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Author Topic: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.  (Read 2836 times)

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Offline Midschoolfool

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The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« on: July 20, 2021, 01:53 AM »
I know. I said I couldn't build any more. Nowhere, though, did I say that I would not break one down  :LolLolLolLol:

It's no secret that I only built my T1 Ruben because at that time I could not really afford a Barcode. I have a limit on what I will pay for old frames, especially if I am not going to ride them. And, I've been good and not gone over that limit. Not on a mid school frame. I nearly did recently, so make yourself a nice cup of tea and sit down because it's story time again.

Recently I tried to buy a Morales BTS. Mostly because I know they are quite rare, but also because they are Morales. Not Robbie Morales, but Bob Morales. TBH? I am probably in the correct place to say that name and you guys immediately know who I am talking about. Yeah, that Bob Morales. The one who rode with Bob Haro BITD, founder of Dyno, Kore and Morales. The model I tried to buy was the earlier flatland model. As far as I knew that was the last frame they made. I like it because it's absolutely ridiculous. You'll know I am into my tanks from the mid school. Back then heavier = better, end of story. Other than the Pork, which runs the BTS close, the BTS was easily one of the most "tankiest" frames you could get. And because of that I lusted over them, even if they were primarily designed for flatland.

OK, so what the hell do I mean when I said "tried to buy" a BTS. Well, I saw one on Ebay (it is still there, and probably will remain there) and the guy wanted ?450. lol. I messaged him pointing out it would need a full resto (tatty, very tatty) and he said he would take ?275 all in. Fair enough. Still a lot, but I know they are pretty scarce and I wanted one. So, I made the offer, he accepted it, and I paid. Immediately he sends me a refund. I questioned this, and he said that he did not want to pay Ebay fees. I was pretty pissed off at this because why the fook are you selling something on Ebay that you don't want to pay fees on? and that is when the fun started. It took four days for the money to go back into my account. He sent me his facebook details and for some stupid reason I spoke to him on there. He said he wanted me to pay by PP F&F. Yeah right, no way. Eventually he agreed to take G&S, and so I paid him *again*.

Immediately he refunds the money again, whining that they won't let him have the cash until he has shipped it and provided tracking. He then starts pressuring me to pay him by BACS, and which point I told him to swivel and moved on. It took 8 working days for me to get the cash back, meaning that any other good finds would have to be lost because I did not have the funds. Hilariously two days ago he messaged me after I had told him to swivel asking if I still wanted it  :LolLolLolLol:

I suppose the fact I have now blocked him gives him his answer. Annoyed, frustrated and a little gutted I moved on. Got onto my 2hip and have nearly cracked it out. However, I still wanted a Morales. Even though I know that I have no room for one.

Last night I was poking around on Ebay and it happened. I don't know how it happened, because I did not search for Morales (and haven't since because it just made me angry) but it just popped up in the suggested. This.





I knew instantly it was a Morales BTS. However, for some reason it was missing the peg mounts. That said, I knew it was definitely a Morales because no one else has ever been crazy enough to create an almost 8lb monstrosity with 2" tubes and 1" stays. I paused for a second because it was in Germany. Then I had a very quick thought and bought it. It was ?167, plus ?20 shipping. Some ?80 cheaper than the last one and in much better condition. The finish is not original, but that doesn't matter to me at all. I knew I had to act fast because of how rare they are, so yeah no messing around. What happened next nearly floored me  :LolLolLolLol:

I was so excited about the frame I did not realise it came with extras ! not just any extras either, but really lovely extras. Like these mint chrome Bully fork from a 2001 Bully.



A pair of Dragonfly Monsterbra bars.



And a headset. I don't think I have ever been so bloody excited before. I suppose what goes around comes around though huh?

As I said, I do not have room to put another bike. There is already an STA in the "work" area, and when the 2hip is done that will be in the work area too. Which sucks. However, this brings me back to the T1 Ruben I really don't want. Like I said, I only built it because I got it for ?130. Shipped. Which was really good. However, I now have a Barcode. So any love I had for it? is pretty much gone and all I really see now is a pile of really nice parts. Mostly NOS, or brand new. The paint on it is also totally screwed. Got ripped off, and it just flakes off something rotten.



