Auction early 2008
Estimate: SOLD for £12100
Chassis No: C11M19632
Norton had intended to release a revised, dedicated racing motorcycle based on the International model for the 1940 season, however, the outbreak of war in September 1939 precluded it. For the next five years Bracebridge Street was preoccupied with supplying machines to the armed forces.
The new racer, which eventually became available during 1946, featured a single overhead cam engine displacing 499cc. This was achieved with a bore and stroke of 79.62 x 100mm. The engine featured all alloy construction and hairpin valves and was housed, together with the four speed gearbox in a rolling chassis that owed much of its design to the pre war factory bikes.
The rear end of the frame utilised a plunger suspension system, whilst the front featured telescopic forks of Norton's own design bearing the trademark "Roadholder". Conical steel hubs were laced to alloy rims. Named the Manx 30M and offered alongside a 350cc model typed the 40M, the new model quickly established itself as a force to be contended with in competition and remained largely unchanged for the next two years. For the 1949 season a revised engine design was adopted featuring a double overhead cam top end. 1949 also saw the introduction of alloy conical hubs and tanks. The two models continued in this form until they were replaced by "featherbed" framed versions in 1951, the prototypes of which having competed during 1950 in the hands of the works riders.
This example, dating from 1948 has been the subject of an extensive restoration and is consequently presented to a very high standard. It is finished in the traditional black and silver livery for so long associated with Bracebridge Street's finest products.
Courtesy H&H Classic Auctions