Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Lockwood spring heel conversion

Generally this blog does not feature scans of magazine articles. This however is information that won't be seen anywhere else and is such an obscurity that it deserves publishing.

In the early post-WWII years rear springing conversions were a burgeoning business. The McCandless (from the same folks that brought you the Norton Featherbed frame) one was the best known and possibly the best designed and made. There were numerous others around, this being one. The conversion was made by Monty Lockwood of Ipswich and was billed as being half the price of a McCandless conversion. In all honesty so it should be as the McCandless job was a conversion to a full swinging arm and the Lockwood is a pair of plungers cut and shut on to the existing rear triangle.

Time was you would see quite a lot of restoration project bikes come up for sale with rear spring conversions. These bike were generally unloved and a lot cheaper than factory spec bikes. Most of them got restored back to factory spec. It is nowadays rare to see a machine with period aftermarket rear springing and they are beginning to be appreciated for what they are and retained when a bike is restored. Good job too as they are an interesting avenue of motorcycle history.

The below is copied from the Motor Cyclist's National News vol 1 number 2 March 1949.

The Monty Lockwood spring heel
conversion as modelled on an Ariel
Red Hunter.

1 comment:

  1. I had no idea such things existed. Great find. I agree, if found now, they would be worth keeping as is.