about-us-sump-magazine

 

▲ We try not to feature too many Brough Superiors on Sump. It's not inverted snobbery, mind. And we've certainly got nothing against them. It's just that for the average biker, Broughs are pretty unattainable hardware, so we'd rather feature more everyday/everyman (or everywoman) machines. However, you have to follow the news where you can, and we feel that this motorcycle is worth a few moments of our precious time—and maybe yours too. It's the handiwork of Ewan Cameron of Cameron Engineering, one of the world's top—if not the top—JAP engine specialists. The idea was to recreate Noel Pope's supercharged Brough Superior which set the solo motorcycle lap record at Brooklands on 4th July 1939. The average speed was 124.51mph. The engine is a 1,000cc JAP 8/80 v-twin. It runs 105 octane fuel and is lubed by Castrol R which is totally lost by the Pilgrim pump. A pre-war Centric 260 vane-type supercharger squeezes the charge which exits through a pair of Brooklands Can silencers. The transmission is a heavyweight Sturmey-Archer 3-speed. The magnetos are BTH. The parts were collected over many decades. The reproduction is said to be very faithful. And Bonhams has just sold it at the firm's 2021 Summer Stafford Sale where it realised £126,500. If you want to catch a glimpse of it in action, you can find it at the inaugural Kilometre Lance Speedrace in September 2021 which will be a side feature of the Bernina Gran Turismo in St Moritz.
 

 

July 2021  Classic bike news

 


Motorcycle news | Biking headlines | Latest motor bike stories | Press


 

Motorcycle news

 













2021 Triumph Trident on the way









How to write a great motorcycle for sale advert

100 years of Alvis exhibition

Allan Jefferies BMW prize draw offer

Kickback Show: entries sought

Calling all coffin dodgers...

One liners - Vic Eastwood

Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 "tin" sign

Catalytic converter thefts on the rise









Poet's Corner: 1959

One liners

Incoming: nuclear hype from BMW!!

Harrison OK-Supreme to auction

2019 Brighton Speed Trials date




February 2019 Classic Bike News

H&H upcoming auctions reminder

One liners

Peter Halsten Thorkelson: 1942 - 2019

Charterhouse February 2019 results

59 Club May ride-outs to St Paul's

Nippy Normans "handy" airline tool

One liners

New classic car metal garage signs

2019 Kickback Show seeks sponsors

Bauer print sales take another dive

Australian cops speed camera poser

One liners

Henry Cole wants your shed

London Classic Car Show 2019

Christopher Chope's FGM backlash

Albert Finney: 1936 - 2019

International Motobécane gathering

One liners

Charterhouse Auctions reminder

Bud Ekins' Husqvarna MX360 Viking

2019 Bristol Classic Show postponed



 


Henry Cole's Motorbike Show returns

Oxford Bradwell wax cotton jacket

Norton Commando Winter Raffle


2019 Triumph Scrambler 1200 details

80 years of AMC with Colin Seeley

One liners

A blue plaque for Rex McCandless

"Barn find" RE Constellation to sell

Kawasaki Zed series restoration manual

Bonhams Stafford Sale hits £3 million

Weise®  Boston Jeans tried & tested

One liners

Star attractions at Barber Sale

Andy Tiernan 2019 charity calendar

Zhongneng buys Moto Morini

Bonhams Autumn Stafford preview

Charles Geoffrey Hayes: 1942 - 2018

Mark Wilsmore's bikes to auction

2019 Street Twin & Scrambler boost


Two Wheeled Tuesdays invitation

Bonhams Alexandra Palace Sept Sale

NextBase 312GW dashcam tested

Charles Nicholas Hodges

Suzuki Motorcycles from Veloce

2019 BMW R1250GS & R1250RT
Dudley Sutton: 1933 - 2018 

Oxford Products Kickback Shirt

One liners

Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber Sport unveiled

Burton Leon Reynolds: 1936 - 2018

Comet Classics Open Day

H&H Auctions seeking consignments

One liners

Motus Motorcycles is bust




 

