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Comet 1951 - rough running


Forum Website User
VOC Member
Comet 1951 - rough running - Update


I am a new member to the VOC located at Banbury near Oxford. I have acquired a Vincent Comet that I believe to be in good condition although it had not been started for 16 years. Still, what a beautiful motorcycle…

I have managed to service, point’s gap, spark plug and lead, bushes on magneto, oil, drain petrol tank and new taps, clean carburettor etc and can start the machine although, there is an occasional backfire through the carb. When I twist the throttle quite heavy the engine starts to die. I can keep the bike ticking over by lightly twisting the throttle but It cannot be ridden as it has no power when the throttle is opened.

I have look to adjust the timing and understand the theory of firing before TDC and have scoured the internet for a good guide for this work however I do not understand the practice of physically carrying out this work on the Vincent Comet.

Does anyone know of a manual or booklet that explains in pictorial and text format for someone that is not that mechanically minded?


All...Thanks for the comments on my timing problems.:)

I look forward to the day I a part of the Vincent Riders Club (VRC) not just the Owners Club (VOC), until then I am part of the Norton Riders Club….

Can you point me to the contact for the Oxford&Bucks section. And if your reading this, It’s a given at our house there is always Beer, Coffee and Bacon Sandwiches on offer

…..In fact I am at the point where I am looking for someone who can do this on a commercial basis if you know of anyone:(…..Desperate to get it on the road.

Cheers, Robert.
Last edited:

Hi Robert,
To get you started you should buy the Riders Handbook, Workshop Instructions and Vincent motor cycles by Paul Richardson.
And have a look at the ATD to see if it is working.



Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Find your local section and Cajole/threaten/bribe(delete as neccessary)beer or coffee often works.The Vincent family are a really helpful lot if you can't sort things out on your own,that vinparts bloke is one of them even if he did sell his only decent bike(Comet);)


Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
You can also get the info from the spares company and if you are a member
you would be able to get some discount on some parts.
support the clubs spares company.

Thank you for the kind words John, I do try to help other Vincent owners even if it means staying up till midnight sending emails, the job in my book does not stop at 5pm. And as for 10% off if you are a member, don't get me going on that one:confused: ALL Vincent owners are the same in my book as long as they "ride them and don't hide them", remember that one you Oxford & Bucks lot?
And as for selling my Comet, don't remind me. The good news is that I am building another one. 90mm with three wheels:D All I need is for the Appleton's workshop to sort out the diff for me.


Debbie Kemp

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Comet-trike600 sees Gold at the end of the rainbow

You're building a Comet with three wheels, Russell? I wonder who talked you into that :rolleyes:

Just don't forget that it would make a REALLY nice Christmas present for somebody (hint, hint):D Obviously it would need to be painted pink with silver glitter and it would need pink leather tassles hanging from the handlebars...........:D

Pete Appleton

VOC Hon. Editor
VOC Member
VOC Forum Website Administrator
Help from the spares company ?

You can also get the info from the spares company and if you are a member
you would be able to get some discount on some parts.
support the clubs spares company.

I am pleased to hear that help and advice is available from the spares company. Whenever I have tried I got the impression that I was wasting their time. (even when enquiring about the parts for building a new twin engine. I gave up and bought them from the welsh bloke).
Perhaps the spares company will join the forum to offer advice and prove me wrong.



Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
The things I like about Vinparts.....

Unfortunately I still have to work for a living, and long hours at that (pause for sympathy).

This means my Vincenteering is evenings and weekends.

I like a lot about VinParts - but especially the fact that Russ offered me the chance to ring him in the evening for a chat and advice, and we chat by email late into the evening, and then when I needed something special he turned it up on the lathe for me overnight, charged me no extra and posted it the very next morning to get me on the road. When I have a special problem I email him a picture and get advice by return - I'm a fan.

I've bought stuff from the Spares Company too, no problems, arrived promptly, wrong stuff was exchanged no issue so it's not that there are any problems - just that Russ and VinParts suits me, that's all. As I'm the customer - I can choose - great isn't it.

All thing being equal I like the personal service and so on balance VinParts gets my vote from my own experiences. I haven't got around to comparing the products from one to another (others have told me there can be differences), or the prices either for that matter.

Special bits like Tyres and Chains I buy elsewhere - and hope that neither VinParts or the Spares Company are offended - because the specialists in that field can do just so much better on price.

So, you takes your money and makes your choice - I just think it is fabulous there are so many to choose from - when I was last involved in Vincents in the 1970's it was the Jolly Thresher Garage or nothing.

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