Australian Motorcycles

Forbes Motorcycles

Saward lists Forbes as a motorcycle manufacturer who fitted Zedel engines, among others. Thus far no record confirming this has been found in the Australian press of the period.

A.C. (Charles) Forbes from Christchurch, N.Z. gained fame by winning the Austral Wheel Race of 1900, achieving a world record in the process.


A number of bicycles are on view on a stand occupied by the above. They also show some motor cycles and a high speed stationary petrol engine in motion.

The Bendigo Independent (Vic.) Thu 10 Oct 1907

A. C. FORBES, Builder of the Forbes Cycle, corner of Mitchell and Wills streets...

The Bendigo Independent (Vic.) Fri 17 Dec 1909
(The same advertisement appeared frequently from 1909 to 1916.)

Mr A. C. Forbes, who won the Austral Wheel Race in 1900, in 4 min. 19 sec., which was then a world's record, has been accepted for service as ammunition maker in Britain, He will leave Victoria shortly. For some years Mr Forbes was one of the crack riders in this State and in New Zealand, and on several occasions won...
Mr Forbes has been in business in Bendigo as a cycle and motor mechanic.

The Ballarat Star (Vic.) Tue 5 Jun 1917

"The following members of our chamber have gone on active service: —Alan J. Beebe, Dr. Charles B. Gaffney, and A. C. Forbes, the latter as a munition maker...

Bendigonian (Bendigo, Vic.) Thu 23 May 1918

To-day. at 2 p.m. sharp, on the premises (Mr. A. Forbes' Bicycle Shop, corner of Wills and Mitchell streets) Messrs T. C. Watts and Son will sell lathe, motor and bicycle plant, etc.. on account of Mrs. A. C. Forbes.

The Bendigo Independent (Vic.) Sat 6 Jul 1918

In May 1919 The Age announced that "Myra (Mrs. A. C. Forbes), 20 Harstreet Upper Hawthorn" mourned the death of her brother from influenza.

Sources: Simon Fleming; Trove NLA

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