June 2018 Classic Bike News

One liners

Trump & Harley-Davidson toe to toe

"Governator's" Harley-Davidson sold

Car Builder Solutions recommended

Dirtquake VII 2018 at Arena Essex
One liners
Mecum Auctions at Monterey 2018
H&H NMM auction shapes up further
Chris Chope gets 'em in a twist
Daniel David Kirwan: 1950 - 2018
Reg Allen Motorcycles is closing
One liners
World Motorcycle Rally 2018
Glynn Edwards: 1931 - 2018
Den Hartogh Museum Sale
Grip-Tite Sockets, tried & tested
Donald Trump's US trade war starts


 

May 2018 Classic Bike News

The Daily Not News

IOM jaywalker in the hoosegow

Rare Norton Hi-Rider to auction

Clint Walker: 1927 - 2018

Ducati Museum Hailwood exhibition

Tougher protection for cops mooted

One liners

New London-Brighton Run route


April 2018 Classic Bike News

Bonhams Spring Stafford results

Royal Enfield Interceptor NMM raffle

60th International Motor Scooter Rally

New Honda "Monkey Bike" for 2018

Carole Nash's dangerous roads

An Austin Anthology from Veloce

Bonhams Stafford Sale reminder

One Liners

Bradford Dillman: 1930 - 2018

Stolen Vincent Comet & BSA Bantam
Spirit of '59 Triumph Bonnevilles
We've been adrift, but we're back in port

Autonomous Tesla claims a cyclist

Motor insurance premiums fall


March 2018 Classic Bike News

Watsonian's GP700 & Indian Chief

Bonhams Stafford Sale April 2018

One liners

We Ride London new demo date

Dee Atkinson & Harrison March Sale

Bull-it Men's SR6 Cargo trousers

Franklin's Indians: Veloce Reprint

One Liners

Kenneth Arthur Dodd: 1927 - 2018

Carole Nash Google Petition

New Musical Express is out of print

1954 500cc Triumph-Matchless chop

1,800 bike collection to be auctioned

Art Exhibition at Sammy Miller's

2018 Cardiff Classic Motorcycle Show

John Lennon's monkey bike: £57,500

One liners

This day in history


February 2018 Classic Bike News

Foscam Wireless Camera system

Pioneer Run eBook: now £2.99

Oxford Clamp On brake lever clip

One liners

2018 Curtiss Warhawk unveiled

Here's the latest bike scam attempt

George Beale appointed H&H director

Next Kickback Show 7-8th April 2018

"Alley Rat" - 2018 UK BOTK winner

One liners

Defeat the online scammers with Skype

Triumph Hurricane scammer alert

CCM Spitfire-based Bobber for 2018

Cafe Racer Dreams: 8 bikes stolen

Coys' Feb 2018 London Excel Auction

Thieves ransom Triumph Thunderbird

Harley-Davidson recalls 251,000 bikes

"Police biker" banker convicted

Bringsty Grand Prix Revival 2018

Two new Weise wax cotton jackets

Murderous solicitor is still on the books

£7k - £10k Triumph 'X-75 Hurricane'

Retro wireless GPS speedometer

"Anvil Motociclette...

2018 Triumph Speed Triples launched

Royal Enfield Flying Flea stolen

Brühl Twin Turbine Motorcycle Dryer


January 2018 Classic Bike News

Laser Power Bar Extension Wrench

One liners

Harley-Davidson quits Kansas City

Online traffic accident reporting plan

Silverstone Auctions February 2018

12th Annual Dania Beach Show

Black Lightning sells for $929,000

Online motorcycle scammer alert

One liners

AJS Tempest Scrambler for 2018

Charterhouse's February 2018 sale

Can anyone add info on this rider?

HJC FG-70s Aries Yellow helmet

One liners

Peter Wyngarde: 1927 (ish) - 2018

Death Machines of London - Airforce

Lancaster Insurance; reality check

One liners

"Fast" Eddie Clarke: 1950 - 2018

Bonhams' Las Vegas Sale reminder

Ban on credit/bank card charges


December 2017 Classic Bike News

Information on this picture wanted

Levis Motorcycles set for comeback?

