Alan S Bultacos

Bultaco - The Obsession Grows

This Bultaco Alpina is no garage queen. Nope, it lives in the house. That has been a full circle journey that took over 40 years.

I bought it from the long gone Sleger-Forbes dealership in NJ, November 1972. Trail riding, trials, enduros; we did it all in north Jersey and neighboring states. By winter '73 it was time for a refresh. Jersey winters are cold, too cold for garage work. I brought the Alpina into the house, a spare 10X10 room became the workshop. I ordered a bunch of specialized parts from Sammy Miller in the UK. In those pre-internet days that involved mailing letters, mimeographed lists, and British pounds in a process that took a couple of months.

After a few more years of riding, and another refresh, I parked the Alpina in the cellar and moved on to race cars and other diversions. Through a couple of moves the Alpina came along, as did many Bultaco parts acquired over the years. Finally, after 20 or so years, a move to Florida precluded taking it along. My best friend's son had reached an age and size whereby he was ready for a full size "yard bike". They got it running and used the heck out of it for the next four or five years before Dan outgrew it.

Returned to me during a Bike Week visit, I determined to restore it for its 25th anniversary. As you can see, it came out pretty well. Another house move a couple of years later resulted in a house with a spare room, now converted into the Bultaco museum. That's multiple Bultacos.

Back in the day I'd had a few pass through my hands, though none stuck like the Alpina. Somehow, restoring it reignited the Bultaco fire. Over the past fifteen years, I have added five more: a 1971 European spec Metralla, a rare Sammy Miller High-Boy tramed Sherpa T, 1976 Matador Mk9 (my latest restoration project), and another as yet undisclosed Bultaco powered bike.

There may well be more to come, but one thing is for sure, the Alpina is not going anywhere.

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