Monday, 24 February 2014

Up the Wolves

I'm back on the northern fringes of the English Black Country at the moment. The house where I grew up, and where my parents still live, is on the Wolverhampton Road, about seven miles from Wolverhampton itself. Over the past century or more, the English West Midlands has been home to more bike builders than any other British region, though almost every marque is now defunct. Sunbeam, of Wolverhampton, is just one of those.

The DT90 dirt track model was introduced in 1928 and featured the TT-winning 493cc Model 90 OHV engine, though fitted with single-port head instead of the twin-port on the road racers and road models. The Druid-style girder forks came in for a load of criticism from testers and racers, so for the following year (below) they were swapped for the Webb-type popular with dirt trackers. Wheels are a giddying 28in. MP


Martin Squires said...

At the Telford Twin Shock Show over the weekend there was the only known Sunbeam speedway (1929) bike I will post photos of it in my report soon!

Anonymous said...

Finally, a Sunbeam post…sweetness!

Tom said...

The factory in Blakenhall - SUnbeam Land - is amazing and worth getting into. The clocks in part of what is now Timken bearings stores are all stopped at 3:40pm when the factory shut in the 1930s.
Oh and where Waitrose is on the Penn Road heading south out of town is the former AJS factory with a great statue as the only clue to something better than a supermarket ever being there. HEre is the lone rider