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For Sale Chopped Rapide Crankcases

greg brillus

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I have 3 chopped cases here at the moment........One of them still has the original gearbox with the parts.......i had a good look at them, and whoever did it did a very neat job, just the width of the cutting blade of missing material gone.......Actually quite a repairable job in all honesty.......But I looked at the bigger picture, and thought... it is a Rapide engine........with the trouble and cost to carry out the job, it is simply not worth the effort..........A Shadow engine maybe, but only if you have the matching frames to go with it......otherwise to me there is no point. Unless you are able to carry out that sort of repair yourself, then it is not viable.
 

daevideo

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I think it most likely when Vincent Black Shadow started to sail away in value that the XX and the F10AB/1B numbers off these crankcases were cloned onto newer cases rather than this is a chopped engine which was stolen. Ultimately, given enough time to forensically examine a bike the only newer cases this switch could be done to fool anyone would be on unstamped crankcases cast and machined in the 1950s. I don't know if this has been done, but a study of crankcases as spare parts and then as replica would be fascinating. Interestingly the seller initially, may have knowingly stated these are Rapide cases and did not show the primary side.
 

ClassicBiker

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Point is Bill a crime may have been committed and they are material evidence, remember in the UK unlike a lot of Europe &US there is no statue of limitations maybe in the states when it could be proved that X years had elapsed they could be re used legally, even then.....
Well here in Michigan, only the frame number matters for registering a motorcycle. You could buy that and have it sent here as used antique motorcycle parts and I doubt anyone would bat an eyelid. You wouldn't have to prove anything. Even if they said well it's an engine what's the number, and that is a very BIG unlikely IF, F10AB/1B/ would satisfy the authorities. It won't be on any stolen list here. There isn't any SORN here, so if a vehicle hasn't had its registration renewed in the last seven years, it drops off the state's radar. But as the state only tracks vehicle Identification numbers and those are only on a frame or a chassis and not engines, even if they are the same number, an engine is not a vehicle. No I am afraid that could be purchased here and put into a frame and used here with very little worry.
 

Marcus Bowden

VOC Hon. Overseas Representative
VOC Member
Greg said
I have 3 chopped cases here at the moment........One of them still has the original gearbox with the parts.......i had a good look at them, and whoever did it did a very neat job, just the width of the cutting blade of missing material gone.......Actually quite a repairable job in all honesty.......But I looked at the bigger picture, and thought... it is a Rapide engine........with the trouble and cost to carry out the job, it is simply not worth the effort..........A Shadow engine maybe, but only if you have the matching frames to go with it......otherwise to me there is no point. Unless you are able to carry out that sort of repair yourself, then it is not viable.


Greg my handsome, I certainly disagree with you there that a Rapide engine is not as valuable as a Shadow. The reason that Shadows came about was because of the abundance of machined & matched cases that were porous through poorer castings that were building up in a store at Stevenage. Until they devised a method of sealing them by submersing them in a vat of shellac and pulling a high vacuum then releasing it so the shellac was sucked into the porosity of the casting then painted with yellow chromate and stoved enamelled black, enhanced with bigger carbs ribbed drums and the impressive 5" speedo and then sold for 5 to 10% more as they had the higher speed.
I was told that by Mr Vincent himself when I visited him for three years 1969 to 1972 when he had his first stroke and I carried him up to his apartment at Queue Bridge.
White shadows were made from Rapide cases and the B.Lightnings. I don't keep a Shadow in my stable although I've never seen or heard of one destroying it's self because of poor castings.
 
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delboy

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Marcus,
you may [or may not?] remember posts last May, re: "Isinglass" rather than "Shellac"?
Regards, Delboy.
 

Peter Holmes

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
The problem is Marcus that although you argue a very good case that a Rapide engine is equally as good as a Shadow engine, possibly even better, but the reality is, simply in monetary terms, the Shadow engine commands a far higher price, I think the point Greg is making is that he can throw X amount of money at the chopped Rapide engine, but he would not see a financial return for his money, on a Shadow engine he possibly would, the amount of money spent on both engines would be the same, but not the sale price.
 

Brian Thompson

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
The third digit looks like an 8
 

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Simon Dinsdale

VOC Machine Registrar
VOC Member
VOC Forum Website Moderator
The third digit looks like an 8
I did wonder that as well as I have played with the light levels of the photo and I also think the 1st digit is a 7. Looking at the stolen list in the DB though there is nothing that would fit F10AB/1B/7#8#, or should I say nothing that has been reported stolen to VOC that would fit as not everybody informs the VOC.

There has clearly been some welding over some parts of the number as well so any stresses in the metal from stamping will have been lost. Whoever went through the process of hiding the original numbers did a thorough job and I can only conclude this was for one reason only.

Simon
VOC Machine Registrar
 

Bill Thomas

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I missed the last bid , But I think they went for over £2000 ! ?,
But unless you move to USA , What to do with them ?.
I think a big shame.
Cheers Bill.
 

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