Tuesday, 28 April 2015

35th Carole Nash International Classic MotorCycle Show

1929 Grindley Peerless JAP
Brooklands "Hundred Model"

(ink sketch)

I was overjoyed to see this machine at Stafford. I have seen the Original Bill Lacey Grindlay Peerless at Brooklands, but this original condition "Hundred Model" brings a true smile to my face. This particular machine is one of 2 survivors of a run of 5 machines built by Grindlay Peerless factory to celebrate Bill Lacey breaking the hour record for a sub 500cc machine. Bill achieved 103.3 miles in one hour on the Grindlay Peerless JAP, an incredible feet of endurance riding on such an early machine. Bill went on to dominate at Brooklands throughout 1928 finishing on the podium at every meeting. Bill broke his own record again in 1929 increasing his distance to 105.25mph.
After such success Grindlay Peerles produced the edition of 5 replica machines which came with a certificate to prove that Bill Lacey the motorcycle had lapped Brooklands at 100mph.
The replicas had nickel plated frames and this example has Brampton forks. The replicas came with twin port heads like the original Lacey machine. It was later found by a few manufacturers that single ports went better, and so this one was changed over to a single port by Barragwanath motors in 1931. In the 1936 an Albion 4 speed gearbox and an uprated front brake were fitted expressly for the 1936 Amateur TT race, where it finished half way down the field.
This factory replica has not only been raced at Brooklands but also at the TT and was used as a road bike in the early 50's. After this it was left to rest until the current owner bought it in the early 2000's.
Seeing motorcycles like this is such a great experience as you can see the history not only in it's original condition but by the changes from the original factory specification.

1921 Martinsyde, Quick Six Special

(ink sketch)

I've seen this bike on a few occasions but it's never stayed still long enough for me to get it down on paper. This is a genuine special that was built and developed by Chris Tait from the mid 30's to the mid 50's. At the Brighton Speed Trial in 1956 the special achieved 103mph. 

The Quick Six Special has been lovingly restored and campaigned by Rick Parkington, not only is he a writer for Classic Bike and a great knowledge on 20's motorcycles he also writes a great blog:

Rick Parkingtons Classic Bike Workshop

1935 Velocette KTT MkV

(ink sketch)

Velocette engines are always a joy to sketch, the designs always give you plenty to work with. It's even better when the engine is in an ex TT motorcycle. 

A. Bradley a racer from New Zealand was equipped with this KTT by the Veloce factory for the 1935 Isle of Man TT. The fact that he was provided with a brand new factory machine must have meant that he was a well respected racer. Unfortunately Bradley crashed in practice and never rode in the main race. From here the motorcycles history is a bit of a mystery. 

A. Bradley at the 1935 TT

The current owner has done some research and has no concrete evidence, but suggested that there were two possible directions for it's story. "The most likely scenario came from a contact in NZ who suggested that the bike was returned to Veloce for repair and subsequently sold on but I have not found any documentation to support this theory. It was also suggested that the bike was quite probably still owned by Veloce.  From the works records it is clear that only one Mk V was sent to NZ, not this one."

The next race appearance known for the KTT was in 1948 when John Cansfield of Scunthorpe raced it. In the late 40s Cansfield sent the rigid KTT to McCandless in Belfast for a swinging arm rear suspension conversion. At the time they used Jeep suspension units as thats what was available after the war. From then the bike stayed in Cansfield's workshop, where parts were slowly taken from the bike to be used on other machines. 

In 1978 Bob Dexter bought the bike from Cansfield as he saw that this historic machine was just going to end up being robbed of all it's parts. Bob managed to retrieve the original magneto and carburettor from people who had "borrowed" them, and so a piece of TT history was saved. The current owner bought it in December 2004 and it was finished in time for the 2006 season. It has been run regularly since.

c.1920 B.A.C. Pacing Motorcycle

 (ink sketch)

I've been fascinated by these pacing machines since seeing period photographs of men on motorcycles with ridiculously large engines. The main function of these machines was to pace cyclists on velodromes. When a cyclist rides directly behind a a large machine like this he takes advantage of the slipstream, which enables him to ride faster without succumbing to fatigue. The pace rider has an upright position with his feet pointing outward, held in place by two pins which went into the soles of his boots. This was to provide as much surface area as possible, in order to achieve an effective slipstream.

