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Messages - cardan

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Identify these bikes! / Re: Engine & Gearbox  ??
« on: March 02, 2009, 11:58:00 AM »
Thanks for the offer Rich - any info appreciated. Here is my "project" as it stands at the moment:

Identify these bikes! / Re: Engine & Gearbox  ??
« on: March 01, 2009, 10:31:36 PM »
Annice at the VMCC library kindly looked at the Norton records for me. They start at engine number 4200 in November 1922 - so it looks like Bob's engine 2580 comes sometime earlier - probably 1921. I can't add anything about the BA prefix.

My engine 4812 left the factory in February 1923, fitted to a "Model 2" frame number 7214. A model 2 is a somewhat "colonial" version of the home market model 16H, which is fitting if it was sent to Australia.

Dating my frame 3007 is still a problem. Annice tells me engine 4200 left the factory in frame 42975, but that would be a strange number for that date. I'll have to do more research. Perhaps if someone is visiting the VMCC library they can study the first book of records and fill us in on early Norton Numbers!



Identify these bikes! / Re: Engine & Gearbox  ??
« on: February 18, 2009, 11:59:29 PM »
Thanks for that - I have emailed Annice and will let you know how I go.

Regarding numbering, I'm not sure that Norton did actually begin again after the war. Certainly the 20xxx used for 1920 engine numbers disappeared, but I don't know the first number of the new series! It may have been close to a match for the frame number. The motor I found for my bike is 4812, which I suspect is around 1922, and the motor in this thread is 2580. From the scant survivors, it seems likely that Norton frames were numbered sequentially from "the beginning" - that 3007 is an early 1920s frame number is a reminder that Norton were a very small manufacturer in the early days. Bob Holliday suggest fewer than 100 machines were built in 12 months in the early days of WW1. I'd love to hear the story of early Norton numbers from someone who really knows!!

Identify these bikes! / Re: Engine & Gearbox  ??
« on: February 14, 2009, 11:36:27 PM »
I have some Sturmey Archer data collected by the Raleigh Club some years back that gives CS50000 as the highest number for 1921 and CS70000 as the highest number for 1922, which puts your gearbox somewhere in the early part of 1922 - but they don't claim accuracy to better than about half a year. There may be more exact lists somewhere, for both the Norton engine and the Sturmey gearbox, but it is certainly possible they both came from the same bike. Close enough anyway. Now just find a frame. And forks. And wheels. And... it's getting tricky these days, but not yet impossible.

I will have to check with the VMCC re their Norton lists. I asked years ago (were the lists held by a library then?) and was told frame number 3007 was before the lists started. Any suggestions welcome.


Identify these bikes! / Re: Engine & Gearbox  ??
« on: February 14, 2009, 09:34:02 AM »
I'm not sure I can give full answers, but let me have a go anyway.
Norton engine numbers went a bit funny during the years 1915-1920 when they used the year as the first two digits of the engine number: so 15xxx is a 1915 engine, 20xxx is 1920 etc. Norton seem to have given this scheme up c1921 and gone back to "ordinary" numbers. 2580 is probably a c1921 number - the detail of the motor looks about right for this date. My best guess at the date of my 79x100 no. 42xx is c1922. That said I am unfamiliar withe the BA prefix. Can anyone accurately date Norton motors from the very early 1920s? How about frame numbers - my model 17C is frame number 3007. Any ideas?
The B&B carb looks good for Norton.
The Sturmey Archer CS gearbox can be dated from its serial number, which is stamped around the outside of the curved section and will start with CS. It could have started life on the Model 1 (Big Four) Norton.
The gearbox will be Douglas, but is slightly unusual as it is the kick-start version. The people over at are friendly and knowledgeable about such things.


Identify these bikes! / Re: unknown engine
« on: February 04, 2009, 09:31:23 PM »
It certainly could be, but wouldn't fully-enclosed overhead valves be a bit on the elaborate - and expensive - side for a mower? I plead almost total ignorance of mower technology!

Identify these bikes! / Re: unknown engine
« on: February 04, 2009, 12:47:46 AM »
Nicely made, isn't it? This alone probably suggests motorcycle rather than industrial application. I suppose it sits in the frame (longitudinally, like a little shaft drive 250 BMW) on the "wings" on the crankcase, but who knows how it is held in!

The enclosed push rods and valve gear (I assume there's a top cover missing) suggest 1930s, as does oil-in-sump and coil ignition (I think I see a set of ponts on the front of the crankcase).

