BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

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BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

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BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Fri Dec 20, 2013 11:37 am

Is it a bird? Is it a 'plane? It can't be yet another BSA Gold Star. Do Partwork members have the monopoly on this kit? Certainly looks like it!

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I couldn't resist it any longer - I managed to get hold of one of these white metal and plastic kits, which, when examining the castings photographs from previous builds, seem to vary in quality somewhat. It is always a gamble when buying things 'unseen' but I was quite happy when the kit arrived from the Far East and it appeared to be absolutely original with the packets of parts still sealed and the castings reasonably clean.

What I have tentatively decided to do, just to make this one a bit different, is to convert it into the Clubman's 'Racing Trim' - the way the club racers used to strip their machines down, lighten them in certain areas, remove the lighting system and other unnecessary road going equipment, fit racing numbers and take to tracks such as Brands Hatch.

All the relevant cycle and engine parts enable this to be done (especially the larger 5 gallon alloy racing tank which clinched it as far as I was concerned) and there are some excellent reference shots to be found on line. Some things will have to be scratch built or sourced from other kits - such as 'clip-on' handlebars that were fixed directly to the fork stanchions, rear set foot rests, racing seat etc.

A rough check of the metal contents found almost everything there with just the spark plug and cover missing (I could have lost them - they are so small!) but I have sourced a 1/12 scale plug and cover set from Belgium.

I have made a tentative start on cleaning the white metal castings by judicious sanding using the very useful Flexifile sanders (imagine a small hack saw frame with a 'blade' of sanding material).

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More anon.

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Mark » Fri Dec 20, 2013 12:01 pm

Oh, nice one Peter :D

The plug was probably missing. I've got/seen five of these hi tech kits, and two of them have had a small part missing from new kits. Not a very good track record........
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Mark

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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby number1 » Fri Dec 20, 2013 6:35 pm

Congrats on obtaining your bsa, sounds an interesting build your doing, I'm finding it hard enough building as per instructions!
Remember I had the rocker box and bottom of the engine missing and two left sides of the engine casting in my kit :cry:
Luckily the right side was lurking in the box :)
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby steve131 » Fri Dec 20, 2013 7:14 pm

Nice kit and nice sanding. K awarded :clap:
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Fri Jan 03, 2014 9:18 pm

Well, it was 'bite the bullet' time! I finally decided to make this a conversion into what the serious club racers of the late 50's/early sixties did with their 500 'goldies' - in other words the conversion of a road bike into a track machine to compete against the likes of the 500cc Manx Nortons et al.

Removing the standard oil tank (to be replaced by an aluminium central oil tank) and the identically shaped tool box on the left hand side of the bike, was one of the modifications. Unfortunately Gunze cast both into the sub frames so they had to be drilled and then snipped away with cutters before sanding the frame as smooth as possible with needle files and finally Flexi Files which are brilliant for jobs like this. I will have to do a bit of filling here and there but the frames haven't turned out too badly. A central oil tank will have to be 'scratched' as will racing number plates and racing seat. This is going to be a long haul! The front forks are next on the hit list - when I can get around to them.

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More anon

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby number1 » Fri Jan 03, 2014 10:58 pm

Good luck with your conversion, I find you only have to look at the model and something bends or brakes :angry-banghead: :angry-banghead:
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Fri Jan 03, 2014 11:21 pm

Yes - white metal can be challenging! I
shall have to hope that it is kind to me!!

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby casper » Sat Jan 04, 2014 11:26 am

Single seat racer sounds like a very interesting project Peter :)
will be watching closely :)
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Mark » Sat Jan 04, 2014 3:59 pm

number1 wrote:Good luck with your conversion, I find you only have to look at the model and something bends or brakes :angry-banghead: :angry-banghead:


I'll second that ! On the bright side, it's not too difficult to drill and pin it back together.......

Your conversion will make a very interesting project Peter :clap:
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Tue Jan 07, 2014 6:44 pm

Well, after the disasters of number1's broken frame and centre stand, I began to take a more cautious attitude when considering modifications to the white metal parts. I was, for example, going to remove the front engine plates and change them to a more scale like thickness, but having regard to number1's (and others!) experiences with the fragility of the metal, I decided to keep the originals but did drill and insert some more engine bolts and nuts with some resin ones I had in my stash.

