Friday, January 13, 2012

Royal Enfield Interceptor makes a powerful statement

Nothing says Royal Enfield quite like a view of the muscular Interceptor.
What favorite photo repesents Royal Enfield motorcycles to you? My question brought this response from a reader named Bob:

"Here is a photo for a nomination of what is envisioned when I hear 'Royal Enfield.' A primarily unrestored 1968 1/2 MK1A Royal Enfield Interceptor.

"This photo was taken at a show in Rhinebeck, N.Y. during the summer of 2011," Bob wrote.

It turns out that the Interceptor, acquired by Bob's uncle 30 years ago, is truly a family project, with Bob's father in charge.

"Dad is now 75 and wanted a hobby after retirement and decided this would be it. He has been a mechanic since old enough to turn a wrench, and appreciates vintage machinery.

"In some respects, I believe that it was a method to maintain family bonds and utilize the acumen developed by siblings in their various fields of endeavor, primarily my brother and myself. My brother is a fairly accomplished mechanic and I have a materials management background.

"My uncle purchased the bike from a friend, who had purchased it new and had trouble with it (engine seized at 6,900 miles). Like a lot of motorcycle projects, the friend had intended to repair it and never got to it, eventually selling to my uncle. Similarly, the bike sat in the basement for 30 years with the same intent.

"About two years ago dad decided it was time to see what the bike was about and began the process of repair. The entire way through the project he studied these machines and is still in a quandary about performing a full blown restoration on this bike or leave it as is. He appreciates the gleaming fully restored versions of these that are seen on the web and the amount of work that has gone in to bringing them back to that condition, but thinks that the bike has far more appeal in this mostly unrestored example.

"With only about 700 of these made it is hard to say which way you should go with a project like this.

"We plan to show the bike at various events this year sponsored by the Antique Motorcycle Association; maybe he will even allow one of us to ride it!

"Dad lives in New Hampshire, and will continue to pursue these projects."


  1. Make it road-ready,and leave it as-is...too many over-restored bikes out there already...hard to find one that's not been molested...just my humble opinion...Matt Law~

  2. Anonymous1/14/2012


    We who have been involved with this tend to share that opinion. It is road ready.Except for the seat whose foam is beginning to deteriorate causing nasty yellow dust and eventually will lose it's structure. The restored bikes absolutely have the visual appeal and you have to appreciate the amount of time and money spent, but most did not look like that when on the showroom floor.

  3. Agreed...she's quite beautiful just as she is...

  4. Anonymous1/14/2012

    Absolute Beauty.
    Sadly no Interceptors were sold in India.
    Can a detailed restoration detail be posted?

  5. We maybe able to compile some history of what was done and provide details w/ photos.
    I have intended to put this together but have not as yet. This may take a bit of time.

  6. Things can be Restored many times But can only Be Original Once...IS what Dad says..Bobs brother Tony..


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