Author Topic: What year ?  (Read 1229 times)

Offline mark

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What year ?
« on: 13.09. 2010 03:47 »
I have avoided raising this issue for fear of sounding petty but I would like to get feedback from others. My Road Rocket was despatched from the factory in December 1954, Bacons book identifies the numbers as being 1955. I'm aware that the model year usually started in August or September of the previous year. Because 1954 is the first year of the rockets am I allowed to call mine a '54 or is it a '55 ?
Regards to all
Mark
55 road rocket




71 Norton Commando Roadster 750


Australia

Online Brian

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #1 on: 13.09. 2010 05:38 »
G'day Mark,

This always seems to be a point of discussion but for all purposes yours is a 1955 model even though it was actually built in 1954.

As I understand it (and I may well be wrong) the model season started in September. I dont know exactly why but I would imagine it would be to allow delivery time to overseas markets. Being shipped by sea I would think that it would take a couple of months for a bike to get to Australia for instance.

I dont know how this worked for the home market (UK), wether the sale of the next year models were delayed to late in the year or if they got the next models earlier than us.

Offline gold33

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #2 on: 13.09. 2010 08:29 »
G'day Mark,

Between all of us, and for our purposes, it seems to me it would best be described as a '55 (personal opinion only).
For the purposes of advertising for sale and registration in NSW it would be a '54
In NSW and unless they have changed the rules Vic, not sure about the rest, motor vehicles including bikes are recorded on build date not compliance, and in the case of older machinery date of first registration.
Most model seasons for cars are based on sales pre and post New Year as well as major annual motor shows, it gives (gave pre GFC) the importers a chance to display their new wares at shows while running out old models so that they weren't competing with newer versions with younger build dates after the change of year.
Darren
'52 Plunger

Offline Beezageezauk

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #3 on: 13.09. 2010 10:51 »
Hi Brian,

I was told that the following years models began in September for marketing reasons.

This was in preparation for the "International Motor Cycle Show" which was always held in October and where all the motorcycle manufacturers introduced their new models.

So Mark:-  Even though your bike was built in 1954 it is actually a 1955 model.

Going one step further, I have an alternator model B31 that was registered in March 1959 and I always thought of it as being a '59 model.  However, I found out that it is actually a '58 model (even though there are no differences between the two) that had been standing in a bike shop for almost a year before being sold.

Strange isn't it how we want our modern machines to be a bit newer than they really are but we would wish for our classic bikes to be a bit older.  I suppose that this is also true of the antique industry generally.  That's human nature I guess!!

Beezageezauk.     

Offline mark

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #4 on: 13.09. 2010 11:15 »
The responses are what I figured to be the case. I'd been looking for a 1954 A10 to restore for a while as that is the year I was born, there wasn' t anything around, so when this one came up I figured close enough. When I found that it was built in 1954 I figured that I had what I wanted. We can share birthdays.
Mark
55 road rocket




71 Norton Commando Roadster 750


Australia

Online trevinoz

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #5 on: 13.09. 2010 22:23 »
Mark,
          Very little difference between '54 & '55.
'54 should have underslung pilot light and no steering lock. Cowl with cut-out for lock in '55.
Long rear guard with high mount stays. No cast front engine mount lugs in '54 & early '55. Fat Armstrong shocks.
A beautiful and highly desirable machine whatever year it was built.
Any pictures?
  Trev.

Offline mark

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #6 on: 14.09. 2010 00:39 »
Here are some shots of the bike at present. Waiting on the correct head to arrive fro NZ. Lots of bits at painter and plater. Just have to source a front guard and make a decision whether I go with a 10tt9 carby or not. It should come together fairly quickly now.
Mark
55 road rocket




71 Norton Commando Roadster 750


Australia

Online trevinoz

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #7 on: 14.09. 2010 22:28 »
Looking good Mark.
For the front guard try to find a 5" blank guard and cut it to length. Knock a pair of indents into the side to clear the forks and drill for the stays.
Don't forget the reinforcing diamond shaped piece of steel which is fitted where the front stand bolt attaches.
Then go looking for a Rocket to mount on top.
Have you got a TT carby? They go for ridiculous prices. If I could get one at a reasonable price I would fit it to my '54 RR which is just a pile of parts at the moment.
Trev.

Offline mark

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #8 on: 15.09. 2010 00:05 »
Trevor I have the original front guard that has been shortened at the front so I can use it as a pattern to modify a blank and use the original fittings or Modak here in Melbourne had some made in England which look OK and will cost about $150 unplated or I could get my own made using the original as a pattern. As for the cost of the 10tt9 which I don't have. I reckon it won't be much dearer than what the rear guard ended up costing me.
Mark
55 road rocket




71 Norton Commando Roadster 750


Australia

Offline wilko

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #9 on: 15.09. 2010 00:19 »
I'd like to see anyone try to knock some indents into there guards! Don't! It wont work and you will just be left with a distorted guard.

Online trevinoz

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Re: What year ?
« Reply #10 on: 17.09. 2010 01:02 »
Wilko,
           I have guards with the indents knocked in. They are not distorted.
I suppose it depends on the skill of the "knocker"
I didn't say "knockers".
Trev.