So we're looking for an in-line-engined, overhead valve, probably shaft drive motorcycle from the 1930s. It would have to be continental! Can we have another clue? What country is the motor in at present?

A vaguely similar (but probably earlier) motor was discussed in an earlier thread . The people involved in KG/Cito and Stock must have moved on to somewhere, and with "in line" ideas might have been involved with a motor like this. Franz Gnadig, for example, apparently went on to build his own 350 cc ohv machines, and was involved with Kuhne and Diamant.


Identify these bikes! / Re: Any ideas?
« on: January 03, 2009, 10:23:40 AM »
There are even more photos in the original thread - almost exactly one year ago!

Nigel have you considered re-naming the threads with the make/model of bike once a it has been identified? It would make it easier to go back and extract information from old posts.


Identify these bikes! / Re: Any ideas?
« on: December 21, 2008, 11:34:07 AM »
Burman gearbox might also help narrow it down...

Identify these bikes! / Re: What is this bike?
« on: December 21, 2008, 11:30:53 AM »
Yes, the machine is Rex, identifiable by the front axle sliding between the parallel tubes. According to Jamie Dee (writing in "Old Bike" No 9, Spring 1994 - try eBay if you don't have the 32 issues,  packed with still-useful stuff), this fork was replaced in 1909, so I suspect this one is 1907 or 1908. The difference between the two is that for 1908 the saddle height was lowered by dropping the top frame tube. Now I fancy I can glimpse the rear stays heading up to join the top tube somewhere in front of the saddle position, so maybe 1908. If that lad would just step to one side...

The bike seems to be the 3 1/2 h.p. (500 cc) single: there was also a V-twin.


Identify these bikes! / Re: Shakey Flat-tanker
« on: November 28, 2008, 09:53:41 PM »
Hi Rich,
I looks to be a BSA, and the combination of flat tank and large front brake probably dates it around 1927-28. Something like this one:

Identify these bikes! / Re: Pre-WWI bike?
« on: November 19, 2008, 11:38:52 AM »
Yes, the bike is a 3 1/2 h.p. (500 cc) Quadrant. 1911 adverts show an almost identical bike, except that the hand oil pump in the front of the tank is angled - unlike the vertical one in the photo. I think we can say confidently 1910-11 as the open-magnet Bosch magneto was replaced by the waterproof version for 1912.


Identify these bikes! / Re: Pre-WWI bike?
« on: September 12, 2008, 04:23:23 AM »
It could easily be a Quadrant of around 1910 - the front fork is not unlike the setup on early Quadrants, and the flat-top timing chest and magneto behind the engine is similar to later Quadrants. Maybe someone has a picture of a Quadrant from this period to compare?


Identify these bikes! / Re: unknown motorcycle engine
« on: November 03, 2008, 09:57:32 PM »
Fascinating. Here is a picture of the Aussi Also two stroke:
Obviously the Germans had a bit of thing for motors of this layout. I can only assume that who-ever built it built both two strokes (like this one) and four strokes (thus the "timing chest"). Perhaps there is an expert on these things out there somewhere?
I doubt Cito were ever imported into Australia by an agent - it's likely that the bike was brought out by an individual, perhaps when immigrating. The photo comes from the family album of a friend of my wife, and was apparently taken in Australia.

Identify these bikes! / Re: unknown motorcycle engine
« on: November 03, 2008, 02:02:38 PM »
I was thinking something like Cito or KG - built in former East Germany I think, so Czech Republic sounds OK. The motor seems to have a "timing chest" between the magneto and the crankcase - just the sort of place that you might expect to find timing gears and cams in a four stroke. There's even a plate on top where the tappets might mount. Cito/KG had valves at the front. Many two strokes used magnetos driven directly off the end of the crank, but this one is not on the same axis as the crank. In a four stroke it is geared down 2:1 and so is offset from the crank.

The reason I'm interested is that there was an unsuccessful Australian bike of the early 1920s called the "Aussi Also" (witty name if you know a little French and some Australian slang). The two stroke Aussi Also was a very similar layout to this engine (shaft drive, magneto in front), and was said to be a two stroke built from a four stroke. The reason it never ran properly was said to be lack of crank case compression, as you might expect from this type of conversion. Of course it has always been thought that the (bad) conversion was done in Australia, but I wonder if this engine tells us differently?

See if you can get the owner to take of the magneto and "timing cover" off, and show us what is inside.

I'll attach a photo of a Cito, taken here in Australia of all places.


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