Road tested by The Motor Cycle magazine in 1927
1927 Douglas 596cc EW
Registration no. DF 2733
Frame no. PF 283
Engine no. EH 1930
Douglas commenced motorcycle production in 1907 with a machine powered by a horizontally opposed twin. Fore-and-aft installation made for a slim machine with a low centre of gravity, and the design's virtues were soon demonstrated in competition, Douglas taking 1st, 2nd and 4th places in the 1912 Isle of Man Junior TT. Designed by Cyril Pullin and launched at the Olympia Show in 1925, the EW was intended to benefit from tax concessions available to lightweights, and so weighed under 200lbs. In typical Douglas fashion the engine was a fore-and-aft flat twin: a fixed-head sidevalve with outside flywheel, hand and mechanical oil pumps, and BTH magneto ignition. A gearbox mounted behind rather than above the rear cylinder, all-chain drive and decent-sized drum brakes differentiated the EW from its predecessors, as did the handsome sloping fuel tank that replaced the 'flat' style used hitherto. An unusual feature was the gearchange gate located in the tank's centre. Benefiting from numerous improvements, the EW went on to achieve some notable successes in the popular reliability trials of the period. Intended for sidecar use or for riders who simply wanted more power, a heavy-duty 596cc version was announced for 1927.
The 596cc EW offered here 'DF 2733' - was road tested by The Motor Cycle magazine in 1927 (22nd September edition, copy article available). 'The Blue 'Un' remarked on the EW's outstanding flexibility, commenting: 'The greatest charms of the engine were its smooth effortless running at normal and high revolutions and the manner in which it responded to the throttle. Engine vibration was never apparent under any conditions, and both mechanically and as to the exhaust the power unit was almost entirely silent.'
Owned by the vendor for over 30 years, the Douglas was restored by him around ten years ago but has not been used since completion and will require re-commissioning before returning to the road. We are advised that the engine, gearbox and clutch all operate freely. Listed in the VMCC's Register of Machines, 'DF 2733' is offered with Swansea V5C registration document.
- Since going to press we have been advised that this motorcycle was restored approximately 20 years ago and is listed with The London Douglas MCC, and not as printed in the catalogue. We are further advised that the machine was purchased from well known restorer of Vintage motorcycles, the late Tom Dewey, several of whose machines featured in The Vintage Motorcycle Road Test Journals by C E 'Titch' Allen. The Douglas was complete but distressed and in need of total restoration, which was carried out over a number of years.
It should be noted that the original frame number PF 283 was abraded when the frame was shot blasted prior to painting rendering the original number unreadable. Subsequently the vendor stamped the number 52743 to identify the frame.