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THE Bat motor cycle has been so long with us that any reference to these machines cannot fail to interest our readers. A brief history of the company is worth recording. The Bat first appeared in 1902, and, ridden by those famous experts, the brothers Chase, soon leapt into prominence by gaining a long series of records on the Crystal Palace track. Towards the end of 1904 the origWal firm died, but was revived by Mr; T. H. Tessier, who had ridden these machines with considerable success during the previous season. Under Mr. Tessier's able guidance, the Bat Motor Manufacturing Co., Ltd., Kingswood Road, Penge, London, S.E.20, had a prosperous existence until early in the war, when war work, of course, took preference over motor cycle manufacture, so that it was with great pleasure that we heard early this year that it had once more been revived, with, the son of its old managing director, Mr. S. T. Tessier, as works manager.
6 and 8 h.p. Models.
Two practically identical models are now being manufactured - a 6 h.p. and an 8 h.p., with J.A.P. engines. The old and long tried system of springing is retained, which consists in isolating the seat-pillar and footboards from the rest of the frame, the shocks being absorbed by a coil spring in tension.
A feature of considerable interest lies in the method of holding the gear box, as, instead of being suspended from a bracket, it rests upon a platform, which is supported at its forward end close against the crank case and at its rear-most end by tubes running from the back fork ends below the chain stays. The gear box is held by means of bolts running through longitudinal holes, and the fact that it is not hanging by its own weight renders it quite easy to slide it back and to take up any slackness there may be in the chains.
It will be noticed that the kick starter has a partially enclosed pinion on the gearshaft, and that it is designed to give the leverage which is necessary when turning over.' a powerful engine. Another excellent feature of the gear box is that it is provided with a large inspection cover which can be removed without interfering with the adjustment of the striking mechanism.
In many respects the present model Bat closely resembles the pre-war pattern, but several details and refinements have been embodied with a view to its improvement.
The spring forks, however, which have been so long Associated with this model are still retained, and it is interesting to note that the fork arms work on adjustable ball bearings, so that any play which might occur after prolonged use can be taken up at once.
A Rear Wheel Clutch.
The rear mudguard is now capable of being lifted up so as to allow of easy access to the back tyre, and this is effected by withdrawing the long bolt beneath the luggage carrier just behind the large metal enclosed tool case.
Contrary to the practice followed by most makers, the clutch is carried in the rear hub, and consists of an internal expanding phosphor bronze ring. There is one pedal on the near side, the first movement of which withdraws the clutch, any further movement applying the external band brake on the back hub. On the off side of the machine is another pedal, which actuates an internal expanding brake in the same drum as that to which the external brake is applied.
The transmission is entirely enclosed, and the chain cases are easily detachable. The mudguarding has been well designed, and both front and rear guards are deeply valanced.
In the case of the sidecar, the comfort of the passenger has been carefully studied; it is well-upholstered, and the wheel is sprung, the movable portion of the mechanism running on ball bearings. A substantial and spacious luggage carrier is attached to the sidecar body, so that the luggage is as well sprung as the passenger. The machines are finished in light grey, and have an exceedingly attractive appearance.
The Bat on the Road.
We Had a short run on the machine, which was driven by Mr. S. T. Tessier, and found that it pulled well and was exceedingly comfortable, not only from the passenger's point of view, but from the driver's as well.
From whatever point of view the Bat machines are regarded, it is obvious that the road experience of practical riders has dictated the main essentials of the design, which is characterised throughout by great strength and robustness.
The Motor Cycle October 23rd. 1919, p 458
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