One Liners

Oops, we screwed up [again - Ed]

H&H December 2017 sale at the NMM

Immortal Austin Seven from Veloce

Triumph T140V for sale: 237km

Irresponsible journalism from MCN?
Hagon Triumph Bobber mono-shock
Bruce Alan Brown: 1937 - 2017

MCN closes its biker forum

Arm rural UK coppers suggestion

Bought a Sump T-shirt? Check your email...

Falling bike sales, 11 straight months

Triumph Birmingham is set to close

New electric black taxi breaks cover

Semi naked girl straddles an Indian!!


November 2017 Classic Bike News

Riding Japan; new touring website

British motor racing anniversary day

Triumph T140 restoration guide

Ratchet handle taps & dies - Chronos

White Helmet Triumphs reach £12K

H&H's first timed automobilia auction

Goldtop £50 off gloves—limited offer

London pillion rider ban idea

Ford Design in the UK - Veloce

Thruxton Track Racer Kit offer

Want to post a comment on Sump?

New Davida "Koura" full face helmet

One liners

NMM BSA Gold Star winner details

Norton 650 twin scrambler planned

RE travel book: Hit the Road, Jac!

Stoneleigh Kickback Show April 2017

Brough Superior Pendine racer

One liners

H-D Battle of the Kings 2017 winner

New Royal Enfield 650 twins launched

NMM's 2018 Speedmaster prize

Meriden Off Road Tiger Cubs

One liners

Andy Tiernan's 2018 calendar

Scrappage scheme classic car poser

Norton launches the California

Scooter gangs face new response

One liners



September 2017 Classic Bike News










Sump news archive

 

 

We've got plenty more classic bike news for you to enjoy. Check out the links below.

 

December 2015

November 2015

October 2015

September 2015

August 2015

July 2015

June 2015

May 2015

April 2015

March 2015

February 2015

January 2015

December 2014

November 2014

October 2014

September 2014

August 2014

July 2014

June 2014

May 2014

April 2014

March 2014

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

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December 2011

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October 2011

September 2011

August 2011

July 2011

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May 2011

April 2011

March 2011

February 2011

January 2011

December 2010

November 2010

October 2010

September 2010

August 2010

 

 

 

e-scooter petition launched

 

Story snapshot:

Road registration is being sought

Cyclists are also in the cross-hairs

 

Nicholas Frank Freeman is the author of this new petition, and he's no one that we know. Regardless, he's looking for 100,000 like-minded people to share his concerns about riders of e-scooters and cyclists who, he feels, need regulating.

 

The deadline for this petition is 7th December 2021 (the day Pearl Harbour was attacked by the Japanese in 1941, fact fiends). If, by then, 100,000 signatures have been collected, the government will consider a debate on the matter (note the word "consider"). However, if only 10,000 signatures have left their digital mark, a formal response from the government will be made.

 

What's driving this appeal is, of course the rising number of e-scooter riders and cyclists who haven't exactly integrated well with modern traffic and pedestrians. The newspapers are rife with tales of collisions and near-misses, and what was once considered to be a minor nuisance is more lately viewed as a serious social threat.

 

What Freeman is advocating is visible ID, licensing, penalty points, greater enforcement of cycle lanes, and general accountability. No doubt there will sooner or later be calls for compulsory insurance, reflective clothing, mandatory crash hats, mandatory training, direction indicators and stoplights—and maybe even a requirement to have handlebar mirrors.

 

Here at Sump we've got some sympathy with Freeman's concerns (actually quite a lot of sympathy). But the notion of foisting even more laws and traffic regulations is anathema. What we'd really like is for everyone to simply behave themselves and give much greater consideration to others on the roads and on the pavements (especially the more vulnerable). Better still, we'd like the current international interest in e-scooters to dissipate like yesterday's fad, etc. But that probably isn't going to happen, so we are where we are and will have to deal with the problem sooner or later. And preferably sooner.

 

We could start with, say, greater public education. Might help. A bit.

 

Currently (28/7/21) there are almost 7,000 names on the petition. You can add yours by following the link below. Meanwhile, if anyone can explain the appeal of riding around on a seat-less, short-range vehicle with wheels the size of jam jar lids in a country riddled by potholes, corrugated tarmac, tramlines and sundry surface defects, we'd be interested to know. There's gotta be something in it.

