1949 Vincent-HRD 500cc Meteor
Registration no. KFJ 349
Frame no. R/1/4591
Engine no. F5AB/2/2691
The Vincent-HRD marque originated in 1928 when Philip C Vincent acquired the name, jigs, tools and patterns of the recently liquidated HRD Company. ('HRD' stood for Howard Raymond Davies, the Isle of Man TT winner who had founded the firm in 1924). Like Davies before him, Vincent relied on proprietary engines until increasing dissatisfaction with suppliers led to the creation of Vincent's own 500cc single in 1934, which was later doubled up to create the legendary Series-A Rapide v-twin. Post-war this situation was reversed, with an all-new v-twin appearing first, in May 1946, followed by the single-cylinder version in 1949. The latter was offered in two forms initially Series-B Meteor and Series-C Comet the main differences between the two being the new Girdraulic front fork fitted to the latter while the former retained the old Brampton girders, and the Meteor's slightly smaller carburettor. When production of Series-B models was phased out during 1950 the Meteor disappeared from the range, making it one of the rarer of post-war Vincent-HRDs.
'KFJ 349' was purchased in 1992 by its recently deceased owner, a prolific collector of Vincents, from dealer Gordon Rose of Molash, Kent and comes with VOC Certificate of Authenticity confirming matching frame/engine numbers. The accompanying copy Works Order Form reveals that the machine was despatched new in August 1949 to 'Green, Newton Abbot'. Restored circa 2001, as evidenced by invoices on file from marque specialist John Mossey, the Meteor also comes with sundry other bills, old-style logbook (issued 1970), purchase receipt (1992), expired MoT (2002), and old/current Swansea V5/V5C documents.