P11A? Frame with number outside of the expected range

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The frame was very well preserved. We live in a super dry climate. Also, I wire-brushed off the original paint to get a good image.

Was lucky enough to get a decent P11 petrol tank from the guy who had the frame. (He also had the correct wheels, oil tank, and many other parts!) Unfortunately, I have not been able to uncover the original cases. They might be around there somewhere.
 
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Hi Knut,

That's three of them that are all stamped in the stamped in the same place.
That makes me feel better. The second one helped, but three is better company.
 
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If you look closely at the 1 in your pic and the Mecum you can see they are not the same stamp, yours is as this sites 1 and the Mecum has a horizontal serif on the bottom. So at least on the 1 the stamps used were not the same. Now this is a possible explanation as the numbers are 5000 apart and stamps can wear out and the 1 was the most used stamp but until you get a photo of a much closer numbered frame that uses a 1 stamp with no bottom serif then you do not have confirmation.

The crispness of the stamps is another clue, the factory stamps were applied by the same worker paid to do it day in day out possible on piecework, he became like a robot and applied just enough force for the stamp to show as he had limited time, I have a B44 where the frame stamps are barely legible but its a genuine frame, made in Birmingham UK and officially registered in Birmingham some weeks after the build date. Someone working on a single frame will be much more careful and use full force to make the stamps.
 
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This is quite interesting! I have a BSA A7 Special Racing Twin with stamps that are not super deep. Also have a A50 from the competition department that was given to a sidecar racer in '68 and those stamps were driven home pretty hard. I never thought about the life of the stamper. My job seems less repetitive now.
 
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Received this information from a most reputable source in the UK:
On Access Norton, there is a request for the number 12794? It is a Commando frame number as from 12794? To 127950 they are all Commando models, from August to September 1968. Nine went to Berliner and the other two to other agents.

Hope this helps? C-ya, Jer


Hello Everyone,
I have just acquired a P11A frame but the number (which appears original an unaltered) and was beneath what appeared to be original paint has a number I would expect to fall within the range of early Commandos.

The number is: 12794X.

Am I puzzled for a good reason or have I simply misunderstood something?

Thoughts?
Thanks,
Chris
 
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If you look closely at the 1 in your pic and the Mecum you can see they are not the same stamp, yours is as this sites 1 and the Mecum has a horizontal serif on the bottom. So at least on the 1 the stamps used were not the same. Now this is a possible explanation as the numbers are 5000 apart and stamps can wear out and the 1 was the most used stamp but until you get a photo of a much closer numbered frame that uses a 1 stamp with no bottom serif then you do not have confirmation.
Well spotted, Kommando. The Mecum bike is the one without the horizontal serif. On recollection none of my G15s or P11s have the serif. I looked up stampings on late P11 Rangers, to possibly identify a change of tooling. Location of stamping changed but stamps were the same, i.e., no horizontal serif. So we may conclude the frame number is NOT genuine. Sorry, Lightningpower!

-Knut
 
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Well spotted, Kommando. The Mecum bike is the one without the horizontal serif. On recollection none of my G15s or P11s have the serif. I looked up stampings on late P11 Rangers, to possibly identify a change of tooling. Location of stamping changed but stamps were the same, i.e., no horizontal serif. So we may conclude the frame number is NOT genuine. Sorry, Lightningpower!

-Knut
Yep, I got the 1's back to front. If the later genuine frames match the Mecum then the frame stamping is suspect, especially if the NOC forum confirms it was part of a Commando batch. Looks like a Commando title identification was applied to a P11 frame.
 
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Unfortunate to be sure. Also unfortunate that there is no trace of other numbers or their removal. Now it's just going to bug me.
 
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Not only the number 1, but also the number 2 is different from original.

Ciao
Piero
 
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Not only the number 1, but also the number 2 is different frim original.
Indeed, Piero!

To the OP:

I would look a little further down the headstock (but still above the split) for remains of the genuine number. You may try citric acid to reveal densification of the metal structure where the original digits were hammered in. If that doesn't work, maybe an X-ray exposure will.
However, as pointed out by Kommando, the genuine stamping was applied with a minimum of force apparently, henceforth the impressions are easily ground off. Thus, even application of scientific methods may not reveal the secrets.

-Knut
 
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Indeed, Piero!

To the OP:

I would look a little further down the headstock (but still above the split) for remains of the genuine number. You may try citric acid to reveal densification of the metal structure where the original digits were hammered in. If that doesn't work, maybe an X-ray exposure will.
However, as pointed out by Kommando, the genuine stamping was applied with a minimum of force apparently, henceforth the impressions are easily ground off. Thus, even application of scientific methods may not reveal the secrets.

-Knut
May be is better to buy a genuine P11 cases and ristamped the frame numbers?.
 
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May be is better to buy a genuine P11 cases and ristamped the frame numbers?.
Restamping the frame is useless unless you have a valid title for a P11. As a roadgoing bike, this frame is good only for someone who has a damaged frame and a legitimate title for it.

-Knut
 
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Restamping the frame is useless unless you have a valid title for a P11. As a roadgoing bike, this frame is good only for someone who has a damaged frame and a legitimate title for it.

-Knut
Why you cannot obtain a new title as hystoric bike?.
Ciao
Piero
 
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I will keep removing paint. I already removed it from the downtube, and the opposite side of the steering head. Nothing yet. I have two legit P11A sets of crankcases, but I'm not a fan of restamping. I never buy anything that has been messed with. Where I live we don't have titles just bills of sale, so title isn't an issue. Even here its illegal to screw with VIN numbers.

I'll just keep stripping paint. I like the citric acid idea. Who knows, maybe I'll find a trace of a number that matches one of the cases I've got (they came from the same guy).

That number '1' is the big problem. I didn't even think about the serif. All the other numbers are identical to the ones on my late Atlas frames. All it takes is a 1!

Does anyone know what concentration the citric acid needs to be?
 
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Why you cannot obtain a new title as hystoric bike?
In some states and countries it is possible, but you need a valid dispatch factory record or other proof of originality. That is missing here.

-Knut
 
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In some states and countries it is possible, but you need a valid dispatch factory record or other proof of originality. That is missing here.

-Knut
Hi.
Here in Italy you can register any hystoric bike that is 30 years old in original conditions.
Not easy to do but you can.
Piero
 
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Following your advice, I've cleared off more paint and found more numbers. Not what I was expecting though.
 

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