What to Buy?

I’m surprised lightweight vintage motorcycles are so cheap in Britain. You can still pick up a restored 2-Stroke for under £1500. They steadily appreciate in value though, so now’s a good time to buy.

There’s plenty written about bigger vintage bikes and the more common marques. My personal interest is unusual smaller motorcycles, so that’s what I’ll focus on. Though my own collection may be too odd to give a precise illustration of what’s for sale generally, it should give you an idea of the range of motorcycles, mopeds, cyclemotors and autocycles you might expect to find in private ads, on ebay, or in dealers’ showrooms.


Many small 2-Stroke manufacturers used common out-sourced engines (Villiers, BMA, Sachs, etc). Even though the motorcycles themselves may be rare, their engine spares would be easier to find if needed. British examples include James, Excelsior, Francis Barnett, Cotton, Brockhouse Corgi, Panther 2-Strokes.
You’d expect to pay more for a 1948 Brockhouse Corgi when it has a child’s sidecar attached like this; but what a practical idea for encouraging family interest in your hobby!

If you can find a German or French machine in the UK in good running order, you’re likely to get more for your money. (Despite the rarity value here, most marques sell for more in their country of origin). You should be able to pick up a useable, attractive, restored 1950’s 125-250cc bike in good condition for under £1500. The 1958 Zundapp 201S pictured below left is a typical example.

For not much more you might be able to buy a girder-fork machine from the 1930’s, such as this rare 1935 French Genial-Lucifer, below right.

By looking at various vintage motorcycles, scooters and 3-wheelers via this magazine, I hope you’ll be inspired to take the plunge. Ride Vintage!


A free online vintage motorcycle magazine with a quirky look at vintage oddities. Please send our website address to your friends: http://www.Ridevintage.com

Published in: on May 25, 2007 at 4:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

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