Moto Guzzi 1931 500 cc Inlet Over Exhaust “Sport 15” frame#13484 engine # L 13689
Moto Guzzi has been a leading make in Italy since 1921 and it is one of the few Italian makes to become well-known abroad.
From the twenties on a number of interesting racing machines with OHC engines were developed and Guzzi’s became a force to reckon with in TT races. |
In the 1926 lightweight TT Ghersi was credited with the fastest lap and he actually was disqualified from the second place because the spark plug he used in the race was of a different make as the one he used in the practice session.
In 1935 Stanley Woods won the Lightweight TT with a spring frame single Moto Guzzi; the next day Woods won the Senior race on a Guzzi twin!
The design of the Sport 15 engine goes back to the early twenties: it’s a remarkable engine with its horizontal cylinder, radial finning to enhance cooling and big but slender exposed flywheel; the idea behind this construction being to keep the engine’s main bearings close together.
The machine’s frame with widely splayed and braced front down tubes is very rigid and the low, horizontal position of the engine and gearbox ensure good road holding and handling. Weight is 150 kgs, top speed 100km/hour and the gearbox is a hand-change device with sliding gear system.
The Sport 15 was to become the best selling Moto Guzzi of the prewar era with 5,979 numbers built between 1931 and 1939.
Dating from the model’s first year of production, this Sport 15 retains matching frame/engine numbers as confirmed by Moto Guzzi while the engine number, ‘L13689’, is also stamped on the inner surface of the gear change gate.
The machine was in original but un-restored condition when purchased and has been sympathetically restored throughout.
Completed in 2010, work carried out included extensive mechanical restoration: new bearings throughout, new piston with original cylinder barrel suitably honed, as well as new fork spindles, bearings and damper friction discs.
Many parts were sourced from the legendary Moto Guzzi specialist in Bergamo, Angelo Tadini.
An additional rear light from a later 1930s Guzzi has been fitted for enhanced visibility
but is easily removable to restore the original appearance.
This handsome machine steers and handles extremely well.
The machine is presented in generally good condition and is ready
for many trouble free miles.