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I was going to use the pre-drilled holes in the front engine plates as alignment when super-gluing the two engine cases together, but had to change my mind on that score because they didn't align! Once glued, the two front engine plates were filled with Humbrol filler to represent the steel top plate that was fitted to the motor cycle. Also, as there was rather a nasty vertical gap between the two halves of the cylinder so I super-glued a piece of very thin plastic card to fill the gap to be filed and sanded away later between the fins.

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Another thing I wasn't happy about was the carburettor flange fitting to the cylinder. This shows a large gap on the left hand side because the cylinder does not have the correct shape for the cylinder to accept the carb. flange. I used pieces of 1/32 balsa sheet to make up the required depth of gap and then chamfered this with a modelling chisel to suit followed by a coat of very thin CA to seal it all up. Some tidying up will need to be done later in the build but I think it will be an improvement. Once everything dry fits satisfactorily, the parts will be primed for Alclad coverage.

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More anon.

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:16 pm

PLEASE DO NOT LET ME BUY ANOTHER KIT BY THIS MANUFACTURER THAT IS PREDOMINANTLY WHITE METAL!
The engine is not too bad, but when it comes to the frame and alignment of the parts.............................. :angry-banghead: :angry-banghead: :angry-banghead:
I know I am attempting to convert this kit into a Clubman Racer and that I have removed the oil tank and tool box from the frame parts, but when I came to do a dummy run of fitting the basic engine into the unglued frame parts, nothing lined up - not even the cast on 'bolts' for the front engine plates to frame fitment. The instructions have you assemble the engine into one half of the frame and then fit the other frame half - similar to closing some aircraft fuselages and cockpits.

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With so many attachment points plus the very 'bendy' framework, this was fraught with disaster, so my cunning plan was to cut off (BIG decision)the misaligned frame/engine plate bolts, file half-round slots into the down-tubes for a suitably sized brass tube to mount the engine to the frame. Doing it this way enables me to complete the frame assembly and then mount the engine which would have been impossible prior to cutting off the cast on 'bolts'. Resin nuts will be glued onto the tube ends later.

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More anon - if I haven't thrown this into the bin for time wasting!

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby casper » Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:35 pm

Surprising how far out the frame was Peter but your mods have made it look much better and i would think much stronger as well.
Love your ability to make better a bad situation, nice work mate :clap: :)
K posted :)
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby number1 » Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:34 pm

Hi Sparbucks, I'm with you when you say PLEASE DO NOT LET ME BUY ANOTHER KIT BY THIS MANUFACTURER THAT IS PREDOMINANTLY WHITE METAL!
How mine has survived the bin god only knows. Best thing todo is to walk away from it for a couple of days/weeks ;)
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Mark » Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:46 pm

I'll second that ! Never let it be said that these kits are easy :angry-banghead:
Mine was just as far out as Peters :angry-banghead:
Worth the effort in the end though !
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby baby_astons » Fri Jan 10, 2014 12:34 am

good job nevertheless -
a friend of mine has thrown in the towell on the original parts back when these kits got fashionable in terms of "heavy-is-nice" -
he made up the complete frame using brass rods + tubes and soldered the whole affair, needless to say it's become perfect -
but he's a wizard as he's made up the complete frame for a cobra and cheetah in 1:24...
building:DB5~E-Type~Testarossa~Aston Vantage V12~Millennium Falcon

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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Sun Jan 12, 2014 6:45 pm

I will persevere with this kit although the more I look into it, the more I wish I hadn't started it!

Further fine tuning has take place with the scratch built front engine plate bolts and attachments. I cut off the brass tube flush with the engine plates and then inserted small pieces of Albion Alloys slide fit tubing to reduce the size until I had a more suitable size for the resin nuts to be fitted.

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Moving on to the larger (5 gallon) 'racing' tank, you will see from my pic that there is very little gluing surface to secure both halves. I had removed the 'chrome' finish with Mr Muscle Oven Cleaner, and flaps of plastic card were glued internally to cover the joints and give extra strength while the inner tank was built up with my favourite filler - balsa wood. I had to use Humbrol filler to match up both external halves.