 

e-scooter petition

 


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Goldtop Shop - Grand Opening

 

Story snapshot:

The news came in late...

... but we're running it anyway

 

We had just ten minutes notice regarding the latest press release from Goldtop. We picked it up from our server at around 10.20am today (Friday 23rd July 2021), and we noted immediately that the new shop opens in—what?—ten minutes?

 

Nice one KC.

 

We're referring, of course, to Kasey Cullen who some years ago bought the hallowed Goldtop name and rights, and has since been patiently and steadfastly reviving and growing the brand; a brand that now offers a huge range of motorcycle gloves, scarves, leather jackets and other items of essential or luxury biking apparel.

 

The new store is therefore open from 10.30am today, and will be staging a Grand Opening Weekend (23rd, 24th, 25th July 2021). To that end, all bikers are invited to mosey on down to the premises to hang out, drink coffee, listen to some live music, and dig into their wallets and purses.

 

 

There will be numerous special offers and treats throughout the weekend, and Kasey will naturally be on hand to ensure that you get the right product at the right price, etc. He knows his stuff and is very much hands-on.

 

The aforementioned live bands, incidentally, are: The Rock-ola Rockets (Saturday), and the Hackney Hill Pickers (Sunday). Parking is free, and there's space for over 100 bikes. Hours are 10.30am to 5.30pm—but 4.pm on Sunday. Note that the retail store is generally open Monday through to Thursdays by appointment only.

 

Here's the bricks and mortar address: Goldtop, Pilgrim's Annex, Gipsy Lane, Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire, CM23 1HA. That's on the Essex/Hertfordshire border, 36 riding miles to the north east of London.

 

And here's the web address: www.goldtop.co.uk

 

See also: Goldtop Classic Gauntlets: Sump 2015

 


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www.britishdealernews.co.uk

Stock shortages hit Manchester Show [Manchester Bike Show]

New owners for Scottish icon Shirlaws


www.motorcyclenews.com

Norton CEO outlines ambitious racing plans

Riding on coconut shells: Activated carbon inserts


www.bennetts.co.uk/bikesocial

Top 10 motorcycle discount codes & competitions

A2 test to allow 245cc-plus bikes


www.visordown.com

Father reunited with son after 24 years, 500,000km motorcycling search

How to keep cool and safe while out riding your motorcycle

Indian Motorcycles reveals first of three tattoo inspired designs for the Chief

Paris streets to be restricted to 19mph - and bikes have to pay for parking!


www.motorbikewriter.com

King of biker films dies aged 87 [Interesting piece on William Smith - Ed]

Brussels Museum Celebrates Vespa’s Diamond Jubilee: 75 Rare Models


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Too many email bounces, guys/gals

 

Story snapshot:

Want to keep receiving Sump news reminders?

Okay. Check your email settings

 

We've got thousands of subscribers on our Sump News Reminder List (thank you very much, one and all). And each month (or every other month at the moment) we fire off the latest missives designed to keep you Sumpsters in the loop. It all takes time and effort compiling the information, and we don't like to waste a drop. So naturally, we're a little disconcerted at the rising number of email "bounces" that we're receiving.

 

We're not talking about hundreds. Yet. But it's certainly in the dozens—and then sometime later in the month we receive smoking emails from puzzled or slightly disgruntled subscribers wondering if they're still on the list. Or what?

 

And responding to that takes time.

 

The underlying problem is simply that most folk don't check their email software and ensure that it's up to date, or take a peek in their spam boxes to check if the filters have been over-enthusiastic. And sometimes, their email inboxes are just full.

 

We can live with this situation. But we'd rather not. So if you're not receiving your news updates, you know what you have to do.

 

And keep in mind too, if you will, that we have the same problem notifying Sumpsters about products they've bought (sizes, availability, addressing queries, etc). In the age of mass communication, the signals don't always get through.

 

Your cooperation will be much appreciated.

 


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H&H Online Auction 11th August 2021

 

Story snapshot:

Consignments are now being sought

Auction viewing by appointment only

 

We still haven't really got to grips with online auctions. Mentally, we put these sales into the same category as online sex inasmuch as things look the same and sound the same and end up with a fairly predictable result, but it just ain't the same.

