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10th August 2007

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Bullets in Blockley; Jampots in Plumstead. Win a Vin or fit clever coils. Our fearless Typing Person endures Press Release Hell to tell you what's going on in the world of the classic motorcycle...

VMCC Winners

Doreen Tweed of County Antrim had a pleasant surprise this summer - she won the top prize in the VMCC's raffle and was presented with this smart 1960 BSA A10 by the club's CEO, James Hewing. The VMCC raffle is open to all, whether you're a member of that club or not, so it's worth keeping an eye open for tickets at shows and jumbles. Doreen Tweed (right) and James Hewing. You can make up your own caption to this photo... 1952 Vincent Comet

The first prize in the next draw is a 1952 Vincent Comet. Tickets cost just a quid apiece and the odds are much better than on the National Lottery… plus there are a selection of other prizes including a snazzy crash hat and a VacBag.

You can order tickets from 01283 540557 or, and this draw will be made on the 21st December 2007.

Ah, Bill Vincent and The Comets. I used to like them. 1960 BSA A10


Going (Jam)Potty in Plumstead

The AJS and Matchless Club have organised a day to remember at The Royal Arsenal in Woolwich, London SE18 on Sunday 9th September 2007.

Together with Greenwich Council, Greenwich Heritage Centre, the London Development Agency and the Royal Artillery Museum, the club will host a special gathering of AMC (Associated Motor Cycles) vehicles at the Firepower museum, this in the memory of production at the AMC factory in Plumstead.

The event will include representations of all the clubs involved with AMC vehicles, plus demonstrations of racing bikes, an autojumble and a ride-out to unveil a plaque at the site of the old factory on Maxey Road.

The programme starts at 10am on Sunday 9th September at the Firepower Museum, and entry is free of charge


Cotswolds Awash With Bullets After The Floods

Heavy flooding the previous weekend failed to deter crowds of current and prospective Royal Enfield enthusiasts from flocking to Blockley for the company's annual Open Weekend last month. In spite of dire weather forecasts, the sun shone over both days, during the course of which approximately 1750 people visited the headquarters of the Royal Enfield's UK distributors, located near the Cotswold village of Blockley, to see the latest generation of Bullet motorcycles.

A goodly proportion of those visitors were RealClassic readers (judging by the numbers of HobNobs consumed!), and the RC Crew enjoyed the first weekend of the summer where the tent was needed to protect delicate heads from too much sunshine! Magazine editor Frank Westworth awarded two concours prizes, one of each day, for the Best Royal Enfield ridden to the event, and we expect to feature those intriguing machines in future. Frank also took something rather special home with him - more of that in the September issue of the magazine…

Most visitors made a bee-line for the Hobnob Tent...

'Visitor numbers were around 10% up on last year, which reflects the increased sales we've seen in 2007,' comments Sales Director Ben Matthews. 'People travelled from Devon to Derbyshire to take advantage of the free test rides on offer, including Royal Enfield's Spanish distributor who wanted to try our UK-developed Clubman cafe racer.'

The Severn Advanced Motorcyclists were kept busy as they accompanied 200 test rides over the weekend, while sidecar rides proved equally popular, particularly for riders' partners and offspring, in the new Electra Classic/Watsonian GP outfit.

The Open Weekend presents a unique opportunity for enthusiasts to visit the factory from which Royal Enfield bikes are distributed in the UK and where Watsonian sidecars continue to be built, 95 years after the business was founded. Visitors had open access to the factory, where staff were on hand to explain the work in progress on various sidecars and Royal Enfield specials. A wide variety of genuine factory-approved performance and styling accessories were on show alongside the current range of Royal Enfield motorcycles, offering plenty of scope for customising.

Once again the Shipston-on-Stour Sea Scouts worked tirelessly to provide great quality sensibly priced home-made food (including a cracking keema curry!) to all the staff and guests, raising much-needed funds in the process. Everyone was clearly in a good mood, because over £350 was collected for the County Air Ambulance Trust during the Open Weekend.

The Third Annual Royal Enfield Open Day will be on Sat/Sun 26th and 27th July 2008.

Details from Watsonian-Squire on 01386 700907 or see

Henfield stuff on

New Guide To Old Bikes

We'll have a full review for your in a wee while, but 'Classic Motorcycling: A Guide for the 21st Century' by Rex Bunn is now available in good bookshops and via This is a 'different and fascinating new look at classic motorcycling with an international flavour - sure to appeal to all owners of classic bikes.'

It includes chapters on: why are classic bikes so popular; choosing the right classic bike; where and how to buy your first classic bike; licensing, registration and insurance; bonding with your bike; global resources for classic motorcycles; riding, survival and shibboleths; from waders to Kevlar; maintenance at home and on the road; wherever your classic bike takes you; classic motorcycle survival; the bonnie index consumer price index for classic bikes; improving perfection - projects for any classic, and some thoughts for the road.

The 280-page book costs £14.95 plus postage, ISBN 978-0-9547912-8-5.


As easy as riding over a log.Race Retro Show Dates

Here's an early date for your 2008 diary; the Race Retro show will return to Stoneleigh on March 14th to 16th. The organisers of this growing historic motorsport and motorcycle exhibition have signed a new three year deal with the venue and are already deep into planning the 2008 event.

Race Retro 2008 will include over 400 exhibitors from the historic motorsport industry, representing manufacturers, restorers, preparation specialists, event and series organisers, motorsport art, memorabilia and books, the prestigious Bonhams motorsport auction, live rally cars, autotests, historic kart racing and motorcycle action in the park.

Over 22,000 people attended the show in 2007, and we'll have more details of what to expect in 2008 as soon as they're announced. If you can't wait, contact 01367 250001.

The chap in the purple jumper couldn't hide his joy that he was the first in line for the Hobnobs...


Ross Jumble Get Bigger & Better!

The South Midlands autojumble keeps getting bigger - so much so that organiser John Harding plans to add an extra event in the middle of the season in 2008. The Ross on Wye Livestock Centre will be bustling as usual on Saturday September 22nd this autumn. Next year it looks as if another date in June or July will join the regular slot of Easter Saturday - giving everyone in Wales and the west three chances to enjoy a great jumble in a convenient location (and at an extremely reasonably price, may we say…!).

The jumble on Sept 22nd 2007 kicks off at 10am - if you'd like to clear out some jumble then call 01989 750731 to book a stand.


Cute Coils

Here's some clever electrickery for Britbikes owners who are looking for reliable and easy starting. Electronic ignitions systems as fitted to British twins energise both coils and plugs at the same time, one being fired on the exhaust stroke. This means that a single coil with two HT leads can be used to save space and weight -- and in many applications it looks much neater.

These twin output coils have been fitted to Japanese twins and fours for a long time and are now available for British bikes fitted with points or electronic ignition. The coils come with a mounting kit and wiring.

Paul Goff has now added these to his range and they cost £26.50 plus delivery from or call 01494 868218 if you'd like more information.

It's a coil. With two outputs.


I'm Eighteen, with a Bullet...


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