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Thread Like Summary
Allan G, Beach, Blown Income, Bob E, chainreaction, Dave Swanson, Jon W. Whitley, Mark Z, Oil Changer, RebelronUSA, RobJP, TR6Ray
Total Likes: 40
Original Post (Thread Starter)
by Dave Swanson
Dave Swanson
I just brought home this 1965 Lightning Rocket. It is a 2600 mile original paint survivor. Feel free to pick it apart or gush over it. If any detail pictures are desired just ask.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]
Liked Replies
by Beach
Beach
[Linked Image]Yes. Correct seat and I think it looks good. I rubbed my seat with baby oil and it restored flexibility to cover.
Attached Images
3 members like this
by Dave Swanson
Dave Swanson
It's a real time capsule.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]
3 members like this
by Allan G
Allan G
Originally Posted by LarryLebel
The seat looks tacky compared to the rest of the bike.

Not quite sure what you mean, but its in great condition and someones taste is their own personal opinion.

I recently aquired an original seat like that, I thought that they were only used on the off road models but on further searching found they were correct for the lightning. I like mine, much better than the hump seat which came later, especially for carrying throw over bags or a pillion (which is the reason why I bought mine). I much prefer the look over the type fitted here to the likes of the Star models with the beading all the way around the top, like a bantam seat.
2 members like this
by Dave Swanson
Dave Swanson
A few extra bits that came with the bike. 50 wt oil, the original spark plugs, Lucas points, handbook and 65 brochures.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]
2 members like this
by Lannis
Lannis
It's amazing to think that this bike could have been kept in a place where the seat material, tires, rubber bits, seals, etc could have been preserved for 57 years. It wouldn't even have survived in my HOUSE all that time without daily maintenance.

It's encouraging, though, as I get older and think about what bike (or car) I might like to ride or drive out of all the thousands of models I've seen, drooled over, and/or lusted after in the last 50 years .... that pristine examples of almost every car or bike ever made are still out there, ready to ride or drive.

And you found one! Maybe I'd like a perfect 1955 Nash Metropolitan with 8,000 miles on it. I'm sure it's out there, and cheaper than a new Subaru too ....

Lannis
2 members like this
by Beach
Beach
Had a hard time finding nice correct headlight and tailight for mine. Found these nos ones from Baxter cycle. These 64 and 65 LR are so unique.[Linked Image][Linked Image]
Attached Images
2 members like this
by Allan G
Allan G
Beautiful. It’s a real life restoration guide.
2 members like this
by edunham
edunham
Then I would definitely check it. The timing will have more of an effect than that small an adjustment of the points. Its easy to check. There is a machined slot in the crank that is accessible from the the front of the crankcase. Line the slot up with the access hole using a screwdriver. Clip your continuity light to a fin on the barrel. Place the point of the continuity light on the spring side of the points. The light should come on. Using a screwdriver in the slot on the end of the points cam rotate it CCW as far as it will go, the light should go out just as you reach the end of the points cam's travel. Adjust as necessary. Then rotate the crank 360 degrees and repeat the process for the other side.

Ed from NJ
2 members like this
by Rich B
Rich B
The access port for the timing plug was a running change in 65. If it has the port, there will be a plate with 2 screws on the RH crankcase at the front.
2 members like this
by Dave Swanson
Dave Swanson
I had my first ride tonight. It runs great.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]
2 members like this
by Beach
Beach
[Linked Image][Linked Image]I'd like as many pics as you feel like taking. Details of assemblies. Thx, will message you my email. Will be helpful in getting my 65LR right. Only difference will be my tank.
Attached Images
2 members like this
by Oil Changer
Oil Changer
Originally Posted by LarryLebel
The seat looks tacky compared to the rest of the bike.
Perhaps, perhaps not. On a bike like this, you probably would want to preserve it. I guess you could put a "clubman" seat on it for fun.
While not near as nice, my 65 LR 283 units newer down the assembly line, untouched with 6,003 miles. Same seat.
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Attached Images
1 member likes this
by Rich B
Rich B
Congratulations Dave on acquiring a fine example of an L/R!

