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Introduction

This is the home of the Iceni CAM Magazine - a free e-magazine about Cyclemotors, Autocycles, Mopeds ... and more.  It was launched on 15th April 2007 and the most recent four issues can be downloaded here.  (Copies of earlier back numbers are also available.)  For non-computerised folks, printed copies are available at £1.50 per edition; we can accommodate mail order too at £2.20 per single edition or £8.80 for a year’s subscription.

So what’s it about?

It’s an e-magazine all about cyclemotors, autocycles and mopeds that carries road test & feature articles, rally reports, free adverts and other assorted information.  Although we are an independent production, we have strong ties to the EACC and also to the New Zealand Cyclaid Register.

We are based in East Anglia, but are by no means limited to that area.  Much that appears in the magazine is of universal appeal.  We welcome contributions, whereever they are from, and are also happy to help to publicise any events for cyclemotors, autocycles and mopeds.

When’s it published?

We publish four times a year and the publication dates are synchronised with key events in the EACC calendar: the Radar Run, the Peninsularis Run, the Coprolite Run and the Mince Pie Run.  It’s purely an enthusiast production, and all produced on a tiny budget.  Nevertheless, we think you’ll be pretty impressed  The free downloadable version will be posted on this website on the same day as the printed version goes on sale.

All the issues of CAM Magazine that we’ve produced have been very well received.  Thank you all for your comments; they are much appreciated.  Several of you have also made donations, which has helped enormously in keeping Iceni CAM going.

What’s in it?

The April 2015 edition is available now on our Downloads Page.

Main feature

As the IceniCAM website and magazine now enters its ninth year of production, the Fan Club main article of our 33rd edition featured the Puch MS/VS fan-cooled models, which were initially designed and developed in the early 1950s by Walter Kuttler.  The Puch fan-cooled engine had an incredible production run of 28 years and has to be considered among the greatest and classic moped engine designs.  Its look is particularly distinctive, and the wealth of polished aluminium imparts a strong sense of quality.

The original fan-cooled engine initially came in two-speed, then three-speed, hand-change versions, but the base motor soon evolved into a big-fin air-cooled ‘sports’ version, the three-speed hand-change VZ50.

Air-cooling was a natural ‘sports’ progression to make use of the motor’s existing capability since it is said that the fan in a forced air-cool system can absorb up to 10% of the power produced.

The two-speed & three-speed hand-change engines subsequently evolved with foot-change gearbox options for applications in scooter bodies like the Puch Cheetah and KTM Ponny, then four-speed and five-speed ratios in the later Grand Prix and Monza sport models, with bigger carburettors and greater developed power ratings.

Puch-licensed engine designs were also produced in Spain, and further sold into the former Yugoslavian State under Tomos branding, and in the USA under Sears Allstate badging.

The Puch fan-cooled engine was ultimately defeated by its age when the model range finally became discontinued in 1982.  Its component complication and labour intensive construction worked against the motor in the end—aspects like the gearbox shaft bearings consisting of uncaged roller bearings, and magneto type LS-bearings for the mains which require the crank end float shimming to within 0.15mm, and a special bearing puller to extract the cores from the journals to back-shim the adjustment.

When the motor was first introduced, it was designed and built in what was the most economical way to do an engine back then.  Loose roller bearings were cheap at that time, while race bearings were very expensive, but with the advent of low cost mass production in the Far East, the situation reversed, making race bearings incredibly cheap and loose rollers now very costly.

The VS50D belonged to Jeremy Colley from Norwich, and came to us when the bike passed through the workshops for some repairs in December 2012.  Once its problems were sorted out, we got the bike for road test in January 2013 and, as the weather conditions deteriorated dramatically at the beginning of the year, completed our first ever photo-shoot in the snow—and yes, it was every bit as cold as it looks!

Since testing Jeremy’s VS50D, the ‘Fan Club’ article had been in the planning for quite some time, with the intention of doubling-up the feature with David Evans’s MS50.  It was agreed we could have the MS anytime we wanted, but it just seemed to be one of those things we never got around to doing even though it was so local to us in Ipswich town.  Probably, since it was so readily available and there was no pressure to do this second Puch, we always seemed to be occupied dealing with other feature machines that were much more transitory—so three years later we thought we really ought to pencil this long overdue article in for the April 2015 ‘Euro’ edition and get the production underway.

