1937  Vincent-HRD 499cc Series-A Comet Frame no. D1282 Engine no. C429

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Lot 315
1937 Vincent-HRD 499cc Series-A Comet
Registration no. CRO 513 Frame no. D1282 Engine no. C429

Sold for £ 34,500 (US$ 44,718) inc. premium
1937 Vincent-HRD 499cc Series-A Comet
Registration no. CRO 513
Frame no. D1282
Engine no. C429
• Single family ownership since 1958
• Comprehensive History File

Going back eighty years or so how many ohv British singles looked quite as 'exciting' as Vincent's 500cc 'A' model Comet, which was of course one of very few machines at that time featuring rear suspension? Neither was this 'excitement' factor based simply on its appearance or the rear springing, for it was already on record that one of the then weekly magazines had 'clocked' a Comet at 90 mph, an impressive speed for any half litre ohv single. As the UK market gradually got under way in the late 1940s, and following Phil Irving's contribution on the design side at the Vincent factory, both the new single and twin model 'B' Series machines were acknowledged as having discarded their Plumber's Nightmare reputations. And yet, paradoxically – aside from Black Lightnings, that is – it's the Series 'A' machines which are the most highly regarded today!

CRO has been in a single family ownership since it was purchased, in the Isle of Wight, in September 1958. Its late rider, a lifelong 2-wheel enthusiast, was apparently disappointed with the condition in which it was acquired, resulting in the machine being painstakingly dissembled; with the parts spread across several boxes, pending an eventual nut-and-bolt rebuild. In the event this conscientious exercise consumed almost thirty years but, finally – in the 1990s – it was completed to the owner's satisfaction. Within a comprehensive file accompanying the machine is a full-page list of the new parts employed. Based upon the content of this lengthy list it can be seen that virtually every area received some attention, including the top and bottom half of the engine itself, the carburettor, the clutch and gearbox, sprockets and chains, front and rear brakes, seat and pillion, plus the renewal of numerous minor engine and chassis items. Following completion of the refurbishment the HRD was enjoyably ridden, at one point taking its rider to a Vincent Owners Club Rally in the New Forest. It is understood that the machine was last used in 2005, given that the last tax disc expired in October that year, likewise the MOT certificate. According to the Works Order form it is perhaps of historical interest that the Builder and Tester are respectively stated as: E Hampshire and G Brown. Despite that the motorcycle has not been used for more than ten years it is in visibly fine fettle; a close inspection is highly recommended.
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1937  Vincent-HRD 499cc Series-A Comet Frame no. D1282 Engine no. C429
1937  Vincent-HRD 499cc Series-A Comet Frame no. D1282 Engine no. C429
1937  Vincent-HRD 499cc Series-A Comet Frame no. D1282 Engine no. C429
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