Comer­fords BSA Ban­tam Tri­als


Could it have been an ear­lier ver­sion of the world­wide best-sell­ing Yamaha TY 175cc model? That’s the mil­lion dol­lar ques­tion asked so many times about the BSA Ban­tam tri­als ma­chine. With works BSA team sup­port with­drawn in the later part of 1967, Comer­fords launched a project to de­velop a well-priced com­pet­i­tive ma­chine. They be­lieved that with­out the mas­sive over­heads that the Birm­ing­ham Small Arms com­pany car­ried they could make it fi­nan­cially vi­able. They planned to build a pro­to­type fol­lowed by a first batch of fifty Ban­tam Tri­als works replica mod­els.

The new ma­chine would be based around the cross coun­try Bush­man ex­port-only model, which pro­duced 13 Bhp. Mod­i­fi­ca­tions would in­clude: BSA Com­petion front forks, a wider swing­ing arm, lower gear­ing and alu­minium mud­guards etc, all at a re­tail price of £190.10. A batch of 25 was planned but only one was built, as BSA an­nounced they were drop­ping the en­tire Bush­man and Ban­tam model range. Brain Martin helped with the Comer­fords project but high costs would also in­flu­ence the de­sci­sion not to pur­sue the project.

The high cost of man­u­fac­tur­ing wider­a­tio gear sets was a prob­lem that would stand in the way of pro­duc­ing them. From this side the ma­chine looks very un-fin­ished, with no ex­haust guard etc.

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