Vincent Black Shadow.

From Saturdays “Riding Into History”. Stay tuned for a lot more incredible bikes.









  1. What ho Steve..
    Well, we all KNOW what you like.. and I don’t mean 2strokes !
    This old nail is lovely of course.. but, I don’t think I understood where this show was to be held.
    I checked out the 2011/2012 photo’s and very much enjoyed them, BUT, I don’t think I’m any wiser [maybe I missed “where at”.. maybe I’m just thick..? Naaah..]
    So, do advise please.. which town/state was the show held in, That’s it. Thanks.

  2. AND.. FGS.!
    Do please have a look at the web-sites for the Vincent builders, that I sent you earlier :
    In the UK.. JMC classics.. lurvely.
    In France.. Patrick Godet.. oooh la la !
    I fully realise you’re busy.. and family goings-on are.. hmmmmm !
    But find a little time and relax with this offer. Go on..
    Regards again

  3. What a magnificent machine, indeed! If I close my eyes, I can see myself flying down a narrow lane in the English countryside, goggles in place and the flaps of my leather helmet flapping in the wind. I have to learn to stop doing that.

    As wonderful as this machine is, I wonder if it really is a Black Shadow at all. I have always understood that the Black Shadow was named “Shadow” with the word “Black” making reference to the color of the engine cases. There were very few Shadows with natural, unpainted engine cases which were named the White Shadow. If this is really a White Shadow, then there were only 10 more of these ever made in addition to this one.

    Someone else will be up on more details than I am and will surely make the distinction. But, I wonder if this could be a Repide, some of which were made at the same time as the Black (and White) Shadows.

    Honda John

  4. Honda John..
    I do happen to think you are right.. as a tribe.. Vincent owners are usually pretty fanatical about their bikes. A shadow should have black engine cases.. a Rapide would have [lightly] polished, tho’ NOT gleaming cases. I’m a bit dubious about the sticker on the tank top. Hmmmm
    Very NOT Vincent owner [at least here in the UK].

    1. I believe I recognize it. I think I have used those same bar end mirrors on two of my bikes. They are great mirrors, they hold nice and tight, but they are current day stuff.

      Let’s make sure that the owner of this fine bike understands that we are just showing off here, and we are not criticizing his chariot. I’d still take a day off work just to go for a ride on it.

      Honda John

  5. Mirror, mirror on the..
    When a new build there would have been [in the UK] no mirrors fitted. No Brit’ bike ever had them fitted. Frankly, there wasn’t the volume of traffic to worry about mirrors, or traffic either.
    Aftermarket mirrors were available from the likes of Wassell, maybe others.
    In the 60’s here [UK], it was only Honda etc that had mirrors fitted.. we thought [the boys.!] they were for sissies !
    Little traffic in the 40’s/50’s when Vincents were new.. NOT like today..!
    63m in England/Wales.. 32m cars licensed in a very small country.. can’t bloody move sometimes.!
    Mirrors now, for sure..

    1. In my heart, I have always felt that the motorcycle was conceived in Great Britain. If not, it certainly was born there and grew up there. It is kind of exciting to hear comments from one of The Boys who lived Triumph, Norton, BSA, Ariel, Vincent … on and on (while we rode Harleys, Indians, Clevelands, Popes …) and can offer comments on them. That is so cool. Where else but in a blog like this would I ever have a chance to be reminded that there were no mirrors. I have looked at pictures for over 50 years and I never noticed fully that there was no need for mirrors.

      Also, I lived in Harrogate, Yorkshire for 18 months back in 1964 and 1965. I rode a motorcycle on the road. I went back for a visit the last time in 2002 and the roads were plugged then. We sat, with the motor off, on the motorway, for three hours waitinig to get into Silverstone for the F-1 race. I can’t imagine what it is like now. Or, what you folks are going to do about it except to begin to ban cars altogether.

      By the way, a person will never truly understand a British motorcycle or car until he has the experience of driving along a back lane with stone walls on each side and houses that front “in” the street.

      I hope that you will continue to share your observations.

      Honda John

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