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Category Archives: Motorcycle photos

Easter Sunday Entertainment – Sherlock Jr. 1924 – The Driverless Motorcycle Scene

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Sherlock, Jr., the perfect entertainment for an Easter Sunday was filmed during 1924. It appears to have been the third feature-length film Buster Keaton made. The movie is a non-stop collection of stunts and is filled with plenty of action. This video contains the short driverless motorcycle scene in the movie, along with plenty of cars, trucks and even a steam locomotive to enjoy while viewing it.

You can learn more about the rest of the production here at Turner Classic Movies, and see the rest of the forty-four minute film Sherlock Jr. here. 

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Posted in Motorcycle photos, video | Tagged , , |

The Keating Wheel Company – Forty Years on Two Wheels

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Brian Keating is just up the road a piece and across the Connecticut River in New Hampshire. He has been: restoring, reviving, conserving, collecting and buying and selling vintage motorcycles for forty years. Lucent Productions has put together an excellent documentary covering Keating’s life’s work that many of you will be able to identify with. Listen along as he tells the story from the very start, of his passion for the two-wheeled machine.

Even though his work is with motorcycles and not cars, Keating does put into focus why so many of us in the trade along with private enthusiasts do what we do. Antique motorcycle collectors have always valued the unrestored original, and he also talks about the allure of those untouched machines. Spend the nine minutes it takes to watch this video, you will enjoy it. You can visit with the The Keating Wheel Company here.

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Posted in Motorcycle photos, video | Tagged , , , , , |

The James Scripps Booth BiAutogo – A “Motorcycle Car”

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Over one hundred years ago the course of the automobile had been fairly well charted out, but this did not discourage free-thinking individuals like James Scripps Booth who would continue to design new variations of mobile transport. And he could well afford to do so as he was an heir to the Booth family fortune that had originated from publishing the Detroit Evening News. Born and raised in the Motor City, he was educated in private schools and also developed his artistic abilities.

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Booth also had a keen interest in mechanical engineering and automobile design, which led to him laying out the Biautogo sketches in Paris, France around 1910, while studying art there for a time. He did not intend to turn it into a production vehicle, but rather to use it as an engineering study and for promotional purposes at the 1912 New York Auto Show.

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The project was not completed in time for the New York show, but it was soon finished and featured in an article in The Automobile, in 1913. And what a vehicle it was – the aluminum-bodied machine was powered by the first V-8 built in Detroit, a 332 ci. Scripps-Booth engine that produced 45 hp. A steering wheel and shaft actuated the springer type of front fork by the use of a chain and bevel gears. The chain-driven rear wheel was suspended by parallel semi-elliptic springs. It rode on large 37 x 5.5-inch tires and a long 140-inch wheelbase.

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One would assume that a vehicle of this type would be stabilized at low speeds by a powered-gyroscope, but instead Booth fitted drop-down balance-wheels for that purpose. It has been reported that above twenty mph the front and rear wheels would keep it upright by the same principals used for the bicycle. Other features were: a four-speed transmission, an air starter, a very distinctive surface-mounted radiator of copper tubing, and seating for three passengers.

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Full details of this of this unusual vehicle are in a two-page article that can be seen above, which was featured in the August 28, 1913, issue of The Automobile. You can also learn about the JB Rocket Cyclecar produced by Booth and covered here earlier on The Old Motor and the later Scripps-Booth Car here.

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In person, the BiAutogo is a genuine delight to see, and you can do just that by visiting with the Owls Head Transportation Museum, in Owls Head, Maine. At the museum, you will find one of the most diverse collections (a small sampling is above) of primarily pre-1920 automobiles, aircraft, motorcycles, stationary engines and bicycles in the country. You can visit with them here at the Owls Head Transportation Museum.

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Posted in Auto photos 1885 - 1920, Motorcycle photos, Pre-War Contemporary Photos | Tagged , , , , , , |