Belgian Motorcycles

Today in Motorcycle History

Antoine Motorcycles and Engines

Address: 41 quai Saint Léonard, Liège

Victor Antoine Fils & Cie was a Belgian firm established in 1899. The company built motorcycles and engines from 1900 until at least 1905 when a four-cylinder 415cc motorcycle was created. It is likely that this engine was designed by Paul Kelecom who worked on the FN four engine and is known to have designed single-cylinder engines for Antoine.

Their machines were quite advanced, featuring brakes on the drive-belt pulley and large cooling fins on the cylinder.

At least two automobiles were offered. One was a 4 hp voiturette. The other, built in 1903, was a 15/25hp car. Automobile manufacture ceased that year.

Two or Three Radical Departures

from accepted motor cycle practice, as it stands at the present time, are seen in the Antoine motor bicycles exhibited by the Cadogan Garage and Motor Co. on Stand 24. Two powers of motor are employed - one of 2¼ h.p. and the other 2¾ h.p. The principal feature for note in the engine is the extra deep radiators provided on the cylinder. The first item of departure to attract attention is the inter-connection of the exhaust valve-lifter and the throttle. The operation of the exhaust valve-lifter closes the throttle valve in proportion to the amount with which the valve-lifter is actuated. The, throttle valve, it must be understood, is also separately operated without affecting the exhaust valve-lifting devices. The second point of interest is the type of brake used. The drive from the engine to the rear wheel is by means of a flat belt.

Advantage is taken of a wide face of the belt rim to make this act as a brake drum, a double shoe being applied by a back-pedalling action of the rider. This back-pedalling action only comes into operation at one point, so that a certain amount of play to the rider's feet is afforded without the risk of unwittingly applying the brake. In addition to this, a pull-up brake is fitted to the front rim. We noticed that, for the purpose of keeping the belt clean and in good order, a projecting arm is fitted on to the back stay. This having a leather-edged scraper attached to it, and coming lightly in contact with the belt, enables it to be kept clean and free from grease. (Stand 24.)

The Motor Cycle November 25th, 1903. Page 845
National Show 1903

Antoine motor bicycles have undergone the following improvement for 1906. The single-cylinder machines are fitted with magneto manufactured by the company, which is of the low tension type, the current being intensified by an induction coil. The magnets are enclosed in a metal cover, which protects them from mud and wet. The magneto transmission is effected by means of gear wheels, which are completely cased in. On the front and rear wheels are band brakes, which are operated by means of Bowden wires, the exhaust valve lifter being worked in the same manner. Large mudguards are fitted. This is a small but important feature. The alterations referred to apply to the single as well as to the double-cylinder machines, with the exception that the magneto on the latter is a Simms-Bosch.

A new 4 h.p. tandem bicycle, of which the motive power is a 4 h.p. Antoine engine fitted with mechanically- operated valves. The frame is well designed, and is composed entirely of straight tubes. The engine is carried between the two halves of the frame in a position midway between the two riders. No pedals are supplied, footrests taking their place, and on each one used by the driver are two pedals, that on the near side controlling the friction clutch, and that on the offside the internal expanding brake on the rear wheel. The said clutch may also be operated by means of a long hand lever situated on the tank. There are two petrol tanks in each portion of the frame, a copper pipe connecting the two together. A good toolbag is fitted, having an outside space for the parafin can.

The Stanley Show, November 1905
Source: The Motor Cycle

Marques employing Antoine engines included:

Sources Graces Guide, François-Marie Dumas

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