850 Mk2 & Mk2A Discussion Split From Another Thread

marshg246

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The VIN is 303990 - but not sure on the items you noted.
For a clearer picture of models, look here: https://www.gregmarsh.com/MC/Norton/CommandoID.aspx

It almost certainly began with silver barrels. Unless the battery box and air cleaner where change it's not a "A".

The only real detractor on price, and it's not much of one, is the gearbox serial. To me, if the engine and title match on a pre-75 it's good enough, the gearbox too is gravy. So, if I wanted it, and I was standing in front of the seller, I would offer less with cash in hand and only peel of the extra thousand if I had to. But in that price range, they sell easily so don't mess around if you really like it.
 
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My MK2a is stamped Nov73 on red plate 3104xx, so Jan 74 for 307311 is wrong.
 

L.A.B.

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My MK2a is stamped Nov73 on red plate 3104xx, so Jan 74 for 307311 is wrong.
Why does it say the Mk2a start was from January 1974 or is that the guessimated month they turned up on show room floors.
The factory records between 305549 and 317848 are lost/destroyed, therefore January 1974 probably was the new model release date which would have been reported in the weekly motorcycle newspapers, monthly motorcycle magazines, etc.
 
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You need that. Norton numbers & Marks are strange. Mine is Mk.II dated on frame Feb. '74.
 

marshg246

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Why does it say the Mk2a start was from January 1974 or is that the guessimated month they turned up on show room floors.
MK2A is not a follow-on to MK2. The MK1A is not a follow-onto MK1. The "A"s were a quieter version made mostly for Europe. Later in 74 the MK2As started being imported to the US. Then there are those like mine. My 310311 was build as a MK2A and sold in Scotland. Then imported to the US.
 

marshg246

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My 3077.. was built in Sep. 73.
The certification label date cannot be taken as much. I have a factory record showing "off-track" months later than the stamp on the bike. I discussed this with AN - they had no answer except that sometimes they were finished, not acceptable when tested, and eventually made it back on the line so be finished.

I doubt that they would take the front-end apart to change the label to match the final build date.

307311 is generally accepted as the beginning of 74 but what does than mean? At Norton, there were no "model years" and they changed what the dates meant over time. For instance, the 72 I just sold was clearly marked on the factory record as the 25th made on Jan 4th 1972 and it was a yellow Roadster. It was a Combat but they didn't keep take of that in the records. The certification label says Dec 71. There is no "off-track" date in the 72 records.

As L.A.B pointed out to me one time, there was no MK1 until there was a MK2
 

998cc

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So, what makes you think it's a MK2?
Hello Greg. It's registered as a 1974 and is a numbers matching bike. Mk-II by the best of my knowledge based on the descriptions of Mk-II versus Mk-IIA folks have given me here in this forum over the past year or so. If you think is is something different, please help me determine what it is. :)

Regards,

~998cc
 

marshg246

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My MK2a is stamped Nov73 on red plate 3104xx, so Jan 74 for 307311 is wrong.
My 310311 is also stamped 11/73. It is most definitely an "A". It was imported to the US in 74 so it has a 1974 title. It has black barrels that have never been off so it should be a 74 but again, the label says 11/73.

Wrong is an overly strong statement - I've never found any facts on how or when the numbers were stamped on the certification label or engine. Unlike Triumph and BSA, there were no model years and Norton tended to make changes whenever they were ready.

Unfortunately, AN doesn't have the records for bikes in our range so it's hard to figure out more.
 

MichaelB

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Maybe I wasn’t clear , my 3077.. is a MkIi and registered as 74.
 

marshg246

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Hello Greg. It's registered as a 1974 and is a numbers matching bike. Mk-II by the best of my knowledge based on the descriptions of Mk-II versus Mk-IIA folks have given me here in this forum over the past year or so. If you think is is something different, please help me determine what it is. :)

Regards,

~998cc
Not sure MK1 or MK2 makes much difference. My last post told of my 310311 "built in" Nov 73 which is pretty clearly a 74 MKIIA. I would say that Sep 73 is far enough back that it is MK1 but since I have a similar case with another bike that is Sep 73 but definitely imported it the US in 74 ???

The big thing to realize in the US is that back then, the date on the title had nothing to do with when the bike was built. It only had to do with what the importer (dealer) put on the paperwork.

If it came with a bean can air filter, you can rule out "A". MK1 or MK2 is harder and I'm not sure makes much difference.

I'm relatively certain that some MK1s left the factory after they were officially making MK2s - fail testing and go back to be fixed when time allowed.
 

marshg246

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Maybe I wasn’t clear , my 3077.. is a MkIi and registered as 74.
You were clear, I was just trying to add to the info you provided. I should have been more clear that I was not contradicting what you said.
 

maylar

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Another clue would be the head stamping - RH4 for a MKI and RH10 for a MKII. Dunno about the "A" versions.

And you're right about dealers assigning the sale year - my Aug 74 bike was sold to me in May of 75 as a 75 850 MK2 Roadster. That's what my bill of sale, title, and Connecticut registration say it is.
 

marshg246

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Another clue would be the head stamping - RH4 for a MKI and RH10 for a MKII. Dunno about the "A" versions.

And you're right about dealers assigning the sale year - my Aug 74 bike was sold to me in May of 75 as a 75 850 MK2 Roadster. That's what my bill of sale, title, and Connecticut registration say it is.
I've heard the RH4/RH10 thing before but have never seen factual on it. Do you know of anything to back that up? I would love to add it to the page but I like to keep things as verified as possible on that page.
 

maylar

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I've heard the RH4/RH10 thing before but have never seen factual on it. Do you know of anything to back that up? I would love to add it to the page but I like to keep things as verified as possible on that page.
Only general consensus and anecdotal evidence. My MKII has an RH10 with 30 mm ports. I can't find any official references to that head, AN doesn't show it. They do show the RH4 with 32 mm ports for 73-74 models.
 

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