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3rd April 2003


Royal Enfield by Mick WalkerRoyal Enfield - The Complete Story

Less satisfying than the Bantam book was Mick Walker's new one, in a similar format to the BSA title, on Royal Enfield. The name is currently prominent thanks to increasingly impressive versions, built in India and reimported, of RE's legendary Bullet singles.

Don't get me wrong - the vastly experienced Walker does a competent job on the marque. But it's been done before, and some remaining areas of interest are not looked at as thoroughly as they might have been. The USA Indian-badged versions of the Fifties, a fascinating yet less known area on which the Owners' Club have amassed data, gets just a single page and one picture.

And on the latter-day Bullets, Walker contents himself with observing that 'the basis of the long-running Indian (-built) Bullet has been the 1955 350 model with AC electrics.' This is true as far as it goes, but omits to mention that thread forms changed from the original to metric, that the Indian-built version sported a cylinder head in iron not alloy like the original, that the mudguards resembled an early Crusader's, that the carburettor replaced the original Amal first with a piston-valve Villiers model and then with a Mikuni built under license - and so on. Such details would surely have been of interest for today's Enfield-fanciers, particularly those in search of a second-hand bargain.

Steve Wilson

Royal Enfield by Mick Walker.
Published by Crowood, ISBN 1861265638, for 19.95.
Buy a copy from Amazon for 13.97


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