by Mats Nyberg

OSSA fans 3


My name is Steve and I live outside of Washington, D.C. I currently have a 1971 Ossa Pioneer that I am restoring. I need a new gas tank for it. If any one has one let me know.
This bike is a rider so it does not have to be pristeen. When I was about 15 I bought a 125 Yamaha enduro with the money I made cuting lawns. I wanted a Maico 400 but could not afford one.
One day I was riding and met this guy with a Ossa pioneer he let me ride his bike and I was hooked. I alway's wanted one but but money was tight as I was saving for engineering school and had to make due with my Yamaha.
I modified it for trials and then for MX and actually did OK with it beating sevral rich guys with
Pentons. I wish I had a Ossa then I would have realy cleaned up.
In addtion to my Ossa I now have 5 Bultacos, 1 Cotton, 5 Greeves, 1 Benelli and 1 Ducati. I am looking for a Stilleto and a MAR in the NE USA

Steven Metz, Washington, D.C, USA

Dwight Rudder, 7 time ISDT/E medalist, 6 time class champion in the AMA Nat'l Enduro Series. I am now 44 years old. and the 1998 and now 99 Nat'lEnduro Sr. A champion.
When I was first starting out in enduros in 1971, Ossa was one of the most favored brands and lots of my friends rode them.
In 1973 I wanted to buy a SDR 175 but my dealer in Montgomery Al. couldn't locate one so I had to get a Penton instead. I now own a 1972 Ossa 250 Pioneer and it runs like a top. I love it. I live in the Jackson Ms, area now.
When I am not working , riding Nat'ls , or riding the Southern Enduro Riders Asso. events, I enjoy riding my vintage street and dirt bikes. I also fly my own WW1 replica Nieuport 16.

Dwight Rudder, Jackson Ms, USA.

Hi there!
My name is Keith Hovvels from Newcastle, England. I have visited your site a few times, trying to get parts for my 1973 OSSA PHANTOM MX.
I have had the bike for 3 years now, I race it in local twin shock & pre 1975 meetings in Scotland.
Through your links I managed to get a set of rear brake shoes from Alex Snoop in NEW YORK U.S.A. I got them with in a week of his Email!!
I had a lot of help with parts from Frank Thornton of M.X.M. formely M.X.A. in Newcastle.
Supplying one of his own graphic kits, works performance shocks, and vintage iron pipe as well as the mudgaurds.
Himself racing a 1973 CCM in the pre 75 series. I am looking forward to my next race in april.
Other bikes I own are HONDA CB 900 FA, and a 1968 TRIUMPH T120 R dirt track style.
So keep up the good work .

Keith Hovvels, Newcastle, England

I live in Galicia, in the NW of Spain. I work as Ingeneer in PSA Spain, cars and motorcycles are my hobbies.

I'm interested in spanish motorcycles since I was a boy. At that time, I read some interesting books about motorcycle repairing, like some books written by M. de Castro and published by Ceac in Barcelona.
These books where in a public library in my town and are dificult to find now. They contained a lot of information about Spanish motorcycles of the '60 and '70 (Bultaco, Montesa, Ossa, Derbi...)

At the age of 16, I repaired a 125-C Ossa (1963). It is a beautiful road bike, with the tank painted in red and white, the frame (tubular: it isn't the stamped frame 125, very common in Spain and called "negrilla") and the fenders in black, and the airbox in red.
The engine is the last evolution of the first Ossa: it is a square (54x54 mm) 125cc 2T, with 2 transfers, and a 22 mm Dell'Orto
carb. The gearbox have 3 speeds and the bike is in a good general condition.

Luis Lozano, Galicia, Spain

Leland loper here in snowy Billings Montana.
I have about 30 Ossas and Raced in the AHRMA series here in the States. I put about 35000 miles on my pickup chasing the +60 intermediate
motocross national championship and by golly I got it.
I met a lot of great old guys from around the nation. Terry Gates from GA was a frequent pit companion. Ossas make for a common bond.

