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British Industrial History

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J. T. Brown and Sons

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J. T. Brown and Sons of 40 Oxford Street, Reading.

See John Timothy Brown

Midget Bicar also known as the Brown-Bicar were motorcycles produced from 1905 to 1909

Brown-Bicar was a motorcycle produced from 1907 to 1913.

Very few of these machines were either built or sold - even in the United States, where they were constructed under licence. This was undoubtedly due to the unusual feature, in the Edwardian era, of an enclosed engine. This feature did not become commonplace until the arrival of modern super-sports machines. The engines were rated at 3hp for the single and 5hp for the V-twin

1905 The machine was first exhibited at the late Stanley show. It was different from most others of the era in that the frame and tank were constructed of sheet steel. Only the braced front forks, handlebars and headstock were made of tubing. All the frame joints were riveted and the outline was one of a normal frame with enclosed sides, except for the 3hp Fafnir engine. The machine was long and low with footboards and a prop stand on each side. There were no pedals. Some versions had a foot-controlled free-engine clutch and the battery tray could be hinged out for servicing.

1907 April. Advertisement. The Palace Cycle and Motor stores, 40 Oxford Street, Reading. J. T. Brown.[1]

1908 September. Advertisement. Patentees and manufacturer of the Midget Bi-Car. J. T. Brown and ons, 40 Oxford Street.[2]

1908 The design had been licensed to the American Walton firm, who used V-twin engines from one of their local suppliers. It continued to be offered in the UK with a choice of 3.5hp single or 5hp V-twin engine.

1909 A two-speed option was added.

1910 Machines were fitted with 3.5hp or 4.25hp Fafnir engines and Druid forks.

1911 They used a 3.5hp Precision engine with a 4.5hp listed for sidecar work.

1912 The smaller, 4.5hp engine, was used on a ladies' model and there was also a 2.5hp lightweight machine. After that, all listings disappeared.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. Berkshire Chronicle - Saturday 13 April 1907
  2. Berkshire Chronicle - Saturday 05 September 1908
  • The British Motorcycle Directory - Over 1,100 Marques from 1888 - by Roy Bacon and Ken Hallworth. Pub: The Crowood Press 2004 ISBN 1 86126 674 X