▲ Back in February 2018 we featured a CB750 Honda on this page. That was a prototype being auctioned by H&H Classics, and that motorcycle fetched a world record price for the model. £161,000 to be precise. This 1971 CB750 K1 isn't expected to sell for anything like that price. In fact, the estimate is just £8,000 - £12,000, which is less than a tenth of the prototype price. And that, we think, is a little mean. But the market will tell us one way or the other when the bike goes under the hammer at the Bonhams Stafford Sale on Saturday 9th October 2021. This 750cc K1 hails from Texas, USA. It was used for a while and restored, and then it travelled to Australia. That was in 2012. In 2016 it was bought by the current owner and shifted to the UK for the Bonhams Auction. There's not much else to say about it beyond the more obvious stuff about the 750-4 Honda (sophisticated, well engineered, groundbreaking, game changing, well equipped, very competitively priced, etc). It's just a cool classic that's only headed one way, price wise—and it's still a very viable machine for modern roads. The years have been kind to a concept that was introduced to the world over 50 years ago in 1968. In all probability, the years to follow will be even more gentle.

UPDATE: The Honda sold for £14,950.


October 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



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Goldtop special offer on socks


Story snapshot:

£14.99 is the price

Or 20% off if you mention TOASTYTOES before 30th November 2021


If you're anything like us (and a lot of you Sumpsters are), you probably don't think too much about socks—until you mosey on down to your sock drawer and see that the foot fairies haven't been around lately.


It happens, brother.


Fortunately, Kasey Cullen at Goldtop is the next best thing to a foot fairy and is lately offering a range of essential toe-loving hosiery topped by these 75% Merino Wool Motorcycle Socks for just £14.99. But wait, brother! If you order between now and 30th November 2021 and mention TOASTYTOES (no, we're not kidding) Kasey will drop the price by 20%.


For practicality, there's also 15% polyester, 10% nylon, and 5% elastic in the mix. But it's the Merino wool, of course, that makes 'em special. Merino comes from Merino sheep that originate from Spain. The wool, we're told, is finer and has other ... well, bacteriological qualities that keep your lower digits fresh and healthy and ready that the next 500 miles in the saddle.


But look, if these sexy stockings are a little too expensive for your tight-fisted budget, Kasey has some other (ahem) more cost-effective £9.99 socky items in stock that might suit you.


Before ordering, just ask yourself how much your size tens are worth. Tip: don't sell yourself short.



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"£2 million record sale" for H&H


Story snapshot:

1938 Brough Superior sells for £224,200

Vincent Black Shadow fetches £76,700


H&H Classics is said to be cock-a-hoop over the results of the firm's latest motorcycle sale held on 27th October 2021 at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull, West Midlands.


The previous high water mark was around £1.5 million, but that's now been raised to an impressive £2 million. Furthermore, the auctioneers are also claiming a sell through rate of 92%—which, according to our maths, is correct.


The top selling lot was the immediately above 1938 Brough Superior SS100 (formerly the property of Titch Allen, amongst others) which fetched £224,200. Runner up was a 1953 Vincent Black Shadow that sold for  £76,700 (image immediately below).



Owned by the same family since 1980, modifications to the Vincent include an electric starter kit, a BTH mag, an Alton dynamo, a stainless steel exhaust system and a Hills centre stand. Additionally, we hear that "a lot of the nuts and bolts are stainless and the wheels are fitted with stainless spokes"


Other top lots include:


1977 MV Agusta 832 Monza sold for £50,740

1948 Vincent Series B Rapide sold for £42,480

1990 Norton F1 with 2,256 miles from new sold for £40,120
1929 Indian Scout 101 sold for £24,190
1921 Kenilworth Motorcyclette sold for £6,490



Lastly, we note that a 1964 Lambretta GT 200 that's been in storage since 1976 finally saw some daylight and sold for £23,600. That's more than four times its top estimate of £4,000, and is a lot of money for a hairdryer. But we ain't knocking it. In this world, you've gotta get it whilst it's going.