Been out of town, I will answer your questions on the other site soon.
1 member likes this
by KC in S.B.
KC in S.B.
Must have been in a large Zip Loc bag !
1 member likes this
by Beach
Beach
What a great looking bike. In process of building one now.
1 member likes this
by Dave Swanson
Dave Swanson
Originally Posted by Jon W. Whitley
Congratulations Dave!!

Inquiring minds want to know....How did you happen upon this time capsule of a bike, and what is its story?


Not too exciting Jon. There is a motorcycle and car museum about 200 miles from me that had this on display for 2 years. Since they do not have unlimited space occasionally they sell off a few bikes to make room for others.
1 member likes this
by BrizzoBrit
BrizzoBrit
Gushing, not picking!!! You lucky man.
1 member likes this
by Dave Swanson
Dave Swanson
Originally Posted by trevinoz
Dave, you said to pick it apart. It is a beautiful bike but I have some reservations as to its originality.
The first thing that I mentioned was the fuel tank and you stated that the home market had this style.
I don't believe that there was a home market Lightning Rocket but was an export model. Yours is not a home model with high bars and that tail light, home had a Lucas 564.
The centre stand is from a later model, I think that style came in in 1966.
I would like to hear thoughts from others on this.
As I said , it is a beautiful bike and I would like to own it.

Thanks for your interest and questions.

It is not a home market bike, It was exported to BSA New Jersey. but it does have the optional 4 gallon "touring" tank that could be ordered. Some refer to this tank as the "home market tank". The touring tank is not that common, but not extremely rare in the USA either. See 1965 brochure excerpt below.

I do not have any intelligence to share regarding the center stand. What I can share is that this is a quite late 1965, dispatched in June of 1965. It may have a few changes for 1966 incorporated by the factory as running changes. I do know of another unmolested 1965 LR that is 283 units newer than mine that has the same center stand. Others with more knowledge than I will hopefully report in.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]
1 member likes this
by trevinoz
trevinoz
Dave, you said to pick it apart. It is a beautiful bike but I have some reservations as to its originality.
The first thing that I mentioned was the fuel tank and you stated that the home market had this style.
I don't believe that there was a home market Lightning Rocket but was an export model. Yours is not a home model with high bars and that tail light, home had a Lucas 564.
The centre stand is from a later model, I think that style came in in 1966.
I would like to hear thoughts from others on this.
As I said , it is a beautiful bike and I would like to own it.
1 member likes this
by Oil Changer
Oil Changer
Hi Trev,
My bike cowers to Dave’s original condition but is also in alleged, unmolested condition. I am a pre unit Triumph guy, so I have little BSA expertise. I attached some confirming pics of my bike and a round-about video (link at the end of last picture) after first start, as my example was also “despatched” to BSA, New Jersey, USA, February 7, 1965 and built a few days later than Dave’s phenom with half the miles and obviously stored better than mine over 57 years. If anyone out there wants original pics of an A65LR, please ask, this would be the “thread of opportunity”. If I was restoring one, I’d be on this like “[***] on stink”. (If you, in turn, have any original pre unit triumph pics, I want them most gratefully and pm me. Right now I am hot for original pics of 56 T110 and especially 56 6T Thunderbird in Crystal Gray Metallic with original decal pics)
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
1st Start 65 A65LR
Attached Images
1 member likes this
by Oil Changer
Oil Changer
Originally Posted by Oil Changer
my example was also “despatched” to BSA, New Jersey, USA, February 7, 1965 and built a few days later than Dave’s phenom with half the miles and obviously stored better than mine over 57 years.
I have been schooled that I may not be able to read "British" date numerically. Birthdate July 2, 1965?
[Linked Image]
Attached Images
1 member likes this
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