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Thread: Bill Richardson Transport World

  1. #1
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    Bill Richardson Transport World

    19th February 2017

    A good night's sleep, after WAY too much beer - I wake late and get showered and dressed. Having had it indicated to me by motu from ADVrider that my trip wasn't being run to a schedule he approved of, I decide to have a quiet day today, and visit the motor museums in Invercargill.

    Bill Richardson Transport World is split into two sites, both located on the same road as my hotel, which is about halfway between them. I decide to visit the Transport part in the morning...



    It's enormous - covering about half a block...



    I park outside the front entrance and buy a 'Turbo Ticket' - which allows me entrance to both museums - for a very reasonable $40...



    Although this pair of Indians is displayed in the foyer, this part of the museum caters for the four-wheeled petrol-head...



    Spot of breakfast first, though - eh?



    I love the little details about this place - US license plates and motorcycle wheels make up the lamps...



    ...and your table number is made from a valve (from a truck, I should think)



    If you'd like some chilled water, it comes from what looks like an oil pump.

    Breakfast arrives...



    Note to self - don't order pancakes in NZ - they come pre-soaked in syrup. I ate the bacon and banana and left the rest...



    The museum itself is well set out, although the first hall is in virtual darkness, reminding me of the main part of the NZAF Museum the other day...



    These pictures make it look much brighter than it is - it is really quite gloomy...



    A couple of things are clear from the start. Bill was very interested in trucks - and he collected everything - he must have been a nightmare to live with...



    There are some great vehicles here...



    ..and they are surrounded by ephemera from their age - like these petrol pumps..



    I wonder how many of these exhibits were bought virtually as they're being displayed...



    ...and how many were restored by Bill and his team...



    Having done some minor restoration work on a couple of classics, I am in awe of the amount of time and money that has been spent here...



    Any one of these could soak up most of your leisure time for a year...



    ...but here there is a city's worth of traffic...



    My next door but one neighbour had one of these when I was five or so...



    He wouldn't let me have a go.

    Git.



    Beautiful...:raabia



    Right - time for some serious trucks...



    A lot of these are familiar to me from when I was a kid in the UK, others less so...



    This massive engine and transmission unit is from a Volvo truck...



    There are only a couple of buses...



    ...but plenty of trucks, from all corners of the world...



    This was a very familiar sight on UK roads when I was a youngster - the Army and RAF used them...



    Overall, I think I prefer this part of the museum...



    ...since the exhibits haven't been restored to within an inch of their lives...



    ...and there's something honest about that. They have a patina of age, rather than looking like they have just come off the end of the production line...



    The occasional bike and three-wheeled interloper makes an appearance...



    ...and there are a creditable number of VW camper vans...



    I spotted a split-screen Morris 1000 coming the other way a week or so ago, but couldn't get the camera out in time...



    A couple of iconic shapes - Citroen Traction and an R90S...



    Street scene from the early sixties...



    I think this is a prison/police van - known as a Black Maria in the UK...



    Almost the double of the MkI Cortina GT in the dealer's window the other day...



    ...but this is the Lotus Cortina - which quickly became a legend. Ford sold a lot more Lotus badges than they did Lotus Cortinas...



    Look at the condition of these air lines and petrol pumps - can you imagine the amount of work involved in finding and/or making parts to get them looking this good?



    The early trucks here have solid rubber tyres, with only cart springs for suspension...



    They have a great collection of Mack trucks here. These things are milled from solid...







    I'm enjoying the old petrol pumps and other stuff as much as the trucks...



    It wasn't that long ago I was buying my fuel from one of these...



    Some of them really are works of art - I'm sure there's a corner in my garage that could accommodate one...



    Big Mack to finish...



    I go back to my bike, ride back to my hotel and upload the morning's pics. At about 1400 I ride down the street to...



    ...where I park in some decent company...



    Entering the display hall, they hit you with some heavy metal right away...



    ...a pair of combinations, a Brough Superior and a Vincent Rapide...



    I notice once again, the attention to detail - the end of the guide rail is a piston, with chains and sprockets being used very artfully...



    Now, I'm not going to take a picture of every bike - so I'll take a selection...



    The display hall is really warm - it's clear that it has been built to cope with chilly winters - not hot summer days like today...



    I didn't know AJS had ever made a V-Twin - but there's one here...



    Any one of these would draw a crowd if they were stopped in any town...



    Meticulously restored - once again, not my preference, but you have to admire the amount of work that has gone into bringing them to this standard...



    There's something for everyone...



    Some marques are familiar...



    ...others less so...



    All the bikes are set out so that you can get a good look at them...



    Some of the older ones have frames no more substantial than a mountain bike - with close to one-litre engines in them (this one's just under 500cc)...



    There's a whole tribe of Indians here...



    Why can't we buy whitewall tyres any more?



    Look at the amount of metalwork in those mudguards...



    There are a couple of three-wheelers in the collection, including this Morgan...



    ...and its slightly younger brother...



    In the UK, a motorcycle and family sidecar like this, was often all a working man could afford in the post war years...



    I loved the look of this Harley-Davidson. That's a sentence I never thought I'd type...



    Must be the heat, affecting my judgement...



    Ye Gods! - OK, that's cured it...



    Nearly time for a move upstairs...



    Just a quick look at some more recent metal, like this Benelli Sei 750 from 1974...



    ...and this Norton Commando - a dead ringer for my bike (except for the colour of the plastics)...



    ...what a dreadful bike it was...



