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#395906 - 09/24/11 1:32 am Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home'  
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 89
Dawg Offline
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Dawg  Offline
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England
I took a trip to the old Norton factory in bracebridge street, Birmingham today. I was on my 1960 Dominator - bought new by my late father in early '62

It was to this building that James Norton located in 1916 with the company later producing so many TT winning Manx Norton's. They probably emerged gleaming brand new from that large doorway.... Sadly, it was closed in 1963 - and Norton under pressure from AMC relocated to London.

It's now derelict - a sad end to such a productive and historic place....




In 1961, age only about 21, my father came here en-route to Velocette's Hall Green factory to pick his repaired Venom Clubman up (he'd crashed it). He said just inside the front door was a sectioned Manx Norton engine which could be turned with a handle connected to the crankshaft. Must have been this door.... there used to be a huge 'Norton' sign above it.


Last edited by Dawg; 09/24/11 1:38 am.

1958 Velocette Venom
1960 Norton Dominator 99
1964 Velocette Venom Clubman Mk1
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#395910 - 09/24/11 1:48 am Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
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Rohan Online content
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Oztralia
Nice pics. Is it derelict though ? The NOC a year or 2 back had a run there, on the weekend - and the present owners opened it up and showed them round inside. Where not a lot has changed, it seems.

P.S. That building goes right through to Aston Brook St, out the back. Where Nortons were for quite a while before Bracebridge St became involved ? Much of the factory ins and outs happened there. ?

Cheers.

#395917 - 09/24/11 2:05 am Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
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Dawg Offline
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Dawg  Offline
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England
Just after I arrived, I actually spoke to the previous owner - he's moved across the street. So this building is now empty. All I know is that Norton motors were listed as being on bracebridge street as from around 1916 - that large entrance looks to be from the 1950's. Thinking about it, I'm sure bikes were taken out someplace else - it's not really big enough to cope with mass transit... But I do have a picture in a book somewhere, of Joe Craig stood outside that doorway in the mid '50's


I was here in 1997 when Geoff Duke unveiled a plaque just above to the right of the doorway. Seems like someone's stolen it....

Last edited by Dawg; 09/24/11 2:09 am.

1958 Velocette Venom
1960 Norton Dominator 99
1964 Velocette Venom Clubman Mk1
#395933 - 09/24/11 3:42 am Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
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Rohan Online content
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Rohan  Online Content
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Posts: 1,921
Oztralia
Apparently someone in the NOC took down the blue plaque 'for safety'.

Bracebridge St was the Admin (Offices) and Race Shop, Aston Brook St was the factory entrance. They expanded at some point to Bracebridge St, 1916 sounds possible. Be interesting to see a rundown of how the factory functioned inside, and changed over time ?

Thanks for the updates.
Cheers.

#397756 - 10/07/11 4:44 am Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
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Tobin Peever Offline
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Tobin Peever  Offline
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Posts: 193
Pullman, Washington, USA
Beautiful bike!!! Can we get some better photos!!


47 Norton ES2
61 Norton Dominator 88
67 Triumph TR6C
68 Moto Guzzi V700
74 Norton Commando
08 Moto Guzzi 1200 Sport
#397894 - 10/08/11 1:18 am Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 1,719
441/R3cafeSteve Offline
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441/R3cafeSteve  Offline
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BC Canada
Was it bomb damaged in WW2? here it would already be converted to live in loft residences. :o) Great photo's
S


The 441, most versatile BSA of the 60's
#473575 - 01/21/13 9:06 pm Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
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Dawg Offline
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Dawg  Offline
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England
Hi - not been on for a while. Tobin - here's some more shots just after restoration.





And here's my Mum back in the Summer of 1962 with the Avon screened Dominator. They went everywhere on this bike. Just glad to still have it and my Mum!


Last edited by Dawg; 01/21/13 9:07 pm.

1958 Velocette Venom
1960 Norton Dominator 99
1964 Velocette Venom Clubman Mk1
#473593 - 01/21/13 10:43 pm Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
Joined: Oct 2007
Posts: 722
norton bob Offline
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norton bob  Offline
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Posts: 722
bromley uk
Notice the engine enclosure?, very rare picture,i don't think there are any surviving, my 99 was fitted with these at one time.

#473595 - 01/21/13 11:28 pm Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Dawg]  
Joined: Aug 2001
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Rohan Online content
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Rohan  Online Content
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Posts: 1,921
Oztralia
It has been a while !

Engine enclosure / legshields.
Are these a factory part ?
Don't believe ever seen these before.
Full enclosed chaincase too, another option.

What are the 2 colours of your bike ?
Poly grey and white ? cream ? dove grey ??
Looks a treat...

#473608 - 01/22/13 12:24 am Re: Taking a 1960 Norton Dominator 'home' [Re: Rohan]  
Joined: Jun 2008
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Dawg Offline
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Dawg  Offline
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Posts: 89
England
My Father bought it brand new in March 1962; it came as a standard Dommi '99' and had been sat in a dealers for 18 months and was on sale as the shop was closing down - it came without the screen and leg shields, just like the photos above; he bought those as after market items. I'm almost 100% certain he said they were made by the company Avon. The leg shields which also covered the engine proved to be a hinderance, so they were removed not long after this photo was taken. I have another photo somewhere with it just sporting the wind shield.


However, it did come with the fully enclosed rear chain guard - to my knowledge, that was only fitted as standard to the fully enclosed Dominator Deluxe; the model which had the big 'bathtub' enclosure...

In '63 he fitted a leather tank cover and that stayed on for 30+ years. He repainted the whole bike a khaki green. When it came time for the restoration, we took off the leather tank cover and the original paintwork was still in tact. The new paint matches exactly that - it's listed as 'Polychromatic Grey' and the cream is actually 'Dove Grey'


Still on the original Monobloc, I still have the original handlebar mirror and rear carrier hanging up in the garage too. She's a keeper..

Last edited by Dawg; 01/22/13 12:34 am.

1958 Velocette Venom
1960 Norton Dominator 99
1964 Velocette Venom Clubman Mk1

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