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Motorcycle frame/Reynolds tubing expert Ken Sprayson (left) dies aged 94

Nourish Engineering founder/engine specialist Dave Nourish has also died

Triumph Adventure Experience launch. Malaga, Spain. Tigers/Scramblers.

Michelin Uptis airless tyre first public reveal. Rubber. GRP. "Recyclable"

London Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) growth. 25/10/21. £12.50. 24/7

Grand Prix and IOM TT racing legend Paul Smart, 78, killed in an RTA


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The Future of Transport consultation


Story snapshot:

Possible threat to motorcycle modification

Carbon concerns and autonomous vehicle worries are at the heart of it


The UK government is seeking your views via its newly launched "Future of Transport" online document (as if it hasn't largely already made up its  mind). Specifically, this document highlights the burgeoning desire to reduce the carbon footprint (or is that tyreprint?) of cars, bikes, vans, trucks, etc and help hit the 2030 "Net Zero" target and save the world from imminent doom. Or so goes the script. But the document also relates to the impending introduction of autonomous, or semi-autonomous, vehicles in general.


The notion of preventing owners from tampering/adjusting/modifying vehicles is hardly new. The Department of Transport has flown this particular kite more than once, albeit without much conviction. More recently however, the EU introduced proposals intended to ensure that original manufacturing standards are maintained throughout the life of a given vehicle. And although the EU is mostly history as far as these matters are concerned, the general threat regarding owner-modification of motorcycles lingers in and around Whitehall.


Beyond that, the government is concerned about how modified electronic control systems might impact (no pun intended) autonomous or semi-autonomous vehicles.


Sound a bit thin? That was our first impression. But there may be something in all this that's worth considering. So we're reserving judgement.


Either way, your opinion is sought (either before or after the fact). So follow the link below. Meanwhile, the Motorcycle Action Group is said to be hot on the trail of this one. Colin Brown, Director of Campaigns, has been quoted by MCN as saying: "As the owner of a motorcycle with less OEM parts than aftermarket ones, you can imagine my reaction. This renewed attack on the right to do what you wish with your own property is not something that I can see many motorcyclists welcoming."


And that of course, if it's an accurate quote, is a naive and facile response in a world where we have to share pretty much everything, not least the air and the roads, and in doing so make regular adjustments to the status quo. But better a weak argument than no argument at all. Perhaps.


Don't misunderstand us, mind. Modifying bikes has always been where it's at, and long may that continue. However, you have to be realistic and learn to mitigate threatening issues as best you can whilst mindful of the fact that change will have its way whether we like it or not—which isn't to advocate outright surrender.


Put another way, blunt resistance is futile, but shrewd opposition is probably wiser. Keep that in mind as and when you formulate your response.




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Nick Mason Kawasaki KE100 for sale


Story snapshot:

Drumming up interest for Pink Floyd's skin basher

Low mileage, with just one (or two) owners...


If you don't know who Nick Mason is, you might as well skip this news story because it will probably be of interest only to Pink Floyd fans. It is, after all, just a minor tale about a lowly/modest Kawasaki KE100 bought new in late 1996 by the aforementioned Mason and registered for the road early the following year.



▲ Nick Mason (left) and Pink's Floyd's Roger Waters snapped in 2019.

Mason is busy campaigning his current band, Saucerful of Secrets, and enjoying mucho dinero from his new (and uninspiringly titled) album, Live at the Roundhouse. Pink Floyd, meanwhile, is defunct—subject to whatever reformations are forthcoming.



There's really not much to say about the bike. To coin a much hackneyed phrase, it is what it is. The mileage is showing just 356. There are a few scratches, knocks and dings, and it's estimated by auctioneers H&H Classics to fetch between £4,500 and £5,500. That's a long way down the financial ladder from Mason's Ferrari 250 GTO bought new in 1977 [price unknown—Ed] and now reputed to be worth around £30 million. Meanwhile, there's a recent MOT on the bike, and it's carrying a current V5C—in the second owner's name.


Does that kill the deal? We don't know, but for some folk that probably makes the acquisition just that little bit less sweet and personal. Then again, H&H has confused us by also stating that there's a V5C in Nick's name plus an old request for a duplicate log book. So two V5Cs? Sounds like it.


Either way, the bike isn't the most exciting item of pop memorabilia, but there is other documentation bolstering the provenance (if that's needed). Also offered as part of the deal is "a signed and numbered first edition copy of Nick's book 'Into The Red' about his collection of supercars."


The sale goes down on 27th October 2021 at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull.


Small earthquake. No one hurt.





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From 1st October 2021, Bullit Motorcycles becomes Bluroc Motorcycles



Triumph launches Tiger Sport 660. 80bhp. 240° triple. Jan 2022. £8,450.

Motor Lock Secure: New tamper proof security device for motorcyclists

UK govt seeks thousands of new ADIs (your chance to promote MCs?)

Triumph Motorcycles: "12,500 Trident 660s sold in one year."

National Motorcyclist's Council (NMC) calls for bike license test changes

NMC expresses more concern over motorcycle freighting/transport issues


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1919 Kenilworth scooter prototype. Click the image for a closer look


Two rare Kenilworth scooters to sell


Story snapshot:

A century old, and still running

A prototype scooter and a Motorcyclette


Once again we're reminded of how history has a curious habit of intruding on the present and showing us that what seems new and original has actually been done before. Specifically, at a time when large sections of the planet are discovering the dubious appeal and questionable wisdom of powered step-on scooters, we see that it's all been done before. Except that modern traffic is a lot faster than it was a hundred years ago, which is when the immediately above scooter first hit the mean streets of post WW1 Britain.


This 103-year old machine is a 1919 Kenilworth prototype. Dubbed "Lenny", it's the earliest known example of the marque, or so we're told, and was designed by Captain George Thomas Smith-Clarke (1884 - 1960), better known for his association with Alvis cars (and the Royal Flying Corps).


The first production Kenilworths were powered by single-cylinder, 4-stroke, OHV, 55mm x 60mm, 142cc, air-cooled Norman* engines. Drive was direct (single speed). Maximum velocity was 15 - 20mph. There was also a single bicycle type brake. And there was no suspension. Wheels were 18-inches.


In 1920 the Kenilworth Miniature series was introduced. These machines included the luxury of a saddle on a sprung pillar, optional electric lighting and brakes front and rear.



The Motorcyclette (image immediately above) was introduced the following year (1921) and featured a re-designed frame, sweptback 'bars and leg shields. Front suspension was now available. The weight was around 80lbs. Fuel economy was around 130mpg.


Given the general condition of British streets in the 1920s, and despite the relatively large wheels (when compared to modern scooters), the ride must have been challenging. But for many scooterists/riders, these machine would have been a very convenient form of personal locomotion.





The last of the miniatures was manufactured in 1923. These machines were equipped with a novel multi-speed friction drive, a clutch and a crank handle for starting. The engine was now perforce mounted longitudinally with the cast iron flywheel at the rear. Wheels were now 24-inch [but note that we've got some doubts about the wheels sizes and exactly when they were changed—so feel free to set us straight, please].


More specific information on these two machines isn't available from the seller, except to say that the Motorcyclette has spent thirty years or so at the Murray Museum on the Isle of Man, and that it's also been a familiar sight on the Banbury Run.


Of the 550 or so scooters produced by Kenilworth, only ten are known to survive of which two are scooters and one is a Motorcyclette. The factory, incidentally, was based at Much Park Street, Coventry.


The two machines are to be auctioned by H&H Classic at the National Motorcycle Museum on 27th October 2021. The estimate for each is £5,500 - £6,500.