    That's more like it...



    Look at that frame...



    OK - I'd hang that on the wall in the lounge...



    Got to love a Messerschmitt...



    Must be like flying a little aircraft...



    A 200cc aircraft...



    Ah, those were the days - when your passenger was your crumple-zone...



    OK - one last Guzzi before we go upstairs...



    Con rods being used as bannister supports...



    Top of the stairs - five Brough Superiors...



    Next to them, a trio of Vincents...



    ...including this Black Knight with a huge fibreglass fairing...



    This Black Shadow...



    ...had this massive lever on the left side...



    ...which apparently allows the rider to put it on the stand without getting off the bike...



    All sorts of odd stuff up here - but the heat is stifling...



    In fact, I'm going to have to get something to drink in a minute...



    I take the three or four steps...



    ...with camshaft-supported handrail - to the Britten stand...



    ...and suddenly forget I'm hot and thirsty.

    Someone once told me that there were two types of motorcyclist - those who have stood in front of a Britten and those that haven't. Since I have no real interest in motorcycle racing, I'd given it no thought. But I think I know what he meant...



    The use of materials, design and engineering involved in this bike - number one in a production run of ten - is awe-inspiring...



    I would love to hear this run, or watch it do a lap somewhere...



    I can't stop staring at it - eventually I have to let other people get a look, but I can see it having a similar effect on them...



    166bhp - it weighs 138kg...



    Onward!



    My neighbour used to have a Scott Squirrel - my God that thing could smoke...



    Aah! A white BMW - the best colour...



    BMW are well represented here, actually...



    Look how skinny that frame is!



    Big old Squarial...



    More Triumphs - it's getting close to going home time now...



    Look at the size of the tank on that BMW - how many litres do you reckon you could get in there?



    ...and what the Hell is that?



    I go downstairs...



    ...and exit via the gift shop.

    I stop at the cafe and have two large glasses of lemonade, which makes me feel a lot better. I then get suited up and ride back to the hotel.

    Good day today - I have no idea what I'm doing tomorrow...

    We will never be here again - have a good look around

  2. #2
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    Thanks for all the great pictures.
    Some museum that.
    I love the Art deco building and the clear blue sky.
    Richard Britten, the ultimate man in a shed.

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    Fantastic report Mike thanks for taking the time��
    I have seen a V twin AJS from the same era. A couple from Worcester(both in thier 80,s) take thier AJ to the Moto
    Piston rally most years.
    Thier bike is a inline V twin, I have never seen a across the frame V twin AJS.

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    "What the hell is that?" - a Ner-A-Car. I've ridden one!

    Great RR, amazing museums but where's Burt?

    A

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by andysdad View Post
    "What the hell is that?" - a Ner-A-Car. I've ridden one!

    Great RR, amazing museums but where's Burt?

    A
    Quite pleased with myself.... I got it when I saw the photo

  6. #6
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    My Grandma used to do the wiring on the Ner-a-car; one model had heated grips, achieved by diverting coolant up the handlebars. Top pics Mike, carry on.
    Paul

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    Great pics, thanks. Now we know who has cornered the market; certainly the Broughs.

    My old Dad had a Ner-A-Car in the 1930s - weird things with a monocoque & hub centre steering. Some clever ideas though. He switched to a Velo GTP & then a 1929 Scott Flying Squirrel - both were mobile smoke screens & the SFS was a whole heap of trouble, maily the liquid cooling system. So he switched to a nice 350 cammy Velocette - then WW2/RAFVR/marriage came along, so he didn't get back to anything like serious biking until the 60s. We used to have some great photos, all lost sadly in a fire.

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    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dPWYI6o5By8

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Britten_V1000

    there was a documentary about him and making of the bike - must find it

    mike - im not jealous

  9. #9
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    I was gonna post the drooling smilie when I saw the R90s (a childhood dream bike) but then you posted Broughs, Vincents, Britten, et al
    What's a man to do with all that bike pron in one post
    Just 'cos you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you !

    Remember, experience only means that you screw-up less often.

  10. #10
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    As usual a great RR.
    A lot of the bikes came from the motorbike museum in Nelson (top of the Mainland)
    The very very rich owner of them all got sick and decided to sell off his collection and fortunately for all of us it stayed in NZ and moved south.
    I saw the collection in Nelson a couple of years back and was told they had the same amount of bikes in storage over the hill in Takaka so I assuming that they now have those on display in Inver-vegas.

    Late last year Christchurch art gallery had a display featuring a Britten in the gallery, stunning

    Name:  Britten (Medium).jpg
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    Adrian

  11. #11
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    I have to say, seeing all these great bikes in NZ, as well as at our NMM, I still love to see totally unrestored, unmolested examples. Bikes that served their owners for years, cleaned up with an oily rag, some new tyres, brakes, being ridden as intended. OK, restoration is often the only option, but genuine patina is priceless IMHO.

  12. #12
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    Wonderful ....

    Ah ... the 1957 Arial Square Four

    Back in the late sixties I bought one for £25 and rode it home. Stripped it down to do up but then moved police houses when I went from beat officer to the Stolen Vehicle - Accident Investigation Branch. No garage so sold it to a pal for the same twenty five quid

    He still has it, in the same cardboard boxes, in his garage

    I've offered him 100% mark up, fifty quid, but says if he ever gets rid it's mine

    I don't think I could kick start anything like that these days with these 'ere metal knees

    Good one Mike ... keep it up

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