Author Topic: Norton Electra  (Read 469 times)

Offline ramwing7

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 9
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Norton Electra
« on: September 02, 2020, 09:40:02 PM »
I've just become the proud (I guess)owner of a 1963 Norton Electra.  It looks complete, but is missing the center stand.
Anybody know where I might get one of those or what other Norton models the part might cross reference with?
Thanks.

Offline R

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1089
  • Karma: +23/-9
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2020, 11:42:36 PM »
I understand the Electra is based on the cycleparts of the James/Francis Barnett range,
so the stand is likely to be common to the Navigator/Electra/Jubilee . (?)

I had a FB in my yoof, and it had a cobbled up centrestand made from what looked like small bore waterpipe !
Quite well done and easy to use, but I don't think it was oem ?
I've never seen mention of a supplier of them, and what happened to all the original ones taken off by would-be
cafe racers has always puzzled me ...

All I can suggest is you take a tape measure to bike shows, and discretely take some measurements.
And keep a beady eye out at car boot sales.
Good Luck.

Pic selected at random

Offline R

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1089
  • Karma: +23/-9
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2020, 11:57:53 PM »
For a moment, I thought I was going to have to eat my words.
But then realised that Enfields now make an Electra model.

https://www.ebay.com/p/24029028322

Maybe you could adapt something suitable ?

Offline 33d6

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 811
  • Karma: +25/-2
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2020, 01:38:40 AM »
Frank Westwoth, editor of Real Classic magazine is playing with an Electra at this moment. I'd suggest contacting him and asking for advice and a photo or two.

Cheers,

Offline Rex

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1207
  • Karma: +11/-68
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2020, 08:35:11 AM »
Which you can do very easily by joining the RealClassic FB group, where he often posts.
No expert on Electras, but I doubt they share much of anything with any Fanny-Bee. That was one of the criticisms of the Jubilee, that they had weak lightweight Fanny-Bee forks so I would think AMC had moved on from the parts bin special when they developed the Electra some years later. A smart looking bike but too small engine-wise for it's intended market of the US.

Offline 33d6

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 811
  • Karma: +25/-2
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2020, 09:48:58 AM »
I can see the front down tube is still Fanny Bee Cruiser and I think so is the rest of the basic frame. If I remember correctly the ordinal F-B had a sort of two stage centre stand that let you bring the stand down to the ground and then with a further push on the lever it lifted the bike up. Being made of the usual AMC pressed tin they didnít last long.
By the look of it they upgraded the stand for the Electra. Given the AMC mindset at the time that probably means upgrading from nasty and useless to very nearly sometimes usable. As you can gather, I donít have a lot of time for the later AMC products although people now say they are much improved with modern electronics. Still fugly though.

Offline iansoady

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 576
  • Karma: +6/-1
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2020, 12:22:51 PM »
I have a vague hankering for one of these (no accounting for taste) so if you decide it's not for you I may be interested. The combination of Fanny-B and Norton parts will complement my ES2 and Cruiser 75......

Oh, by the way, if you join the Norton Owners' Club (which I recommend) there is quite a lively lightweight section.
Ian
1952 Norton ES21955
Francis Barnett Cruiser 75

Offline john.k

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 426
  • Karma: +3/-0
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2020, 10:07:53 PM »
The front forks and wheel are in fact ,Short Roadholders,with the internal rod damping and the Electra was a good source of front end spares for the bigger twins ......the many points of disaster built in to the small twins meant they more often broke unrepairably ,rather than crashed at terminal velocity ,as a Dominator or a  650SS might be expected to do.............Incidentally ,I suspect Herby Hopwood cribbed the unusual head design from the abortive Indian 249 model ,very similar IMHO............The gearbox is prone to seizure if an owner is careless in checking the oil ,seized bushes turning in the case and often cracking it.

Offline R

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1089
  • Karma: +23/-9
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2020, 11:37:39 PM »
Incidentally ,I suspect Herby Hopwood cribbed the unusual head design from the abortive Indian 249 model ,very similar IMHO

Not really, the Indian 249 has some of the rocker gear really hanging out.
http://www.themotorcyclemuseum.com/images/bikes/49indian-249scout/49indian249-Scout-1080.jpg
Where the Electra is looking like a smaller version sorta of the dominator, but with alloy covers over it.
The pipes in both are poked into the head close up to the valves though, saves head soaking the heads some ....

Sorted out, the 249 is quite a capable little bike.
There was one here at a rally, with twin carbs on it, reliable ignition and all well lubed.
It was a real flyer.
(A lot of early 249's were sold with no grease in the rear hub !)
(whomever wrote that contract should have mentioned grease)
We diverge.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2020, 11:43:23 PM by R »

Offline mini-me

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 997
  • Karma: +18/-24
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2020, 08:33:56 PM »
the Jubilees and Navigators were pretty poor bikes.

I remember back in the 1960s riding  my bike towards Staines, and spotted a pair of Norton Jubilee forks and wheel just lying inthe road,odd, i thought, looking back it it, turned my head to see a group of people around some poor sod lying in the road near a forkless Jubilee, bloody  Francis Barnett frame had snapped behind the steering head.  You can imagine the result. Nothing would persuade me to put a leg over one after that, and when in the trade would neither sell one, or work on one.

Offline R

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1089
  • Karma: +23/-9
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2020, 10:07:21 PM »
A lot of lugged frames were capable of doing that.
And that was much of the British Bike industry, plus others !!
There is a reason that all welded frames were eagerly adopted.

You recall the Triumph that won a GP with the frame tube snapped off into the headlug,
he rode it (very gingerly?) to the finish. And won !  Was it  Ernie Lyons ?

Modern bikes are not entirely immune from that either.
If it hits something more solid than it is...
https://media.malaymail.com/uploads/articles/2020/2020-08/20200816motogpcrash.JPG
« Last Edit: September 05, 2020, 05:40:18 AM by R »

Offline mini-me

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 997
  • Karma: +18/-24
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2020, 08:49:11 AM »
Francis barnett /jubilee were not lugged frames though.

I have never had a lugged frame break

Offline 33d6

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 811
  • Karma: +25/-2
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2020, 10:03:00 AM »
My favourite ride is a circa 1930 Model 1 Excelsior. Very normal lugged frame. Oddly enough I have three spare frames of which two have broken the top frame tube immediately aft of the steering head. Excelsior knew how to make frames then. They won a TT in 1929. Canít remember whether Lightweight or Junior. So lugged frames do break even when the maker knows their job.

Offline Rex

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1207
  • Karma: +11/-68
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2020, 11:16:40 AM »

There is a reason that all welded frames were eagerly adopted.

Yep, usually speed and cheapness of assembly. Given the billions of lugged pushbike and bike frames produced over the decades I would think incidents of frame breakage is very low.
When it does it always seems to be the tubing near the lug rather than the lug itself, so if the tubing is at fault (either through manufacturing faults, wrong spec tube or the frame builder overheating the tube)  it would happen regardless of being a lugged or welded frame.

Offline R

  • Advanced Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1089
  • Karma: +23/-9
    • View Profile
Re: Norton Electra
« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2020, 04:06:46 PM »
I have never had a lugged frame break

Your bikes must have led a sheltered life !
Rough roads soon sorted the tough from the fragile. ?

Advice from an expert on how to strengthen a Norton frame
And newly cast lugs are available to repair the actual lug there, I see.
Which I am going to resort to, I think ...