As it worked out there was still a series of other important machines progressing through road tests & photoshoots in the early part of the year, so the MS got bumped on back to the end of the line, and we finally ended up cutting this one a little close, since the bike was only road tested and photo-shot in early March 2015.

The springtime pictures of the MS50 were taken at the same spot as the winter pictures of the VS50D three years earlier, the idea being to present a contrast of conditions from the exact same location.

Puches in Winter and Spring

Since Jeremy delivered and collected his machine, and the MS was so local anyway, production costs for ‘Fan Club’ were negligible, and covered by a modest sponsorship donation from Ken Howard of the West Anglian Section of the EACC.

Support feature

Établissements Cazenave was a fairly big French manufacturer of its time, and produced quite a lot of mopeds in a relatively short period, though mainly for sale in their home market.  They weren’t a common machine in the UK because just a few models were only imported for a relatively short time.

We presume our featured machine was another of the many ‘grey imports’ that seem to be coming in from the Continent these days, since creeping standardisation of Euro legislation introduced all the joys of registration, insurance, roadworthiness testing and taxation to those European countries where the moped classes had been previously treated as bicycles.

As a result of this ‘progress’, the French appear to have largely lost interest in old mopeds and seem to be cheaply flogging them off to anyone waving a fan of bland Euro-notes, so lots of these obscure home market French bikes are now being dragged back to our side of the Channel, where we seem to becoming increasingly involved in their dating for UK registration.

From Little Acorns presented the heartfelt tale of Louis Cazenave’s lifetime as an entrepreneur building up a hugely successful family firm, until his death right at its peak, after which Établissements Cazenave faltered towards a progressive decline as the circumstances of trading conditions turned against the business.

As 60 years of achievement collapsed in the bankruptcy courts of Bordeaux, it represented an unfolding employment tragedy for the local community.

Cazenave mopeds are few and far between in the UK, and we were certainly lucky to come across such an interesting and unusual model, which the workshops returned to operational order for our feature.  Our Cazenave moped came from the Derek Scott collection, which was purchased in its entirety by the workshops as a commercial project, who returned the bikes to operational and registered status for selling on, but presenting an opportunity to IceniCAM with the pick of any vehicles wanted for road test as they became completed.

The road test and photoshoot took place in August 2014, following which the bike was sold on.

Since it’s so difficult to find references to identify the plethora of anonymous Cazenave moped serials, we never managed to confirm quite what model the bike actually was—perhaps someone might be able to identify it and tell us please?

The bike was nicely made and elegantly appointed, though quite a physically small frame, and likely to be not so well suited to a larger rider.

You’d probably expect that historical information on such a large scale business might be readily available, but not so; research into Cazenave was typically difficult, as is often the case with many French brands, and useful references seem particularly hard to find.

While the Cazenave required a certain input of workshop time to return to suitable condition for road test, actual production costs for the article remained quite minimal and were covered by a small sponsorship donation from John Hayman, County Durham member EACC, as thanks for some component repairs and EACC registration services on his Chiorda sports moped.

Second Support feature

Sunspot was our second support feature on a somewhat oddball sports moped—certainly not our usual stuff!

The Casal S2 wasn’t a machine we were familiarity with until this example came our way.  It was a well built bike benefiting from most of the better quality sports model components on a solidly built light motor cycle style chassis, having sound suspension, dual seat, big-brake alloy hubs and alloy rims.  All good stuff, and the S2 looked full of promise, however its motor was a basic entry-level two-speed unit that was obviously going to be of limited capability due to its lack of available gear ratios.

This was a sports moped that proved to be disappointingly un-sporty!

Being a Zündapp licensed design, the engine was obviously going to be a tough and capable unit for the job it had to do, and the big 16mm carb delivered lots of gutsy torque within the working range—it’s just that the restricted transfer porting clipped the revs off with a low ceiling, which had to be that way or the motor would inevitably be buzzed to a premature conclusion within the short ratio range of the two-speed gearbox.

