1953 Lohmann 18cc Diesel Hilfsmotor
DVLA registered (V5C) and on SORN.
This rare cycle-attachment engine is mounted in a postwar BSA Sunbeam bicycle frame. The bicycle is functional and is included in the sale. But the seller has an option of receiving just the engine if preferred (for the same sale price) to save money on postage costs.
The unit is complete – and includes the rare original handlebar controls – except for the rear lever and its fittings (see further down page).
I’ve not had it running, but the engine turns with good compression. It would be easy to construct a rear lever fitting and put the machine on the road.
Lohmann 18cc ‘Bicycle-Diesel Engine’
The 18cc 2-stroke Lohmann engine was officially described as a ‘mixture compressing self-igniting two-cycle motor.’
It fixes under a bicycle’s pedal crank and operates the rear wheel by roller.
When it originally went on sale in Great Britain, the price was just under £25 10/-
There’s neither carburettor nor ignition system. Instead the engine works on a variable compression ignition system, which is moderated by the twistgrips.
Inventor and designer Hermann Teegen (1899-1962) is the spiritual father of Lohmann engines. He designed several similar engines, 3 of which were patented.
From one of these prototypes, over a period of 3 years, the current 18cc Lohmann engine was developed. It first appeared in 1950.
51,000 were built by August 1954.
Although in test reports of the time, it was specifically pointed out that the engine was not a genuine diesel, Lohmann advertising subsequently marketed it as a ‘bicycle-diesel engine’ (ie ‘Fahrrad-Dielelmotor’ in advertising leaflet below)
The article below appeared in ‘The Guardian’ newspaper.