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Reg Bolton Racer

davidd

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VOC Member
Most of us are familiar with Reg's racing exploits. When Reg was living in Japan, he raced quite regularly. Years ago Reg moved to Australia and converted his racer to the street. These photos were taken by Greg Brillus and he was lucky enough to snap some from Reg's scrap book. The photos show Reg's racer just prior to the move to Australia. There are lots of details. This first photo is a recent photo of Reg with his bike:
Reg Bolton_PB_1.jpg
P3160106.jpg
P3160107.jpg
P3160110.jpg


David
 

greg brillus

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VOC Member
Hi David, Thanks for posting these photos, Had another great weekend catching up with Reg, and he always has a million stories to tell. He said that while racing in the UK Bill used to beat him off the line every time. Was this due to your previous stint at sprinting Bill...? Anyway, you can see much detail in these photos, which will be of great help to me building up the twin racer. In particular, the exhaust and the high forward position of the footrests which gives a very upright riding position, which he found a far more effective way of riding rather than the more usual lay down stance using rearsets and lowset bars. As he explained, how much time do you actually spend flat out down the straights verses cornering? He had the lightest Thornton springs available in the front end, and similar at the rear using the long Thorntons and shocker units, with a custom alloy brace (pictured) to support the rear spring boxes, and all of this worked very well. His front end is certainly quite soft, and with no resistance of movement. You can't see it in the photos, but he had a hydraulic steering damper mounted on the left hand side, as well. The front brake is the biggest of the three he had, with the wheel in it now using Lightning type brake plates, and another wheel with a Suzuki 4 l/s hub ( which is what I am using). You will note that the front wheel is a WM3 but is actually stamped a WM2 unusual...!! When I asked Reg about tyre choice, he said that using a wider rear tyre (than a normal size on a WM3) was a bad idea, due in his experience, to the better cornering ability of the narrower tyres. When racing in Japan, he could easily out corner other more powerful machines using wider rims and tyres, as they had to lean over far more.....Not necessary on a Vincent, he found. He is still fine tuning the carbs ( 1 3/8 gp's) with internal stops to adjust the idle speed......quite time consuming methinks....) anyway he's running 220 mains on premium fuel, and it misses a bit on full throttle...It's a work in progress....he said. It has always been a very tractable engine, with mountains of torque from it's 1250 cc capacity, a testament to John Renwick's expert engine building ability, and done many years ago now...but when I asked how much output it had, he replied that when tested, it put out just under 100 HP at the back wheel......Now that's impressive.......I'll update as I remember things, it's time to get back to my own, in the shed. Cheers for now.......Greg.
 

Albervin

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VOC Member
Thanks Greg, when Reg told me the power of his bike about 15 years ago I was tempted to mortgage the house and send my engine to John. I then realised my ability did not match the expectation and so saved a lot of cash. Of course I spent it on other things so saved nothing except maybe my body, marriage, house, etc.
 

Bill Thomas

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VOC Member
Hello Greg, I think Reg must be talking of another Bill !! I only got past him once ! Then he got back in front in a second ! We talked befor about good riders, They could win on anything, They Cheat by not slowing off for the corners !! Cheers Bill.
 

Len Matthews

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VOC Member
Hello Greg, I think Reg must be talking of another Bill !! I only got past him once ! Then he got back in front in a second ! We talked befor about good riders, They could win on anything, They Cheat by not slowing off for the corners !! Cheers Bill.
A long time ago when Reg was still in the UK he was beginning to make a name for himself on the circuits with his ride-to-work Rapide. I met him during TT Week. He said he thought that the Rapide's Big End was on the way out but didn't have the finance to replace it. I offered my spare flywheel assembly but wasn't sure how I could get it to him. He said "No problem, I'll come and fetch it." At the time he lived in Shepton Mallet down in Somerset and I'm in Essex. So what does Reg do? He borrows his wife's Honda CD 175, rides to Essex, loads flywheels in top box and after a cup of tea, turns tail and heads straight back to Somerset. Not only was that journey after dark, the weight of the flywheels in the top box can't have done much for the Honda's stability!
 

Bill Thomas

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VOC Member
Anybody know what he has done to the front forks ? They must be a bit steeper with those long rear springs, Cheers Bill.
 

davidd

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VOC Member
Anybody know what he has done to the front forks ? They must be a bit steeper with those long rear springs, Cheers Bill.

Bill,

I am not 100% certain, but I see that he is using concentric bushes in the front end on the bottom link. You can tell because it is half way to side car position as can be seen by the short distance between the spring box and the fork blade. This set-up is a favorite of John Renwick. It is easy to make and it quickens the steering. I am not sure what front springs are in there. Some of the very early Thorntons were prototype springs that Laney tried out before settling on what he made available to the public. They tended to be lighter, which was good for the lighter racers.

The longer springs at the rear does lower the rake also. The Thornton rear springs caused sever "cocking" of the spring boxes and I actually had one come completely apart while racing. I came to the conclusion that what Reg did was the only sensible way to guide the rear springs properly, but after that spring box came apart on me I decided that I would go simple and made a rear coil-over. It is simple and light.

I believe that Reg is using a mod he designed for better ground clearance. He designed two plates to fit on the rear of the UFM that relocated the suspension mount around 2.5" to the rear. I suggested this mod to Carleton Palmer who was having cornering clearance issues with his Flash. Carleton used it successfully for year. This mod would also steepen the rake angle.

David
 

Attachments

  • Pages from RegBoltonGroundClearance.pdf
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vibrac

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
If it wasnt Reg Boltons bike I would have said the bike looks as if it had even heavier steering than a normal Girdralic, and it would handle like a pig. BUT it is Reg's bike, and it does handle very well, and Im wrong:oops:.
Pictures dont tell the whole story where handling is concerned
 

Kansas Bad Man

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
Non-VOC Member
John Surtees on his 35 year project had a handle on the suspension ,shocking/springing were his idea's of how to make his Vin road racer
handle in the twisty's . Coil over shocks front and rear. That guy is not human on the race track!
 
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