*This refers to the Norman Engineering Co Ltd of London, Leamington Spa, Uxbridge and Warwick (1919 - 1964) and not Norman Cycles of Kent which produced bicycles and lightweight motorcycles. Norman Engineering was founded by J.A. Watts and E.J.H. Norman. Norman Cycles was founded by Charles and Fred Norman.


Update: The Kenilworth sold for £6,490




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September 2021



Buell relaunch and new production


Story snapshot:

1190 Hammerhead model planned

Reservations are being sought


It's been a very rocky road for the Buell motorcycles brand. That's hardly news. But the marque keeps bouncing back with new energy (and finance), and it now seems that another re-launch is imminent. Yes, we've heard it all before, but we're giving the firm the benefit of the doubt. More or less.


Production, we're told, will begin on 1st November 2021 at Grand Rapids, Michigan USA, and the company is now seeking reservations—which is perhaps another way of saying that the management is unsure about the scale of demand. But certainly, the enthusiasm for the Buell marque is there.


The re-launch model is the (immediately above) Buell 1190 Hammerhead that's based on the EBR 1190RX, and we've posted a few words on that machine (click the link you've just passed and take a peek). We haven't seen definitive evidence of a production-ready machine, note. In fact, it all feels a little ... diaphanous. Computer generated images of new models. Possibilities. What ifs? But if you believe the hype, and if you've got the cash, and if you love the marque, you know what you have to do.


And how much cash will you need? We haven't been told.


See what we mean?




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Charterhouse Auction: 14/10/2021


Story snapshot:

Sir Costalot is the name

A Comet-Rapide is the game


We won't repeat the date. It's clear enough in the headline immediately above. But we will tell you that the venue is the Haynes International Motor Museum, BA22 7LH. Pre-auction viewing will take place on Wednesday 13th October from 9.30am and will conclude at 4.00 pm. There will be a second chance to poke and gawp pre-sale from 9.30am on the following day. The auction is scheduled for 12 noon.


At the time of writing this news item, Charterhouse has listed 119 lots and we can report that there's not much to get very excited about. But many of the bikes are coupled to low reserves, so there might be a bargain or two to be had.



One bike that caught our eye is the immediately above Vincent twin dubbed "Sir Costalot". Apparently, it began life in 1963 when the first owner paired a 1953 Vincent Comet frame with a 1951 998cc Rapide Series C engine. We're advised that the work is high quality, and it seems that the Vincent has collected a few awards here and there.



It also boasts a certificate of authenticity from the Vincent Owners Club—for whatever that's worth. Not that we've got anything against the bike. As we often say around here, if it rolls, it rocks. It's just that we don't fret too much about factory originality or peer approval. But the bike is now known to the VOC, so it's official or ... well, something.


Sir Costalot, meanwhile, is an appropriate name for a Vincent Twin special. But we'd prefer it if it was called Sir Ridealot—which, for all we know, is equally appropriate.


The estimate is £25,000 - £30,000.




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Clive Humphries cool custom for sale


Story snapshot:

Older special with great provenance

650cc Triumph Bonneville from an ex-Meriden man


Twenty years or so before Sump there was Ride—a kind of embryonic Sump, if you like; a magazine that one or two of us around here were a part of. Ride was a paper publication and a tentative foot on a long publishing ladder that saw Ride morph into Custom Cycle which enjoyed a few rocky years on the mainstream magazine racks before ... well, before most of the fun fizzed away (there's a long story here, and we're not going into it).


Sump is now 12 years old (and 11 years old since we posted out first news page), which makes Ride around 30-odd years old since issue one. When Ride/Custom Cycle was canned, EMAP evidently liked the title and promptly appropriated it. Hence the current Ride magazine; an iron horse of a very different colour, etc.



Well, that first edition of Ride carried a feature on a 650cc Triumph Bonneville custom built by time-served Triumph parts dealer, ex-Meriden man and travelling adventurer Clive Humphries. And that bike is about to come up for sale at the H&H Classic auction at the National Motorcycle Museum (NMM) in Solihull (more on that auction further down this page).


