Author Topic: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles  (Read 3559 times)

Offline cardan

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #15 on: January 31, 2018, 11:36:01 AM »

And that photo was taken in the 1950s before a few more parts went missing!!

Offline chaterlea25

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #16 on: January 31, 2018, 08:09:38 PM »
Hi Leon,
Certainly a "Project"  ::)
Blackburne as far as I can figure out used the same head  on the front cylinder of the V twin on some of the singles, the singles need a curved inlet tube to match, The single and twin cylinders should be the same

A BSA long rod B33 piston is a good substitute, needing a little shortening on the skirt
I had to make a new split big end bush which was an interesting and time consuming exercise to fit the reground crank, bolted together with Austin 10 big end bolts  :o on the single engine pictured

John


Offline cardan

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #17 on: January 31, 2018, 09:47:49 PM »

I love projects!

I acquired this one many years ago from a (late) friend. He was asking around if anyone wanted a Blackburne twin, and although it sounded interesting I had enough stuff on my plate. Later I tripped over part of the frame in his shed. "What's this Chris?" "That's part of the Blackburne frame" "But it looks Australian-made?"

Now I've got a bit of an Australian-made thing going on...

We dug out the rest of it, and sure enough the Adelaide-made Victor Blackburne identity unfolded. So far as I can see there was only one 8 hp twin made, c1921, and it went to a guy called Lenny Brooks who was an active member of the MCC of South Australia. He rode it in club events, won a fuel economy trial, even raced it on Sellick's Beach.

The reason my friend had the bike is that he was disposing of the estate of an eccentric Adelaide collector/hoarder. He dismantled everything he had, and the story was that his wife used to wrap random bits in newspaper and throw them in the bin. One of the heads had gone missing, and while all the single and twin heads are similar, I can report that there are many subtly different versions!

Anyway, I now have a matching head, and most of the stuff needed to restore the bike, even a nice period 60 degree magneto. The motor was seized, but I've managed to free it up and get it apart. With luck I'll be able to re-use the cast iron pistons. The twin has a built-up crank with roller big ends. It's a nicely-made thing, and the flywheel is almost unbelievably huge.

Fun!

Leon

Offline cardan

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #18 on: January 31, 2018, 09:58:18 PM »

Oh let's give Lenny (Leonard L Brooks) a bit of a plug - he deserves it!

Note that he was working for J. N. Taylor in Adelaide, South Australia, in the early 1920s, and it was Taylor who built bikes under the "Victor" brand - usually with JAP engines, but also some Blackburne singles, and at least one 8 h.p. twin.

Leon


Offline chaterlea25

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #19 on: January 31, 2018, 10:58:21 PM »
 Hi Leon,
Quote
It's a nicely-made thing, and the flywheel is almost unbelievably huge.

Yes, They sure knew how to make a flywheel  ::)
The one on my 350ohv is a fraction of the weight

John

Offline cardan

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #20 on: February 01, 2018, 12:42:29 AM »

The term "bacon slicer" was sometimes used to describe the 250/350 ohv flywheel. The 8 hp side valve flywheel has nothing "bacon slicer" about it - all "mill stone"!!

If you wanted to combine the finesse of the 350 and the extra power of the twin, you could go for the 5-7 hp overhead valve fast tourist - quite a bike in 1924.

Leon

Offline cardan

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #21 on: February 01, 2018, 01:17:46 AM »
Massey Arran were at one time in residence in Alvechurch Road, West Heath, Birmingham.
I believe it was just after Triple H stopped production round about 1923/4. (of interest to me as I have a Triple H, but don't have a M-A).
One of the 'H's of Triple H, a Mr Hobbis stayed on to become Massey Arran's works manager.
Not sure when M-A folded, but evidently they had moved to Blackburn by then.
Info from the late Bob Currie VMCC Journal April 1970.

Hi Keith,

Such an interesting story! There's a similar version told in "The British Motorcycle Directory" by Bacon & Hallworth, but they refer to the Hobbis Bros. concern as "Triplette" - presumably a typo and it should say Triple H? According to this version of the story, E. J. Massey left M-A some time during 1922, and founded the Massey company in Birmingham in January 1923.

