Page 82. 1956 Vincent Power Cycle: Vincent Firefly & Phillips frame SOLD

1956 Vincent Power Cycle: Vincent Firefly & Phillips frame. Registered ‘MAB 601’

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Vincent Power Cycles such as this are quite rare nowadays. The Vincent Firefly was only manufactured between 1953 to 1956. In the first year it was supplied as a cycle-attachment engine kit only. When fitted to a specially made Sun bicycle, in 1954 and 1955, or this type of Phillips frame in 1956, it was known as a Vincent Power Cycle.

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Vincent ceased production of their big motorcycles in 1955. So, actually, a Firefly unit fitted to this Phillips frame as a Vincent Power Cycle would have been one of Vincent’s final machines.

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firefly_ad6.jpg

The Firefly was marketed at the same time as Vincent imported and sold the NSU Quickly. The Quickly was so successful that Firefly sales suffered as a result.

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It was a well-built machine, and still very useable over 50 years down the road. These days the model is highly sought-after by Vincent afficionados and cyclemotor enthusiasts alike.

peterfireflyad.jpg

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MAB 601

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We’ve not had MAB 601 running. The engine unit is complete and it turns over with good compression. It will most likely need a new condensor and maybe a coil. The current coil is fitted to the bottom of the petrol tank and is complete except for the securing ring at the bottom. The only other issue is that the engage mechanism cable needs adjusting.

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The cycle is in good order and fully functional. It has been painted at some time in its life, and the handlebars have been painted silver. It retains the Phillips pedal crank (below).

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The petrol tank has also been repainted, by the previous owner.

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Phillips Cycle Co

In the 1950s, several cycle makers produced special cycles for ‘cyclemotorization.’ They would be supplied as a complete bike, or missing the rear wheel if a Cyclemaster was to be fitted. Phillips produced a range of such machines. Common features were:

  • Strengthened frame
  • Lower saddle position (more comfortable for powered riding but less suited to pedalling)
  • No rear brake on the Cyclemaster models; rear brake on the others was often a coaster hub
  • Braced (or sprung) front fork
  • Number plates
  • Lighting set designed to run off the engine
  • Lower than normal gearing – since pedals were mainly used for starting and assisting on hills.

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The effect of the braces on the front fork must have been minimal, but at least they make it look stronger. The mudguards are bigger and stronger that on a normal pedal cycle; although extra mud protection made a good selling point, the most likely reason for them was that normal mudguards would not be reliable in supporting the weight of the number plates.

Below you can see the Phillips Motorised Bicycle. Phillips sold this as a complete machine (though the cycle parts are the same as used on their ordinary bicycle). The frame is the same as that made for the Firefly.

Below, you can compare it to the ordinary Phillips cycle.


Firefly history at the Online Cyclemaster Museum:

PLEASE CLICK HERE

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The handlebars are genuine Phillips.

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Saddle is a Brooks B73 in good (weathered) condition.

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You’d certainly not consider the machine to be anywhere near concours. The paint is adequate but not professionally applied. Nevertheless, overall, the machine looks very attractive.

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It has a DVLA registration document, though the numbers do not tally.

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The rear wheel is tarnished.

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SUMMARY: You need to do various jobs here and there to finish off this Vincent Power Cycle. But as these machines are so hard to source these days, and this one has so many factors in its favour, it would be a very viable proposition to put it back on the road.

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MY PRETTY FIREFLY

Wonderful thing, the internet. I did a search today on Vincent Firefly and, hidden among the usual guff was this little gem from 1915: Helen Vincent’s My Pretty Firefly. I wonder if the song influenced Philip Vincent when it came time to name the company’s cycle-attachment engine in 1953?

Helen_Vincent_Firefly1

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PLEASE READ THIS BEFORE BIDDING

OWNER: BuyVintage Online Auctions

LOCATION: Brighton, E.Sussex, United Kingdom

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DELIVERY is not included in this auction.

This means that it is not my responsibility,

BUT I can put you in touch with a delivery chap and organize collection;

you liaise with them direct re delivery and pay them separately.

Great Britain – delivery is £40 for a cyclemotor 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).

LOCAL DELIVERY FREE

If you want it fast, please organize your own collection.

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

Europe – delivery is probably around €400 to Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Spain, etc. I can recommend two companies.

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

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.

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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…

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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 DO NOT AGREE WITH THE ABOVE, PLEASE DO NOT BID.

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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 – Buyvintage@mac.com

The Auction Catalogue is our website –

http://www.BuyVintage.co.uk

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Published on April 17, 2008 at 8:23 am  Leave a Comment  

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