Old mopeds - Oude brommers

Oudebrommers (Dutch for “old mopeds”) is a neat informative site about mopeds.

In the days that cars and even motorcycles were too expensive for the common man, mopeds were very popular in Holland. It was faster then a bicycle and you didn’t need a drivers licence… In the 60’s, 1 out of 3 families had a moped.
This site (in Dutch) offers lots of photo’s, brochure scans, technical data and information on the subject.

Did you know that MIELE, the famous German brand of domestic (and industrial) appliances, made mopeds during the 1930 – 1960 era? In the fifties Miele was even one of the largest producers of light motorcycles in Germany.

For the non Dutch speaking: check out the photo’s and brochures (in alphabetical order).

All pictures: www.oudebrommers.nl


Pin ups & vintage Harley's

If you caught yourself, wondering what model and year the bikes are ... and you're not staring at the girls.You definitely are a true motorcycle maniac.

Via: caimag.com


Velorex Oskar, the reversed trike

Spotted at MOTO RETRO Aarschot, Belgium 6.12.2009

Velorex (Czechoslovakia) also known for their sidecars, made this strange 3 wheeled microcar from the 1950s until 1971. It was developed as a car for the crippled and disabled.

- Motorcycle engine Jawa 250, two-stroked, one cylinder, forced air cooling, 248.5 cm³, 9 HP with 4,250 rpm,
- Fuel consumption: 3.6 l/100 km,
- Weight: 205 kg unloaded, max 395 kg,
- Length 3.25 m, width 1.38 m, height 1.25 m. At least one of the trike models with a roof...

Photo: Motorcycle 74
More info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velorex

Dutch projectgroup Motorcycle Mobility for Disabled

Motorcycling with a physical handicap is certainly not an invention of the project group Motorcycle Mobility for the Disabled. This phenomenon probably exists just as long as motorcycling itself. However, until a few years ago, all these initiatives were on a individual base. The fact that nowadays a well structured organisation helps and accompanies handicapped people with procedures and techniques, is new and unique in Europe for sure! This system is a route along different sections of the project group ‘Motor Mobiliteit voor Gehandicapten’.

It all started with a request from a physical handicapped motorcyclist. He asked Rob Janssen to use one of his well-known drag-racing techniques. With that particularly technique he was able to ride a motorcycle again. The idea succeeded and automatically more requests followed. This way the project started and slowly the true problems and needs became clear; a lack of rules and guidelines, a shortage of driving-schools and accompany, and no specific and approved adaptations or expedients. But above all that, no real recognition for the fact that a lot of physical handicapped people truly wished to take part of traffic on a motorcycle, in spite of their handicap! The project group Motorcycle Mobility for the Disabled wants to accompany people with functional limitations through the necessary procedures to eventually obtain their driving-license. Solutions are offered for many technical an procedural problems that can exist along the way. Because of the gained experience and continuously technical developments, the possibilities become more and more extended. Slowly, but surely the limitations for the people concerned change.
During the first prudent presentation at the Automotorsport event in Zuidlaren in January 1995, Rob Janssen and the CBR came into contact with each other.
Short after that, they both concluded that there were no possibilities to follow a training-course at a licensed training-school for adapted motorcycling. That’s why the Traffic Education Centre Koops was asked to get involved in the project, and specially adapted motorcycles were build. Several people with missing or paralysed limbs entered the project, and the needs for special prosthesis and orthosis became clear. This problem was solved by the knowledge and expertise of orthopaedic centre Stel Orthopaedic Vries. Since than, the fundament of the project group ‘Motor Mobiliteit voor Gehandicapten’ was a fact. It became a well organised cooperation between these four individual companies. The design company MMD Vormgeving created an appropriate face for the project. Also new contacts existed with the RDW Centrum voor Voertuigtechniek en Informatie, the handicapped advisers of the Advise- en Demoteam, rehabilitation centres and medical specialists. The appreciation from important authorities such as KNMV, BOVAG, ANWB, 3VO, ROV and MAG is very important for the functioning of the project group. On December the 13th 1995, the project was presented to the press and public at the TT-circuit Press Centre in Assen.
The enthusiastic reaction of the media resulted in a lot of positive publicity. All the publicity resulted in many new entered candidates. The first successful candidate was Edwin Vester. He obtained his driving-license on may the 2nd of 1996. Meanwhile we can say that hundreds of motorcycling enthusiasts are (back) on the road again, because of the project group.
‘The snowball’ is rolling and because of a growing attention for the project, several developments followed each other rapidly. Even today there are limits to what the project can offer. Not everything is manageable, because an old rule is still handled…..only when we can realize it on a save and responsible way…….But the snowball is rolling and it can’t be stopped anymore.

More info: http://www.mmvg.nl/

1908 progenitor of the scooter

"Auto- Fauteuil" 1908 model “Tour” 490cc watercooled monocilinder frame

The Chair Car is viewed as one of the progenitors of the scooter.

