I have not said too much about the 250 as there are not that many people out there who own one that is in everyday use, and there is a wealth of information on the web anyway.
When we got Dinky she was in good condition but had not been ridden since 1993. She had been well looked after while Alyson owned her, but as with any 49 year old bike, no one knows what previous owners has changed.
It was easy to ascertain that her year of manufacture was 1967 despite being first registered in the UK in 1969. The reason is that she is known as a narrow case model, as opposed to a wide case model, and the narrows were only produced up to 1967. There is an engine number which tells me that she is a 250 mk3, and the black frame also says mk3 as the mk1 has a red frame. The frame has no number at all on it, which indicates that it might be one of the batch that was destined for the US market in ’67, but was sold in the UK instead.
After a few jobs like rebuilding the carburetor with a new seal kit and fitting a new clutch we tried her out and found that she started first kick of the high compression engine. Some minor problems came to light, things like leaking fuel taps, one on each side and a stripped thread in the inlet rocker cover. I do have a Helicoil kit, but a longer bolt serves as a temporary fix. The mudguards, front and rear, have been stripped and repainted in between waiting for items to arrive in the post. The tyres are over 20 years old and the front one is a remould as well as being so far out of balance that I would need to decorate the beautiful alloy rims with weights to correct it. New tyres and tubes should be here in a few weeks.
I am also waiting on an ignition switch, not the bent wire one that is original, but one with a proper key that will be fitted where it cannot be seen so that it does not detract from the originality of the bike. A modern Yuasa AGM battery has been fitted. I went for AGM for the fact that it is sealed for life and cannot spill should the bike topple. I do not need the extra cranking amps as they are only of use in a starter motor and do nothing for the kickstart.
I was a little baffled by the regulator/rectifier, the part that controls the output from the puny little alternator, it is certainly not original and seems to be similar to a Lucas item off a BSA or similar bike. I am looking at replacing this with a more modern solid state item and rewiring the whole of this area to sort the existing mess out.
With the sump filled with some nice 10/40 semi synthetic oil, it was time to test a few more things. The headlight is still not fitted because a fuse inserted in the cavity acts as an ignition switch for now. With no helmet or gloves, both are a legal requirement in France, off I went around the tracks in the woods to do some testing. Jude was out with here video camera and produced this. Best with sound on.