 

But Messrs H&H seems to know what they're up to and are apparently making a good fist of it (so to speak), and they've scheduled another such sale for 11th August 2021. To that end, the firm is looking for more consignments, either bikes are cars or bits and pieces. So if you're downsizing your classics, etc, you might want to give H&H a call.

 

At the time of writing (16/7/2021, 23:16), there are only twelve lots on the books; two motorcycles, a bicycle, and nine cars. But that will no doubt change soon enough. The balloon goes up at 12 noon. For motorcycles and automobilia, the commission is 15% (plus VAT @ 20%—and that's VAT on the commission only, not on the lot). For cars, the commission is 12.5%.

 

www.handh.co.uk


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Manchester Bike Show is again postponed. 11/12/21 moves to 2-3/4/2022


Petrol price rises seventh month in a row. Average UK unleaded: 129ppl


Triumph and Swiss watch firm Breitling limited edition bike & watch in 2022


Harley-Davidson Sportster S: Revolution motor. 1,252cc. 121bhp. £14k

Tough guy/biker/cowboy/gangster movie actor William "Big Bill" Smith dies aged 88


Actor Stuart Damon (The Champions/General Hospital) dies aged 84


Triumph announces off-road plans for new MX and enduro motorcycles


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Derek Rickman: 1933 - 2021

 

Story snapshot:

UK top motorcycle engineer and racer has passed the finish line

He was the co-creator of the beautiful Metisse

 

He was a motocross rider of no mean talent. He was also an engineer, a motorcycle fabricator, a kit car builder, a spares manufacturer, and a very astute businessman who recognised a good opportunity when it appeared on his horizon, and then seized it and made it walk and talk. We're talking about Derek Rickman—one half of the hugely respected and much lauded Rickman Brothers—who has died aged 88.

 

Elder brother to Don, Derek's riding career began in the 1950s primarily astride Royal Enfield singles. By 1959, the racing duo had created the Rickman Metisse (French for mongrel); a Triumph/BSA twin cylinder sporting hybrid that quickly set the pace for what was to follow. Other motorcyclists, impressed with the success and style of the Metisse, were soon looking to the Rickman brothers to sprinkle some of their engineering magic on their own bikes. Riders included Clint Walker and Steve McQueen.

 

Steadily, operating from a factory premises in New Milton, Hampshire, a range of frame kits began to appear catering to pretty much whatever single, twin or even multi that came along. We're advised that 16,685 kits and complete bikes appeared in the 21 years between 1960 and 1981. A huge achievement if true.

 

 

 

 

Next came a range of Hondastyle spares that included fairings, carriers, seats and many other bespoke parts. But already Derek was casting his glance elsewhere, notably at the burgeoning kit car market where he saw a fresh opportunity. Over the next few years around 1,100 kit cars were produced including the Ranger, the Space Ranger, the Rancher and the Metisse—and the firm also sub-produced kits for other companies.

 

In 1974 the Queen recognised the output and scope of the Rickman boys and bestowed upon them a Queens Award to Industry.

 

Other high spots in Derek's life and times included the winning of the 1966 FIM Coupe d'Europe 750 astride his hand built 600cc Mk3 Matchless Metisse.

 

 

Would it be correct to suggest that Derek Rickman and brother Don are among the top ten British motorcycle personalities ever? We think so. The company produced a world class product, helped develop racing motorcycles, employed hundreds of men and women over the years, and thoughtfully and cautiously dissolved their interests into other hands when retirement came.

 

Fortunately there are still plenty of Rickman motorcycles out there in the marketplace that are still competitive and great value. And just as fortunately, there are also new bikes available if that's the way you prefer to go. See the links below.

 

Derek died on 3rd July 2021 at Lymington, Hampshire. He was nothing if not a biking legend in his own lifetime.

