Thursday, April 29, 2010


Manuel from Cometa Restauracions sent in these photos with a query: 'Is this a Matchless?  Did they ever use a Blackburne engine?'

A wolf in sheep's clothing...clearly the saddle tank, which looks bloated over that delicate chassis, is a later addition, meant to modernize an obsolete (by the 1940s)  but very sporty Vintage machine, with legs, so to speak.  The front brake (Enfield), gearbox (Sturmey-Archer), carburetor (Amac), and engine (Blackburne) all appear to have left the factory together.

Blackburne-engined sports bikes are rare and desirable as the engines are beautifully engineered and gave terrific performance in their day, doing well in the TT and at Brooklands.  I'm waiting for the motor and frame numbers, which will prove definitively if the engine is a racer, and the chassis is what it appears to be.

But I leave it open to you to suggest...what is the make of this mystery machine?