1922 Velocette 250cc E3S Frame no. 2166 Engine no. 21 525
Lot 221
1922 Velocette 250cc E3S
Registration no. DS 9545 Frame no. 2166 Engine no. 21 525
Sold for £6,900 (US$ 10,820) inc. premium

Lot Details
1922 Velocette 250cc E3S
Registration no. DS 9545
Frame no. 2166
Engine no. 21 525
Veloce Ltd were renowned for a sporting range of K (camshaft) machines; the family run Birmingham firm's reputation was based upon several sound designs, not only ohc, but side-valve, ohv, and a number of 2-strokes. It was however the 'cammy' models which achieved so much success in TTs and European GP...extending circa 1925 until the early '50s. The first 2-stroke, known as the 'A', was introduced in 1913; its popularity spawning a raft of different 2-strokes over the next decade, designated 'B', 'D', and 'E', respectively. While Scott's unique 500/600cc 2-stroke twins undoubtedly dominated the upper end of the market the miniscule Velocettes were arguably the most respected 'stroker' amongst smaller machines, helped of course by the black & gold livery, and some distinctive styling. That they were mechanically satisfactory is confirmed by The Motor Cycle, whose 18/11/20 report stated how three such machines had gained the Runner Up Team Prize in that year's ACU Six Days Trial, a rugged 'annual' in which rival factories strived to shine, utilising results thus obtained for advertising. From a road test of several days' duration in the same issue, Velocette's inclusion of all chain drive (and mechanical oil pump) is praised, features regarded as exceptional for a lightweight. It is interesting to note a rare textual error in the Iliffe magazine's comments concerning the oil pump, which reads 'This system is more cleanly than the "petroil" system...since oil is delivered to such parts as are most in need of lubrication!'

This 3-speed Velocette has an interesting history. Supplied by Parkers of Kendal in August 1922 the model 'E' had been especially ordered by a successful competitor in Reliability Trials; the Reverend Hodgkin, no less, who was somehow able to specify his new machine be fitted with an engine 30cc larger than normal, the additional capacity believed to be of benefit in competitions, and for travelling within his Lake District Parish. He also insisted on the fitment of a B & B carburettor, and leg-shields, suggesting the Reverend was not without practical experience. Included within the album of accompanying documents is an evocative illustration of the Reverend beside his new steed, upon whose fuel tank the dealer has added the word ARADNE - i.e. Greek for 'Most Holy!' The bike's subsequent history is sadly unknown, until acquired by the vendor in 2005. After checking that it was virtually complete and original, it's remained unused in the vendor's Velocette collection, which he is currently 're-balancing' on a 4-stroke-only basis. A replacement de-compressor is supplied separately. Offered with V5/V5C registration documents, relevant photographs, appropriate BMS Instruction/Spare Parts Books, and a letter from knowledgeable author Dave Masters', explaining Velocette's numbering system. An interesting machine constituting an attractive proposition.

Saleroom notices

  • The Engine number is 2237.
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