Thursday, June 30, 2016

Post war club meet

Meeting up for a ride out in the early fifties. Difficult to positively identify many of the bikes in the line up. Second from left is unmistakably a Douglas. Well done if you can name the rest of them.

Bike meet fifties style. Looks like winter time from the
riding gear.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Barleycorn Engineering swan neck clip ons

Seeing as I've now put plenty of time and alas money in to my Gold Star I thought I might as well make it comfortable to ride too. The standard clip on position just doesn't suit me: could be something to do with being tall or I could just be getting older. I get on well with rear sets and flat bars but the Taylor Dow top yoke has no provision for regular handlebar clamps. A further bind with the Dow top yoke is that it comes with a different headlight bracket that pushes the clip ons further down the stanchions.

Swan neck clip ons seemed like a decent answer. I had a pair kicking around that I had bought at an autojumble some time back. I tried those on but the angle of them was cast down and though the position was raised from regular clip ons they still put a lot of weight on the wrists and at a bad angle. So, back to the drawing board. Fortune had it that I walked by the Barleycorn Engineering stand at the VMCC Shepton Mallett autojumble.

Barleycorn proprietor Simon was decent in taking the time to go through the options, even down to the possibility of a bespoke set of bars. In the end I opted for his regular swan neck clip ons. Made to order they arrived in a very swift five working days. They're a beautifully made piece of kit, stainless steel and the fabrication is spot on; they might seem expensive at first glance but when you hold and see a pair in the flesh they are good value.

The Barleycorn swan neck bars give a far more comfortable position. The lines of the bike are changed more than I expected by just swapping the bars but not necessarily for the worse, just different. The bars are very generous in width but I would rather have this to be able to accommodate all the handlebar furniture and then cut down to taste than have something too narrow to start with.

The long and the short of it is that the real value in these bars is the extra enjoyment that I can get from riding the Gold Star. The position is now one that I can live with all day rather than one which gives neck, wrist and back ache after half an hour.

Head on view of the Gold Star with Barleycorn swan necks
fitted. A tad wide for my taste but I'll cut them down later when
I am sure.

Rider's view. The bars sit about five inches higher than the
standard clip ons did and the angle is a lot flatter.

Very nicely made.

The Amal alloy levers are a period accessory.
They take up a lot more space than regular
levers. Good job the bars are wide. Still
some scope to narrow them down though.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Pioneer Run 1956 / 1957 pt2

Here are the rest of the bunch of photos from the 1956 and 1957 Pioneer Runs.

Royal Enfield v-twin again.

Not completely sure but that looks like the Kerry as
featured in the last post.

Easy ride on a Henderson.

Can't identify this machine.

1950s version of a go-pro.

Terrible blurry photo. Top of the class if you can identify
the bike...

1910 Scott 486cc

Looks like another Scott.

Wilkinson four combination.

Another Royal Enfield on Madeira Drive.

Far smaller crowds than nowadays.

Brighton sea front could be every bit as grim sixty years

Riding a veteran in the rain. At least there was less
traffic to contend with.

Well before helmet laws were put in place.

Friday, June 24, 2016

AJS side valve flat tanker

Great image of a late twenties AJS side valve flat tanker. baker boy cap, waistcoat, plus fours and clogs - proper riding gear!

Late twenties AJS side valve.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Military left overs in Myanmar

I passed through Myanmar (formerly Burma) for work recently and came across this ex War Department Chevrolet truck. The truck is still looked after and is pressed in to use as a shuttle bus to take tourists between Thanwe Airport and a resort. There seems to be quite a few transportation remnants of the War floating around in Myanmar. I would love to spend some time there and discover more, must be some interesting bikes to be found!

Wartime Chevrolet truck. The Burma
AA badge is a nice touch.

The coach body seems to be a fairly
new addition and is really well
executed in hardwood. Great to see
that it still gives good service.

Another view of the front end of the Chevy.