M-A continued on through the Triple H connection, but faded away in 1924.

The Massey name (through the Birmingham connection) is said to have been acquired by R. L Jepson in 1924, and bikes produced "until the end of the decade". I doubt this; or if they did produce Massey bikes in the late 1920s it must have been in very small numbers. I had a quick look: no mention of Massey motorcycles at the 1927 or 1928 Show (1928 or 1929 models), just a rather sad advert for wheel repairs. And some "new motor cycle frames". I bet they had plans for those that didn't quite work out.

What year do you think the Massey is TPP?

Cheers

Leon

Offline chaterlea25

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #22 on: February 03, 2018, 09:35:14 PM »
Hi Leon,
The ohv V twins are a thing of beauty,
I have never see one in the metal though, I met a Man from Austria who said there is one in a Museum over there
I seem to remember reading about some make of motorcycle using one for the TT in the mid 20's ???

I had saved a couple of pics of Blackburne ohv V twin (Tomtit) and 3 cyl radial (Thrush) engines intended for light aircraft. The engines intended for aero use have steel cylinders
There's some video on You tube of a Chater Lea  cycle car with a v twin Blackburne aero engine fitted
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dithZaqwVNg

John

Offline The Pheasant Plucker

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #23 on: February 19, 2018, 09:10:00 AM »
Regarding your Victor Blackburne, try contacting Martin Shelley the VMCC Blackburne marque specialist, he has a wealth of knowledge on the subject of Blackburnes

Offline vintage_keith

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #24 on: March 04, 2018, 06:47:29 PM »
Hi Leon
I'm not totally confident on dates, but I think I remember reading in Tragatsch many years back, that Triple H came first, with the 250cc Morris engine. Although I got my bike without any documents/history, I've always thought of it as 1922.
At some point, 1 x Hobbis moved to Massey Arran. I think the story went that the other Hobbis and Horrell formed 'Triplette' using a different proprietary engine of 175cc. I don't think I've seen a picture of a Triplette, no idea if it looks similar to my bike (mine's the bottom version in the attachment). If M-A took over HHH premises, I don't know where the Triplette was assembled.
Keith

Offline cardan

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #25 on: March 04, 2018, 09:43:50 PM »

Fascinating! The front fork on the Triple H bikes in the advert is the "Maplestone". These were designed and built in Melbourne, Australia before WW1 by A. N. (Norm) Maplestone. After the war he took the design to the UK where it was at first built by Precision Gauges Ltd in Birmingham as the "Maplestone Cantilever Fork". The design was sold to Webb c1922 and was the basis of their very successful fork.

Does your bike have the Maplestone fork Keith? A little bit of history.

Cheers

Leon


Offline vintage_keith

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #26 on: March 13, 2018, 10:40:04 PM »
It sure does! It may have come to me with:
the wrong engine
the wrong gearbox
incorrect wheels
but it did have Maplestone front forks.
I've only ever seen one other set sold on ebay about 18 months back, that were for a larger bike.
The guy selling had never heard of Maplestone.
More info/pics at www.http://vinvetmotorcycle.simplesite.com/432421719
I knew it was an Ozzy design, but I'd no idea they were being made pre WW1.
Cheers Keith

Offline 33d6

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #27 on: March 14, 2018, 06:36:33 AM »
Whilst serving in WWI Norm Maplestone met and married the daughter of FE Baker, the manufacturer of Precision engines pre WWI, the Beardmore Precision afterwards and finally the Villiers powered Baker.
Mr Maplestone came home with new wife plus a couple of Barr & Stroud sleeve valve engines. JFerg can give chapter and verse on this and I believe has even been bailed up by a Maplestone descendant trying to do a family history.
It's all go in the early motorcycle world isn't it. Far more fun than just riding a clean, reliable and utterly boring modern bike that you can only polish.

Cheers,

Offline chris mac

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Re: Massey & Massey Arran motorcycles
« Reply #28 on: April 13, 2018, 11:08:31 PM »
E.J.Massey left Massey Arran and went to F.J.Coopers where they produced the Massey. Early in 1924 he sold out to R.L.Jepson.  He was then briefly with H.R.D in late 1924 and early 1925