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Mysterious Inscription inside cover
#794122 12/28/19 11:00 pm
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Danam Offline OP
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So I’m taking everyone’s advice and tearing down my A50 to check big ends. The prev owner mentioned he was told it had an A65 top end but I thought that was unlikely. Turns out it needs a bore and machinist said the cylinders are definitely A65. I’m not sure how that works but it does. Anyways, I removed the right side cover to find an inscription Etched inside:? “December 4, 1974 J.McDowell” I googled it with no results. Just thought it was interesting. Anyone know this guy?
Link to photo

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Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794126 12/28/19 11:25 pm
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Okay now THIS is interesting. I googled the address and found “ 2774 Woodstock Road; Los Angeles, CA–Home of Abigail Folger and Wojiciech Frykowski. In the neighborhood of the Bernard Crowe and Cass Elliot residences.” Abigail Folger, heiress to the Folger Coffee fortune was murdered by the Charles Manson “family” in 1969

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794131 12/29/19 12:21 am
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More questions: the oil pump is inscribed with 3-70 since this is a 1970 bike, would this have been inscribed at the factory?

phot link

Also, 71 k 1042 is cast into the case next to the cam gear, what does this mean?
photo link

Last edited by Danam; 12/29/19 12:24 am.
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794134 12/29/19 1:05 am
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Beezers tended to scribe the later oil pumps with dates. It may have been a tea-break activity.
If it has a D or DD inscribed it indicates it is a dowelled type, with the later larger gears and spindle.
If it's an iron one they are a bit like rocking horse s#it nowadays, normally only found on post 71 bikes.

The casting mark on the case indicates it was made some 20+ years before England was invaded by William the Conqueror.
7/1/1042 (Bill arrived in 1066) He was instrumental in the demise of the BSA factory as they made armaments.

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794136 12/29/19 1:12 am
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71-1042 is the internal BSA part number for that side of the crank case.
AFAIK BSA only supplied them as a matched pair form 68 on and the 197- / 71 part number is 71-1108 for the pair.
The K in a diamond is the trade mark of the foundry that cast them.
By that time BSA was in a mess and the bean counters who did not understand the economic power of the internal dollar ( £ ) bought in a lot of parts that could have been supplied by their own foundry because on paper the bought in part was cheaper.
Pumps are generally dated but it usually is a stamp
You will probably find one on the pump some where when you pull it down
The only difference between an A 50 & A 65 bottom end is the crankshaft and the model number stamped into the side.


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Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794137 12/29/19 1:16 am
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Trevor's just treating me with the contempt i deserve i suppose.

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794141 12/29/19 2:17 am
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Wojiciech Frykowski, was Freddies brother , who later went on to star in The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers by Gilbert and Sheldon. maybe.

My 71 one came with the fabled iron pump , along with yellow paint daubs and unfinished NRV ball seat, good material , could have been straighter.
Every one knows that 71 10 42 is the answer to life and everything else as we know it.
71 , prime, also adds up to 8 which is very lucky in China,
10, is binary for 2 in normal decimals ,
so now we have 8 2 42.
42 is the answer to life the universe and everything.
So you have lucky number , times two , with the answer to everything. stay lucky.

Last edited by gavin eisler; 12/29/19 2:36 am. Reason: cant do sums drunk

71 Devimead, John Hill, John Holmes A65 750
56 Norbsa 68 Longstroke A65
Cagiva Raptor 650
MZ TS 250
The poster formerly known as Pod
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794150 12/29/19 3:09 am
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Hi Gavin--please let us know which Scotch you have been imbibing---I must try some!

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794170 12/29/19 6:42 am
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My original pump has 3/71 scratched on the body. I didn't see any date on the iron pump I put on the bike.


Stepping on others doesn't make you stand tall.

71 A65L "Zelda"
92 BMW K100rs "Gustav"
72 T120V cafe project "Mr. Jim"
72 T150V "Wotan"
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794177 12/29/19 10:20 am
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It was Glen Goyne.


71 Devimead, John Hill, John Holmes A65 750
56 Norbsa 68 Longstroke A65
Cagiva Raptor 650
MZ TS 250
The poster formerly known as Pod
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
gavin eisler #794181 12/29/19 10:54 am
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Originally Posted by gavin eisler
It was Glen Goyne.


I’ve recently developed a taste for Old Ballantruan, and a Sherry cask Glen Caddam.


Now let’s all have a beer beerchug

68’ A65 Lightning “clubman”
71’ A65 823 Thunderbolt (undergoing restoration)
67’ D10 sportsman (undergoing restoration)
68’ D14 trials (undergoing transformation)

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794185 12/29/19 1:00 pm
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The oil pumps were inscribed by hand with month / year of manufacture, the question is why? what is the point? Yeah the pump was made in March 1970 but who cares? Is it just another pointless step in manufacture?

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Dave Martin #794187 12/29/19 1:56 pm
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Originally Posted by Dave Martin
... Is it just another pointless step in manufacture?
Maybe not. A range identifier for QA/QC purposes?


1967 T120R
1970 T120R
1970 Commando
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794192 12/29/19 2:23 pm
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Hmm an interesting concept, BSA and quality control ……… don't get me wrong, I love the damn things, but you have to admit they are hardly Vincents!

I cannot imagine the Japanese coming up with a system that involves writing by hand on each and every part the date of manufacture, and if this part why not all other parts? I suppose the reason, if there ever was one, is lost in the mists of time.

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794193 12/29/19 2:53 pm
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True. But hard to think of a more critical failure point from a warranty POV.
If I was going to keep track of anything...


