1963 BSA 646cc Rocket Gold Star 378 HWO,
Lot 265
Property of a deceased's estate,1963 BSA 646cc Rocket Gold Star Frame no. GA10 1465 Engine no. DA10R 10145
Sold for £18,975 (US$ 31,874) inc. premium
Lot Details
Property of a deceased's estate
1963 BSA 646cc Rocket Gold Star
Registration no. 378 HWO
Frame no. GA10 1465
Engine no. DA10R 10145
Widely recognised as one of the most desirable of all factory built 'café racers', the Rocket Gold Star arrived in 1962 along with the first of BSA's new unitary construction range. A combination of - mainly - Gold Star cycle parts and the A10 Super Rocket twin-cylinder engine, the newcomer represented the last of the old 'pre-unit' line rather than a new departure and thus was destined for a relatively short life. The idea of making what was effectively a twin-cylinder Goldie originated with Banbury motorcycle dealer Eddie Dow, who had built up a considerable body of expertise in looking after BSA's high-performance singles. Dow believed that his hybrid would bridge the gap between the end of Gold Star production and the introduction of new unitary construction sports models, and so it proved.

The Super Rocket engine's compression ratio was raised to 9.25:1 for the RGS, the claimed maximum power increasing to 46bhp. But for some reason best known to BSA, the RGS frame was unique, although not that different from the production A7/A10 item, as was the wider dual seat. The model was offered in a number of different forms and with a host of options relating to controls and equipment. Motor Cycle tested a Rocket Gold Star in November 1962, summing up the new BSA as a 'scintillating high-performance road burner: good brakes, excellent rider comfort and docile traffic manners.' A top speed of 105mph was achieved. Around 1,800 Rocket Gold Stars were made over a two-year period and today genuine examples are highly sought after.

The restored example offered here comes with a Science Museum letter confirming matching frame/engine numbers and stating that the machine was despatched from the factory to 'R Ware, Newport, Monmouthshire' on 6th June 1963. Copies of local registration records on file reveal that '378 HWO' was first registered to one Edward David Morgan of Manmoel. The late owner acquired the BSA in March 2011 and there are various invoices on file for parts purchased for it subsequently. Described as in generally excellent condition, this most desirable of post-war BSAs is offered with Gold Star Owners Club dating letter, assorted DVLA correspondence, sundry invoices, two expired MoT certificates, current MoT/tax, current Swansea V5C and copies of previous registration documents.
Activities
Contacts
  1. Ben Walker
    Specialist - Motorcycles
    Bonhams
    Work
    101 New Bond Street
    London, W1S 1SR
    United Kingdom
    Work +44 20 8963 2819
    FaxFax: +44 20 8963 2801