Back then, Clive Humphries was running a parts business from a Kenilworth warehouse, just down the road from the castle. Over the phone, in his usual modest way, he described the bike and it certainly sounded interesting, so an appointment to view (and feature) was made.


It turned out to be one of the best Triumph customs we'd ever seen, and we've seen a few. What made it so good wasn't the OTT flashiness, or the in-yer-face glitz and gizmos and contrived attitude. No, its real appeal lay in the simple construction and the more subtle modifications thereof. It was the kind of bike that looked as if it just might have come off the production line at Meriden. Today, it probably looks a little tame to many. And it needs a little detailing to bring it back to its best. But back then, this bike was something very special—and we think it still looks like a contender.



The most obvious modification is the front lower downtube and lower frame rails which were removed by Clive. Asked why, he shrugged and explained it was partly for looks—and was justified by the increase in ground clearance. "But is that really strong enough?" he was then asked. And he shrugged again and said simply. "We'll see, but it seems to be holding."


Other details include the long travel front fork (non Triumph), the Morris cast wheels (18-inchers as far as we can recall), the petrol tank which carries both fuel and oil, the handcrafted saddle, the handcrafted side panel ("bashed from a piece of tin"), the handcrafted high level exhaust/silencer, the handcrafted grab rail, the brake caliper/torque arm arrangements, the 5-inch headlight, the high-level front mudguard, the T160 folding kickstarter, the custom rocker box covers, the repositioned sidestand, the petrol tank engine breather, the angled carburettor manifold which brings both carbs away from the exhaust and exits them on the right—and there are many other details that conspire to make this motorcycle look right from any angle. And most of it is off-the-shelf Triumph parts.





We don't know what happened to the bike over the years. But some time back (maybe 15 years ago) Clive told us that he'd sold it. And now it's up for grabs once again. H&H Classic Auctions is estimating £10k to £12k. Paradoxically, we can't see this motorcycle making that much money, but it might. These kind of customs, after all, are very personal (for want of a better way to express it). By their nature they generally don't have huge mainstream appeal. Instead, they occupy a zone in which the sale price is usually way below the cost to build.


So we'll see what we will see on the day. But if nothing else, the provenance is unimpeachable. And while we remember, the bike was featured once again in Custom Bike magazine—which one or two of us around here were also involved with.


Mysterious stuff, huh? Well no. Not really. Just stuff.


Check it out via the H&H web site. The auction date is Wednesday 27th October 2021. We've already told you that the venue is the NMM. Meanwhile, we note that the bike hasn't been used much in recent years. But if Clive Humphries built it, you can trust that it was built right.


Get bidding, boys (and girls).




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H&H 1970s Jap "superbike" sale


Story snapshot:

Four Jap classics from the same owner collection

No reserves on any


Four Jap classic "superbikes" are to go under the hammer at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull courtesy of Messrs H&H. The date will be Wednesday 27th October 2021. The bikes are all from the same owner collection. Here are the details (left to right in the image immediately above):


1. 1975 750cc Kawasaki KH750 H2C

2. 1976 900cc Z900 Kawasaki Z1 A4

3. 1979 997cc Suzuki GS1000EN

4. 1980 1,047cc Honda CBX1000


People talk fast and loose about the "seventies superbike era" as if there weren't superbikes before that point in time. But of course there were numerous motorcycles from the earliest days that could equally claim a contemporary superbike crown; notably the radical Ariel Square Four, or any of the fabled Vincent Twins, or the exquisite Brough Superior—not to mention offerings from the likes of Ace, Crocker, Harley-Davidson, Excelsior et al.


But certainly, with the "more modern" engineering architecture of the 1970s Japanese invasion, the term "superbike" gained new impetus. And if you were on the road during that period, you were probably more than mildly acquainted with all of the above machines that have rightly earned the right to be called "modern classics"—and, come to think of it, not too modern anymore actually.


