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 Wacky 50

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Trevor Amos



Number of posts : 858
Registration date : 2010-08-13

PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Wed Sep 14, 2016 11:06 pm

Ned,
With the exception of the red telegram bikes scurrying around, my first real encounter with a bantam was in the paddock at Silverstone. My father used to man a program stall at Bemsee meetings so had a pass to access to the inner circuit. He was also an acquaintance of Bill Boddice, the famous sidecar exponent, and it was his son Mick that was riding a mist- green, plunger framed bantam around the paddock. I remember being in awe of, and terribly envious of his being able to enjoy that freedom at such a young age. Perhaps from this encounter there was some sub-conscious message implanted that it must be a bantam that would be associated with racing?

Cheers,Trevor
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Thu Oct 13, 2016 7:32 pm



Couldn`t understand why my Bantam D1 wasn`t handling right, then it finally dawned on me!

Trevor
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john bass

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PostSubject: Reminds me ...   Sun Oct 16, 2016 4:21 am

That pic of a decrepit Bantam front wheel reminds of an ancient fireman in the volunteer fire service at Epping.

In those early 60´s days there seemed to be quite a lot of small fires -- haystacks and so on -- and we´d hear the fire alarm siren sound and then hear the Bantam churning in bottom gear up the hill (very steep) from Epping Station where the fireman worked part-time. I was working during the summer of ´63 as a motorbike mechanic for Sam Flack. Len Edney (grasstracker) and I warned the fireman that one day his rusty rims would be the death of him... Well, he was lucky. We heard him coming up the hill, then an almighty bang came when he was about 400 yards from Flack´s garage. Len went out on a customer´s Matchless, picked up our dazed fireman and at the old chap´s insistence took him to the fire station. I collected the Bantam and took it into Flack´s garage. Len came back and said the Fireman, as he boarded the fire engine, had requested we find a second hand tyre and tube... I spoke to Sam about it and being the gentleman Sam was he said for us to find a couple good Bantam wheeels, otherwise zhey´d have to be new ones and fit new tubes and tyres. When the old chap came back he was amazed to see his Bantam had new wheels and looked almost respdectably clean
. He asked how much and Sam asked how much he had in his pocket. The old chap handed over 15shilling & 6pence and Sam solemnly gave him 7 and ninepence change.

They were known as the Good Old Days -- I wonder why???

Cheers!
JayBee....
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Trevor Amos



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Registration date : 2010-08-13

PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Sun Oct 16, 2016 8:09 pm

John,
That is a lovely, heart warming tale from a time when immediate personal interrelations were taken as normal. I fear today we are all of us far more insular and media and personality driven to the point of obsession. The good old days when strangers interacted and were mutually respectful and as kids were out all day long finding adventure every where, and our parents were never concerned by that strange man who might have been lurking. Trouble is John, you have to live to our ages to remember the `good old days`, assuming we haven't succumbed to dementia then every memory is from the old days!

Cheers, John
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john bass

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PostSubject: Thanks Trevor...   Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:14 am

Thanks Trevor,
Monday 17th Oct -- just deleted a load of rheumatic rhetoric of yesterday evening....

Saw the Superbikes yesterday  morning on telly and it was exciting. The Ducati in the hands of Chett Davis or is it Davies? is certainly getting back its olds glory and he is some rider and what the deauce is Nicky Haydon doing back in WSB -- also on a Ducati finishing a goodly 4th ?

Must find a pic of a Wacky motorsikkel somehow !!

Cheers!

John-Boy.....?
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Sun Oct 30, 2016 11:17 pm



I bet that outcome didn`t feature in the pre-race planning!
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john bass

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PostSubject: Weird not wacky...   Thu Nov 03, 2016 4:39 am

Weird --!!!??

Cheers!
JayBee...
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john bass

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PostSubject: No -- it is tsill Wacky    Fri Nov 04, 2016 5:20 am

No -- it is still Wacky!

Fantastic camera work....

