H.R.D. 1935 “Comet series A” 498 cc OHV frame front and rear # D 1074 engine # C 328
Since his schoolboy days Philip Vincent had been a great admirer of Howard Raymond Davies, who had begun manufacturing HRD machines at Wolverhampton in 1924.
While studying mechanical engineering at Cambridge Vincent built his prototype Vincent Special that already incorporated the strong triangulated and braced sprung rear fork that would remain a feature of all Vincents-to-come.
In 1928 Vincent acquired HRD Motors Ltd. and formed the Stevenage-based Vincent-HRD company; JAP and later on Rudge Python engines were used.
In 1932 Phil Irving joined the company and by the end of 1934 the Vincent/Irving designed 498cc ohv engine was presented.
It featured a high camshaft (“ Semi-overhead camshaft”) and short pushrods angled at 62 degrees. The very advanced design had a spring frame, duo brakes on both wheels, interchangeable wheels and a 4 speed Burman gearbox.
The 498 cc engine was used in 4 models of which the “Meteor” was the standard machine. More highly tuned engines were available for the “Comet”, “Comet Special” and “TT”.
According to information from the Vincent Owners Club machine registrar this highly tuned and expensive sports machine was despatched on January 11, 1936 to a Mr. L. H. Gratton in the U.K. The original registration was BAR 756 and the frame and engine numbers are matching.
The bike was road tested on November 15, 1935 by Mr. Clark. The original gearbox according to the factory records (BAPH 33156) is still in the machine.
The Comet engine is externally the same as that in the Meteor, but it is fitted with special cams, valve springs and high compression piston.
This desirable mount has been restored a number of years ago and is still in a well presented and good running condition.