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RealClassicRealClassic

RealClassic

October 2019

RealClassic magazine features the very best British motorcycles from all eras, plus charismatic Continental machines (and the odd Japanese classics crops up occasionally, too). Long term classic riders will recognise many of the members of the RC team, which includes authors, historians and journalists like Steve Wilson, Dave Minton, Matt Vale, Odgie, Jacqueline 'PUB' Bickerstaff, Rowena Hoseason and editor Frank Westworth -- but the magazine's key feature is that it is firmly grounded in the real world. Our articles are written by real life riders and reflect far more than a simple road test ever can. We're never scared of getting grubby in The Shed (and we even admit it when things go horribly wrong!)

Land:
United Kingdom
Språk:
English
Utgiver:
Mortons Media Group, Ltd
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12 Utgaver

I DENNE UTGAVEN

access_time3 min.
from the front

Famously, variety is the spice of life. I’d not argue with that, and one of the many merry features we enjoy about this often odd magazine is the variety of machinery on view. This issue is no exception, which is also slightly wonderful, and it keeps our lives here in the office in a constant state of entertainment – also amusement, as you might imagine. I opened a file sent to me by Rowena headed ‘Norton Commando’. I like Commandos, always have, always will, but sometimes I think that I’ve read enough stories about them. That’s not any form of poke at Nortons, either; I’ve read literally hundreds of stories about all the most popular machines from the more popular marques. Before reading into the story, I looked at the pics…

access_time9 min.
triple knockers

No matter how long we’ve been knocking around with old bikes, we never know everything. You investigate just one new thing and another whole world opens up… as a recent visit to my mate Brian revealed. There’s never an ‘ordinary’ visit to Brian’s. It was my turn to be showing off and I’d bobbed round to let him see the new race bike I’d just finished. I pulled it out the van and we poked and prodded and made all the right sort of noises between us. Then Brian says, in his usual conspiratorial way, ‘Here. I’ve got something to show you.’ We retire to his barn, and there sits a rather resplendent Velocette he’s just acquired. A 1929 KNS to be precise. I know very little about Velocettes, but I…

access_time2 min.
the earlier ktt

Brian mentioned the KTT he owned previously; KTT #534, registration FG 9764, and it turns out there’s a tale there too... ‘I owned my original KTT in 1956. It was a very special bike, it had a great deal of modification. The engine had lots of extra external pipework and, at the bottom of the crankcases, a square hole had been cut and an extra sump screwed on with BS screws. It meant the oil drained into it before being scavenged and of course that reduced any chance of oil drag. ‘I got into a dice with a chap with a brand new Triumph 650, the first swinging arm framed ones. He reckoned his bike was fast so we arranged a few laps of the Perry track, the outer perimeter of the…

access_time2 min.
taken for a ride

What’s it like to sit astride a 1920s cammy Velo? In the late 1970s, VMCC founder Titch Allen shared his experiences with the breed… ‘Blindfold and with ear plugs, anyone with a mechanical feel can pick out an ohc engine from a pushrod one. The engine can be revved and revved without blowing up. It was a new dimension in motorcycling. I had ridden machines as fast with steering as good, engines as quiet, but never before had I come across all these qualities in one mount. Plus it was the indefinable cammy feel. ‘The clutch action at the handlebar is finger light because you are only lifting half of it. Until it has done one complete revolution, turned either by the engine or the motion of the machine, it will not…

access_time15 min.
incoming!

I must mention the good people at Rickman motorcycles. I have recently bought a Honda CD 250U with a Rickman fairing from the 1980s. Unfortunately the screen was homemade and too short to be much use. Despite it no longer being listed, Rickman still have the moulds and were able to supply a perfect new screen at a very fair price. Lovely people! Keith Rimmer, member RUDGE RACER Could I shed a little light on the Horne Rudge admired by PUB in RC184? This could be a restored version of the bike raced in the 1956 Junior TT by Jackie Horne, whose father had a motorcycle business in Scotland. I served my National Service in REME attached to the Royal Signals Driver Training Regiment where Jackie was a motorcycle instructor. His fellow instructors…

access_time6 min.
café commando

Half a century has passed since Norton launched the Commando. In typical British tradition they opted to use an existing (and possibly outdated) engine in a new rolling chassis. This was based around an Isolastic frame, an attempt to calm the vibration which increased in line with the engine capacity. The idea was to isolate the engine from the frame using rubber mountings and it worked. Initially however the new frame didn’t find favour with many traditional Norton fans. It spelled the end of the legendary, much-loved featherbed, a frame with roadholding which became the standard by which all others were judged. People asked ‘why fix what ain’t bust?’ and many felt that the Commando should have included the featherbed frame in its design. History has shown that Norton almost certainly…

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