The ups and downs of owning a classic motorcycle
Rider: Malcom Gruver, Wichita, Kansas
Age: 75. Malcom’s been riding since he was 14
Rides: 1970 BSA Thunderbolt
Another BSA saved: Malcom Gruver's 1970 Thunderbolt as found. Photo by Malcom Gruver
Malcom’s story: “Four years ago, after unloading at a power plant in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, I pulled out of the loading dock, looked across the street, and saw a half-covered bike under a tarp by a garage. It was a 1970 BSA Thunderbolt. I contacted the owner, made a deal on price, loaded the bike that was missing the tank, seat, bars, one wheel, and three milk cases of parts into the trailer and headed back to Wichita, Kansas. Over the next three years I located parts, had the frame powder coated and started the restoration process. The engine and transmission rebuild and restoration were done by Barnyard Restoration in Baldwin City, Kansas, the chrome and paint by ACC Co. in Haysville, Kansas, the pinstripe work was done by Signworks in Park City, Kansas, the polishing by Choc Taw in Clearwater, Kansas, and I got all my parts from Klempf’s British Parts. I saved approximately 14 pounds using a 2-into-1 exhaust and a dry-cell battery. This has been a joy for me, as I have been riding since I was 14 years old, almost 61 years ago.”
Another BSA saved: Malcom Gruver's 1970 Thunderbolt today. Wow. Photo by Malcom Gruver.