Leland Loper email:

204 Leudinghaus Road
Chehalis WA 98532
phone:360 291 3524

Mon, 10 Dec 2001
Greetings from Canberra, the capital of Australia.

I just wanted to thank you for all the effort you have put into your Ossa website, it has given me great joy. I especially enjoyed the photos and articles from the magazines. Although it was not on the site,I recall that there is a 250 enduro comparison in the 1974 Petersens Motorcycle Guide, the stars of which are the Bully and the Ossa.
When I was 16 years old (1975)I was real keen on enduros, especially the Spanish bikes. The Husky was to expensive for me, and the Montessa King Scorpion was a bit tame, so it came down to the Bultaco Matador SD or the Ossa SDR, both at the same dealer. I bought the Bully, it had more goodies (ala enclosed chain) and was $100 or so cheaper than the Ossa, so represented better value. I have also had a Montessa 250 H enduro, and over the years met several other Bully and Monty owners, but can not recall ever seeing an Ossa other than trials bikes. In some respects I regret not having bought the Ossa, and still desire one to this day.

By coincidence, a few months ago, I came across an SDR that had broken down and spent the night at a local garage. I left a message in case the owner wanted to sell, but no response. My vague search for an SDR or Pioneer continues.

Thank you again, and good luck.

Scott Thompson, Canberra, Australia.

Man, you don't know what kind of inspiration that Stilletto gives!!
My 1st store bought(although slightly used) bike was a '71 Stilletto bought from Sandy's Cycles in Victoria, Tx.
30 years later, I've collected the carcass from the back of my Dad's barn, and stored the parts in an arid part of the state, away from the coast where it's been all this time.(yikes) As far as I can tell, all the parts are there except the front fender (trashed pretty early in life), and some idiot(me @15) tried to make a full-floater type brake, and cut a piece off of that (nickel plated?) plate on the left side(?) that has a slot that slides over a square piece (oh yeah, I cut that off,too) on the inside of the swing arm and keeps the backing plate from spinning when you hit the brakes. Yeah, yeah I know. I was 15 ok.

It was orange with white trim, and of course, I painted over it.(!!!) (Any suggestions on removing the blue metal flake lacquer?) One thing tho', although everything was the same as the 250, same frame, cases, even weight(230+)(!!), it had a 125 barrel and piston. With my very small amount of experience, that IRZ carb gave me fits. It was a running joke.

They called me Ossa Bill, and it was normal at any race to hear somebody remark "Ossa Bill's oiling his chain again", which meant that I'd left at least one of the 2 petcocks on, the cases had filled with fuel causing a hydraulic lock, and the bike was upside down on handlebars and seat(ala oiling a bicycle chain) sans spark plug with me draining the fuel out thru the spark plug hole. Before I put a Mikuni on it I think I pushed it more than I rode it. The gear ratio on the starter was so high, that anything even close to the right fuel/air ratio would start it, so I was way off on the IRZ setup.(found that carb, too).

As a 125 it was a dog, but it had the same flywheel as the 250(right side Femsa magneto) so it did well in sand which we had a lot of, and also that bike was born to slide. I've never had a bike so forgiving when it came to that. One time I was showing off for a girl on a long left-hand slider that was right by the pits on my home track. Went in too hot and got it way down with me even further down, but I never lost it.
Instead I cut this huge 270 degree circle and it stood up and stopped right by my trailer. Every face was a question mark. "Did he really mean to do that?"
They never found out.

Original Betors were swapped for laid down Konis at some point (I'll change that back), and the chrome on the forks (diameter of which seemed huge compared to the rice-burners of the time) is screwed. I'd really like to find a 250 barrel and piston. Also the rear Akront (sp?) rim is cracked straight across.

Well, that was it's 1st life. Any suggestions you might have would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again for the inspiration!

(Ossa)Bill Saylor, Round Rock, Texas, USA.

I just picked up a '74 250 Phantom which I hope to have up and running soon, this will be the first time I've ridden an OSSA  28 years.
In 72  I bought a used  71 Pioneer from a local enduro racer. The Pioneer had a Stiletto jug bored .020 over with a reed valve and an after market expansion chamber.
It was a good set-up you could run a scramble or an enduro one week and a MX the next.
In74 I lost the bike in garage fire and moved on to 250 CZ it was a good machine too but it was a single purpose bike you, couldn't lug it down and the carburetion was horrible, I'll take an OSSA any day for lugging power.

