Australian Motorcycles

Today in Motorcycle History

Firth Bros

Firth Bros., of Richmond, Melbourne manufactured the Firth motorcycle in 1914-1915 using a V-twin of their own design mounted in a Chater-Lea chassis.

The firm also built Maplestone forks (c.1914-1920), and built complete engines.

From 1922 until about 1928 they built the Invincible-JAP for Turner Bros. These were fitted with a Burman Gearbox, forks described as an "Excelsior/Henderson copy", and saddle tanks from Edwards Brothers. Engines were JAP singles and V-twins of various capacity, the most common apparently being the 770cc version.


Firth Bros first commenced business as precision engineers in 1915 at Richmond, and shortly after were called on by the Government to manufacture time fuses for hand grenade and other wartime small explosives.

When hostilities ceased the firm turned to the manufacture of motor car engine parts, and, in 1921, to the only complete motor cycle made in this country - the "Monarch."

In 1928 one of the principals spent nearly a year in the U.S.A. factories of Majestic Radio...

The Herald (Melbourne) Wed 14 Sep 1932

Racing at Sale.

SALE, Tuesday. The road race for the higher powered motor-cycles was decided this morning over the usual circuit of 23 miles...

P. Oates (Monarch), 18½min., 2h. 54min 35 sec.

The Argus (Melbourne)Wednesday 19 April 1922


Five-lap Solo race (over 600 c.c.). - C. H. Disney 25sec, 1; Erie Tyler (Monarch), 53sec, 2;

The Australasian (Melbourne) Sat 7 Jan 1922

In June 1934 the company offered to supply and install Precedent radios in every state school in suburban and rural schools in Victoria at no charge. In October of that year the company commenced the manufacture of Precedent Refrigerators.

The Herald (Vic.) Friday June 22nd, 1934

Other marques with the Monarch name: Disambiguation

Sources: Trove NLA; Simon Fleming; Australia Post, et al

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