Norton trouble

MAK

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In the interest of creditors, none. All they must try to achieve is the best possible return. The worst advice is to make haste. Unload what costs money for storage first and what may go out of engineering fashion, retain the TM (or what you have of it) until a serious bid comes along.
Been there, done that. Though we still store the remaining Norton rotary parts, not having the heart to scrap them. A lot of the stuff may still be there if and when my grandchildren ride electric Nortons!
Please don’t get rid of the Rotary parts or I will have a problem ..
Rotary & 961!
Why did I have to like Norton’s as a child.
Following Peter Williams & Dave Croxford instead of the Japanese teams!
 

Fast Eddie

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Ha, I was just looking through this thread to see if Nicks article had been posted.

The comments from Brian Crighton after the article about sums it up.
Forgive me if I’m being thick (again) but where can I see Brian’s comments ?
 

acadian

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Forgive me if I’m being thick (again) but where can I see Brian’s comments ?
In the comments associated with the article itself:

"
August 19, 2012 at 8:48 pm
I was one of the three original people involved in the new Norton project instigated by Stuart Garner. I had several meetings with Garner explaining that he needed huge amounts of money to be able to produce good quality motorcycles. At the time the only motorcycle that we could make was a copy of the NRV588 Rotary which I had built for the National Motorcycle Museum of a bike I designed for the 1994 race season. I said to him that I needed a proper test bed facility and all the necessary equipment to achieve this. He said there was no problem at all with financing this and I questioned him as to whether he had sufficient funds to finance this and the Norton factory start up. He always maintained that the money was no issue. I therefore agreed to take on the role of Technical Director of Norton Racing which was the only Norton company at the time. In my contract it stated that I was to receive 10% shares of the company for my expert involvement.

After starting, it became obvious to me that the guy was just full of bullshit and I didn’t get any testbed or any facilities for building the two NRV588 Rotary’s. I said for the bikes to be reliable I needed to develop new rotor bearings which were the weak link in the engine. There weren’t even ramps in the so-called workshop so I built the bikes in my own workshop at home. Garner kept asking me when was I going to go to the unit at Donington to work on the bikes and I told him that if he thought I was going to crawl about on the floor to build bikes he must be joking. Eventually he agreed to get me some ramps and some equipment… Sentence removed from original pending corroboration.

Now we’ll talk about the Isle of Man TT. The first I heard about it was when I’d arranged to do some testing at Donington Park with Lee Dickinson to ride the bike. When I arrived in the garage I was introduced to Michael Dunlop and told that he had come to test the bike as he was riding it at the TT. I was obviously very unhappy about this as the bike was never designed for the TT circuit and was a lightweight quick turning short circuit bike completely wrong for the TT. I also said that the rotor bearings would not stand the long straights etc of the TT circuit due to overheating. I had several meetings with Garner telling him in no uncertain terms that if we go to the TT we would be made to look a laughing stock as the engine would break but as usual he would not listen to somebody that knew what they were talking about. Consequently Spondon Engineering had to rush and make two more chassis with bigger oil tanks and geometry to suit the TT Course. Due to this, the bikes were still being built up when we arrived at the I-o-M. The rest is history about this saga as everything happened the way I said it would and the engine failed in practice. Garnder said in MCN etc that every engine we had blew up at the I-o-M in fact, we only ever had two engines and only one blew up twice. Once at Jurby and once on the practice lap.

Now for the 961 which came as a protype from Kenny Dreer of America. I said that it would need a lot of redesign and extensive testing before it ever went on sale. But again, Garner thought he knew better and basically copied the bike and put it into production. Although according to MCN reports etc. the bike was supposedly completely redesigned. This was untrue. Inevitably, there were reliability issues.

Because Garner’s attitude and the lack of sufficent funds to finance Norton properly, I resigned. I didn’t want to be professionally associated with Garner. Obviously the 10% shareholding I signed for in the contract never materialised.

Lots of well known people in the motorcycle industry bought into the idea of Norton, but in my opinion we were all conned. Many left when they found out the truth. Staff also experienced problems when it came to getting paid.
I also feel very sorry for the people that have paid upfront in full for their bikes and have not received them: it’s the same old story.

Look at all the promises that have been made by Garner regarding a new 700cc Rotary that he says in the comics has been made and is ready to test on the dyno? What about the MotoGP bike he said they were building? It’s all just spin. The new TT bike that they said had been designed inhouse was in fact a road Aprilia engine put into a sawn off NRV frame – not a Norton at all and how lucky was Garner that the Senior Race was cancelled.

I think MCN have been misled by Garner into printing all sorts of claims about how many bikes they’re building a week etc. Sentence removed from original pending corroboration. They have to sell papers and the Norton concept helped them do that.