Like the Cazenave moped, the Casal S2 also came from the Derek Scott collection, which was purchased in its entirety by the workshops as a commercial project.  The workshops returned the S2 to operational order for our road test and photoshoot in August 2014, following which the bike was sold on.

Despite the disappointing performance, it was actually quite surprising to come across this two-speed × 2.5bhp S2.  They wouldn’t have been a popular model at £269, because the much better Casal four-speed × 5.36bhp SS4 sports moped seemed to be inexplicably listed at just £229 - £40 less!  Was that an error?

Even the fantastic five-speed × 6.2bhp Phantom Five sports moped was listed at £279, just £10 more than the S2!

Who in their right frame of mind would even think to buy an S2?  Few S2’s could have been sold against Casal’s other and better models, so we were probably lucky to come across this rarity at all.  Perhaps we might come across other Casal models for another future feature sometime…

‘Sunspot’ was another ‘economy’ feature involving very minimal production cost, and sponsored by a modest donation from Stephen Dunbar, Warwickshire member EACC.

What’s Next?

Next Main Feature: This Victorian cycle manufacturer came to cement its brand as one of the big, well established, and most respected motor cycling names on the German market … but wars have a habit of resetting the clock.  After having been there and done that, like so many shattered companies in a devastated country, the entrepreneurs of these businesses find themselves having to start from the bottom again, with such god forsaken things as cyclemotors, scooters, and mopeds—but what a moped!

Next Support Feature: Staying in France, we revisit a manufacturer we’ve visited several times before, but they produced so many models it seems as if we could find an almost endless supply of material from this one company alone!  Obviously it’s a Mobylette, which on the face of things, might appear much the same as something we’ve covered before, but is actually another quite different and somewhat overlooked model.  Telling a story of living in the shadow of another more widely famous machine—this is ‘Little Brother’.

Next Second Support: We travel east, far east, back again to the land of the rising sun, to start at a time before the sun had risen, and before the sun would set.  We may seem to talk in riddles of stone bridges, Ishibashi—onward then to a new time of bicycles, a new sunrise, and then a time of rare, strange and exotic cyclemotors that were hardly sold beyond the home market, and remained largely unknown in the western world.

What else?

Well, there’s this Website ... we’ve put a lot of useful information here, and we’re alwas adding to it.  We have a directory of useful people to know.  Information on local events: route sheets, maps, etc, are here as downloadable documents and, after each run, we put photos of the event on this website.  There’s also a market place where you can buy and sell mopeds, autocycles, cyclemotors and other related items

We have a discussion forum on Yahoo—you can get to that from our Contacts page or the box at the top of this page.

Director’s Cut logo

As each edition of the magazine is published, we add to our collection of articles.  From Edition 3 of the magazine, we introduced another evolution.  Previously, features in the articles section had reflected what appeared in the magazine, but you may now discover a bit of extra content has crept into some items as they’ve transferred to the website—you might call it ‘The Directors Cut’.  The problem with printed magazines is editing everything to fit page sizes and space, and there can sometimes be bits you’d like to include, but they have to be left out to fit the available space.  The web articles don’t need to be constrained by the same limitations so, although the text will remain the same, the ‘Directors Cut’ graphic in the header indicates the item carries extra pictures and bits that didn’t make it to the magazine.

We also have an Information Service—if you want to know more about your moped, we can help.

What we do

Iceni CAM Magazine is committed to celebrating all that’s good about the Cyclemotor, Moped and Autocycle scene; researching toward the advancement of the pool of knowledge about cyclemotors, autocycles, old mopeds, and other oddities; and the publication of original material.  We are a declared non-profit making production, though we still need to fund everything somehow to keep the show on the road.

The magazine is free on line, and the nominal price of supplying hard copies to non-computerised folks is pitched only to cover printing and postage.  All advertising is free since we believe that the few people left out there providing parts & service for these obsolete machines do so as a hobby and an interest.  This involves far more effort than reward, and they should be appreciated for the assistance they provide.  Our Information Service is there to help anyone needing manuals to help with restoration of a machine.  We make a small charge for this but, again, we have set our prices so the just cover postage and material costs.