At first I thought it was a banking sidecar outfit where the sidecare wheel does the leaning. But the number plate seems at odds with the front wheel & obviously the forks have partially parted company with the frame -- or....???

I passengered twice: once on the grass for Joe Wheeler, Ilford MCC, at Newmarket and we flipped. Joe broke his pelvis and I had the front brake lever in my stomach -- no real damage just a bloody hole -- (next year ball-end levers rule came in...) and with Derek York at Boreham where I was scared out of my wits ....

It is truly amazing at how much the girder forks deflect without breaking and I still wonder why I volunteered....

.....and why anyone wants to be a sidecar passenger....

Thanks Trevor!
Cheers!
John-Boy --- Eyoop! who´s kidding who....
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Mon Nov 28, 2016 12:54 am



Time for another image for the Wacky files, and isn`t this a remarkable one!
It would seem that the race number was a portent of what was to follow with the weather. A pin sharp focus of dramatic intensity, but what on earth was he doing racing in such awful conditions, but it did give us this fantastic picture?

Trevor
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john bass

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PostSubject: The REAL McCoy!   Wed Nov 30, 2016 5:19 am

Thanks Trevor! That´s reality! and of course, truly wacky!

I did it -- several times -- with worn out tyres it is greatest fun an I..t can ever have.

Have you heard of -- or seen -- the Böhmerland with 4 on board? If you haven´t I shall send pics thro´post ...... I have only just got "Old Bike"-- Australasia and have yet to read the article.
OLD bIKE also has some more pics and info on the Welsh Bantam...

The Böhmerland solo is not so extraordinary except that there is only one saddle for 4 passengers and the top of the engine is exposed between the saddle and the petrol tank such that if the driver slips forward the rockers could do him considerale damage to certain vital organs.

Anything out of Bohemia has to be wacky anyway.

Cheers
JayBee....
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Wed Nov 30, 2016 7:10 am



I hope this is the machine you had in mind John, have to confess this is another marque that I had no knowledge of, but it is certainly an unusual machine being capable of carrying 4 adults! I was thrown a little at first by the cast alloy wheels thinking that they were a modern addition but no they are genuine period items, seems its all been done before! Strangely, the more I look at it the more futuristic it seems, or is it just me?
Thank you for bringing the Bohmerland to our attention and for its rightful placement in the Wacky files.

Cheers, Trevor
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john bass

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PostSubject: Right on Trevor....   Thu Dec 01, 2016 4:09 am

Right on Trevor...!

Several pics in "Old Bike " Australasia (no date -- issue no.61) did not show the long seat -- only one for the driver ('pilot' to the Bohemians) -- (the wheelbase in your pic is also much longer...) and there was not that which looked like a 'private-parts protector` sticking up at the front of the long seat. I agree the  cast alloy wheels are definitely before their time.Also mentioned was that the engine had overhead camshaft which must have been revolutionary too,  in 1923....

There´s also the bit  -- I mentioned -- about the Walsh Bantam. Having read it since last posting I came across the bit where the engine would rev to 9000 and when the float level  was raised a !/4" (using a retard-advance lever on the bars) the engine would rev to 12000rpm ....

The writer admits not knowing what the max speed was...?! and in the previous Bill Lomas - Welsh article it was stated they didn´t know the max revs -- only that it revved on and on...

Perhaps the rev counter was fitted much later than Bill´s visit....

The picture you show of the Böhmerland is much more impressive than that in the Old Bike article. I guess that in those
Twenties days it was a matter of transporting as many as possible in one go which was why sidecars were so popular in the Good Old Days.

Cheers!

John-Boy...
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Sat Dec 24, 2016 9:57 am



In a bid to reduce the number of Christmas drink dive incidents the local police have instituted this novel form of instant justice. You have been warned, you could be targeted!

