What year of 850 commando is most desireable or valuable??

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I know this question may be a matter of opinion but I was just curious as to what year and style of Norton 850 Commando is the most desired and or valuable?? What are the reasons for this?? I have two parts bikes and am wondering which to build and which to sell. One engine number is 31827 and the other is 317052. Thanks for any help!!
 
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Im not sure about ther various Mk no.s but late 850's pre eceltric start are supposed to be the best, this would mean 1973/4. These are the most sorted for reliability but much lighter than the MK 3 electric start model
 

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Re: What year of 850 commando is most desireable or valuable

Mark Cigainero said:
I know this question may be a matter of opinion but I was just curious as to what year and style of Norton 850 Commando is the most desired and or valuable?? What are the reasons for this?? I have two parts bikes and am wondering which to build and which to sell.

Just a matter of personal preference really!
There being little difference in desirability between 850 MkI (and IA) and MkII (and IIA) models in their Roadster, Interstate, JPN and Hi-Rider versions, and Commando enthusiasts are unlikely to agree which is the better model.
A greater number of minor improvements were made to the 850 MkIII model, including the addition of an electric starter, left foot gearchange and rear disc brake, but these are not always regarded as necessarily desirable features by some enthusiasts.
Generally the overall condition of any particular Commando model would (in my own opinion) be my guide to its desirability (and as for *value* that is best left to the motorcycle collectors to argue over I think?).


Mark Cigainero said:
One engine number is 31827

Have you missed a digit off that number?
 

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Geoff said:
much lighter than the MK 3 electric start model

There's not really as much difference between the weights of MkIII and previous I/II models as some people may believe.
 
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Mark, how long is a piece of string :?: I think most Norton owners would say the one or two or three they have sitting in their garage would be the most desirable.

As far as value is concerned, it just depends how badly someone wants to own a Norton, there was a Mk.2 Commando over here on ebay last year that went for over $20 thou. Oz.

It had apparently only test miles on it and all the original paper work etc., so maybe in some peoples minds, value equates to originality rather than specific models.

Mike.
 
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Re: What year of 850 commando is most desireable or valuable

Mark Cigainero said:
I know this question may be a matter of opinion but I was just curious as to what year and style of Norton 850 Commando is the most desired and or valuable?? What are the reasons for this?? I have two parts bikes and am wondering which to build and which to sell. One engine number is 31827 and the other is 317052. Thanks for any help!!

Those numbers both sound like 1974 Commandos so are probably equivalent. Is a numeral missing from the first one? 74's go from serial number 307311 to 32499?? 325001 is the first electric start model in 75. As others have stated, the value of a Commando seems to have more to do with how much someone wants to spend than anything else. There were improvements made over the years but all improvements can be retrofitted to the earlier models. My only experience is with a 74 MkIIa but I would like to try a 750 one of these days!!
 

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Take the best parts from each and build the best bike! The great thing about Commandos is the opportunity to "improve" the bike without seriously affecting value. In general a well-fettled Commando is at least as valuable and more satisfying than a "restored to the last bolt" version.

These bikes make very good daily riders, yet still have that "classic" look and sound.
 
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I believe that in the long run, the pre-e-start 850s will ultimately be the more collectable. Keep in mind that the 75 E-start had many concessions to American bureaucracy. Those being, left hand shift, bulky air box, bulky "annular discharge" mufflers, EPA tuning, not to mention a less than marginal e-start system.
 

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norflog76 said:
Keep in mind that the 75 E-start had many concessions to American bureaucracy. Those being, left hand shift, bulky air box, bulky "annular discharge" mufflers, EPA tuning,

(Except for the left foot gearchange) the large plastic airbox and annular discharge silencer mods. were fitted to both earlier IA and IIA models (late '73-on) and these modifications (along with the raising of the second gear ratio) and were intended to meet prospective European legislation (the 'A' models originally being less common in the USA I believe?).
 
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(the 'A' models originally being less common in the USA I believe?).

Not exactly sure when the "bureaucracy mods" were required in the US, but I have a 74 Commando, purchased new and it has NONE of these mods. Will have to check actual date of manufacture.

I am certain all 1975 US models had these changes.

Don't believe there were too many of the pre e-start "bureaucracy mod" models imported to the US. (Right side shift, airbox, annular discharge silencers)
 

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norflog76 said:
Not exactly sure when the "bureaucracy mods" were required in the US, but I have a 74 Commando, purchased new and it has NONE of these mods. Will have to check actual date of manufacture.

I would not expect it to have them if it is a '74 Mk II model?

Being a US model (I guess?) it is unlikely to be an A variant (can't really be an A if it never had them)?

The IA/IIA models being manufactured/sold at the same time as the I and II models (IA from approx. late 73) and did not replace the I and II.
 
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