Check out this one

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Oct 7, 2005
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Yeah, but who painted the fuel tank white? It should be silver. Did it have the original green hemisphere Norton "badges"?

I remember the comments after the 1968 Motor Cycle Show. "Was it sponsored by the Republic of Ireland Tourist Board?" (referring to the green badge, the silver paint and the orange seat-cover). "Where's the switch for those green turn signals on the fuel tank?" (referring to the partial-sphere new "logo").

I couldn't believe that N-V spent over £20,000 with an "image consultant" who came up with that crackpot green partial sphere to replace the familiar Norton logo. They spent untold additional thousands having all the company stationery and documentation redesigned with that sphere also.

With that money, we could probably have designed a decent disc brake for its inugural!
 
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May 22, 2004
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Mike

I know where there is a same first model original frame and engine in the MIA near Wagga ~ lurking in some blokes garage ~ been in the same town since brand new ~

This one was progressively used and abused with Dunstall kit/s and most memorable by its original owner doing wheel stands !! (and always seemingly broken down!!)

( I bought my first A65L from the same bloke and it too was highly worked internally as well ~ )

The $$ on this one is certainly on the way up at $8K ~
 
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Feb 22, 2006
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G'day Stuart,

Given what it is, I would think the price will continue to go up, it will be interesting to see what the final price is and how many bids he gets.

Mike.
 
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May 19, 2006
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I remember this bike when it was in the UK and it always puzzled me a bit. The seat was a brownish re-cover and it's not difficult to paint a Fastback silver.

As Frank says, where are the green globes ?

I spoke to the then-owner and he seemed convinced that the fact that it was silver with an orange seat made it one of the earliest but it just looked like a standard Plumstead Fastback to me.
 

L.A.B.

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Commando production supposedly started at engine number 126125.

This bike is number 127784 which does not place it anywhere within the (supposedly?) first 400 made at the Plumstead factory?

Plumstead-made (AMC) Nortons also had an additional 'P' added to the engine number I believe?

Did the factory ever build any silver production model Commandos?
 
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Mike, I thought that I'd carefully avoided saying that it wasn't a desirable bike. All Commandos are special anyway :)

Plumstead Commandos are uncommon but they are around (certainly in the UK).

The green globe was followed by a more conventional badge but this tank has the later type transfer. I don't see that a later tank and re-covered seat should be taken as meaning that this bike started life as one of the elusive orange-seated variety

The previous owner clearly had the impression that the bike was one of these fabled machines but I do think that any potential buyer should consider that it could well have left the factory looking rather more like a conventional Fastback than it does now.

Amusing that he places the quality of Plumstead above Andover. Not a patch of course on proper Birmingham-built Nortons :twisted:
 
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L.A.B. - Just noted your comments made while I was typing slowly. I think that we are in agreement here.

The 1968 "Two's Company" brochure Shows a bike with round Norton Villiers plastic badges and says that they were available in Red, Green and silver. I think most people bought red ones though.
 

L.A.B.

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Further research gives the first Andover built Commando as number 134108 (according to Steve Wilson's Norton book).

So 127784 may indeed make it a Plumstead built bike?

The production numbers still don't add up,-maybe some of the Plumstead numbers could have been allocated to the Mercury (or hybrid?) models?

--------------------------------------------

Update

Roy Bacon's Norton book lists some Mercury and P11 Ranger numbers which does seem to show that numbers from the same series as the Commandos were being used.
 
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There must have been many more than 400 Commandos made at Woolwich.

I always associated them with the domed primary cover and the unpolished levers.

Steve Wilson gives a date of 25th July 1969 for production of the last Commando there.

I don't think that Mercury figures were high but agree that their numbers must have been in the sequence.
 
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