Jim Evans, New Columbus, Pennsylvania, USA.

Back in 1972-74, I started a company called "Canossa Motor Corp". We were the Ossa importer for Eastern Canada, while
Dave Wildman of Caribou Motorcycles in Vancouver was taking care of Western Canada.
Canossa set-up a small number of dealers in Ontario, Quebec and the Martime provinces and imported several containers of bikes and parts from the factory.
My sponsored rider Jimmy Fenwick did the Czecho, the Spanish and the U.S. ISDT's. Regrettably Jimmy drowned in a boating accident shortly afterwarts.
When Canossa Motors seized functioning, we sold the balance of our Ossa inventory (parts & tools) to another ISDT veteran, Helmet Classen in Hamilton, Ontario.

I do not have a motorcycle at this time and funds really do not allow me to indulge in my fantasy of owning  (again) one of the Ossa SDR's or MAR bikes that I originally imported. However, should anyone know of the location of one of these jewels, I'd love to hear from them.

Kindly contact:
Jerry Baljeu, Sarnia, Ontario, Canada.

Hi Mats!
Your site is absolutely fantastic. Amazing! I can't say enough.
My name is Tom Bailey. I live in Nyack, NY which is in the Hudson Valley just North of New York City., USA.
I learned to ride motorcycles at the age of 12 in 1960. At the age of 14 I began racing Ducatis and working at the local Duc shop. Around 1969 I started contributing pieces to some of the American motorcycle magazines based in New York City. In 1971 I became a staff writer and photographer for the Magnum Royal motorcycle magazines ( Supercycle and Performance Cycles). After a year or so I became road test editor and ultimately editor of those books. In 1975 I became editor of the Countrywide Publications Motorcycle Magazines (Cycle Illustrated and Dirt Cycle). After that I moved to Engledrum Publications and was in charge of all their motorcycle magazines ( which were published quarterly and were buyers guides and guides to new models etc.) Because we were located in New York and Yankee was located in Schenectady ( which is also in NY) we had basically unlimited access to the Ossa bikes -- in essence we did a test on one of their products in almost every issue.
Accordingly I have a bunch of road tests I wrote on Ossas and the Yankee and literally hundreds of original photos of the bikes from the magazine assignments. If you are interested in them for your site I would love to send some! I would need to know what size you want them etc, I also have the 16mm Yankee promo film on the MAR and Mick Andrews USA tour around 72 or so!

Tom Bailey, Nyack, NY, USA.

Mats - love your website
I used to own 14 Ossa Motorcycles including a Wildfire 230, a Yankee 500
and an MAR Plonker with only 600 miles on it. I bought my first OSSA in
1972 - a 250cc 5-speed Pioneer model that I still own today. Right now
the engine for this motorcycle is in a big box in the basement and I
need the workshop manual to get all the gears back in the right spots
and correctly shimmed. The factory manual will be a great help to
getting another Ossa back on the trails once again.
My friends used to say they liked to ride behind me on my DT-1 Yamaha or
Honda 305cc Scrambler in the days before I bought my Ossa - they always
said I could find such creative ways to crash on those bikes. After I
got the Ossa they said I wasn't nearly as much fun to ride with any more
- I got a lot faster and stopped falling down as much - they couldn't
keep up with me anymore!
I was also stopped once in Alabama, USA for doing 112 mph (180 kph) on
my 230cc Wildfire in a 85 kph zone - the Ossa had a full fairing and the
roadracing kit on it and I had it wide open as fast as it would go when
I went by the policeman. When they asked me what I thought I was doing I
told them I was seeing how fast my motorcycle would go - they let me off
with a warning saying "we think anyone crazy enough to go that fast on a
motorcycle that small deserves a break - but don't let us catch you
doing it again".
Jack Walter, Roswell, GA, USA

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