So okay, the handling on any of these machines was always, well, interesting. The general build quality was frequently questionable. Winters could be cruel to the finishes. But the pricing was always very keen, the equipment was fairly generous, and the top speed performance was often little short of blistering.


However, for a long time at Sump we've been expecting to see these bikes climb way out of reach of the average classic collector. But that still hasn't happened; meaning that you can still pick up some half decent seventies "Jap crap" for less than £10k—and for less than five if you're shrewd, fast on the phone, and are prepared to travel.


But okay, we are seeing prices for some of these machines top as much as £30k. However, these bikes are generally offered by the more adventurous dealers who are generally way ahead of the private pack and who have plenty of customers on their books for whom money is plentiful.

All that aside, H&H reckon there are no reserve prices posted on any of these motorcycles, and we'll be watching with interest to try and glean which way prices are headed.


Stay tuned.




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Manchester Bike Show: 29-30/1/2022 (brought forward from 2-3/4/2022)

The HCVA is warning of E5/E10 fuel "snake oil" salesmen [fuel additives]

174 abandoned classic cars found in London warehouse—£1m valuation

Battlesbridge returns. Sunday 26th September 2021. £5 adults. 9am - 3pm

New UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss pushes Harry Dunn issue at UN

Dunn family/Anne Sacoolas US civil settlement. Criminal pursuit continues

ePetition launched: "Re-open Brighton Speed Trials to motorcycles"

Triumph Tiger 900 Bond Edition


Triumph launches James Bond 007 themed special edition 900cc Tiger


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Andy Tiernan calendar


Andy Tiernan 2022 calendar


Story snapshot:

Back the East Anglian Air Ambulance if you can

£12 is the price for UK bikers


Last year, sales of the 2021 Andy Tiernan calendar raised an impressive £3,085.93 for the East Anglian Air Ambulance. So naturally, this year Andy wants to at least match that figure—if not exceed it. And also naturally, he needs your help.


That air ambulance is a vital service for the county—and no doubt for neighbouring counties—and many broken bodies have been rapidly attended by this life-saving whirlybird and whisked off to the hospital. But the chopper needs cash to stay airborne. Your cash. So ante-up if you possibly can, especially if you live in the respective catchment area.

Mike Harbar is once again the calendar artist. He's beautifully sketched six Triumphs; one from each decade between 1910 and 1960 (and if you want to avail yourself of his creative services, visit: www.classiclinesartist.com)

Meanwhile, you can get your calendar at: Andy Tiernan Classics Calendars, The Old Railway Station, Station Road, Framlingham, Woodbridge, Suffolk, IP13 9EE, United Kingdom.

UK buyers can buy one for £12.00 which includes UK 2nd class postage. EU buyers will pay £17, including European postage. Anyone in the rest of the world will pay £20, also including postage.


Cheques should be made payable to "East Anglian Air Ambulance" or by PayPal to AndyTiernanCalendarDonation@outlook.com. Please pay with a cheque drawn on a UK bank. Credit or Debit cards, take note, can't be accepted.

The calendars are being printed now and will be sent hot off the press. Talk to Andy if you need further details.




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Jean-Paul Belmondo: 1933 - 2021


Story snapshot:

The much fźted "New Wave" French movie star has died aged 88

He was professionally active from 1956 - 2009


Tonight we're lamenting the death of French movie star Jean-Paul Belmondo, and you're invited to spend a few minutes with us briefly looking back at his life and career.


Affectionately known as Bébel, he was primarily a movie actor, but he also worked in theatre and television. Crime thrillers, comedies, swashbucklers, spy flicks, and romantic dramas, Belmondo, with his popular down-to-earth Gallic charm, was apt to turn up just about anywhere and everywhere—not least when the subject matter was offbeat and quirky. His fame quickly spread worldwide and he developed something of a cult following. Box offices loved him.