1967 T120R
1970 T120R
1970 Commando
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Hugh Jörgen #794198 12/29/19 3:20 pm
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Originally Posted by Hugh Jorgen
True. But hard to think of a more critical failure point from a warranty POV.
If I was going to keep track of anything...



If I was going to keep track of anything... I wouldn’t be a British bike factory in the 1970s.


Amateur Loctite enthusiast.
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794199 12/29/19 3:30 pm
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OK,....... Back on topic
What year is the bike? Is that somewhere? You might Add that to your post signatures....... You stated inside cover, date / Name. I see the photo link now, so cover looks like it was chromed? And the address in CA. BTW, you can count cylinder fins to tell A50 / A65, don’t need to remove the head.
My 1st thought, from your 1st post is: The motor was worked on, possibly rebuilt, and the mechanic logged that action for himself, or the next guy. As a Ref: I date the sludge traps I clean out. Just a thought.......

Last edited by KC in S.B.; 12/29/19 3:32 pm.

Down to 1 BSA, 2 Triumphs, 1 '56 Chevy
1 '65 XLCH, Hernia Gift, on the way to Japan!
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794200 12/29/19 3:35 pm
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Oh, If not already........ Consider joining the BSAOCNC. Lots of help up your way !!!


Down to 1 BSA, 2 Triumphs, 1 '56 Chevy
1 '65 XLCH, Hernia Gift, on the way to Japan!
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794205 12/29/19 4:05 pm
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Sometimes an owner will make a mark inside the motor in case the bike is stolen. They can identify it if recovered (Ha!) by the police. Notice the point cover also has the initials etched into it.

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794219 12/29/19 5:48 pm
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I think DMadigan has the correct answer.

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
KC in S.B. #794221 12/29/19 5:51 pm
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It’s a 1970 A50. Engine stamped CD06231A50R, so the bottom is definitely an A50. How many fins does an A65 cylinder have? Where are the markings on the crank? The covers on both sides are black, not paint but almost like they were in a fire. Bad chrome? I traded this for an old CB750, I surely traded down with this one. What little oil was in the tank was half gas, but has great compression and starts right up.

KC I’m a member of the BSAOCNC but those guys are hard to get in touch with. They’re mostly of the pre computer generation.(some of them pre television 😂)

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794225 12/29/19 6:54 pm
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2 things
1 my A65 is covered (internally) with my name ect i did that in 73? first time i blew it up ........i did it to prove it was mine if it was ever stolen...lots of guys did that Triumph owners didnt get to keep their bike long enough to do it .....those things were constantly getting stolen.
2 its a 70 and the original oil pump also had date code scratched in........


"There's the way it ought to be and there's the way it is" (Sgt Barnes)
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Allan G #794233 12/29/19 8:12 pm
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Originally Posted by Allan Gill
I’ve recently developed a taste for Old Ballantruan, and a Sherry cask Glen Caddam.
We're getting you off that heap rum. Excellent smile

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Dave Martin #794248 12/29/19 11:36 pm
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[quote=Dave Martin]Hmm an interesting concept, BSA and quality control ……… don't get me wrong, I love the damn things, but you have to admit they are hardly Vincents!


No, if they were, they'd have gone broke at least 15 years earlier.

I've never bothered marking the inside of the cases etc on my bikes, they are insured so if anyone pinches 'em
they would just get replaced with a new toy.

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794252 12/30/19 12:18 am
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A50 barrel has 8 fins, 65.5mm bores , A65 has 9, 75 mm bores. Both have the same stroke, A50 has a different flywheel balance, not sure about id marks. its not unknown for a 650 top end to be mated to a 500 bottom end, although it may vibrate in an unusual way.
Black covers are not stock, maybe anodised?

Last edited by gavin eisler; 12/30/19 12:22 am.

71 Devimead, John Hill, John Holmes A65 750
56 Norbsa 68 Longstroke A65
Cagiva Raptor 650
MZ TS 250
The poster formerly known as Pod
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794258 12/30/19 1:21 am
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Fair point NickL, fair point!

Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Dave Martin #794281 12/30/19 4:51 am
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Originally Posted by Dave Martin
The oil pumps were inscribed by hand with month / year of manufacture, the question is why? what is the point? Yeah the pump was made in March 1970 but who cares? Is it just another pointless step in manufacture?


Because they were made and put in stillages till required.
There were also warranty claims to protect against
And finally it is no different to a serial number on a critical component, a common prectice now days


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Trevor
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794282 12/30/19 4:56 am
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As for 650 to[ ed.
many places have 500 cc as a cut off point between medium tax & exhorbent tax
SO you buy a 500, pay yhe reduced tax / insurance and still have a 650.
Remember BSA riders are cheap.

Down here the RD 250 out sold the RD 350 nearly 4 to 1
However the 350 top ends out sold the 250 top ends by an even bigger margin
Our threshold in those days was 250 cc


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Trevor
Re: Mysterious Inscription inside cover
Danam #794316 12/30/19 1:11 pm
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This is getting a bit, well, nit picking but, instead of writing by hand on each and every oil pump, how about writing once on the box you put them all in?

As far as the warrantee aspect ….. are you saying that this is the only part that requires tracking? 'cause it is the only part with a hand written date on it! the pump on my bike is still going strong after 52 years, bugger all else is, but nothing else is tracked by date.

It is just as well that the British Motorcycle industry didn't produce at the rate of the Japanese, can you imagine how many people would have to be employed to hand write the date on the 500,000 plus oil pumps of the Honda 4 alone (if it has one!)?!!!!

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