Christmas cheer from yours truly?
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Ned

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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Sat Dec 24, 2016 11:15 am

That's mental. Imagine trying to drive that back to the nick with a drunk on-board who didn't want to go !
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Mon Jan 02, 2017 4:50 am



As its the start of a new year I thought we might begin with a distraction from just normal Wackies, don`t know about you guys but G oo gle seems to be, er, expanding?

Have a good one!  trevor
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Sun Jan 15, 2017 10:50 pm



As a couple of weeks have slipped by I thought we might have a new wacky, mind you I shall be sad to say good by to that lovely trio!
The rather more prosaic offering today is the  sort of sight that was not unfamiliar back in the day. The car looks a bit like it was 30s/40s, a Morris eight perhaps but I`m no motoring expert, however the thing is jam packed with stuff both in and out with a bike on the back and inside. Gives a whole new definition to motor home!

cheers, Trevor
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Edward Pickering

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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:19 am

Courtesy Of John Colter.

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Jimmie



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Tue Jan 17, 2017 7:47 am


My good friend and former road racer Larry Devlin, identifies the chap with the loaded car as S A (Sven Aage) Sorensen from Sweden who rode Excelsiors (often ex-works) pre WW2. He was also a hugely talented unicycle rider.

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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Tue Jan 17, 2017 9:37 am

Thanks Jimmie, it is just incredible that some one can identify the guy posing on his car, your information fits very well with the evidence from the picture, please convey all of our thanks to your friend. I`ll do some follow up internet work on that name and machines he competed on.

Thanks also to John for using the good offices of Eddie to facilitate the posting of that cracking, pin sharp picture, pity about the desecration of a fine Indian motor cycle to make that weird railways contraption. But it is both weird and Wacky, great!
It just goes to show that the Wacky files can reach places the others can`t!
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John Colter



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Tue Jan 17, 2017 6:03 pm

On the American railcar using the "Indian" motorcycle, I was astonished by the braking system. I doubt that it would slow the contraption significantly. It seems to be a case of stomp, hope, and at the last minute, jump for your life!
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Tue Jan 17, 2017 8:58 pm



Jimmie, I have discovered a bit more information about Sven Aage Sornsen, apparently the picture I posted of him posing with the car, was taken by his wife, who also travelled in the car, when they were on their way home from the IoM, where on earth did she sit? The car was a Standard Eight apparently, and without the counter balance weight of the wheels up front, the car was un-drivable! Can you imagine the reaction of the police patrol seeing that lot on the motor ways of today. In the picture he is seen astride the Excelsior.

John, your description of the braking of that rail-car thing perfectly sums up the braking of my early Bantam, the hairpin at Cadwell was always a particularly interesting challenge for the D7 brake. I also enjoyed the shaped hand grips at either end of the frame, can`t see anyone being able to man handle that thing in a hurry.

Thanks to you both, Trevor
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larryd



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PostSubject: Wacky 50   Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:15 am

Trevor (and Jimmie) - the second photo is of Sven Aage on the ultimate works Excelsior - the 4 valve pushrod twin carb 250 single, the "Mechanical Marvel". The gent in the dark jacket is Australian Alan Bruce, who was Excelsior team manager. Sven had very good Excelsior connections!!

Wink
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Trevor Amos



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Wed Jan 18, 2017 7:49 am



Hello Larry, thank you for all of the information you have provided to illuminate this Wacky topic. Prior to this I had little knowledge of the early racing Excelsior's and none at all about Sven. From what I have discovered he seems to be a motorcycling polymath proving to be successful in all forms of competition, even peddling on one wheel!  
The extra picture was taken in Douglas on the Island and is bizarrely unorthodox. One question I must ask is, how do you know of this Scandinavian racer?

Cheers, Trevor
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Jimmie



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PostSubject: Re: Wacky 50   Wed Jan 18, 2017 8:01 am

Anyone spot a wing mirror?
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larryd



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PostSubject: Wacky 50   Wed Jan 18, 2017 10:32 am

Trevor, I am obsessed with (especially) pre-War roadracing, to the point of "anorakness" lol!
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