 

www.rickman-motorcycles.com

www.metisse-motorcycles.com

 


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Hi, I guess a few of your readers will be of a demographic that was riding around on BMX’s in the 80s (or even still are, like me!). I noticed this aspect didn’t get a mention in your Rickman piece, so here’s some info gleaned from 'Rickman BMX Official Owners Group’ on Farcebook. Rickman BMX was an offshoot of Rickman Motorcycles (a company formed by Derek & Don Rickman) who during the 1980s were based in New Milton, Hants. All BMX frames, forks & 'bars were made from the finest Reynolds 531 Tubing. Produced from 1984 through to 1985/6 (as far as we know) Rickman BMX frame-sets have become one of THE most desirable Old School BMX items to own as they were produced in limited numbers to the highest quality. It's thought that well under 1,000 of each model were ever made & we are learning more every day.—Tim Ruck


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The helmet law in the Covid-19 era

 

Story snapshot:

A few words on personal liberty

... and why the riders rights movement is missing an opportunity

 

In light of the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson's, latest remarks about the British public taking personal responsibility with regard to the lifting of some or all the UK coronavirus restrictions, it might be a great opportunity for the riders rights community and the more liberal minded bikers among us to re-present the compelling case for repealing the compulsory crash helmet law—and, come to that, the compulsory seat belt law too.

 

The crash helmet law in the UK came into force in 1973 (note the use of the word "force"). The seat belt law followed in 1991. After those dates, some fundamental rights were removed from British citizens; notably the right to decide one's personal safety behind the handlebars of a motorcycle, or the wheel of a car.

 

Given the rise of injuries caused by practitioners of extreme sports, not to mention the huge cost of repair work routinely undertaken by the National Health Service in order to mitigate the damage caused by so-called "healthy sporting activities" (broken limbs, concussions, torn ligaments, wrenched shoulders, broken necks, boxing injuries, internal injuries, etc, the wearing of crash helmets (or not) doesn't actually represent a significantly high cost to society.

 

Add to that the massive cost of alcohol related health issues, smoking issues, eating disorders and general obesity, the financial case for compulsory lids and belts is trivial—never mind the basic moral case regarding self-determination.

 

Put simply, right now is a very good time to try and claw back some of the libertarian rights that the government had no justifiable case for removing. Moreover, if the crash helmet and seat belt laws were repealed, we suspect that the vast majority of people would lid-up and belt-up anyway. But the point is, we'd have the right to decide.

 

Which is right.

 

 

▲ A stupid advert that underlines a lot of social bigotry regarding bikers. Of course, if you're a sikh, you're exempt from wearing a lid. But why should religion get special privileges while secularism is sidelined? We've been trying to figure that out forever.

 

Boris Johnson has been quoted as saying: "We should trust the British people to behave sensibly and take responsibilities for their actions and behaviour." This line, remember, is spoken in the context of 128,000 Covid-19 related deaths over the past eighteen months, with thousands more set to follow.

 

... not that anyone here at Sump would ride a motorcycle without a crash helmet, or drive a car without a seat belt were the laws repealed. Not for any distance, anyway. That's our personal choice. But that ain't the point. The helmet and seat belt laws are self-evidently wrong, and they look increasingly absurd in a nation where mandatory vaccination is, if you believe the government, a non-starter.

 

 

▲ Actually, it's still perfectly legal to smash your face in. Just do it abseiling, or in a boxing ring, or playing rugby, or similar. You can't do it in a car, however; not so easily anyway.

 

 

So is the helmet law and seat belt issue a lost cause? Well it certainly is if we give up on it. Meanwhile, while you're busy opening an email window to fire off a suitable missive to your MP and/or (noted, or supposed, libertarian) Boris Johnson, just take a moment to reflect on the fact that social freedoms are generally lost not in huge chunks, but are removed piecemeal.

 

The Covid-19 emergency has thrown a lot of issues and questions into a new light. The lid law and seat belt law needs to come out of the shadows and see what, if anything, can be done about them.

 


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World record for an AJS Porcupine

 

Story snapshot:

98% sell-through rate at Summer Stafford Sale

Total sales of £3,585,000

 

Auction house Bonhams is boasting a record price paid for an AJS Porcupine which was sold at the firm's recent 3-day Summer Stafford Sale (2nd - 4th July 2021). The estimate for the 1940s 497cc E90 (Lot 33), once the property of esteemed works rider Ted Frend, was £250k - £300k. In the event, the bike sold for a very comfortable £293,250.