▲ Belmondo performed many, if not most, of his own movie stunts. In 1963 he performed a motorcycle tightrope act at the Medrano Circus (Cirque Medrano) in Paris. The circus was once located at the edge of the Montmartre district, but is now a travelling enterprise.



Born in Neuilly-sur-Seine (now Hauts-de-Seine; a commune west of Paris), Belmondo hadn't initially planned on being a movie star. He'd wanted to be either a professional footballer or a professional boxer. And to that end, he enjoyed a very brief career in the square ring; a career that began in 1949 and ended the following year when he noticed the impact that it was having on his face (pun intended). But if his prize-fighting ambition was short-lived, it was at least successful. In his first fight he knocked out his opponent in round one, and henceforth Belmondo remained unbeaten.


▲ Belmondo riding a 500cc Triumph TRW through the streets of Paris.



By 1953 his latent interest in acting led to a part in a short movie Moliere. It

wasn't much of a role, but he got his first good look at the camera, and the camera got a look at him. As a follow up, he enjoyed a small part in On Foot, on Horse, and on Wheels (Ą pied, ą cheval et en voiture, 1957). But that performance, we hear, ended on the editing room floor—as these things are apt to do. We haven't actually seen that film to confirm, but Jean-Paul Belmondo is certainly listed among the cast.


In 1960 he made Breathless (Ą bout de soufflé). In 1964 he made That Man from Rio (L'Homme de Rio). The following year he made Pierrot le Fou. These three film are arguably his best known works, and largely because of them he was soon drawing favourable comparisons with the likes of Humphrey Bogart, James Dean and Marlon Brando—none of whom, we feel, were in fact possessed of that unique Belmondo charisma.


In 1970 he appeared with Alain Delon in the 1930s Marseilles-set gangster romp, Borsalino. Delon became something of a business and acting rival, but there was no mistaking either man on screen. Both were apt to turn out compelling performances, which was exactly what happened with Borsalino. It was a smash.



Jean-Paul Belmondo, rarely seen in public without a cigarette in his mouth, was married twice and divorced twice. He fathered four children. Beyond that, he was frequently in the international news as a result of his personal relationships with various high profile actresses and top models.


In 2009, after an eight year absence, he made a surprise return to acting in A man and his dog (Un homme et son chien). Despite diminishing health, he offered a credible performance playing a man with ... well, diminishing health.


Belmondo was honoured with numerous French awards, and he was twice nominated in the BAFTAs. A policeman, a gangster, a priest and an alcoholic, Belmondo was all of these on screen. And much more. He became one of the cornerstones of the 1960s French noir scene—which is something that we haven't reacquainted ourselves with for some time.


Belmondo's death, however, has prompted us to put that right at the earliest opportunity.


He was 88 years old.


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Covid passes at motorcycle events?


Story snapshot:

A significant UK government vote is on the way

Ditto for the Scottish government


It hasn't happened yet. But if the government has its (wicked?) way, bikers could soon find themselves compelled to prove their Covid-19 status before entry at major motorcycle events. And the reason for this move is that Prime Minister Boris Johnson (surprise, surprise) wants to introduce Covid passes—despite having previously stated his opposition to them.


To change the status quo, the PM's plan require a debate and a vote in Parliament, and that's going to happen within the next couple of weeks: say, by around the 20th of this month (September). In the interim, the Scottish government will be holding a vote this week following a debate on the 9th September.


Down south in Whitehall there's likely to be a serious reaction from the usual Tory backbenchers, et al. And there are plenty of Labour MPs sawing through the floorboards where Johnson usually stands in the House.


Up north in Edinburgh, as we understand it (and we misunderstand so much in this world, folks), the passes are being campaigned by Nicola Sturgeon's Scottish Nationalists and backed by the Scottish Green Party (which has recently cozied up to the Nats in return for a little power, so now the Greenies have got to toe the line).


