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1945 James ML

Margaret  Hyde

Ulverstone, Australia

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Artist's Description

3894 viewings on 7 August, 2016.

This motorcycle is on display in the Caboolture Warbirds Museum, Queensland, Australia. Caboolture, original spelling Kabultur, is an Aboriginal word for “place of the carpet snake”

The photo was taken with my LUMIX G3.

The photo is dedicated to the Australians who fought in the Second world War.

Harry James began making ordinary bicycles (Penny Farthings) about 1880. The first James motorcycles did not appear until about 1902. Various improvements were made over the years and by 1913 the company had a fair reputation for well made and sturdy machines with models suitable for solo or sidecar work.

During the First World War James supplied some machines for military work.
From 1934 the factory produced only lightweight two-stroke motorcycles which saw them through the low years of the1930s . In the Second world War they produced only two models – an autocycle and , for the government, the James ML.

The James ML (Military Lightweight) was a development of a pre-war design adapted for miliitary use with the intention that it be dropped from an aircraft for use in the period afte rthe D-Day landings to allow airborne troops greater mobility. The ML was nicknamed the “Clockwork Mouse”.

In the early 1950s the company was bought by A.M.C. the makers of Matchless and AJS motorcycles. Although the company continued to make motorcycles the quality and reliability was questionable. The factory closed in 1966.

Artwork Comments

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  • Margaret  Hyde
  • Nadya Johnson
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