Mafe's Morgan going strong with its new owner (Bob, North Cotswold Chairman) taken at Snowshill Arms on Wednesday 14th April 2021.
The committe had their first meeting for over a year, in splendid isolation.
Outcome is a Programme of Events for 2021.
See "Schedule of events 2021" page.
Thanks to Mark Lepkowski of the Norton Owners Club for allowing us to reproduce this article.
Cleaning the legends
Back in the summer, the Midlands Section of the VMCC asked for volunteers to help get all the bikes at the National Motorcycle Museum ready for display by giving them a good clean and polish. At that time, the museum was planning to re-open at the start of October, but alas, as we all know, the on-going
Covid situation led to the government introducing further restrictions
and that re-opening is now on hold.
VMCC asked us to spend three or four hours every Thursday morning
to get the 800 or so display bikes sparkling clean again. I believe the
regular museum cleaners had been either laid off or furloughed, hence
the call for VMCC to come to the rescue. The Birmingham branch are
lucky enough to have use of the museum as their club house, so they have a vested interest in its continued success.
Not wanting to miss such a unique opportunity, I joined a small band of a dozen or so fellow enthusiasts, and armed with tubes of Solvol, bike polish and cloths we set about our task. It took us eight weeks to go through the five display halls as well as all the bikes in the reception area. I was lucky and
managed to clean the Nortons, as well as rarities like the Brough
Superior, Buccaneer and Silk 700. It was a real treat to get up close
to so many iconic bikes as opposed to seeing them behind a barrier.
Following the cancellation of the re-opening, we were asked back to
the museum today (29 October) to dust down all the bikes so that
our earlier hard work would not be wasted. With the hard graft
already having been done back in the summer, the dusting process
was much quicker and we got through two display halls today.
The plan is to go back every month to keep on top of the bikes in readiness for whenever the museum can open up again.
I thought you might enjoy seeing some of the Nortons from a slightly different viewpoint than you would if visiting the museum. I have kept the pics as large as possible so you can see the details. (see Slideshow at end)
This Nemesis took me the best part of an hour to clean with the huge amount of alloy making up the chassis, swinging arm and front fork! Despite claims by some when it was released that it is a wooden mock-up, there really is a tiny V8 engine hidden under that fairing. A pity it never saw the light of day - or not really a Norton?
And on the subject of bikes not really being what they are, here is one of the infamous Triumph TR6’s badged as a BSA. Meriden workers assembling the bikes as part of a special order in 1972 downed tools when they saw the petrol tanks!
Click on the arrow > on the right of the logo to see all the pictures
If you are interested in an update of our Accounts for 2020 from the Treasurer
Click Here and make a request
Good new is that we are still solvent
Approx 10 Mins
In 1974, as a youth of 17, I bought a green Honda CB250 G5 from the shop of racer Derek Chatterton. It was the bees’ knees for a (short) while, before I moved on to bigger better bikes.
In 2010, I saw two semi derelict G5s for sale on eBay and bought both for the grand total of £160.
This video is of one of the preliminary trial rides, not bad only broke down twice! I soon remembered just how good these old Hondas are and promptly sold them for a small profit on eBay and quickly spent the proceeds on an early Fireblade, much more satisfactory.
Sorry about the video quality but technology has come on in leaps and bounds in the last 10 years.
Approx 2:30 Mins
An early excursion to Cadwell Park for a track day. Bike is a 59 Viper (350cc) which I have owned since 1974. A little slow for track use having to change down to third to go up the hill at Coppice, good fun all the same.
Same excuse for video quality as before.
Approx 10 Mins
A year on and we are back at Cadwell and on slightly (!) more suitable bikes.
Video quality still not great, but getting better.
Santa Pod and Whilton Mill
Approx 7 mins
Strange bedfellows, but the video quality is much better.
Top Fuel Dragsters are LOUD
The Guy brought 3 Karts to Whilton Mill which cost 6 of us about £200 a head for the day, all in. Great value, great fun, BUT at the end of the day nobody had the strength or will to drive any more…brutal.
As an explanation, stick on beards are a bit of a tradition.
Bumpy & Museum Ride a Bike Day
Approx 12 Mins
Bumpy have a 9 acre site in Batley near Wakefield. We went for a Trial Riders lesson, none of us having done so before, as you can see we managed to capture a couple of tumbles, but not nearly all of them.
If you fancy having a go they can be contacted at http://www.bumpy.org.uk/
Open to ‘Friends of the Museum’ 2 or 3 times a year James Hewing and his staff get 10 or so Bikes out and let us ride them round the car park. To join see https://www.nationalmotorcyclemuseum.co.uk
Approx 3 Mins
Having recovered from our ordeal at Whilton Mill (above) we decided to buy a Kart and enter the OECK National Endurance Championship. 2021 will be our first year as we were Covivded off last year. We have a team of 6 (all past the age of 50 and most past 60)
Race days consist of ½hour Practice and Two 2 ½ Hour, or one 4 ½ hour race. Will see how we get on and if we want to come back in 2022.
This video is of the first try out day at Birmingham wheels on a hot summer’s day in 2020.
Kart is an Intrepid Chassis, with a 125cc Rotax Motor producing about 32hp, to say it’s nippy would be an understatement, generates significant G force in corners and takes no time at all to give you sore ribs.
Approx 7 Mins
Twice a year, VMCC Head office arranges a training day at Curborough Sprint circuit near Lichfield. Members bring their, mostly, pre war machines, for those signed up on the day to ride under safe, closed road conditions. It’s not often you get to ride a Brough, Vincent, Velocette, Scott etc in quick succession. This Video is from September 2016 and we did not let the rain spoil a good day, or the bacon butties.
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Alan Fox Coach lining.
I’m sure you’ve all seen the November 2020 VMCC Magazine (page 18) extolling the virtues and explaining how Alan Fox carries out his tank and wheel coach lining service.
Unfortunately it does not say how or where you can contact him!
For anyone working on their bikes over lockdown and winter who has the need for some coach lining on petrol tanks, oil tanks, mudguards, wheels etc. Alan Fox is the man.
He lives in Shirley, not far from our Chairman Geoff and his contact number is 07853 831594.
As can be seen from the article, his work is pretty damn good, so if you need any lining doing give him a call to discuss.