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johnnyjazz

Montesa 123! any advice? :)

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Hello friends,  this turned up locally as a barn find. Ad says its all original, hasn't run since late 70s but turns over, original docs, manual, tool kit etc.

He wants $1k for it (obo)... Is it worth investigating further?  with a TY resto i attempted, parts were plentiful online and i wonder if this is the case for a euro 70s bike too or if it would be more of a headache than its worth. - isnt there a montesa with a wierd size front wheel that you cant get any more?  is that this bike?

How does it look to you Montesa experts?  And..is the 123 as sound an investment as the 247 or 349- or does none of that matter?

Any advice appreciated from a novice!  with very best regards and thanks in advance, Johnny

 

montesa 1.jpg

montesa 2.jpg

Edited by johnnyjazz

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It seems to be very complete and in original condition. Not difficult to restore, except the wheels, whose rims are in bad condition.

The problem with those bikes is the wheels. 17 inches the rear one and 20 for the front. Unusual measures nowadays to find a suitable tire.

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Looks very original even got the toolbox! Kickstart mechanism was a little fragile if I remember corretly so just check it works as it should.

 

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My 74 had black frame, 17/20 inch whees and Pirelli tyres(crap!)

Suspension was not good.

Bigger Montesas were better.

As far as I can remember 73´s had grey frame but the same wheel sizes🥴

I think some people replaced the rims for 18/21🤔and Dunlop tyres

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Hi ,  maby a good purchase , little  rusty , cylinders can have small rust holes ,  , carb ,prob  gummed up   ,tank , was it drained , ,seals engine need replaced , wheels  you can possibly replace  200 cota  , or keep original , and rebuild , ,, once and a while there on ebay for parts , montesa dealer Oregon state , he sells on ebay ,  I purchased  almost 1k parts , from this dealer ,, I have , 200 Cota , Rickman montesa vr73 , king scorpion , , my Rickman was ruffle same condition as 123 ,,, ,, montesa , is a , different road ,, say Yamaha or Honda ,, why  harder to find parts , more$$$ , and  more time to complet project ,, ,,  and ,,  you have a rare bike  CHEERS  ,, sincerely larry Seattle !,,,,,, best offer  

I

Edited by larry s. k.
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I had a 172 as a kid. Which was maybe better than the 123 in having 21”/18” wheels.

The looks of both the 123 and 172 are gorgeous.

The less good things I vaguely recall (it was about 1978...)...

- Brakes were pretty awful - had to take both wheels out and clean the drums after each wet ride.

- The kickstart sucked - weak and the slip out top kick bit was always slippery.

- Timing always seemed to slip. 

- Condensation on the magneto side after every trial.

- Used to get coked up pretty quickly.

But I was only 15-16 with no mechanical knowledge and I’m guessing Spanish bikes (then) def didn’t have the engineering of the TYs. Also suspect most of the above apply to any Spanish bike of the era.

And if a nice 172 came up now then I’d def be in the market!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The 1st Cota 123 was the biggest heap of ***** ever made, I've been scarred for life after my Dad bought me one at 12 yrs of age (brand new early '70s), even at this young age I knew there was something wrong with this bike, it was so gutless. Thank god he bought me a TY 175 when they were released, but I've still got the Mental Scars of that Cota 123. Beautiful looking bike for a collection not something to ride. 

PS: Not to mention that 20/17" wheel combo, welded clutch and front brake lever mounts to the bars,no chain tensioner and not enough power to pull the skin off a rice pudding. Awful, awful.

Edited by fourex
PS added.
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Thank you all again so much for the input! just what i needed to hear.  Appreciate the advice and guidance and i learn SO much here from your experiences and willingness to share. As always, time spent on reconnaissance is seldom wasted! There is also a Honda TL250 going locally...bit more $$ but probably a sounder investment and possibly easier to get parts for! 

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If you want something to look at then Montesa...but to not go wrong Honda.

it’s possibly why I now have a 4RT :)

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I never experienced that problem with it jumping out of 2nd gear, probably because I couldn't wind it up to the point of needing 2nd plus I was only 12. Can't help myself here,I'm sorry, found some pics of a young fourex riding his new 123 around the back yard the day it arrived plus some pics from my 1st Trial on the same bike. I think I looked p****d off because I didn't like having photos taken as a kid, I don't think I'd realised at that time what a dud of a bike I had. But it's some pics of a brand new Cota 123. See smiley face once on a TY 175.

 

BIDDADDABA RIDERS BRIEFING 1974.jpg

IMG_0003_NEW.jpg

BIDDADDABA EARLY 1974_0001.jpg

BIDDADDABA EARLY 1974.jpg

1976 QLD TITLES GOLD COAST_0003.jpg

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Those old photos are fantastic fourex. It's exactly how I remember trials from the time and one of the locations looks quite familiar.

That kid in the last photo sitting backwards talking to you looks familiar.

Also no wonder so many old bikes have broken stand mounts. Look at you two sitting on the bikes on their stands. One friend of mine was a bit small for his TY250 in 1974 and had to have it on the stand to be able to start it. Luckily for him the stand was on the left on the A model.

Your TY175B looks a lot like mine did, even where the top shockie mount was moved to and the black fork boots. Were they konis too?

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Awesome Pics Fourex, love the vibe of yesteryear! I shall indeed pass on the 123.  Thanks for all the input. :) 

Edited by johnnyjazz

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