You can see it on the drops. It was bad then, it is ten times worse now. Recently I wanted that sprocket for another build so I switched it out with a Haro nuke I have. It didn't go well. I ended up losing a ton of paint from the chainstay, as literally dropping the chain on it is enough to make it fall off. At which point I got really frustrated and it is now ruined paint wise. Given the time I put into that paint job (a week of hard slog) and the money (over ?80 for crap) I have no ambitions of painting it again. At all. In fact, it's going. It really does make me that angry.

So, I am going to strip it. The wheels are NOS, the tyres are awesome, plus I will use the cranks (SNAFU Mayweather, top end cranks) the gyro (Stolen Satellite) and etc. Not sure if I will use those Fly Tierra 2pc or the DF bars. We will see. Pedals (Ruben) and grips (T1) will be sold with the frame. I will also not be using the Bully fork on the Morales either. They are 10mm, and the wheel set I have on the Ruben is 14 F&R. I am going to use the fork on there (Conspiracy Hitman, NOS) instead. The Ruben also has a cheap stem on it. Firma. It was about ?12, as I wanted the stem on there for something else and did not have a spare. It also has new Springfields front and rear too.

The only parts I have bought are the following. I got this stem on clearance half price.



These grips for a fiver, again on clearance.



Two sets of these for 4 quid for both.



And finally, I got this. NOS, 7000 billet for a tenner.



BTW going back to the frame and how it differs. This was the failed model. It is not a flatland bike. Flatland was dying out in the very late 90s, so Morales designed the BTS MK2. Which was a street frame. However, they went out of business and most of them were sold to Dan's Comp in the USA, who rebadged them "Poverty BTS" and sold them off cheap.

Paint. I love the orange. I just, fooking love it. so far I have been pretty restrained when it comes to being completely loud, but this time I DGAF.  :LolLolLolLol:

There is some paint damage on it, and some grind rash (minor) on the left side drop. So, I will fix that and repaint it. Orange. Going with "Jam"



And lots of gold flake.



Oh and I have bought a set of NOS decals from Gary who runs the BMX museum too. He got them from Bob when Morales went tits up.


Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2021, 04:20 PM »
Parts in today.


Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2021, 03:40 PM »
Popped up into the loft yesterday. It was hot still, stupidly hot. I stripped down the Ruben when it was still very hot. That wasn't my smartest move tbh. Made up the bars.



Stem is lovely, not sure about the grips. Fitted the 30t to the SNAFUs.



Needs some cleaning. Also realised that gold totally doesn't work with orange parts. It looks like someone pissed on the parts and they faded. Thankfully I have plenty of black parts. Love the orange anno on the stem though.

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2021, 01:01 AM »
A tank needs tank wheels.




Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2021, 07:18 PM »
Rear hub ordered.




Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2021, 08:25 PM »
OK. The only pedals that can make everything cry at once. You, your wallet and your shins  :LolLolLolLol:

I had to. Especially when I read the weight "Plenty"  :LolLolLolLol:





I've been riding two sets of their Nano pedals for over three years and they are superb.

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2021, 04:38 PM »
Ordered some more parts. Wait for the disclaimer  :LolLolLolLol:

Firstly the long unflanged grips. Not mid school enough, not even close. As soon as I fitted them I realised they looked all wrong.



Much better.

So did the bars. I found a set of bars in the shed. Over sized, fat AF and nicely welded.





I then found out they are from a really terrible cheap bike. However, after some digging I found out that they are very popular for beach cruisers in the USA and sell for $70. So, I am beginning to wonder if they were just leftover stock or something weird that ended up in the hands of this crap company. I don't want to sound like a know all dick head but I know my parts and I know quality. All you have to do is pick something up. They are amazingly light for something so tanky, and I am pretty sure they are made from 4130. I have hi ten 2pc steel bars here (Vocal Neptune and Radio bars I used on the Fat Boy) and these weigh half. Even with the oversized tubes. Still, I didn't want to commit so I found another option. These are made for a trials bike, but have a 7" rise. Which is about right for mid school and they look very different, which is what this build will be all about.



Whether I will use them? it may literally come down to putting a few sets on and seeing how they look at the end. At least I don't have to paint them, so there's that. This is a very unusual frame, so I am trying to get unusual parts for it.  What I did get though was an Astroglide lower cable for the gyro.



Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2021, 08:03 PM »
Apparently the brake pads are all wrong. When you have wheels like that you have to have these  :LolLolLolLol:




Offline Chilli Rinse

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2021, 08:14 PM »
Liking the 2nd set of bars. Oddly cool  :coolsmiley:
Low end French does it for me ! 😂

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2021, 10:16 PM »
Yeah, there's something about them tbh. They were only ?15, so if I don't like them then  *shrug* really. I'll cut the bejesus out of them too  :LolLolLolLol:

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2021, 02:44 PM »
Pedals, if you can call them that, arrived today. So did the hub, which is so heavy it presses itself into the memory foam on my bed  :LolLolLolLol:



Bonus is it's LSD. Always nice. Thankfully my sprocket (12T) and lock ring (it was missing) fit lovely.


Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2021, 03:23 PM »
When you spend 10 minutes typing, press a combo on your keyboard and lose the fooking lot :(

OK, deep breath. Lots of parts came. Will get pics in a bit. Rims came, so I made a tool to measure the ERD from two old spokes and nipples. It turned out to be what I feared. You need very short spokes. I don't want to ask Avro to borrow his machine as after a lot of reading they only warranty the cutters (dear) with certain makes of spoke. That I can't get. After hours of pissing around I found some reasonably priced spokes in 160mm (the wheel calculated to 161, but you can + or - 1mm, preferably -. The way they sell spokes is like a crack dealer. In odd numbered packs so you spend ?15 more than you want to. Buggers. In the end I found then in packs of 6 in stainless (what I wanted) and ordered 8 packs. Total cost was 17 and a few pence. Good ! Now I just need to order orange nipples (lol) but I won't do that until I have the front hub and spokes sorted.

OK moving on. The seat came today. I carefully took it apart, and then even more carefully peeled off the black vinyl.



Then removed all of the glue.



And kept the old vinyl as a loose size guide/template.



I ordered my pig skin suede.



Was 4 quid. BTW the bars came, and I remembered where I had seen them before. KHE used to make all in one flatland bars called Swiss Miss.



Only difference I can see is that those are much straighter due to being flatland and more rise (8.6"). That said this isn't a flatland bike, so more reach and less height is bang on.

More pics of stuffs soon.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2021, 12:14 AM by Midschoolfool »

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2021, 03:32 PM »
OK bits in.



And I bought the tyres. Thankfully they were on sale for 20 quid each, not the 40 quid folding tyres usually cost. They are 1.85 too, which is what I wanted. last thing I wanted to do was put clown tyres on those rims it would have looked stupid.




Forgot pic of tyres FFS. That shows you how my day has been - mad. 6 separate deliveries, chasing the guy I bought the frame from, pissing around for hours working out and finding the spokes and etc.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2021, 12:17 AM by Midschoolfool »

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2021, 10:42 PM »
OK, got the tracking info for the frame and parts.



Kinda knew that would happen. Good thing I put money away  :LolLolLolLol:

That said I am pretty sure the bars and fork will rekindle me a few bob, so it's no biggy.

Offline Chilli Rinse

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2021, 12:01 AM »
I might be interested in the bars if the price is right ;)
Low end French does it for me ! 😂

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #15 on: July 30, 2021, 12:10 AM »
Which bars? The DF?

You'd be the second person to say that  :LolLolLolLol:

If he did actually send them (the auction was in broken English) then yeah, they'll probably go up for sale.

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #16 on: July 30, 2021, 01:11 PM »
Phoned PF. The "revised" part was nagging at me.

?73.69.

I asked him to explain why. "33 VAT...... ?12 our fee (both of which I expected) the rest import duty".

Nowhere anywhere does it explain that. That said I would be pissed, but I am not. Not at all.

Providing it does come with the bars and fork? yeah, I did very well.

Talking of the bars. I had a guy interested literally the day I bought them. I have just told him what I want, and I will be open I want 50 quid shipped. If he doesn't want them you have second call. TBH? I think that's pretty cheap. Kneesavers are worth a lot of coin now, with Haros going for 120 quid and more. These are better quality and overall better bars. Saw some Hoffmans make about 200 quid the other day.

I will let you know if he doesn't want them.

Offline Chilli Rinse

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #17 on: July 30, 2021, 03:43 PM »

Talking of the bars. I had a guy interested literally the day I bought them. I have just told him what I want, and I will be open I want 50 quid shipped. If he doesn't want them you have second call. TBH? I think that's pretty cheap. Kneesavers are worth a lot of coin now, with Haros going for 120 quid and more. These are better quality and overall better bars. Saw some Hoffmans make about 200 quid the other day.

