Today in Motorcycle History

Carfield Motorcycles

Carfield of Windmill Lane, Smethwick

  • The company was founded by Messers Carter and Fielding and produced motorcycles from 1919 to 1927.

    1919 The first machines were built using the 269cc Villiers two-stroke engine with simple cycle parts, and with transmission by either direct belt or a chain-driven Albion two-speed gearbox with belt final-drive. Druid forks were used and the fittings were typical of the era.

    1921 There was now a version with a spring frame and Brampton Biflex forks. Engines used were 348cc sv Blackburne and 689cc sv Coventry-Victor flat-twins.

    1922 The twin had gone, but the other capacities continued.

    1923 A 247cc Villiers replaced the old 269cc engine. Late that year a 147cc Villiers engine was adopted for their most famous model - the Carfield Baby - which performed far better than expected. One of these was ridden in the 1923 Scottish Six Days Trial, achieving a bronze medal and further enhancing the firm's reputation.

    1924 The range continued using a two-speed Albion gearbox, and they also tried Blackburne and Bradshaw engines.

    1925 The firm went over entirely to Villiers, with several versions of the Baby having 172cc and 247cc engines.

    1926 Two of the larger capacity models were produced that year along with a new 292cc sv JAP-engined machine that was also in two versions - both with all-chain drive and three speeds.

    1927 Carfield's final machine was powered by a J.A.P. 2-stroke AZA engine; only a few of these machines were built, and the company ceased trading in 1928.

A "Baby" has been on display at the Black Country Living Museum, Dudley. It is believed that only 8 Carfield machines survive.

Carfield 1919 Villiers

The 2 1/2 h.p. Carfield two-stroke. The engine is a 2 1/2 h.p. Villiers and the gear a two-speed Albion.

A New Lightweight on Standard Lines.

The Carfield Two-stroke embodying Well-known Components.

CONSIDERING the demand existing for motor cycles at the present time, it is perhaps surprising that more new firms have not come into existence to take advantage of the popularity of the motor cycle. In the car world upwards of thirty new motor firms have entered the industry, and, although the call for motor cycles is even greater than for cars, only a few newcomers have been recorded.

One of these is the Carfield Motor Cycle Co., of Smethwick, Birmingham, which, though handicapped by inadequate temporary premises, has made a good start with a two-speed two-stroke light-weight on the usual standard lines. It has a strongly built frame, particularly strengthened at the head, designed to accommodate the well-known 2 1/2 h.p. Villiers two-srtoke engine unit, with a standard Amac carburetter and a C.A.V. magneto.

The drive is taken through a Brampton 1/2in. X 3/16in. chain to an Albion countershaft two-speed gear box, of standard pattern.

The drive to the rear wheel is by Dunlop 3/4in. belt, and the 26in. wheels, which are finished all black, are shod with 2in. Dunlop rubber-studded tyres. Amply wide mudguards and a very substantial carrier are special features, the latter incorporating two metal-cased toolbags. The rear brake is heel-operated, acting upon the inner side of the belt rim.

The other points of the specification are Lycett's pan saddle, semi T-T. bars, and Best and Lloyd sight drip-feed lubricator. A well-formed tank carries one and a quarter gallons of petrol and a quart of oil. The filler caps are of large size.

Production commenced a few weeks ago, and several Midland agents have machines in stock, the selling price being £51.

The Motor Cycle May 1st, 1919.

Sources: Graces Guide

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