Rambler-Husqvarna 1913 Model A3 354 cc OHV-V-twin Moto-Rêve frame # 107037 engine # 11480
Rambler was originally an American cycle brand, imported from 1896 by Albert Öhman AB in Stockholm, according to the firm’s own information. But when it became less advantageous to import, manufacturing was arranged in Sweden. It appears that Öhman sourced out most of the production of his bicycles and also the motorcycles that he started to sell at the beginning of the 20th century. The frames for his cycles and motorcycles were sourced from Husqvarna.
This company began producing motorcycles at Huskvarna, Sweden, as a branch of the Husqvarna armament firm which had supplied the Swedish army with rifles since 1689. Husqvarna has been manufacturing motorcycles from 1903 till the present day. At first Belgian FN engines were used, from 1910 Husqvarnas were equipped with Moto-Rêve engines but they were real Swedish bikes: from the first Husqvarna/Moto-Rêve motorcycle a Husqvarna frame was used. Husqvarna had a long tradition producing bicycles and made the frames themselves. At first glance both frames look the same, but Swedish frames are 25mm longer and the tubes are thicker. In Switzerland external lugs were used to connect the tubes, Swedish frames have internal lugs and look more elegant. The cooperation between Husqvarna and Moto-Rêve ended in 1918. Husqvarna started their own engine production in 1919 with the model 150. The Rambler A3 is actually a rebadged Model 65 from Husqvarna. The 354 cc V-twin engine has overhead valves which was a relatively rare construction detail in pre-WW1 years. The engine has bore x stroke dimensions of 53 x 70 mm and Moto-Rêve claimed a top speed of no less than 85 km/h for the light but agile machine.
Husqvarna’s despatch notes for 1913 survive and show that the machine with frame # 107037 and engine # 11480 was sent to Albert Öhman AB in Stockholm on August 29, 1913 and sold to Emil Andersson in Jönköping. The 1913 entry shows that in all 165 Husqvarna motorcycles were produced that year, of which only 2 were sold via Albert Öhman AB. It appears there was some friction between Jönköping and Huskvarna and it’s speculated that this might have been the reason that Emil Andersson ordered his machine via Öhman so it would be a Rambler and not a Husqvarna.
This very rare machine with its delicate OHV V-twin engine was found in original and almost complete condition in Sweden a number of years ago. She was equipped with a clutch of which the control lever was missing, together with some other small parts, as can be seen on a photograph taken before refurbishment. It was decided not to restore the machine but touch up the paintwork and retain as much as possible the original finish. The machine has a number of nice period accessories, such as tyre pump, travel bag, acetylene front lamp, two leather tool pouches and oiler in leather case. Starting is done by hand crank, which is fitted to the rear carrier. Note the Brown saddle, which is equipped with leaf suspension.
She has been part of a museum collection for quite some years so a good checkup will be advisable before guiding her to the roads again.