A common sight in Myanmar is old wartime sand tracks put to use
as fencing. The Allies must have abandoned miles and miles of it
when they left.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Pioneer Run 1956 /1957 pt1

I recently came across a series of images from the Pioneer Run dating from 1956 / 57. Many of these machines were already 50 years old back then. Interesting how the accent of the Run was on really early machinery though the cut off date of 1914 was the same as it is today. I wonder how many of these bikes are still making the annual pilgrimage to Brighton?

There is a note on this image that says 1909 Motosacoche
but that is plainly wrong. The machine is far earlier, c1901
and is perhaps a Werner?

1904 Kerry. I believe this machine is still around and

Not too sure of the identity of this machine.

Beautiful Henderson 4.

Motosacoche circa 1909.

Victoria 1902 146cc

1904 BAT 482cc

Unidentified tricycle. De Dion is the obvious guess.

Rex fore-car 1903 550cc

Royal Enfield makes it to Madeira Drive.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Kreidler Junior J51 moped

Here's the sales flyer for the Kriedler J51 from round about 1955. A fine quality moped in its day from a firm that would go on to make some extremely fast fifties.

Kriedler J51 brochure front page.

Kriedler J51 brochure rear page.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Argson Electric Invalid Carriage

A bit different from the usual subject matter but somehow relevant. This device is an Argson electric invalid carriage and the image is dated 1940. When the petrol has all run out these babies will be in high demand from us retro heads!

Argson electric invalid carriage.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Yet more Gold Star fettling

A spot more fettling on the Gold Star of late. It's nearly there, didn't make the deadline of getting it sorted in time to ride to Dijon though. That was probably a Bullet dodged - I'd forgotten just how far Dijon is away and four days' ride on a 350cc cafe racer wouldn't have been a lot of fun. The bike seems good now, the only problem left is that the Newby belt drive conversion has upped the primary gearing. With the standard final drive sprockets in place I'm geared for Bonneville. I can hit 70mph in first but barely pull fourth. At least it's an easy fix. 

Monday, June 13, 2016

Another veteran Triumph

Great photo of a veteran Triumph circa 1912. The gent riding has got a bit of a Tyrolean vibe going on with his outfit. The fact that in most of these veteran photos the chaps are wearing hats leads me to believe that they must have ridden everywhere in the sub 15mph zone...

Veteran Triumph free hub model.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Douglas and Triumph on holiday

Well loaded up Douglas and Triumph enjoying life out on the road. Great how a suitcase is strapped to the back of the Douglas. 

Douglas and Triumph having an adventure.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Moto Legendes Dijon 2016 pt4

The final batch of pictures from Moto Legendes.

One of a trio of tastefully cafe racerised sixties BMWs.

This 1929 Model 19 Norton definitely has the
right stuff.

As does this TT model Triumph.

Beesa Gold Star / B34 bitsa has character.

Proper French eccentricity. Velosolex with knitted accessories.

Another view of the brilliant knitted Velosolex.

Can't be too clever when it gets hot!

Loved this period Italian modded Triumph Tiger 100.

Lovely little Gilette two stroke triple.

Such is the scene for pukka vintage race machinery at Dijon
that plenty of folks brings there bikes over from neighbouring
countries. This New Imperial was over from the UK.

Have to admit I don't know the marque but what
a peculiar motor. It's a two stroke and the carb
seems to feed through the crank. Could it be
disc valve? The oil compartment is built in to the
engine and the unit clamps on to the frame.

Cushman scooter is a rare sight in Europe.

Even rarer is a Japanese Rikuo. The Rikuo was a licensed
Harley copy.

Another view of the Rikuo.

Equally rare is this US export market Velocette Viper 21 Sports.

A trio of Aermacchis

Sweet Harley JD racer.

Heavily modded Motosacoche racing combo.

'Stovepipe' model Nimbus.

Dohc Moto Morini.

Nearside view of the Morini.

And the Morini in its full glory. Beautiful.

BMW R65 monkey bike!

Harley bitsa racer looked right.

Tatesfully modded Moto Morini 3.5.