Friday, 14 October 2011

Friday bike

This week's bike is one that has a particular significance for me. When I was young I was aware of motorcycles around me, but hadn't really paid attention to the different types. I suppose I grew up just thinking of bikes as bikes, and not a variety of different makes and types. That was until I saw one of these:

A John Player Special Norton Commando. I saw one parked outside a motorbike shop in Glasgow, and was so amazed by the 'look' that I stopped and stared. I had never seen anything as cool looking in my life. The JPS Norton came out in 1973, so I would have been 15, and this is what probably sparked my interest in motorbikes. At the time, bikes with fairings were pretty rare, and to see one with and integrated tank/fairing unit, and in such bright colours, was quite revolutionary. For some reason I always remembered the twin headlights and the way the fairing flowed into the tank (I think it was a one piece glass fibre unit that fitted over the standard tank - anyone confirm this?)
Still a stunning looking bike, and very rare. I've had a look on the Web to see if I could find out how many were built, but I've only seen 2 others since I saw my first, nearly 40 years ago.

1 comment:

  1. I was 21 and a rabid Norton fan. Two of my friends had 750 Commandos. I wouldn't get one, an 850, until I was in my forties. Better late than never.I do believe the stock metal tank was hiding under the fibreglas. They certainly were radical looking for the time.