Curious about frame and engine numbers

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Hello again,

For the first time since I bought my bike, I have the time to try and get it running. I have been tinkering here and there, and took a look at the frame/engine numbers. The numbers and info on frame tag:

OCT 71

200355

Can anyone give me a little info?

Thanks,

DS
 

L.A.B.

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madcarpenter said:
OCT 71

200355



The engine and frame number 200355 should make it a '72 model, but a build date of October '71 for that number wouldn't be impossible.

Does the engine have the '72 style breather at the rear of the crankcase?
 
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where could I find a picture of the breather? I have the factory manual and the haynes manual. Does it show it in there?

DS
 
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That is weird because your numbers look like 72 but the breather indicates 71. It sounds like you have a Norton that was produced during the transition to the newer style cases but was drilled for the old style cam and breather.

Maybe you have a combat engine too. That would be really unusual though.
 
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I bought it from the second owner, who had it for over 25 years, on the condition that I'd get it running or sell it back to him at the same price. It had a regular seat, a hi-rider style gas tank and clip on hbars on it. I bought some generic handlebars when I first got it, but thats it.
I'd love to get in running order. This is my second norton and I definitely miss my snortin norton
 

L.A.B.

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RennieK said:
That is weird because your numbers look like 72 but the breather indicates 71.

If the breather is as it's shown in the the link diagram, then it's almost certainly the '72 model (200000-on) breather, as far as I'm aware?



RennieK said:
Maybe you have a combat engine too. That would be really unusual though.

But Combat production didn't start until 200976.
 
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Sorry everyone, I misunderstood the first 2 posts and should have read things more closely.

I immediately thought L.A.B. would make reference to the camshaft breather location on the 71 Norton as a means to identify the year as it's so easy to spot and that thought got stuck in my thick head. When madcarpenter replied saying yep. it's there I thought we had a 71/72 cross of some kind.

After re-reading it I see your reference L.A.B. was to the breather on the 72 Norton and I see things are as they should be on a 72 Norton (except that date of manufacture on the plate)

My apologies for running the thread astray in my incoherence.
 

ILLF8ED

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Commando 200355

The NOC in England has the factory records. I have some photo copies of the hand written records. One page has 200360 to 200389. All on this page were roadsters and all shipped to dealers in the UK with the exception of 200372 went to Norton France and 200375 went to a guy named Paul Dunstall.

David
 
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a guy named Paul Dunstall

Interesting, I wonder how many individuals have their names on that list.

I recently purchased a set of 750 eng cases serial # 235311. When I've checked this number to lists on the net it doesn't show up anywhere. It would appear to be numbered after the last 750's and before the 1st 850's.

Before I put anything into them I'd be interested to find out why they seem to be numbered out in the twilight zone.

Can anyone offer any info?
 

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RennieK said:
I recently purchased a set of 750 eng cases serial # 235311. When I've checked this number to lists on the net it doesn't show up anywhere. It would appear to be numbered after the last 750's and before the 1st 850's.


Another of our members has seen a 235XXX number (235565), but it was on an 850 with a 4/74 date stamp. http://accessnorton.com/post20849.html#20849
 
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Think I'll join the NOC and run my numbers by them. It'd be interesting to find out exactly what model I have
 
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My 750 200530 was a drum braked Roadster when I bought it. The crankcases had been replaced by new unstamped MkV cases by the time I got hold of it. It had the 72 / 73 pattern breather as would be expected.

The headstock plate (which looks original) does not have a date stamped on it. I have ploughed through the factory ledgers at the VMCC (who now hold the originals) and it's not in there. I don't remember if the books show despatch dates. They are a pretty incomplete list by this time (and it only got worse later on). My 850 Mk111 doesn't appear either and both of these were bikes with full DVLC history.

The ledgers are a sad contrast with the Bracebridge Street books (proper Nortons of course) where small details were noted and every now and then the wonderful words "Full Manx Racing Specification"
 
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I sent my info to the vintage motorcycle library and got this reply:

"Thank you for your email. The full record for your Commando is blank
but the day record gives the following.
Tange, HR, 2 Dec 1971, I assume this to mean Tangerine Hi-rider."


Compared to what I have now, the bikes been down a long road of change.

DS
 
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Strange, isn't it ? So where does the October date come from ? I suppose that we'll never know.

No point worrying about it, just build the version that most appeals and enjoy it :D

Personally I quite like Tangerine Hi-Riders, they hardly come more early seventies than that. Quite fancy an Imperial Purple Roadster though ! :?
 

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79x100 said:
Strange, isn't it ? So where does the October date come from ? I suppose that we'll never know.


I'm not sure the plate date stamps are always entirely accurate?
 

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I remember years ago reading somewhere that Norton would build rolling chassis combinations and add appropriate tank, seat, and side covers as the orders required.

Perhaps this is what is at work here. The frame and engine were mated in October, 1971 (hence the frame plate) while the completed machine was not created until the tank, seat, and side covers were installed and dispatched for delivery in December??

I have two 1973 MkV's that both show build dates on the tag of November 1972, but records indicate the MkV wasn't built until January '73!! :shock:
 
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