I will let you know if he doesn't want them.

Cool 😎 I think that is a good price and would be a buyer. I still need to see what bars my Sjappi turns up with. I too have been walloped for 70 quid for vat and import duty. That 12 quid PF handling charge is expected but a f##king joke.
Low end French does it for me ! 😂

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #18 on: July 30, 2021, 05:00 PM »
I'll let you know dude. They'll be here Monday for sure as I just paid the fees.



Got a seat clamp ordered. And a post that looks like a friggin bean can  :LolLolLolLol:



Love how it's side mount like the old Perv and S&M posts.

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2021, 02:14 PM »
Spoke to the guy who asked about the bars first. He does want them. So they're sold sadly (well, once they arrive).

Some goodies came. Tyres, tubes, levers and contact adhesive.


Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2021, 03:40 PM »
Did I say this wouldn't be cheap? if I did then I really meant it  :LolLolLolLol:

I just fitted the levers to the bars. They look great. Unfortunately due to how acute they are a top gyro cable would be so long it would look completely stupid. So I got some knarps so when the time comes I can make them the perfect length.



I also had a sit down last night and thought about the cranks.



They are just too modern. Not just that, but they are pretty skinny. I think personally they would look a bit stupid on this bike, given everything is massive and over sized. I had a poke around, and tbh? what I would really like are JAD. That said, I would guess that 99 percent of the BMX community would too  :LolLolLolLol: so, A. There are none and B. If they were I would need to sell my bumhole for a year to pay for them  :LolLolLolLol:

I remember seeing these a few months back.



I remember them very well. They're chunky, polished lovely and include the entire BB set up I would need for this bike. What I am saying is by the time I bought yet another U.S cup and BB set I would be into it another 40 quid. This entire set up cost me 70. Which is pretty fantastic for period correct NOS cranks.





There is but one catch. You need to drill out the sprocket hole to 32mm. I checked the sprocket last night, and she can take it  :LolLolLolLol: I may have to send it to my buddy, or, spend 13 quid on a stepper bit and do it myself.  We'll see. I just reckon the big fat polished arms will look gorgeous with the polished sprocket and those pedals, which are also oversized and huge.

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #21 on: July 31, 2021, 04:57 PM »

Offline Chilli Rinse

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #22 on: August 01, 2021, 01:21 PM »
Spoke to the guy who asked about the bars first. He does want them. So they're sold sadly (well, once they arrive).

I have only just seen this.

No problem, I don't blame him to be honest. Thanks for the offer of second dib dobs though.
Low end French does it for me ! 😂

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #23 on: August 01, 2021, 03:22 PM »
I will keep you updated dude. I'm not going to chase him around.

So it seems I cocked up (just a little). I forgot when buying those alu cranks that the bike is going to be LHD. Uh oh. I could put the pedals on the wrong way, or I can take them apart and switch the bodies. You then use blue thread locker and job done.

Thankfully Superstar have a tutorial on YT. I have also ordered a 32mm step drill bit too, so I can drill out the sprocket. I will order 100 orange nipples on Tues. Am going home on Weds for a couple of weeks, will get stuck in when I get back. Whether I will paint the frame this year? IDK. It all depends on how the weather goes and etc. I want it done right like the 2hip, and that means lots of hard work and time. Not sure I have it in me, given the nightmares I've had this year with the S&M (crap paint, white is awful) and the T1 (we all remember that LOL).

If I can find the time to do it right I will. I'm currently at a record for bike restos. I usually do like, 2, but this year I've done 4.

Offline Midschoolfool

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Re: The orange tank. Morales BTS MK2.
« Reply #24 on: August 02, 2021, 05:44 PM »
Update. Cranks are made by FSA mid nineties. They share lots of characteristics with GT show cranks, Powerlite and FSA's own. Including the 6 spline.

Frame and parts arrived.



First place you check on one of these....



Mint. However, he was right when he said it needed repainting. Whoever bombed it did it quite well, only with 0 prep. So the chips and scratches were all left without even so much as a courtesy lick with some sandpaper. Meaning I need to do a bare metal job.

Not bothered tbh. Well worth putting the effort into this. I bought some spoke nipples in orange. Bloody hell they are expensive !



The bars sold BTW. Paid for.

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