Obviously I have kept quiet about all of this, and more, hoping that someone who was owed lots of money would close the company, which still appears to be insolvent. Because of this site, I think it’s now time to tell the truth about Garner.

Brian Crighton"
 

ZFD

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Thanks, yes, read it now on the link given dating back to 2012. A good report from Brian, but also some telling others- the bit about Cathcart's showing Garner and his antics in a far too rosy light, just repeated in the American press, and a totally befuddled piece by the late George Cohen who saw Norton's future well in the past, building singles.
All very entertaining, but the writing was on the wall even then. Most Norton fans didn't want to see it until January 2020 when at last the house of cards came down and even after that they were still defending their hero!
 

storm42

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Forgive me if I’m being thick (again) but where can I see Brian’s comments ?
Sorry Nigel, I didn't check WR's link, I have also just deleted a copy of the letter from Brian as I didn't check acadian's post before replying either. Doh.
 
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Please don’t get rid of the Rotary parts or I will have a problem ..
Rotary & 961!
Why did I have to like Norton’s as a child.
Following Peter Williams & Dave Croxford instead of the Japanese teams!
Me to in the same boat rotary classic F1 961 !
 

storm42

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Thanks, yes, read it now on the link given dating back to 2012. A good report from Brian, but also some telling others- the bit about Cathcart's showing Garner and his antics in a far too rosy light, just repeated in the American press, and a totally befuddled piece by the late George Cohen who saw Norton's future well in the past, building singles.
All very entertaining, but the writing was on the wall even then. Most Norton fans didn't want to see it until January 2020 when at last the house of cards came down and even after that they were still defending their hero!
I did post a link to it on here and on the NOC forum back in 2012, got a lot of flack for it, who would have thought!! most of the comments from the NOC revolved around not giving bad press as it would not help Norton to survive and obviously I personally would like Norton to fail. They could not see that the venture was doomed and hurting other businesses and any effort to bring this to a wider audience was belittled.

People like yourself and disgruntled customers are dismissed as troublemakers and ignored. The masses are so easy to control, just like the newspapers and the BBC do daily, until you try to tell them something they don't want to hear

Having owned Nortons for nearly 50 years, the way SG was running the name into the ground as a con, was and is a tad annoying.

Incidentally, I have know of Nick from biker Glory since 2006, he is a member of the ZRXOC forum and I don't recall him every being vindictive in any way.
 
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Meanwhile rumours have resurfaced that Andover Norton (who back in the real world have been quietly getting on with business of selling genuine Norton spares and the occasional complete bike since 1977) are involved in a legal dispute with Garner concerning rights, which, if true, would have implications for any interested parties. We’re trying to clarify this situation at the time of going to press.

I suspect that @ZFD has already laughed at them.
 
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Meanwhile rumours have resurfaced that Andover Norton (who back in the real world have been quietly getting on with business of selling genuine Norton spares and the occasional complete bike since 1977) are involved in a legal dispute with Garner concerning rights, which, if true, would have implications for any interested parties. We’re trying to clarify this situation at the time of going to press.

I suspect that @ZFD has already laughed at them.
Trying? It would have taken less than a minute to confirm it. They could have just asked.
 

ZFD

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We have had a few disputes with him but didn't want to take him to court because we know who we are and hope the Norton riders do, too. Add to it I knew he was trading illegally, trading technically bankrupt for a number of years, and feared we might spend a lot of money only to find our adversary wasn't there anymore by the time of the court hearing. I was waiting for the implosion of the "Black Hole in Downington" for years. But then I couldn't imagine the criminal energy behind the whole show in my wildest phantasies!

Because he sullied the name and logo and did not do his duties as licensor against parties fraudulently claiming to also have licences- easy to check on the TM register we have an exclusive and nobody else has been registered as licencee- we took to using our good name and logo on the real Norton parts rather than the licenced scroll.

It will be entertaining to see how the TM drama pans out!
 
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A very unhappy customer.

https://www.captiongenerator.com/1671992/Hitler-Norton-V4-

This scene has been done to death over the years but this one is funny. Skinner gets a mention too.
To date, a very happy 961 customer but starting to wonder if I've bought a load of trouble, not new to that I suppose. Took years sorting an original Rocket 3, only to be outdone by 'Japcrap', at least in a straight line. This summer will be 50 years of biking, started with a 3 speed Bantam, lots of brit bikes a handful of Japs and 1 American, bought the 961 to realise the dream of taking a bike to the IoM. Loads of planned and failed attempts, various bikes. Realising that it's not totally British, suppose my 06 Scrambler is the nearest I have to that, but with the history, a near perfect bike to go on. Feeling a bit cheated at the moment but here's hoping it turns out reliable enough for the trip. So far, nearing the 1st service, all is good.
 
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