Overheads involve operation of the website, and particularly the generation of features.  Articles like Last Flight of the Eagle can cost as little as £20 to complete, while others have cost up to £150 to generate, eg: Top Cat on the Leopard Bobby.  With these overheads, you may be wondering how we get the money to keep it all going.  So do we!  But, somehow, it works, helped by a number of generous people who have sponsored articles or made donations to keep the show on the road.

How long does it take to research, produce, and get these feature articles to press?  Well, up to two years of preparatory research in some cases, where little is known about the machine or its makers, and where nothing has been published before.  Then, collating all the information and interviews, drafting and re-drafting the text, travel and photoshoots typically account for up to 40 to 50 hours to deliver the package to editing.

There are many examples where these articles have become the definitive reference material for previously unpublished machines like Mercury Mercette & Hermes, Leopard Bobby, Ostler Mini-Auto, Dunkley Whippet & Popular, Stella Minibike, Ambassador Moped, Elswick Hopper Lynx, and many others.

We’re committed to continuing to produce these articles, because we believe it needs to be done, and we’ve got a proven track record for achieving it.  Nobody else has done it in 50 odd years, so if we don’t do it—who will?

To whet your appetite for what’s ahead, here’s an updated list of machines with developing articles for future features: Ariel 3, Ariel Pixie, Batavus Go-Go, Busy Bee cyclemotor, Capriolo 75 Turismo Veloce, Coventry Eagle Trade Auto-Ette, Cyc-Auto (Wallington Butt), Cyc-Auto (Villiers), Derbi Antorcha, Dot ViVi, Dunkley S65, Dunkley Whippet Super Sports, Elswick-Hopper VAP MIRA test prototype, Gilera RS50, Heath mini-bike, Hercules Corvette, Hercules Her-cu-motor, Honda CD50, Honda SS50, Honda Stream, James Comet 1F, Kerry Capitano, Leopard B6, Motobécane >SP50, MV Agusta Liberty, Norman Nippy Mark 2, Norman Nippy Mark 3, NVT Ranger, Phillips P36X motorised cycle, Powell Joybike, Puch Magnum X, Rabeneick Binetta, Simson SR2E, Solifer Speed, Sun Autocycle, Sun Motorette, Tailwind cyclemotor, Vincent Firefly, Yamaha FS1E.

The working list changes all the time as articles are completed and published, and further new machines become added—so as you see, there’s certainly no shortage of material.

Readers have probably noticed a number of the articles collecting sponsorship credits, and we’re very grateful for the donations people have made toward IceniCAM, which certainly assures we’re going forward into another year.  We don’t need a lot of money since IceniCAM is a declared non-profit making organisation, and operates on a shoestring (and we’d like to keep it that way)—run by enthusiasts, for enthusiasts.

It’s easy to sponsor an article by either picking a machine from the forward list, and we’ll attach your credit to it, or simply making a donation.  There is no fixed amount, it’s entirely up to you, and however large or small, we’re grateful for any contribution to keep the show on the road.

If a vehicle you’re interested in seeing an article about isn’t in the list, then let us know and we’ll see about trying to add it in the programme, but we do need access to examples—perhaps you have a machine you’d like to offer for a feature?

See the Contact Page for how to: Subscribe to the magazineChat to fellow readersMake a donationSponsor an articleEnter a free advertSubmit an article yourselfWrite a letter to usPropose a machine for featureOffer your machine for test feature ...

News

No more counterpart … date confirmed for abolition

January 2015

As part of the government’s Red Tape Challenge initiative to remove unnecessary paperwork, it’s now been confirmed by Ministers that from 8 June 2015, DVLA will no longer issue the paper counterpart to the photocard driving licence.  This means from that date, existing paper counterparts will no longer be valid.  DVLA is advising drivers to destroy their counterpart after this date.

The old paper-only driving licences (issued before the photocard was introduced in 1998) remain valid and should not be destroyed.

How will drivers check their driver record when the counterpart is gone?

In 2014 DVLA launched the View Driving Licence service which allows GB driving licence holders to view their driving record online.  The service is free and easy to use and available 24/7.  Drivers can check what type of vehicles they can drive and any endorsements (penalty points) they may have.

Driving licence holders can also check the details on their driving record by phone or post.

There’s more information at www.gov.uk/dvla/nomorecounterpart


Older news stories are available in our News Archive