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Help with detail on my 1956 Norton Dominator 99

Forums

Hi everyone, I'm new to the club and need some help.

In 2013 I bought my Norton as a basket case from a trader at Stafford show it is a matching numbers Dominator 99 comissioned on the 1st June and registered on the 9th June 1956 It is one of the first of the 1957 models which I am informed that they did start to build from the 1st June. The problems that i'm having is identifying what it should or shouldn't have fitted as standard ie, Chrome panels on the fuel tank, pedal type footrests etc I have the bible by Roy Bacon but it just doesn't go into enough detail.

The bike is still a box of bits that I have just started building into assemblies ready for the final assembly after everything has been painted.

I need a detailed build list from the Norton factory but as it is nowhere near complete how do I go about obtaining this list to assist in the build

Thanks in advance

John

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Don't know what you mean by a detailed Norton factory build list but there are a lot of people on her with similar machines who would only be too glad to assist if you could be more precise.

I have this particular model and as a starter I can tell you they do have the screwed on chrome side panels on the tank.

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Previously richard_evans wrote:

Don't know what you mean by a detailed Norton factory build list but there are a lot of people on her with similar machines who would only be too glad to assist if you could be more precise.

I have this particular model and as a starter I can tell you they do have the screwed on chrome side panels on the tank.

Hi Richard

Thanks for your prompt reply

Well you have answered one problem but there are many others like what silencers should it have, what footrests etc I was talking to Les Emery at Norvil the other day who is pretty knowlegeable but he didn't have all the answers as apparently Norto used parts from earlier models until they ran out which would mean that there is a few hybrids out there. I've been buying period magazines from 1956 to look at adverts and any literature to help as really all the people that knew for certain have already unfortunately passed away.

My bike was originally sold in Lancashire and it has now been brought back home from Yorkshire it has apparently been in boxes from the mid to late sixties when the then owner stripped it to repair he has saddly died a good number of years ago the bike was passed onto his son who sold it to the man that I purchased it off there has been many parts lost in all the moves since it was taken appart and it is for this reason that I ask for as much detailed information as possible because I want to return the bike into original as it left the factory condition to add to my large collection of classic motorcycles

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Previously john_holmes wrote:

I need a detailed build list from the Norton factory but as it is nowhere near complete how do I go about obtaining this list to assist in the build

You need a spares parts list for 1956 which covers 88 and 99 deluxe.

Also you can start here

http://www.rgmnorton.co.uk/index/Models-88-99-De-Luxe-Twin-195_275.htm

Hi John

I have the lists for both the 1956 and the 1957, I have already bought so many parts from RGM along with Norvil and I have only done the engine and gearbox for now the wheels are away with Jeff Holt from Bolton to have new rims fitted and I'm currently into stripping the frame etc to bare metal for a repaint in the equivilent of Polychromatic Grey so I'm well on with it but when I start to show it I don't want people coming up to me saying that this and that is wrong and I do like to get things right first time if you know what I mean

PS I do also ride my bikes they aren't just trailer dollies lol

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Previously john_blears wrote:

Previously Pete McDermott wrote:

The August 2016 edition of Real Classic has a good article on the late 1956 version of the 99 with good photos. Basically the earlier version but with a panelled tank.

http://www.classicmagazines.co.uk/issue/View/issue/RC148/?utm_source=RCMag&utm_medium=OnPage&utm_term=BackIssues&utm_campaign=RealClassicMagazine

Wow

What a write up that bike got and so very informative, loads of pictures giving me useful information and on the plus side he lives not too far from me so I think I'll be making regular visits to the carosel at Southport

Thanks for that Peter

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A good starting point would be to carefully study photographs of original or well restored machines or visit some of the shows, ot the NEC where there are similar machines on display. The 99 is usually well represented on the NOC stands.

The Norton parts lists will of course provide you with illustrations and Part Numbers

I'm sure that if you keep coming back here as you progress with your project you will get good advice to update your project.

I've just completed a rebuild of the exact model and it does take a bit of patience. I can advise on the colour equivalent if you need that information.

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Previously richard_evans wrote:

A good starting point would be to carefully study photographs of original or well restored machines or visit some of the shows, ot the NEC where there are similar machines on display. The 99 is usually well represented on the NOC stands.