This particular example is a later machine which has a roller on the back which stopped the cyclist hitting the rear wheel of the pacer. Earlier machines a the birth of the sport didn't use rollers and the cyclists would often collide directly with the rear wheel of the motorcycle. The engine is a 2400cc V Twin made by B.A.C. (British Anazni Company). The reason for such large engines is that they had great torque and could run at a constant speed around the velodrome. Races between pacing pairs would be run, the cyclist would shout at the pacer to adjust his speed to enable them to go faster. In the 20's the pacers were running at a top speed of around 70mph with the cyclist in tow.

This pace motorcycle is currently for sale by The Motorcycle Factory in Belgium along with many other fine motorcycles. 

1983 Moto Martin CBX

(ink sketch)

I had a lot of fun drawing this machine, and it proved that more modern motorcycles can be just as complex as verteran machines. This CBX has a Martin frame built by Moto martin a French company who specialised in frames for sports bikes and even made kit cars and other motoring parts. Coupling this frame with a bored out engine to 1300cc, carbon fibre wheels and an R1 front end makes this quite the super bike. Especially seeing the original 1047cc engine produced 105bhp!

More Photos...

Milwaukee Flyer, Harley Davidson Custom
1926 / 2013 Flying Millyard,
Utilising 2 cylinders from a Pratt and Whitney radial aero engine, giving 5000cc!!
Harley Davidson Aermacchi
1972 replica AJS 7r
Mars Autocycle

Jumble Spots....

"Muc Off" 1952 D1 plunger Bantam frame with a British Anzani engine.
1926 16h Norton
c1926 Rex Acme
Bradshaw Engine
Victor Martin Speedway
Genuine PROFAB HL500,
With a Yam 125 tank??
1978 Montesa Enduro 360h
MAC Milano
Trojan Mini Motor
1924 N.U.T.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Bespoked 2015

Last Friday I finally made it along to the Bespoked Handmade Bicycle Show. This was my first bicycle show, and what a great show! There was a plethora of amazing hand made bicycles on display and some very interesting ideas in both engineering terms and design. If you didn't make it this year and like what you see I urge you to make sure you go in 2016.

Takhion Tsubasa Mass 2

(ink sketch)

This intriguing track bicycle is the result of a collaboration between Reginald Vorontsov the founder and designer of Takhion and Tsubaba Bicycles (Edvinas Vavilovas). Vorontsov designed racing bicycles which eliminated the use of the headset and put the handlebars directly onto the front forks. Not only did this reduce the weight it also made the riding position even more aerodynamic. These bikes pushed Russian cycling to win at the 1988 Olympics.

The Takhion Tsubasa Mass 2 is the latest incarnation and evolution of the Takhion design, using an all carbon fibre frame and fork set using "A unique carbon fibre layering system, where pieces of carbon fibre are meticulously layered over each other, resulting in  a strong seamless but incredibly light frame."

Due to the extreme riding position the rider doesn't exhort much pressure on the seat and so a minimal design has been employed.

The prototype frame T+T Mass 1 is to be auctioned off to raise funds for the Red Cross, to support the war orphans of the Ukrane. To bid on the frame or even make a small donation please go to the following link. The auction ends on 8th July:

Reginald Vorontsov is from the Ukraine and due to the conflict it has made the collaboration difficult, but Edvinas and Reginald feel that they can overcome this and prove that "man and man is more than war"

Ogre, DH-1R

(ink sketch)

Built by Eiji Konishi this is a beautifully crafted downhill bicycle, the main frame is made from sections of flat titanium, and the rear swinging arm is almost organic. To find out more about Eiji's amazing bicycles please go to his website: weld-one.com

More Photos...

GWG Innisfree