Today in Motorcycle History

Eclipse Motorcycles

Eclipse 1904

XL-All by Eclipse, 1903

The Xlall two-cylinder motor bicycle. Either of the two cylinders can be used, or both together, as required. With both cylinders firing the engine develops about 5 h.p. This machine is made by the Eclipse Machine Co., John Bright Street, Birmingham.

Eclipse Motor and Cycle Co of John Bright Street, Birmingham produced Eclipse motorcycles from 1903 to 1905 and XL-All motorcycles from 1902 to 1906.

1903 The first Eclipse machine was exhibited at the Stanley Show. It had a variable-speed gear, engine-driven rear wheel and free-wheel clutches. A forecar was also offered.

1904 A wide-angled V-twin was added. The engine fitted into a loop frame with braced forks and conventional belt drive. There is little further information.

XL-All motorcycles had 2hp or 4hp 90-degree V-twin engines mounted in a loop frame. They were claimed to be the most powerful road machines that could both pull a trailer and push a forecar at the same time. They also professed to reach 'Any speed from 4 to 50mph' and to 'pass everything on the road'. Either cylinder of the engine could be used alone while allowing the other to cool when not in use; or both together - which ever preferred - were the extravagant claims.

In 1907 the firm became XL'ALL Specialities, selling motorcycle saddles, spark plugs and electric lighting.

N.B. Unrelated to Eclipse Machine Co. of Elmira, N.Y., which produced bicycle and motorcycle fittings.

Sources: Graces Guide; contemporary literatue.

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