The full sized petrol tanks were attached to the frame with a central bolt fixing through the top of the tank and the hole covered with a rubber bung, while the petrol cap was set forward of this and just left of centre. I drilled the tank for the central fixing hole and then drilled the frame to accept a 1mm piece of brass rod to accept a slightly oversized piece of brass tube that was C/A'd and strengthened inside the tank as the slide on tank fitting. The excess was then cut off and filed flush with the tank.

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The tank cap had no location shown in the plastic so I drilled a hole just left of centre and forward of the central tank fixing hole. A piece of plastic card built up the depth of the cap as there was no corresponding 'lip' on the tank, and piece of locating rod was C/A'd to the cap through a drilled hiole.

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Many hours of labour but not much to show for it! Persevere!! :angry-banghead:

More anon.

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby number1 » Sun Jan 12, 2014 9:06 pm

I like the idea of attaching the fuel tank as per the original, never thought of doing that and have been wondering how to fix the tank into position on mine.
One thing to look out for when drilling the holes in the front forks for the wheel axle is to make sure they are parallel, I thought mine were until I fitted the front wheel :angry-banghead:
One of the hardest things I found is trying to get the steering geometry right as handlebars, mudguard and wheel all want to point in different directions !
Glad you haven't thrown the towel in yet.
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:23 am

@ number1: Thanks for the 'heads up' re the front end alignment although I would imagine the same problems will occur at the rear end as well. From my limited experience of building model motorcycles, wheel/frame alignment seems to be the 'Achilles heel' but I guess this is to be expected when mainly using plastic and especially those with built-in, sprung movement like the more modern kits I suppose.

With regard to the handlebars, my plan (A?!?) is to discard the kit offering and those awful, over-scale brake and clutch levers changing to clip-on bars attached to modified fork stanchions, so that will reduce the incidence(s) of non handlebar alignment ;) - but a lot more work to do it :(

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:10 pm

Some more work carried out on the Goldie:

Wheel building - this has already been covered in other BSA DBD34 build diaries so I won't double up. Suffice to say, the method used by Gunze to fabricate the wheel building process is really very good. I would even say it is easier than Tamiya's answer for the RC166 wheels. The only down side for Gunze is that there no spoke nipples, but apart from that, a very good system.

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There is a 'chicken or the egg' situation here. a) You could leave the wheel rims in their 'chromed' state - I discarded that because the rims depicted in the kit look like the aluminium Dunlops of the period. b) You could spray the rims aluminium and then do the wheel build, but I also discarded that idea because no matter how careful you are, the rims will be scratched during the spoke threading process. I chose a third option, c) to build the wheels and then spray the rims - something I haven't tried before so I shall have to see how this turns out.

One of the up-sides was the very useful wheel jig parts which were discarded at the completion of the build. I had been searching my spares box for a suitable petrol tank cap 'spacer' to give the impression of a 'lipped' tank opening for the cap to sit on. Problem solved!

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Another 'bite the bullet' moment was putting the micro saw to the front forks. I am cutting off the top fork shrouds to replace them with tubing to represent the fork stanchions upon which the clip on handlebars were attached. The handlebars will also have to be 'scratched' from rod and tubing courtesy of my Albion Alloys stash.

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More anon.

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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Re: BSA DBD34 Gold Star - Conversion?

Postby Sparbucks » Fri Jan 17, 2014 11:21 am

number1 wrote:Glad you haven't thrown the towel in yet.


It has come very close number1, very close indeed! I fitted pieces of rod through various holes for a guide to 'squareness' and was not impressed. I then decided to mock up the fit of the swinging arm and wheel assembly....it was awful! I have never seen so many different angles and that waste bin looked very tempting indeed. Much more work to do on the frame, but herewith the warts and all pics:

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But! Being white metal, and very soft, it is possible to gently bend everything into a passable 'square' condition, admittedly not an ideal engineering solution, but a possible encouragement to continue. The dual seat depicted will be discarded as I am in the process of making a new racing seat while awaiting delivery of more Albion Alloys rod and tube for the front forks conversion. Will it be worth the investment of time and effort though..........................? Persevere! (?) :angry-banghead:

Peter
Ongoing builds: Heller Super Constellation conversion, unfinished Airfix Bentley and unfinished Revel Ar196

Recently Acquired Stash: AMT 1/16 Shelby Cobra, Tamiya 1/20 Honda F-1 RA272, Minicraft 1/16 1955 300SL Gull Wing Mercedes plus much, much more!
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