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  1. #21
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    Unfortunately Ajays and Matchboxes were a bit thin on the ground. There was one A.J.S. twin but that was all. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the field was largely comprised of Nortons, Triumphs, Beesas and combinations thereof.

    The 59 Club was around to dish out awards at the end of the day for Best Classic, Best Modern and Best Custom, though I'm not sure of the criteria for each award because I thought that all cafe racers were customs of a sort.


    Best Modern went to the Norzuki, a Suzuki four in a Featherbed frame


    Best Custom went to this, which is apparently a Triton so I presume the rather untraditional triple is from a Triumph


    But this is what does it for me - the Best Classic, a 1959 B.S.A. 650c.c.


    Meanwhile, this beautiful, period-perfect Triton was given special mention since it had come over from the Channel Islands
    Last edited by Nigel Incubator-Jones; 20-09-17 at 07:55 PM.

  2. #22
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    As well as the bikes, a couple of other cool motors showed up with no obvious connection to the event.


    You don't see too many of these around - 1978 Ford Transit Mk. I with motorhome body by Caravans International


    Cool '70 Chevelle. I don't normally like vanity plates, but this one was quite cool.

    Anyway, once all the prizes had been given, the event came to a close and it was time to saddle up...



    ...and bugger off, thus:






  3. #23
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    Might as well have an update while I've got a minute. I had the Big O Vintage Festival at the beginning of July, which had a few customs and '50s classics, plus a strong display from the Detonators trad rod 'n' kustom club. Since it was a local event, I'd photographed a lot of the cars several times before, so I'll just post a small selection of the more unusual/lesser-seen cars here...


    ...but first, I can't help posting this shot from before the parade into the show, which could conceivably date from 1962. Well, maybe a bit later, taking into account the Hillman's scruffiness.




    Avast! 'Tis Queen Ann's Revenge! Mk. I Transit is in the best tradition of British custom vans, but the murals were only dated 2015.


    '34 Ford which is also owned by pirates


    Here's a VW Buggy that was completely unfamiliar to me - it's a Fibrefab Rat (or RAT?)

  4. #24
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    The day after the Big O was the Wrotham Steam Rally, which may well have to be covered over several posts. I think it's worth a comparison with the Bromley Pageant. With Bromley, you pay £12 to exhibit your car in advance, spend ages queueing, and get to see some nice classics but not much in the way of variety, while half the show is given to yoof with Focuses and Subarus, and you don't even get a programme or arena entertainment (they did have an arena, but it wasn't entertaining). On the other hand, with Wrotham, you pay nothing to exhibit your car in advance - if you turn up on the day to show then you have to pay £7 towards a local cause - and you get a free programme. The show is perhaps ten times smaller than Bromley, but it's ten times superior in terms of variety and quality. I noted a Nissan Micra and a PT Cruiser as imposters to the show, but absolutely everything else was worthy of being there. What's more, it wasn't just restricted to '50s/'60s/'70s cars like Bromley largely was; a large proportion of the show comprised motorbikes, pre-war cars, commercial vehicles, military vehicles, tractors and, of course, a few titans of steam.

    Despite this, Bromley manages to profit from its greed and laziness, whereas Wrotham had to go from two days to one for this year because it was struggling to break even.

    I'll begin with a general look at the classics before posting specifically on vintage cars, commercials, Yanks 'n' rods, etc...


    Spotted this Austin 1/2-Ton motorhome in the car park


    Bond Minicar sat alongside a trio of Bugs


    1960 Fairthorpe Electron was one of the many now-obscure low-volume sports cars being cobbled together in the '50s and early '60s


    Weird Ford Transit


    Another weird motorhome, this time a Morris Marina paying tribute to Elvis! Very rock 'n' roll. Speaking of Elvis tribute cars, whatever happened to the 'Dedication' Cadillac?


    The Ford Pop - before becoming one of the most popular bases for British hot rods, it was, of course, one of the most popular bases for British sports specials... and this. The Siva Edwardian appeared in the 1960s and used Pop underpinnings with a body emulating Edwardian elegance. Should be familiar to sci-fi fans as Dr. Who's Bessie.

    I suppose the Siva is what an American might call a 'neo-classic', which allows me to draw what I think is an interesting comparison between two cultures. While we were building these, and latterly kit cars like the N.G. and others in a similar vein, the American idea of a neo-classic was an Excalibur or Clenet, which were massively expensive and not kits, although not necessarily more convincing than the cheaper British equivalents. The same sort of idea but executed very differently - at least until the Beauford came along. Just thought that was worth commenting on. I quite like the Siva.


    A55 Mk. II Cambridge with a bit of character


    Bedford CA Dormobile Debonair


    The Morris PV is interesting enough for its rarity, but why's this one wearing Camaro wheels? Because it's running a Camaro engine, of course.


    There's always time for a Mk. II


    Stock car-themed '55 Standard Ten looks fun

    More later.
    Last edited by Nigel Incubator-Jones; 21-10-17 at 05:04 PM.

  5. #25
    Might as well be part of the furniture.
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    Likin that Stude pickup behind the satin black 34 with the parrot; and I usually dont like 'patina'ed' cars atall. Could be the Cragar GTs and the Velocette dealer lettering...

