Page 173. 1951 Sunbeam S8. SOLD

1951 Sunbeam S8

Excellent Restored Condition

Starts Easily, Runs Well, Long MOT

This fabulous old Sunbeam is in excellent all-round condition. It was restored in the early eighties, and purchased by the previous owner in 1985.

He kept it MOT’d each year but it has had only light use: since fitting a new speedo in 1986 it has done less than 1800 miles.

It will be sold with a Sunbeam handbook and parts list, old receipts and MOTs, etc.





These days many S8’s are rebuilt using fibreglass reproduction parts. Not this one. It’s all metal. It has the standard improvement to the carburettor to prevent blowback.

This motorcycle starts easily and runs well.

There are only two minor issues that I’ve noticed.

1. All the gears select easily, except going up from 2nd to 3rd you must touch the lever gently up or down with your toe before putting it into 3rd.

2. There’s some pitting on the chrome on the front wheel (see below).

If you wanted to bring it up to the standard of the rest of the bike, you’d want to replace the wheel. But it does not stand out when you’re looking at the motorcycle.

The chromed shaft, below, is a nice touch.



This fabulous Sunbeam S8 motorcycle is one of the most stylish of all 1950s British machines. It was a design classic in its day with its innovative shaft-drive and superb Sunbeam workmanship, and was Great Britain’s answer to America’s Harley Davidson and Germany’s BMW.

It’s also a very practical classic to own and use 50 years after it was made. There’s active club support and an excellent dedicated Sunbeam specialist and spares supplier (details below).

Produced from December 1949 until 1956, approximately 8300 manufactured.

Distinctive features

* Available in Black or polychromatic grey (some were supplied in standard BSA colours, especially to Canada and USA)
* Conventional BSA type front fork suspension
* Normal ‘Lucas MC45L’ dynamo
* Normal control levelers
* Spring mounted three point attachment seat
* Normal sized rear light
* Blue up to about 1952 and then gold
* Aluminum cast exhaust with art-deco styling
* Flat pressed steel carburettor cover
* Horn mounted on the left hand side of the frame behind the rear brake peddle
* Conventional tyres
* Side stand
* Normal main stand
* Flat petrol cap
* Plain fork shrouds




The Owners Club: The Sunbeam Owners Fellowship is a worldwide group open to all fascinated by these special British motorcycles. If you are interested in the Erling Poppe designed, BSA built, shaft-driven, OHC, ‘Sunbeam S7’, ‘Sunbeam S8’ or ‘Sunbeam S7 deluxe’ British motorbikes, SOF is the group to belong to –

Stewart Engineering: Established in 1960 for the shaft drive Sunbeam S7 and S8 motorcycles (1946-1957), Stewart Engineering are the world’s experts on these machines. With huge stocks of spares, superb world wide mail order facility. An excellent site, with on-line ordering for parts –




OWNER: BuyVintage Online Auctions

LOCATION: Brighton, E.Sussex, United Kingdom


DELIVERY is not included in this auction.

This means that it is not my responsibility, but I can put you in touch with delivery people and organize collection; you liaise with them direct re delivery and pay them separately.

Great Britain – delivery would be £70 to main parts of England; extra to extremities such as Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, etc (and may take longer to arrive). Please email your postcode if you want to confirm price.

THIS BARGAIN PRICE DELIVERY IS ON A PART-LOAD BASIS. Collection when they’re in my area; delivery when in yours. If you want it fast, please organize your own collection.



Ireland & N. Ireland – I’ll recommend some companies, but you’ll have to organize it yourself.

Europe – delivery is probably around €450 to Germany, Austria, France, Italy, etc.

North America, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, etc – I’ll organize all the crating and shipping for you.

I recently shipped a large motorcycle to Australia. I reckon it would cost around £550 to send this one over there too. And probably around £500 to a North American port depot.

PAYMENT: Paypal is okay for cheap items; otherwise deposit only on paypal please.

INTERNATIONAL PURCHASERS: You must communicate with me before the end of the auction to discuss payment and shipping options.


AFTER PURCHASE: Please email me your phone numbers; I prefer to speak to all purchasers personally.

I do everything I can to make your purchase a pleasurable experience.

I’ve been selling obscure vintage vehicles on ebay since 2002.

Sharing similar interests, I’ve become good friends with many of my customers.

Please feel free to email or phone with any comments or questions…


VEHICLE CONDITION: Vintage vehicles are wonderful beasts – but each has an individual personality and they sometimes have bad days just like you and me. You will need basic mechanical skills (or a local mechanic) to use one on a regular basis.

Two-strokes invariably need basic servicing before starting them, if they’ve been left to stand for more than 3 weeks or so.

These are rare vehicles whose values are not necessarily based on running order.



If you have any questions about this (or any other vehicle in these BuyVintage Online Auctions),
you can contact Colin in the Customer Service Department between 9am and 7pm daily:

By Phone – (UK 0044) 07866-126469

By email –

The Auction Catalogue is our website –



to see what’s currently being sold



Published on June 6, 2010 at 2:05 pm  Leave a Comment  

The URI to TrackBack this entry is:

%d bloggers like this: