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Frank Roper, motorcycle dealer, London Rd.

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01-10-2008, 21:28   #21
retep
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Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
I worked at Ropers as apprentice mechanic 1955-1961 (with two years National Service in between).As I remember Frank Roper Owner, Mr Hall G.M. and George Haley shop foreman.Part of my duties was picking up and delivering Motorcycles and Scooters with a Matchless and Sidecar Box Thingy, One of the high lights of my pick-ups was to go by train to Yarmouth and ride back an allmost brand new B.S.A. Road Rocket with a single seater sports sidecar, "What a Ride"
Will look in my stuff to see if I have any papers with there name on for you bsarider I know you can still get all the transfers and badges for for your bsa just use the net.
Frank Roper sold out to Humpferies of Birmingham and I went on to Dan Bradburys just up the road and then onto Walter Wraggs at Chesterfield but still did business with Porridge and Wildoats (DAH) and Sid Smith.
Texas... The only Italians I remember was Amando and Claudo and they worked at Dan Bradburys
I had a mate who worked at Dan Bradbury's in the sixties, he got knocked off the motor bike and box by an Ambulance think it went through the red light on emergency, Glossop Road area.
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01-10-2008, 21:38   #22
prioryx
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Did'nt amando set up his own workshop? It was Horridge& Wildgoose i think thats where I bought my Zundapp Bella from in 58.
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02-10-2008, 03:14   #23
flyer
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Bro' took his bike in not charging, out came the foreman in his white coat and with a quick twist with his minnie screw driver fixed the prob' that will be 2&6,what 2&6 said my Bro' all you did was quick flick, ahh said the foreman it me 20yrs to learn that flick of the wrist(True story 1947)
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02-10-2008, 08:43   #24
prioryx
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Originally Posted by flyer View Post
Bro' took his bike in not charging, out came the foreman in his white coat and with a quick twist with his minnie screw driver fixed the prob' that will be 2&6,what 2&6 said my Bro' all you did was quick flick, ahh said the foreman it me 20yrs to learn that flick of the wrist(True story 1947)

How about this for a heartbreak. Just been looking at a 1937 Motor Cycle magazine,
A brand new BSA £38/10. There again a good weeks wage was aboiut £4 so whats changed?
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02-11-2008, 12:06   #25
bsarider
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just finished this thread off have a look at the first thread.
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02-11-2008, 16:30   #26
Falls
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedwood View Post
I worked at Ropers as apprentice mechanic 1955-1961 (with two years National Service in between).As I remember Frank Roper Owner, Mr Hall G.M. and George Haley shop foreman.Part of my duties was picking up and delivering Motorcycles and Scooters with a Matchless and Sidecar Box Thingy, One of the high lights of my pick-ups was to go by train to Yarmouth and ride back an allmost brand new B.S.A. Road Rocket with a single seater sports sidecar, "What a Ride"
IN addition to selling BSA, weren't Roper's agents for what used to be known as Associated Motor Cycles (AMC). That would be Aerial, AJS, Matchless and Sunbeam.

I remember when Sunbeam brought out their inline, shaft-drive bike. Can't remember the model type. I remember standing outside Roper's one terrible wet Sunday morning with my Dad, and about 50 other people. This must have been the late 1940's or early 50's. We were all trying to get a good look at this NEW Matchless in the window.

Regards
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[COLOR=/COLOR]
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02-11-2008, 19:32   #27
Joanl
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I can remember sitting outside the shop in the sidecar while my dad went inside for something or other....it was a BSA bike and a maroon Watsonian sidecar......
_______
Wise people speak because they have something to say.
Fools speak because they have to say something.

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02-11-2008, 20:46   #28
Runningman
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Do the elderly ( sorry for use of the word ) amongst those of you subscribing to this thread remember 2 Sheffield brothers, both very keen bikers, Ray and Alan Stevenson. Ray did work for Dan Bradbury for a short period from 1951 onwards. He was an ex BR Fireman.
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03-11-2008, 09:40   #29
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Me and 3 other mates went through a period of trying to create "choppers" out of the various basket case bikes we running - this would be 1968/69 I suppose and was inspired by Easy Rider.
The one essential was apehanger bars but cable lengths were then a problem so we went to Ropers and purchased coils of inner and outer cable + a load of nipples to make up extended cables. I think Ropers were the only ones out of the Abbeydale Road biker shops to sell such things.
The trouble was that we really weren't much cop at soldering so inevitably applying the front brake in anger would pull the cable apart just at the wrong moment.
At the time I was running a beaten up Sunbeam S8, can you imagine how badly it handled with huge apehangers. I fell off twice in close succesion making a very unpleasant mess of my hip on both occasions, since then I have learned to solder !
Ropers were also the best shop for all things Lucas.
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03-11-2008, 13:32   #30
biker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falls View Post
IN addition to selling BSA, weren't Roper's agents for what used to be known as Associated Motor Cycles (AMC). That would be Aerial, AJS, Matchless and Sunbeam.

I remember when Sunbeam brought out their inline, shaft-drive bike. Can't remember the model type. I remember standing outside Roper's one terrible wet Sunday morning with my Dad, and about 50 other people. This must have been the late 1940's or early 50's. We were all trying to get a good look at this NEW Matchless in the window.

Regards
Ariel and Sunbeam were part of the BSA and Triumph group not AMC.AMC were Norton,James,Francis Barnett,AJS,Matchless.The inline Sunbeam was the S7 with balloon tyres which changed to the S8 with normal tyres.Apparently it was a slow performer due to the weak shaft drive and was detuned to preserve it.
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25-11-2008, 06:36   #31
ImbrosGeorge
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Armandos would be the scooter workshop off Abbeydale road then. I once took a Vincent there for an mot test. Armando looked for a few minutes, waggled the brake lever and said "Itsa alright". That was it. Done.
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25-11-2008, 20:08   #32
flyer
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Living in Leicester pre 49 and after 55 Roper is to well known to be strictly Sheffield or was it my S5 Sunbeam i suppose the adverts went far & wide
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27-11-2008, 20:08   #33
coyleys
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If my memory serves me, didnít Ropers always price their bikes in guineas?
Anyway this may be of interest from a 1939 telephone directory, although thereís no mention of Ropers.

http://i401.photobucket.com/albums/p...edirectory.jpg
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28-11-2008, 17:43   #34
lindy3
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sorry coyles yu are wrong the man who priced in guineas was grays on bridge street.who moved to west steet later on.bought my my husband bought his first bike from him bsa b31 350cc.
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28-11-2008, 17:56   #35
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Sorry lindy3, I stand corrected (said the man with the prosthetic leg) the old grey matters not what it was.
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30-11-2008, 00:10   #36
Tradescanthia
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I remember Frank B Ropers, Dan Bradburys, Wilf Greens, orridge and Wildegoose, Grays on Bridge St, Wraggs on West Bar, Toms Motorcycles on Copper St, Leather and Simpsons.
I particularly remember Wilf Greens hatred of Japanese motorcycles. He once had a sign in the window which read :- WE DO NOT SELL ORIENTAL ODDITIES.
At the end of each racing season we used to look in Grays window. They used to sponsor John Cooper and a 500 and a 350 Manx Norton were on display [complete with oil drip-trays under the engines].

Ah, memories,memories.
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01-12-2008, 12:59   #37
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We do not sell oriental oddities"I'm afraid that sort of outlook killed the british bike a total misread of the British biker as in "real men have kick start's"NO real men have push button start and all cover cowlings I don't know if a bike is still made in U.K over here bikes are 80%Japanese quite a few "Harley's" and a few B.M W
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01-12-2008, 23:53   #38
biker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nimrod View Post
I remember Frank B Ropers, Dan Bradburys, Wilf Greens, orridge and Wildegoose, Grays on Bridge St, Wraggs on West Bar, Toms Motorcycles on Copper St, Leather and Simpsons.
I particularly remember Wilf Greens hatred of Japanese motorcycles. He once had a sign in the window which read :- WE DO NOT SELL ORIENTAL ODDITIES.
At the end of each racing season we used to look in Grays window. They used to sponsor John Cooper and a 500 and a 350 Manx Norton were on display [complete with oil drip-trays under the engines].

Ah, memories,memories.
A motorcycle dealer near in Laceby (near Grimsby) had a nice counter sign.It said "Please do not ask for Japanese parts as a smack in the gob often offends".
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08-12-2008, 11:26   #39
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Originally Posted by flyer View Post
We do not sell oriental oddities"I'm afraid that sort of outlook killed the british bike a total misread of the British biker as in "real men have kick start's"NO real men have push button start and all cover cowlings I don't know if a bike is still made in U.K over here bikes are 80%Japanese quite a few "Harley's" and a few B.M W
Wilf was a 'character', a living institution, and had a huge sense of humour.
We still make bikes in the U.K., Triumphs are still made [at Hinckley instead of Meriden] and Nortons are on the verge of firing up again once the deals are struck. We have a thriving classic industry, we even make new Gold Star and Vincent engines. Complete bikes if you can afford one. We even reproduce and race Manx Nortons, G50 Matchless and AJS 7R's. The Japs beat us on productivity but we still build quality bikes. Just listen to a racing Norton 'on the pipe' and you will know what I am talking about. It brings tears to your eyes.
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08-12-2008, 17:21   #40
biker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nimrod View Post
Wilf was a 'character', a living institution, and had a huge sense of humour.
We still make bikes in the U.K., Triumphs are still made [at Hinckley instead of Meriden] and Nortons are on the verge of firing up again once the deals are struck. We have a thriving classic industry, we even make new Gold Star and Vincent engines. Complete bikes if you can afford one. We even reproduce and race Manx Nortons, G50 Matchless and AJS 7R's. The Japs beat us on productivity but we still build quality bikes. Just listen to a racing Norton 'on the pipe' and you will know what I am talking about. It brings tears to your eyes.
And if you go to Cadwell Park,Mallory Park or Donington to the Vintage racing next season,you can watch and hear them.
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