If the coronavirus passes/passports get the go-ahead, they won't apply to smaller gatherings. Not initially, anyway. But night clubs and football matches are among the first in line, and it's anyone's guess who's next. Somewhere down the list are any of the race tracks in the UK and any of the biggest biking shows. Is this scaremongering? We don't think so. But no one needs panic. We already do enough of that, etc.


At Sump, we've got mixed feelings regarding Covid-19 passes. But we think the ongoing claims of an imminent two-tier society are overstating the problem. Nevertheless, the goalposts are on the move, and Johnson is widely expected to score.


If you've got a view one way or t'other, tell it to your MP or MSP. There's a link below detailing a draft letter (if you need it). As for the image at the top of this story, that's campaigning group Big Brother Watch again projecting their thoughts onto Parliament (today, 6th September 2021).




MP or MSP Covid-19 draft letter




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Kickback Show 2022


Kickback Show 2022


Story snapshot:

Custom bike builders look this way

Organiser Lorne Cheetham is looking for entries


It will be the 21st edition of the UK's Kickback Show, and it's scheduled for the 2nd and 3rd of April 2022 (Saturday and Sunday). The venue is the Three Counties Showground in Worcestershire, WR13 6NW; more specifically inside the Avon Hall.

The competition categories include; Best Young Builder, Best Freestyle, Best Modified Classic, Best Cub, Best Cafe Racer (inspired custom), Best Chopper/Bobber and Best Universal (unclassified) Custom.


If you want to enter your custom creation, you're asked to email good quality photos to lorne@rwrw.co.uk. The deadline for entries is 29th March 2022. When invited, you'll need to deliver your bike on 2nd April 2022 before 10.30am. The trophies will be awarded on Sunday at 3pm.


If you're seeking admission tickets, you'll need to contact www.ticketsource.co.uk. Meanwhile, you can look forward to "dozens" of trade stalls, refreshments, camping, free parking and suchlike.


This isn't the biggest custom bike show in the world, but Lorne Cheetham is a serious guy with ambitions, and he always puts on a decent event, Covid-19 notwithstanding.


Good enough?


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London Red Route fines set to rise?


Story snapshot:

£130 is the current penalty

Mayor Sadiq Khan is now looking for £160


It's no secret that the coronavirus pandemic has hit Transport for London very hard. London Mayor Sadiq Khan has invested heavily in public transport, and for many people things have certainly improved under his watch¨—albeit largely at the expense of the private motorist and motorcyclist. We're talking about the congestion charge and/or the Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ), both of which are part of the wider mix aimed at keeping the British capital on the move.


Meanwhile, some revenue is also raked in via the controversial red routes which prohibit stopping at any time, except for buses. And the penalty for transgression is currently £130—or £65 if paid within 14 days—and that's set to increase to £160 (or £80 for payment within 14 days).


Of course, there is the formality of a public consultation which is currently underway. But essentially, it's probably a done deal. A £30/£15 hike is almost certainly on the way, and in fairness to Khan it's the first rise for a decade. That, says the mayor, aligns the increase with UK inflation (which may or may not be true).


And you might think that as a biker, the red route doesn't much affect you. But it does. Stop for a second the cameras will pounce—never mind that you paused only for a minute or so to put on some wet weather gear or drop off a pillion.


London's red routes account for only 5% of the capital's road space, or so we're told by City Hall. But that 5% accounts for 30% of traffic. Critics of the hike have called it a simple, unashamed money grab. And that's probably true. Revenue from buses and trains has fallen hugely since the virus came, and there are massive outstanding bills to be paid regarding various on-going transport projects. Meanwhile, it's worth remembering that it's the role of local authorities, government agencies and suchlike to do whatever they can to raise funds. That's how it works. Someone has to foot the bills.


You can register your objection to the rise—assuming you do object. Or you might want to sit this one out because, as we said, it's almost certainly going to happen. Then again, it might be worth gently jerking Khan's lead and telling him not to get too greedy.


The consultation ends on 19th September 2021.




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