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1962 Norton 650ss

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Old 05-24-2017, 10:01:01 AM
Benjamin Gradler Benjamin Gradler is offline
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Default 1962 Norton 650ss

I thought I would throw this up here. My father was a dealer/racer of British motorcycles in the late 1950s/early 60s. He rode Matchless, but I rode Norton bikes. Most people do not know it but the original Norton factory was closed at the end of 1962. A big company had bought control of Norton in the early 50s and slowly bled it to death. After 1962 Norton bikes were made at a larger factory for a decade and a half but they were watered-down more and more each year and were never what they were before.

The old Norton bikes had very conventional four-stroke engines which often came with magneto ignition systems, especially the more sporting models. Lower-end models came with points/coil ignition.

So over the decades I tried to save a few of the old 1962 and earlier magneto Norton bikes. In this era Norton had very low production, most years their total output was around 7000 bikes from WWII through 1962, and most specific models had production of only a few hundred to maybe a thousand or so. It was not until 1961 that Norton finally got around to selling a 650cc bike, and that year they sold a little over 500 of them. In 1962 they made a lot more of them, about 1300! I have had this 1962 650ss, SS stands for sportspecial, for about 30 years. Most of that time it sat around in pieces, but a few years ago I went through it and bolted it back together and I ride it a bit each summer. A nice old bike with magneto ignition and none of that computerized junk on it:

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Old 05-24-2017, 12:55:47 PM
Rod Gaffrey Rod Gaffrey is offline
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Default Re: 1962 Norton 650ss

My younger brother made a glass top coffee table with a complete, polished 650 Norton engine as the main pedestal. Quite a conversation piece.
He used to have a Norton show bike.
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Old 05-24-2017, 04:28:42 PM
AKMark AKMark is online now
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Default Re: 1962 Norton 650ss

I wanted a commando back in the early 70s but ended up with a BSA 650.
You have a nice motorcycle, thanks for posting.
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Old 05-24-2017, 04:55:21 PM
BobSaunders BobSaunders is offline
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Default Re: 1962 Norton 650ss

About 1965 my brother bought a new Norton Atlas 750. I bought it from him but I seemed to have trouble being light weight kicking it over. Or did not understand how? I sold it and bought a used BMW 600CC boxer twin and put a solo seat on it. With the Earle's leading link forks it was very smooth but you almost had to make it corner. In 1970 I bought a new MOTO GUZZI 750CC V twin. Around 80 MPH it got speed wobble which was not fun. With the wind screen it sounded like the valves and pistons were swapping holes. Got rid of it. I used to like going on Saturday night POKER RUNS where you got a playing card in a envelope at five stops for best hand wins. Bob
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