After 12 years of hard labour my 1954 Velocette MSS500 was finally ready to go on display in the Lounge room of the house. This bike was rescued from a paddock in Tamworth, NSW. Australia. Some local kids had butchered the front end and put a Honda Four wheel in it, so one can imagine what the rest of the bike looked like! I soon found out replacing the cycle parts was near impossible. Thanks to a kind colleague in the U.K. who spent many years scouring swap meets all over England, I finally was able to secure the parts needed to put the bike back to its former glory.
The Velocette marque was first founded in the U.K. in 1905 and began manufacturing a basic 276cc 4-stroke engine in 1909. In 1926 production moved to Birmingham and by 1936 Velocette's 350cc racer started a long competitive history by winning the Junior Tourist Trophy at the Isle of Man. A history which saw Velocette win the 350cc World Championship in 1950.
The Velocette brand was renowned for producing expensive bikes, engineered to aircraft quality standards and marketed to "gentleman" riders. Owning a Velocette meant you were a cut above the average and certainly superior to your average BSA, Triumph or Norton owner.
The Velocette MSS 500cc single cylinder engine in all its glory.
Velocettes were easily recognised by their trademark "fishtail" exhaust.