The Norton parts lists will of course provide you with illustrations and Part Numbers

I'm sure that if you keep coming back here as you progress with your project you will get good advice to update your project.

I've just completed a rebuild of the exact model and it does take a bit of patience. I can advise on the colour equivalent if you need that information.

I have been given two colours one ford and the other vw is this right

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Previously john_blears wrote:

Previously richard_evans wrote:

A good starting point would be to carefully study photographs of original or well restored machines or visit some of the shows, ot the NEC where there are similar machines on display. The 99 is usually well represented on the NOC stands.

The Norton parts lists will of course provide you with illustrations and Part Numbers

I'm sure that if you keep coming back here as you progress with your project you will get good advice to update your project.

I've just completed a rebuild of the exact model and it does take a bit of patience. I can advise on the colour equivalent if you need that information.

I have been given two colours one ford and the other vw is this right

Hi John, I have almost the same problem, I bought my February1957 model 99 in 1962 so it was still pretty original but like most of the teenagers of the day swapped steel mudguards for alloy etc. etc.

It blew up in 1970 and has been a basket case ever since until this year. I am determined to ride it again before, like yours, my sons have to sell it.

What I can tell you is that the rear shockers on mine are the Armstrong version with only 'Heavy' and 'light' settings rather than the Girling with 3 spring settings. Yours will most probably be the same.

Regards, Dick Hudson

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www.rsbikepaint.com supply the polychromatic grey you require.

There were notable changes from 1956 to '57, as I am sure you are aware. Are you also sure that yours is a 1957 model? 1st June seems too early to me for the following year's model to appear. It may have been changed to that cosmetic spec. at some time in it's history. September/October is the more usual time of year, to be ready for the Motorcycle Show in October/November. I would absolutely ensure that you are correct on that before proceeding, given that you would like it to be nut-and-bolt correct.

1956 would have had the earlier chrome tank, with polychromatic grey side panels and top, red & black lined, with round badges and stick-on rubber knee grips. It would also have peardrop silencers, and pedal type footrests.

!957 used a painted tank with separate chrome panels, tubular silencers, and round footrests; a cheaper specification to manufacture.

The 1956 spec. is the best of them all imo!

Ian

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Also, the early 1956 models had the laydown gearbox, whilst later in 1956 they changed to the AMC 'box. Your would probably have the AMC.

As Dick has already mentioned, Armstrong rear shocks for 1956, Girlings for 1957.

The full-width front brake had the flush brake plate fitted for 1957.

1956 models had a different headlight with instrument panel, which went for 1957.

It would be interesting for you to run through these various changes and let us know what yours has got.

Ian

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Previously richard_evans wrote:

A good starting point would be to carefully study photographs of original or well restored machines or visit some of the shows, ot the NEC where there are similar machines on display. The 99 is usually well represented on the NOC stands.

The Norton parts lists will of course provide you with illustrations and Part Numbers

I'm sure that if you keep coming back here as you progress with your project you will get good advice to update your project.

I've just completed a rebuild of the exact model and it does take a bit of patience. I can advise on the colour equivalent if you need that information.

Hi Richard

Do you have the colour equivalent codes please

Permalink

Previously richard_evans wrote:

A good starting point would be to carefully study photographs of original or well restored machines or visit some of the shows, ot the NEC where there are similar machines on display. The 99 is usually well represented on the NOC stands.

The Norton parts lists will of course provide you with illustrations and Part Numbers

I'm sure that if you keep coming back here as you progress with your project you will get good advice to update your project.

I've just completed a rebuild of the exact model and it does take a bit of patience. I can advise on the colour equivalent if you need that information.

Hi Richard

Do you have the colour equivalent codes please

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I was advised in 2001 by N. J. Hilton, the then records keeper for the NOC as follows, as relates to the frame number of my own Dominator 99.

"For Dominator 99 built on 10.9.57.

Original standard finish, all parts polychromatic grey with chrome side panels and fittings.

If it had been the optional colour of black and silver, then all black with silver tank and chromium side panels. Suggested silver now is Rover Silver Birch 34040/M using Ault & Wiborg paint system".

I chose to do my finish my own Dominator in silver and black with the silver tank and chrome side panels which I thinks looks much nicer. Using the silver paint described above.