  6. #26
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    Glad you like the Stude, John, 'cos there's a photo of it to come.

    Now it's taken me much longer than it should have done, but I'm ready to feature some of the stand-out bikes from Wrotham. The first few aren't exactly cool, but they are very unusual so that makes them worthy of inclusion to me.


    1961 Velocette Viceroy


    1957 Zündapp 201S


    The Zündapp hailed from Nuremberg, as does this 1956 T.W.N. Cornet. T.W.N. stands for Triumph Werke Nuremberg and was completely separate from British Triumphs, but both companies were founded by the same man, Siegfried Bettmann. German Bettmann founded Triumph Cycle Co. in Coventry in 1886 and founded another Triumph in Nuremberg in 1896. The German company later changed its name to avoid confusion.


    1955 Vincent Black Prince (with Wessex sidecar) is an exceptionally rare machine, being one of only 129 made. Advertised as a 'Gentleman's touring machine', I'm sure it was more sophisticated than the Black Shadow but I can see why it wasn't so successful nor so fondly recalled.


    Onto the proper cool stuff now, and here's a 1952 Vincent Comet for contrast with the Black Prince


    I understand Mr. Rosco has a certain fondness for Matchless singles, so here's a 350c.c. G5 model from 1960
    Last edited by Nigel Incubator-Jones; 11-11-17 at 02:03 PM.

  7. #27
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    Military provenance always adds interest, so here's a 1964 Triumph TRW 500...


    ...and a 1943 Royal Enfield WD/CO wearing the markings of the 43rd Reconnaissance Regiment and 43rd Wessex Infantry Division


    I always thought Panther made pretty attractive bikes. This is a 1959 model.




    Pair o' purty Triumphs, one's a Tiger 110 (obviously) and I think the other's a TR5 Trophy, both c.1954


    I'll end with this one, because I do love my vintage machinery, so here's a 1923 Douglas for you.

  8. #28
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    Think I've got time now to post a selection of military vehicles from across the ages, which seems appropriate as a marker of Armistice Day, though it didn't cross my mind when I was uploading the photos.




    I think the Second World War is perhaps the most popular period for military vehicle enthusiasts (just saying that as an outside observer) which to me makes it all the more interesting to see vehicles from other eras, like this pair of Series III Land Rovers from 1980. OWV is a three-quarter-ton utility vehicle that was sent to the MoD's Hilton depot on the 15th October 1980, though it's not known with which regiment it served. There is evidence that it served in Bosnia for a time before the 119th Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers recovery company. It moved to the R.E.M.E. 101st Battalion in 1993 before being withdrawn from service on 7th November 1997.

    Whereas OWV used a military chassis, OPP, another three-quarter-ton utility vehicle, used a civilian chassis that was plucked from the production line to meet military demand. It began service on 12th July 1980 with 7th Ulster Defence Regiment in Belfast, then served with the 39th Infantry Brigade from 1984 until being withdrawn on 27th November 1992.


    War: what is good about it? Without wishing to make light of it, it did give us the Jeep. The Willys MB was built from 1941 to '45 and was also built by Ford as the GPW, but after the war production resumed under license in France as the Hotchkiss M201, of which this is a 1960 example, which was built into the '60s and used by the French Army until 1981.




    Two examples of the forward-control Land Rover 101, which were built from 1972 to '78 and served until the late '90s


    FV432 armoured personnel carrier was produced by GKN Sankey from 1962 to '71 and has served from '63 to the present. It weighs 15 tonnes, with 12.7mm-thick armour plating and has a crew of two, with room for carrying 10 troops. The main weaponry is a 7.62mm L7A2 general-purpose machine gun, plus six smoke dischargers. Power is from a Rolls-Royce K60 multi-fuelled opposed piston engine which generates 240bhp at 3750rpm and propels the FV432 to a top speed of 32mph, returning around 3mpg.

  9. #29
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    Another variant of the FV430 series is this FV433 'Abbot' self-propelled gun, used from 1965 to '95


    While the 1950s was a period characterised by exciting Loewy designs for Studebaker, the company had other interests as well, as this REO-designed M35 2½-ton 6x6 cargo truck shows. Studebaker had a contract to build them from 1951 into the early '60s, this one dating from 1955.


    1943 G.M.C. CCKW 2½-ton 6x6 cargo truck was found behind a pub in Pewsey, Wiltshire, and was restored in 2004, immediately following which it drove to France to commemorate the 60th anniversary of D-Day. A four-litre six gives 104hp and takes it to 45mph.


    1941 Austin K2 continues to earn a living as a mobile canteen


    1955 Austin Champ


    Beautiful little 1943 Standard Light Utility

    I've still got the pre-war cars, commercial vehicles and Yanks and customs to post, but it'll probably be ages before I get the chance, so enjoy the peace and quiet in the meantime.

  10. #30
    Might as well be part of the furniture.
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    Thanks Nigel... looked like a really good day out, that's some spg if it was in service for 30 years
    Old Land Rovers ...... still got the scares from riding around (more like bouncing really) in the back of them
    Last edited by cptpugwash; 11-11-17 at 10:51 PM.

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