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Old man

Bultaco Astro.History lesson needed

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Can not find much on why we never got Astros in UK been after one for a while but price rise and sterling pounds got worse against the dollar because of brexit.The Astro and pursang 360 are they same engine.Biggest guestion thoe why no one bought one and put on road as local run around.Been on youtube only seen on race tracks no American seen on road with them.Thanks  

Edited by Old man

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The Astro would not have been much good as a road machine. Being made for short track racing the gearshift and rear brake are both on the right side. No front brake. The 250 had a compression of 12 to 1, not too practical for street use ! The 363 cc version was Pursang Mk 9 based, again 10 to 1 compression for that motor. Again, the chassis was short and light, designed especially for a single purpose, to race and win. However, the occasional one is for sale in France.  I check Le Bonne Coin occasionally and the listing changes quite often. I think a late Matador would suit you ?  I have 4 different Bultacos on the road. Each has its own characteristics, possibly my favourite being a 175 Lobito. John.

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From memory they came here in Canada ( I was working at a Bultaco dealership at the time ) as racing bike only like the Pursang. I remember having read a test ride, the title was : They come sideway in the crate! They sure look good on a short track the few times I saw them.

Guy

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Thanks for replys Seems like the Americans and Canadians got the most also not that many built looking at production list.Been trying to do research but not much on way of answers

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Only the Americans thought of including ‘speedway sliding’ into their race circuit programme to make it more hairy to watch! Remember the Trans American ( think thats near ) racers when they came over to race. Jumping the kerbs and sliding the corners....bit like Rossi dangling his leg in the way of anyone trying to pass him, just as difficult to pass a bike on its side still being accelerated into the corner!😳

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There were some Astro engines sold in the UK for 250 grasstrack bikes. I had one bought fromTig Perry of Antig engineering in Gloucester.

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Named after the USA Astrodome and American only import. 163 was 250 and 164 was 360. No front brake only rear disc brake...light it up and hang on, sideways here we come😳

 

Edited by section swept

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Found one on youtube called Bultaco Astro de Romero con juan Bulto looks Beautiful i really want one now so lets hope brexit gets done and sterling gets stronger more dollar for the pound 

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The first Astro was the model 90 and was based heavily on the model 86 pursang and was in fact called the pursang astro , followed by the 105 and 106 models (250 and 326) then the model 123.The first chequerboard astros were the 145 and 146  and fitted with a rear hurst airheart disc brake , the 163 and 164 were very similar  and the last astro was the 195  which had the option of either capacity if you swapped the complete top end as they had the 64mm stroke and if you went 250 had to use the 70mm bore size. The prices of astros has gone up by quite a bit so the most cost effective would be to get any mk5/6/7 pursang and fit it with astro bodywork , the differences would be minimal (frame bottom cradle is narrower on 145 onwards for example) Gilles escuyer in france has done this and its a real smart bike 

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Gents from what I have read ages ago and it may be incorrect.

First raced at the Houston Astrodome , known as a Pursang America,( 19 inch front wheel , rear disc brake , r h shift. other Pursangs in the USA to be known as Pursang Europa.

They were winners straight out of the box , a lightweight sensation, became known as the Astro. 

The artificial turf there laid for football became known as Astro Turf. 

Houston Astrodome now demolished, there are some one off Frontera’s , Metralla’s painted up similar, look terrific.

Point of discussion. The tank graphics , who was first. 

Bultaco  or Yamaha - yellow / black speedblock, discuss.

American called Royal Sherbert was involved.

Viva Bultaco

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I recall one Astro been imported into Ireland in the early mid 70's. The chap who rode it was in the Experts and was fairly handy. I last saw the bike in the mid 80's. It was used in Irish Grasstrack Events. Our version of Grasstrack Racing is using a reletively flat field or one with gentle slopes and hills, with sweeping bends etc.

Must make a few enquiries to see if it survived.

Edited by model80

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I was looking at the Pursang model list to get as close to the Astro and modify for road use a few years ago.I was a bit worried about what it would look like and what bad reactions copying a Astro.The cost always comes in the Astro so expensive the Pursang depends on model and condition.Then parts list to modify not cheap prices going up.But there seems no end for brexit and getting older so might gamble and and get a cheap non runner pursang as the cost to modify will bite less than buying a Astro 

Edited by Old man

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One difference between the Astros and Pursangs ( earlier ones anyway) is the Astros had a half a degree steeper steering head angle. This is why they slide better than the Pursangs.

 

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