Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Yet another Iron Curtain relic...

My dear son Thomas has a habit of bringing home examples of the finest Eastern Bloc motorcycle engineering available for under a tenner, mostly from eBay.

This was the first one:

It's a Minsk 125 marketed in the '70's under the Neval banner, and is one of those  myriads of  DKW RT125 copies of which my Bantam is a fine example.

He painted it, serviced it and we spent months fiddling around with a peculiar electrical system with no battery that was never going to drive those indicators without flashing all the other lights at the same time. It went OK though. 

He sold it for a profit, financing the purchase of whatever students drink these days.

It was followed by an MZ TS125, courtesy of eBay, it was the Luxus model (the one with the real hair?) with the rev counter. This was a bit more adventurous  as when it arrived it had no wheels, tank or seat. He collected from somewhere in Hertfordshire, on the way to my Dad's funeral. He turned up behind the hearse with this MZ stuffed into the back of our Morris 1000, which was never the same again. And no, it wasn't an estate, or a van, or a pick up - just a regular two-door saloon.

Here it is:


He did a great job with it, collecting all the missing parts, repainting & rebuilding. This is how it ended up:

Strangely enough, it looks just like any other TS125 doesn't it! It ran pretty well once we got it going, which in itself was an adventure because some numbnuts had fitted a home made base gasket without cutting the transfer ports in the gasket. Puzzling - the carburettor had fuel in it, the jets were all clear, but the plug was dry...

He now has this one as well, which like all true enthusiasts he has in his dining room - along with cats & rabbits. His girlfriend, bless her, is just as enthusiastic! It quite brings a tear to my eye, reminds me of the 250 Matchless that used to occupy our living room:

So this is the latest addition, another eBay find. We bought this one together - I paid, he went & collected it - as a kind of joint project & a 'congratulations' for getting a promotion at work:


This is how the advert was worded:

1981 MZ TS250/1 Supa 5 restoration project or for spares.
Both tyres are useless and have punctures, the silencer has the usual case of MZ Rust Scabies, both tank panels have quite good chrome for an MZ but aren't perfect. The grey colour is primer and the general gunky condition is old Waxoyl put on years ago to try and help preserve it.
Engine kicks over freely and seems to have quite good compression, all gears seem to select - but it's not a runner and there's no Tax or MoT so please don't think you can ride it away. (It's happened!).
It has the correct front indicator lenses, sound speedo and tacho brackets and the rare-ish side stand plus a Rear lens and tool-box cover (no lock) come with it.
Originally bought by me (in this state) as a source of spares for my other Supa 5 back in 1994......and there it's sat ever since; and as my ride to work Supa 5 has long since gone this may as well follow it.
Interesting number plate? TEX 6**W
All in all a nice little project that just needs a little T.L.C........you could have it running by the weekend (lol)!
Just to re-iterate this is a non-running project, with no Tax or MoT so you will need a van or trailer to take it away (I'm unable to deliver). We are near Bury St. Edmunds in Suffolk.
Having said that, there is a possibility I could take to Beverley (near Hull) for collection from there on 23rd February - but it is only a possibility, so PLEASE contact me first before assuming it's going to happen!
Any queries, please email before bidding.


And here is another view:


Now that is it at home in my garage (another thing he has learnt - why put stuff in your own house when you could leave it at your Dad's?), I have to say it is a fine machine. The waxoyl the previous owner (I don't know his name) smeared all over it has made a great job of preserving the alloy and some of the chrome. It has apparently been standing in a garage for the past 20 years.

The rubber is shot to bits though. I was tempted to put some tyre sealant in the tyres just to move it around more easily, but on screwing the can onto the valve I found the valve completely detached from the tube!

So there it is. Waiting a bit of time, for #1 son to buy a battery and for me to take a trip to Leeds, where I understand Wyldes have some tyres at a good price...

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