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998 Commando? Identification Help Please

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998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by geoff_ranson at February 11. 2018

Help needed here,

I am trying to find out anything about a 998 "featherbed" Commando.

Bought as an early (1968) 750cc, but the log book says 998cc

Engine number MV51048, which doesn't match any data base that I| can find

Frame number 127251 made by a guy called Terry Mead based in Kent, bronze welded oil in frame featherbed type.

Seems to go quite well!

Any information or thoughts on any of the above would be appreciated

Thanks

Geoff Ranson

 

 

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by Dan Field at February 11. 2018

Terry mead still makes frames

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by david_evans at February 11. 2018

My guess with the details furnished would be, a special frame made to accommodate maybe a 998cc four, (maybe even an MV Augusta) and then a Norton Commando engine fitted when the 998cc engine became too valuable to disgrace a Norton frame

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by geoff_ranson at February 13. 2018

Thanks for the replies

Dan, thanks, will be getting in touch with Terry

David, the ENGINE number starts MV, not the frame, and the last time I looked there were only two cylinders and on one side the timing cover says Norton, so I think it might be as I described.

Anyway

Have made some further inquiries, and it looks as though the left hand crankcase has at sometime been replaced either in America or with an American stamped case.

Apparently, if the cases were replaced in the states then they were re - stamped and the numbers were changed to their own system

Next question

the barrels are stamped Birco 24237, and are made of aluminium, the only barrels that I can find with these numbers were used on both the Atlas and 750 Commando and are all Iron.

There are plenty of Aluminium after market barrels about, but surely these would not have the Birco stamp ?, or were the casting tools sold on, and now produced by someone else?

Any ideas welcome

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by david_evans at February 13. 2018

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by Peter Denham at February 15. 2018

I find this very Interesting please keep us posted.

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by robert_tuck at February 15. 2018

I seem to remember Norville producing a 1000  Norton and reading a road test.

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by anthony_curzon at February 15. 2018

127251 is a Commando frame number from August 1968. It went to the Berliner Corporation in New York.

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by geoff_ranson at February 18. 2018

Previously anthony_curzon wrote:

127251 is a Commando frame number from August 1968. It went to the Berliner Corporation in New York.

Anthony

That, would seem to back up that the crankcase was replaced in the States.

Best guess is that a previous owner had the Terry Mead frame made / bought to replace the original and kept the original frame number, that clicks a lot of pieces into place.

Looks like that the engine is a 750, and the log book is incorrect.

Thanks for all the help from everyone

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by ian_cordes at February 18. 2018

Do post some pictures Geoff. It does sound interesting, so it would be good to see how it looks.

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by kevin_grainger at March 01. 2018

hi - the bike is mone, geoff was kind enuff to kick off the queries but i've now joined so heres a couple of piccies

Attachments

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by Julian Wells at March 01. 2018

Very tasty ...

Previously kevin_grainger wrote:

hi - the bike is mone, geoff was kind enuff to kick off the queries but i've now joined so heres a couple of piccies

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by Julian Wells at March 01. 2018

I have to say that the barrels look like perfectly normal 750 iron barrels (painted silver, as many were when they left the factory). If so, I can't see how engine capacity could be 998 cc.

Maybe a magnet will reveal more?

 

Previously geoff_ranson wrote: ...

the barrels are stamped Birco 24237, and are made of aluminium, the only barrels that I can find with these numbers were used on both the Atlas and 750 Commando and are all Iron.

There are plenty of Aluminium after market barrels about, but surely these would not have the Birco stamp ?, or were the casting tools sold on, and now produced by someone else?

Any ideas welcome

Re: 998 Commando? Identification Help Please

Posted by kevin_grainger at March 02. 2018

think you're right ref the barrels, no idea how the log book came to state 998cc so i'm getting it changed to 750. think i'm going to be spending a few months working out whats been done to the bike, someones spent a lot of time and money on it thats for sure!

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