 

 

The second highest seller was Lot 739, a Brough Superior SS100 1,000cc Supercharged Special Re-creation built by Ewan Cameron of Cameron Engineering. It sold for £126,500, and we refer you to the bike at the very top of this page.

 

 

Meanwhile, we see that a very rare Pioneer era Brough (but not a Brough Superior, note) did very well at the sale and sold for £103,500. This 1914 Model H (see image immediately above) was built by Nottingham-based William E Brough, father of the more redoubtable George—who was a partner in the venture, but reputedly left following a dispute.

 

With its air-cooled 497cc, 70mm x 64.5mm, fore-and-aft flat twin configuration and two-speed transmission, the motorcycle cut a stylish dash when first conceived in 1912 and released from industrial captivity the following year. As with later Broughs and Brough-Superiors, the build quality was very high and the model quickly found favour with the more discerning (and well-heeled) members of the buying public.

 

There were three models in the range. This flat tanker took silver, as opposed to gold and bronze, and was priced at £56. It's the oldest survivor of its type, or so we're told, and it spent the first sixty years of its "life" in Wales. J M Jones, Motor Engineer of Tryal Garage & Motor Works, Cribyn, Llanybyther, was the supplying dealer.

 

The story goes that in 1974 this machine (Lot 707 incidentally), plus another 1915 model, was discovered by a certain John Greenland [there's slightly more to the tale than this—Ed]. They were 100% original and unused since the 1920s. The 1915 model was subsequently restored. The 1914 bike was in 1989 sold to the National Motorcycle Museum—which, as many of you Sumpsters will know, has recently been flogging off much of the family silver, so to speak.

 

 

A large history and build file accompanied the bike which includes photographs, assorted correspondence, and various photocopied items (brochures/magazine articles).

 

William E Brough, you might want reminding, began building motorcycles in 1902. Prior to that he had built a motorised tricycle and engaged in much mechanical experimentation with other designs and concepts. He closed his firm in 1926 leaving son George (who had left the firm in 1919) to continue the family tradition, such as it was.

 

Overall, it seems to us that classic bike prices are still depressed when compared to, say four or five years ago. But as ever, there are highs and lows in every auction, such as a 1955 149cc Triumph Terrier (Lot 20) that sold for a respectable £4,140 whilst a clean looking 1951 489cc Sunbeam S8 (Lot 39) realised only £2,760. That said, you have to check the detail before drawing too many conclusions. There are often underlying issues and interesting provenances.

 

Meanwhile there were a bunch of cheap sprinters starting at Lot 41, a 1980 GR500 Godden grass-tracker that changed hands for just £977, and Lot 42, a 649cc Triumph that fetched £1,610. Of course, with sprinters you're  mostly buying problems rather than solutions. Nevertheless, these are entry level prices and represent a small outlay if you fancy some long fun on short tracks.

 

In general, it could be that classic bike prices are starting to level off following a long and steady slide. We wouldn't put much money on this vague assertion. But we wouldn't take many sizeable risks at the moment, either.

 

Other sales include:

 

▲ 1940 11/50 Brough Superior. Lot 698. 1,096cc. £59,800. Sold.

▲ 1939 Zundapp KS600. Lot 701. 597cc. £13,225. We gave this bike a romanticised vignette because for us, this outfit instantly evokes thoughts of the heady between-the-wars 1930s Art Deco era and all that it promised. Travel. Adventure. Unexplored continents. Spies and skulduggery. And so on. Of course, Hitler came and put a damper on the optimism that much (but by no means all) of the world felt. Regardless, rigs such as this do it for us. How about you guys?

 

▲ Keith Emerson's 1973 Norton Commando Roadster (Lot 772) sold for £12,650; a fair sum for a handsome bike—and less than we expected given its connection to one of rock's greatest keyboardists (notably The Nice and Emerson, Lake & Palmer). The bike was a replacement for a 750 Roadster that was stolen. Keith had been commuting between his Sussex home and a London recording studio at the time. He was impressed with the model and wanted a new replacement, but alas, Norton had since folded. So he opted for a secondhand replacement which, like the first, was sourced through Elite Motors in Tooting, South London. Keith Emerson died in 2016. The Commando was sold by his family, and it will need some re-commissioning.

 


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