BSA Motorcycles 1950s

Today in Motorcycle History

1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler A10 Literature

1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler

Lee Slocombe in Australia sent me this color brochure scan.

Lee owns a 1963 A10 GoldStar Spitfire Scrambler (GSS) which is currently under restoration. Brett Matthews just sold one these models and I (Daniel Boss) acquired one in early 2003. Peter Dietrich auctioned a 1962 A10 GSS, Frame# GA10 327 Engine # DA10R 7390.

These bikes were also referred to (in UK BSAOC maintained factory dispatch records) as Rocket Gold Star Scramblers. According to one source, the gearbox should be stamped "STB" on these models according whereas the West Coast Catalina Gold Stars that same year were stamped "STBT". But another source indicates it should have an stbt or arrt gearbox. Brett's gearbox has no stamping. Mine is stamped "STB" and Lee's is stamped "ARRT". Peter's was stamped ASCT.

Frame Numbers on these models should be GA10 just like the RGS although apparently some had GA10A stamped on the frames. Eng No. should be DA10R or DA10SR (it can be either). Frames did not have any pillion loops, although Lee (mentioned previously) owns a '63 RGS Scrambler with a full clubmans trim frame!! Per a page in the the UK BSAOC Star magazine, 272 Goldstar Spitfire Scramblers were made, and per another source all went either to Hap Alzina, or Nutley, NJ. There much the same as a "Normal Spitfire" except for the Four lug frame, usually low Goldie Scrambles 'Bars, Red fuel Tank, single sided Goldstar brakes, rubber fork gaitors, single seat, clamp-on foot pegs. Note: Four lug frame means that on the front down tubes there are 4 cast motor mounts, two top and two bottom, unlike just two top ones that all the other A&B series bikes had (including Spitfire Scramblers up to '62); the bottom motor mounts were welded on bits of tube.

The 358 cam was a option after you bought the bike with most apparently having the 357 cam.

Charles Falco quoted the 1963 West Coast BSA brochure which has "The Gold Star 650 Twin," which is the 'clubmans' version, as well as the "new for 1963... "BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler." The relevant things from this brochure are that the bike "now has the lightweight Gold Star frame, Gold Star Catalina type brakes front and rear (i.e., the half-width front brake), sports tank..."

Charles has the very first Spitfire Scrambler (serial no. 1). The U.S.-only model was made in 1957 with Gold Star Catalina frame and components, then they switched in '58 to using standard A10 parts, and finally in '63 reverted to putting the engine back in a Catalina-type frame (no passenger loops, no lug for a fork lock, etc.). The Gold Star 650 Twin, occupies most of the space in the sales brochure, with only a small spot for the Spitfire, indicating that far fewer of the latter were available for sale.

I have had discussions with Bud Kubena who rode a buddy's 1963 Goldstar Spitfire Scrambler in the year of 1964 (when it was still stock) and he told me what he could recall about the bike. He said the paint was flamboyant candy apple red on the tank with a gold pin strip (same color red as a BSA lightning or RGS). He said the chain guard was chrome. The tank was the 2.5 gallon goldstar tank. He thought it had the optional lighting kit on it. Front fender was same as a RGS (he thinks with rolled front lip and cut in back). He could not remember if it it had gauges or not on it but thought it had one gauge mounted on it. What is very interesting is that by almost everyone I know who saw the 1963 Goldstar spitfire scramblers when they were new, they all remember the larger badged goldstar tank (even in early Eary Goldstar Spitfire photos I have obtained for my website)...but you will notice all the spitfires pictured in the brochures had the smaller badged tank. I understand that brochures were sometimes put out months ahead of the bike production and that it was not uncommon for them to switch things after the printing... That, coupled with the fact that the local dealers could change parts to suit customer desires, probably indicates that either tank maybe correct for the spitfire. Per Don Bachtel (who owns 1963 GSS GA10 1157 DA10R 9505), the 1963 Gold Star Spitfires were shod with Dunlop Trials Universals from the factory. 1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler
1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler
1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler

These images above were clipped from two different 1963 brochures and the last one was clipped out of a 1963 issue of the Motorcyclist!

1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler

1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler

The above two tables are an excerpt of literature sent to me by Don Bachtel with specifications on the Goldstar Twin, I believe it was part of the same sales literature booklet as the page scanned in color at the top of this page. If anyone has a better quality scan of these tables (especially of the 2nd table), please email me a copy.

1963 BSA Gold Star Spitfire Scrambler

Above shows part of a two page ad depicting the '63 Goldstar Spitfire from page 4 of Cycle Magazine's February 1963 issue.

Special thanks go to Lee, Don Bachtel, Bud Kubena, Charles Falco, Peter Dietrich, and Brett Matthews, for supplying me most of the information on this page! Check out Lee Slocombe's (a.k.a. Speedy's) website, Lee's Speed Racing for a great source for Spitfire Scrambler accessories. Lee's has informed me that he is about to make a batch of scrambler pipes, so if interested, you might want to drop him an email! ( 404)