

    Lots of combinations of cams and pinions are available, along with carbs and compression ratios.

    My own bike....half width brake, Dow damper rods with 7.5W oil, 9.5-1 compression, Amal 1038 carb, scrambles cams (2446), STD T gearing, 4 spring BSA clutch, it’s geared fast (forget the ratio, another area of lots of choices), standard pegs and bars, 12V dynamo and EI conversion. I find it comfortable to ride, very competent on the road. Engine is a hoot. Still hard for me to grasp that a 1956 500cc single can perform that well. Between 2500 RPM and 6500 RPM, it is a beast.

    They do show up for sale, but usually go for serious money. Looking around for local BSA people. Might find a bike that is under the radar.
    #9
  10. goatroper

    goatroper Been here awhile Supporter

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    Hitchhiking on Rich's last paragraph; like many sought-after things, they tend to be traded within a small circle and if you are unknown, you won't know when they are available, except in a high priced auction. Find the local BSA ( or just British ) folks and go from there.
    #10
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  11. Ricardito

    Ricardito Been here awhile

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    Again, thanks for the short tutorials. I enjoy learning and will stay with it until I come across the real thing. We'll see then if it's just a fantasy or if it's something that I truly want to own in spite of its many unusual characteristics.
    #11
  12. motu

    motu Loose Pre Unit

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    There was a nice custom Goldstar somewhere here recently and a link to the build...he was complaining about there being parts from a B33 and other BSA models...well of course there was ! Like a Bonneville is a tweaked up Thunderbird, a B32 or B34 is a tweaked up B31 or B33, they share many parts in common. As Rich points out, there is the gearbox, the real deal close ratio box is not usable on the street, although it is fun slipping the clutch away from the lights - right across the intersection and a hundred metres down the road, having to slip it just to turn into a side street. Other ratios were supplied by BSA, but a box from another model will have different ratios - the A10 had 3rd and 4th close, and a big gap 2nd to 3rd, the 650 could pull that gap, but not a B31 which had a more evenly spaced ratio box than an A10. An M20 certainly found that jump too much, and I used to have to retard my ignition on that shift.

    So I wouldn't worry to much about what should or should not be there, who ever built it for their purpose was using a good Lego kit.

    I never got my Goldstar...I turned down a nice small barrel swingarm scrambler for $650, but needed too many parts to make street legal...and a few months later had all those parts, but the bike was gone. But Goldstar parts fit a B31, and that's what I did. Go to a 350 or 500 Classic race here, and 18 of the 20 bikes are B31 or B33, maybe a real GS or 2, but in the real world a GS is out of reach for most.
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  13. Carmackle

    Carmackle Been here awhile Supporter

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  14. Ricardito

    Ricardito Been here awhile

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    Baxter Cycle has had that one advertised for many months. No information on its provenance, build, mechanicals or electricals but pretty enough, so no telling how "real" it is. Is the $19,500 price a fair barometer of what a genuine GS currently sells for?
    #14
  15. Thumpermeister

    Thumpermeister roost maker

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    Yep. There are more Goldstars and Rocket Goldstars in existence today then were ever produced by the factory! :lol3
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  16. Rich B

    Rich B Long timer Supporter

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    Depends on the bike. The “ideal” is a DBD34GS Clubman. Clip ons, RRT2 gearbox, rear sets, 190mm brake, big tank, 2442/2446 cams, GP carb, etc. Those bring the most money, reality is there are more of those today than likely BSA ever built, especially in the US.

    The Scramblers seem to bring good money too. The touring models like mine are at the low end.

    The earlier ZB & BB models are pretty reasonable and, IMO, damn good looking motors. CB’s are not common and don’t seem to come onto the market very often.

    A B33 has a good looking engine and a fair amount of GS parts fit easily. A set of GS touring cams really brings a B33 to life.
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  17. UstaKood

    UstaKood Been here awhile

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    Just happen to have one hanging around ..

    1959 dbd34 ,

    Attached Files:

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  18. RustyStuff

    RustyStuff Long timer Supporter

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    Is there any sort of encyclopedia of BSA bikes and parts? This is interesting but I have no idea what any of these bikes are like.
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  19. Rich B

    Rich B Long timer Supporter

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    There is a surprising number of books available about BSA models in general and specific models. They built a shit load of bikes and a shit load of models. There are a lot of rabbit holes you can run down with BSA.

    The Gold Star is pretty much the Holy Grail of BSA, but they built a lot of other bikes
    #19
  20. Ricardito

    Ricardito Been here awhile

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    C'mon you guys, send me an email <landeira@colorado.edu> and, on the quiet, sell me or point me to a bike that may be available privately. I am not necessarily looking for a pristine, overrestored, concours quality Clubman. I would be very happy to purchase a touring model in good running condition. I've learned through the years of collecting that--for me and my purposes--condition trumps originality most of the time. This is not to say that I wouldn't be interested in a restored GS, but that a nicely cared for--original or not--, good reliable runner would do me just fine. My preference also is buying from a private owner, a fellow enthusiast like all of us who hang out on Advrider. Auctions and dealers scare me.
    Ric
    #20
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