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My Flying Flea


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Hi all

As in my introduction I bought the two bikes, a Panther and a Royal Enfield WD/RE 125cc to rebuild and put on the road but before I start the Enfield I want to know exactly what I have bought, what do I know? well it was registered in 1946 for road use and used by various owners until 1951 then put in the shed and forgotten about until the son of the last owner decided to rebuild it around 1994 along with the Panther (at the same time) but due to ill health the two bikes were never completed and and he sadly passed away a few years ago, his son mentioned the two bikes to a friend of a friend and I bought both bikes.


The frame number is 5949 which is also stamped on the engine and the engine number is .M.1601. (the full stops represent centre punch dots), it has Mansfield saddle, Miller headlamp and switch, Amal carb, swivel footrests and handlebars, bean tin exhaust, standard kickstart, the photos will say far more than I can about the bike, if it is ex WD then I will rebuild it as ex WD............then the questions will begin.











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5949 is from contract S1945 for 4000 WD/RE's in 1943 (same contract as mine) and the frame number being repeated on the engine case is exactly correct. However I'm intrigued to know about the actual engine number you have (M 1801). Normally the engine number would start with a 'V' (villiers carb) Ron

Lightweights 032.jpg

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Yes Ian, the RF60 logbook confirms Oxford, first name in logbook is the dealer Kings Motors Ltd, New Road, Oxford dated 2/7/46.




This is Kings Motors as it is today, the entrance floor still has the original mosaic 'Kings Motors' & the beautifully engraved front glass windows are now on display at the National Motor museum Beaulieu.


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It is indeed commonly accepted that the V prefix denotes a Villiers carburetor. The question is: was this really so, or is this just a silly coincidence or an urban legend? The fact that this "well preserved" Flea has an Amal carb could be the proof of this theory... Or was the original carb replaced by an Amal shortly after the war...???


The centre points remind me of similar points on the late war Norton engines. Norton used the points to drill the holes for a tag that was riveted to the spare engines. But WD/RE spare engines have their data tag riveted somewhere else on the engine...


I'm defeated by this one... But it would be nice if it could be added to the Royal Enfield WD Models Register (I'm the registrar by the way... ). If you want to do so, please send me an email: wd.register(at)gmail.com .




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