'Neetle' sounds good, but in fact this is the Norton 'Volkston' (pronounced Folkestone) built by the Bracebridge Street experimental department in the late 1950s as part of the programme to develop a viable four cylinder machine. Of special interest is the 'Longline' Featherbed frame, of which only five were ever built. Designed primarily for sidecar use, the bike is seen here hitched to a garden table - one of many ploys intended to confuse rival factories and the prying camera lenses of the motorcycle press. The unusual right-hand fitting is for long distance Continental testing - the conventional left-hand mounting brackets were left in situ to facilitate quick change-arounds for use on British roads.
Spot on Phil, the plant pots were the result of a later "call back" by Norton to aid stability, a clever mod as the owner could vary the amount of earth in them depending on his (or her) weight. Of the five built this one is number two's by the way.
It sure looks like a 'number two' !!
Hmmm could be a Mrs Beeton?The obvious difference would be the kitchen table instead of garden.
Yes Pete, this is really quite fascinating. The plant pot stability aids(PPSAs) were very successful for a while as a general mod, but due to diminishing sidecar sales a large number were stockpiled at the factory and later sold to Comerfords when Norton moved to Plumstead in London. Rather than sell unsold PPSAs off for scrap, Comerfords storesman Charlie Hopper came up with the idea of modifying them into shorty silencers 'for offroad use' and, I believe I'm right in saying it was Motorcycle Mechanics that later gave them the name Charlie Hopper pots in an early 'build your own' custom bike feature.
Funny how these tales get mixed up over the years, i heard the PPSAs were used by office staff ladies at Comerfords for growing flowers, mostly tulips, and when Charlie Hopper saw them he got his vision for the Charlie Hopper custom silencers we now lust for...
i was gunna say something funny but i cant top that, so i'm gunna have a bath instead..
Well make sure you wash everywhere young Robert.
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