It was produced by the firm Georges Gauthier and Cie. The company was located at 23 Quai Henri-Chavigny in Blois, in the Loir-et-Cher. Production began in 1902, originally with different types of Dion Bouton engines. Around 1906 the machine had obtained its final form and was then fitted with its own type Gauthier block, that option could be provided by solenoid or battery-coil ignition.
There was also the choice between different types of engines, with or without water cooling. Production ended in the early 20's.
In the brochure the company was immediately clear that the Auto-chair was not a motorcycle nor a car, but a light car on two wheels that the benefits of both car and motorcycle united in itself, without the disadvantages of having two vehicles.
(The author here was wisely not much further.)
The machine was designed for people from a particular social group: castle owners, doctors, notaries, lawyers and priests were specifically mentioned.
These were, says the brochure, a certain dignity in people who had their dress radiate.
That dignity was on a regular motorcycle in jeopardy?
Technically, the Auto-chair very interesting: the low seating position was obtained by applying small wheels, the seat was actually very comfortable suspension and the suspension was provided by two coil springs.
The machine was started with a crank and had a clutch, operated by the right handle.
The exhaust cared if necessary the heating rate and the machine was very ahead of his time with the centerstand mounted.
While the vehicle after the first World technically sound dated, early 20's gave the manufacturer still has all his 20 years supplied Auto-Chairs could modernize.
This is an unusual veteran older restoration and has a Dutch registration.

Pictures & text : yesterdays.nl

Vintage oil company roadmaps

Remember the days without GPS on board... unfolding the roadmap in the middle of nowhere.
A nice collection of oil company (and other) roadmaps.
Source: http://www.mapsofpa.com/roadoil.htm

Norton 961 Cafe racer

Contemporary manufacturers nowadays add cafe racers to their line of models and Norton is no exception. Although the brand has a historical link with "cafe racing".
Soon available in Europe.


caferacer coffee stop

Not really a biker hangout I guess, however this coffeebar has a very cool logo.
Quite ecclectic bar design: Bauhaus as a name - Bauhaus was a 1930's German architecture style and school and as a logo a cool graphic of a cafe racer.
So when thirsty in Seattle...

Photo source: http://blog.jollyrogersmotorcycleclub.com/

Royal Enfield military sidecar

Blog about Royal Enfield motorcycles with interesting photo's and information.


Voltra, E-bike concept by Dan Anderson

As we wrote in last week's article about the ECOS Harbinger, one of the best things about electric vehicles is that they're much simpler in many ways than a petrol vehicle to build. Freed from the necessities of fuel tanks, airboxes, cooling systems, exhausts and the bulky combustion motor itself, designers are going to be able to start with a pretty blank sheet when it comes to designing tomorrow's electric motorcycles. Take the Voltra, a design study by Aussie student Dan Anderson - with its low-slung, bulldog looks, a seat unit that looks like it's floating on air, detachable dash and an engine-mounted swingarm pivot. It's a filthy sexy bike - and yet unlike anything we've seen before; a blue-sky reinvention of the motorcycle based on the new rules the electric age is going to bring in.
Electric transport has captured the imaginations of the eco-minded among us, but if you're going to sell electric motorcycles in any decent numbers, you're going to have to give them a serious injection of desirability.
Performance in itself can make a bike desirable, but electrics won't be able to offer the stratospheric power-to-weight ratios of modern sportsbikes until battery technology has taken another few strides forward. And while electric will offer immediate practicality in a commuting sense, motorcycles are still viewed as toys by most western consumers, so they'll need to be able to comfortably run a 600km day before most riders will see them as reasonable options for sporty scratching.
But one thing they'll certainly be able to compete on is design. Removing all the dirty, complicated trimmings that a combustion engine requires can open the door for a range of design options the bike world has simply never seen before. In performance terms, mass centralization and targeted mass distribution will take huge leaps forward, which should pave the way for sensational handling, but there's every chance that first- and second-generation electrics will be able to sell themselves on looks alone.
Dan Anderson's Voltra is a great example of the kind of electric that's going to start light bulbs going off in the minds and loins of even the staunchest petrolheads. From any angle, this thing is absolutely stunning.
Without a fuel tank, Anderson was free to bolt the entire subframe to the front end of the bike, leaving the seat and tail unit floating in air above the rear wheel, and making the sharply angled rear shock uniquely accessible through the gaping space in front of the seat.
The engine drives directly to the front sprocket, and its casing appears to rotate as the swingarm pivot. The "tank"-mounted dash is removable, doubling as the bike's ignition key and storing a decent range of information - as well as offering control over selectable power modes that let you choose between giggles and mileage at the throttle.
The batteries, the bulkiest part of any electric, are slung low and forward in the bike's belly, and are kept out of sight by a beefy plastic side fairing - which begs the question, what would you call this thing? With no front fairing, it's not a sportsbike - but then, despite the sharp front headlight unit, with those plastic side covers it's not a naked or a streetfighter.
Whatever label you'd put on it, this is one clean design and one hot ride that would turn heads at any bike meet. We applaud Dan's efforts on this bike and hope he gets a chance to build it one day - for the moment it's just his final year thesis project in an Industrial Design degree. But it's eminently buildable, and a great example of what the electric era might bring to bike design. Bring it on!

Text & photo's: GIZMAG / Loz Blain
Source: http://www.gizmag.com/voltra-sexy-electric-motorcycle/13484/