Presumably the current records keeper could tell you what what finish the particular one you have left the factory with.

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Hi John,

Regards colour. I think that Norton Grey (polychrometic) was used for quite some time and that the colour I have on my 1961 650 would suit. This was made specially by matching the colour from behind the tank badges. Peter Priest of Broadheath, Altrincham did it for me. You have my number.

Cheers

Peter

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Previously ian_cordes wrote:

www.rsbikepaint.com supply the polychromatic grey you require.

There were notable changes from 1956 to '57, as I am sure you are aware. Are you also sure that yours is a 1957 model? 1st June seems too early to me for the following year's model to appear. It may have been changed to that cosmetic spec. at some time in it's history. September/October is the more usual time of year, to be ready for the Motorcycle Show in October/November. I would absolutely ensure that you are correct on that before proceeding, given that you would like it to be nut-and-bolt correct.

1956 would have had the earlier chrome tank, with polychromatic grey side panels and top, red & black lined, with round badges and stick-on rubber knee grips. It would also have peardrop silencers, and pedal type footrests.

!957 used a painted tank with separate chrome panels, tubular silencers, and round footrests; a cheaper specification to manufacture.

The 1956 spec. is the best of them all imo!

Ian

Hello RS PAINT ARE THE WRONG SHADE FOR 1956

Permalink

Previously john_blears wrote:

Previously john_holmes wrote:

I need a detailed build list from the Norton factory but as it is nowhere near complete how do I go about obtaining this list to assist in the build

You need a spares parts list for 1956 which covers 88 and 99 deluxe.

Also you can start here

http://www.rgmnorton.co.uk/index/Models-88-99-De-Luxe-Twin-195_275.htm

Hi John

I have the lists for both the 1956 and the 1957, I have already bought so many parts from RGM along with Norvil and I have only done the engine and gearbox for now the wheels are away with Jeff Holt from Bolton to have new rims fitted and I'm currently into stripping the frame etc to bare metal for a repaint in the equivilent of Polychromatic Grey so I'm well on with it but when I start to show it I don't want people coming up to me saying that this and that is wrong and I do like to get things right first time if you know what I mean

PS I do also ride my bikes they aren't just trailer dollies lol

Hello well in 1956 there was a dispute over men being sacked, so they all walked out and there was a strike for 3 months for may till July so nothing was built in these month's after this they were sill on 180 machines a week and by august the new smooth look was on its way for 1957 and by September 1957 another change with dynamos out and alternators in along with AMCbox cigar type silencers and chrome panel for the all painted tank export bikes had different colours to home models

John,

I am also rebuilding a 1956 Dominator 99. It is certainly not original but I will try to get it close.

I note that you have a spares parts list for 1956 which covers 88 and 99 deluxe.

May I take you up on your kind offer to send me a PDF copy.

My email address is mikepageqcuk@hotmail.com

Kind regards

Mike Page

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Hi John -

Welcome to NOC - a great bunch of very knowledgeable and helpful people here.

Like you I also have a 1956 99 in “ large lumps “ as they say. I am currently involved in a Commando build but hope to start in on the Dommie in a year or so.

According to Roy Bacon the serial numbers should start with a letter code for the year - L for 1956 and M for 1957. Also according to Mr. Bacon this practice continued until 1960. This was followed by the serial number itself and then the model code number which is 14 for a 99.

My example has no letter code for the year - neither on engine or frame. Serial number is 69xxx followed by 14 for the model.This number is stamped on the left side crankcase just below the cylinders where it should be. Around the corner on the rear of the crankcase is another set of numbers - 99 and below that 16xx - I think these may be works numbers that allowed tracking through the build process- perhaps a more knowledgeable member can confirm or deny this. Frame bears serial number only - no year letter code or model code number.

My example has the AMC type gearbox and Armstrong shocks - the fuel tank has the hole for the round badge but is painted - it may have been repainted or replaced at one time - most bits show it may have had a difficult life. 

I would like to know when it was built and fully intend to get all of my Norton’s documented through the club’s record service - just need to get around to it.

I hope you will continue to share your progress with us and post some pictures as well - I’ll be following with interest if you do so.

Cheers - Richard 

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Hello there is a set of small letters and numbers on the edge of the top lug you will have to remove the paint these are the build date  yours Anna j

 

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