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1962 Chang Jiang M1M
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Belt-drive DKW (or Giggling in the Garden)

On loan during 1966, this was the DKW that got away!

For a while we kept at our place an unregistered and incomplete DKW two-stroke belt-drive machine of unknown cc and unknown year. It had neither clutch nor gears nor kickstarter, but it did (if I recall correctly) have a compression release in its cylinder head. It had been donated to the BRMCC and we were going to see whether it would go or not.
I checked the magneto and saw that, as I cranked the engine by turning the back wheel while the bike was up on blocks, it was creating a good spark, although I had no idea whether the timing would be correct or not. I cleaned out the carby and put some petroil mixture in the tank.
We stripped off everything that was not essential to the bikes running in order to make it lighter to push, even replacing the seat with a push-bike leather saddle loosely inserted into a convenient frame tube.
Then we opened the compression release and ran like mad around the yard every so often closing the compression release and jumping on the bike.
Suddenly, without warning she fired.
That was the moment we discovered that the throttle was stuck wide open!
The front wheel came up in the air and I slid off the back of the precarious seat, fell on my belly on the ground, but refused to let go of the handlebars, so I just got dragged along as the Deek accelerated. With the engine screaming like a banshee, we went carreering around and around the garden straight through several flower beds and then straight into the middle of the very large and very dense rhododendron tree. The bending branches of the rhododendron softened the blow and the front wheel came to rest against the trunk where the engine finally stalled. I, having been half staggering and half belly-flopping along beside this wild machine much faster than I was capable of running, fell and slithered on my belly straight though the rhododendron and emerged from the other side with leaves and twigs sticking out all over me. I kept sliding along across the lawn and eventually came to rest up against the side fence of our property, from whence I was unable to get up because I was hopelessly disabled by my uncontrollable laughter.
Two of my brothers who had witnessed the same incident had also collapsed on the lawn shreiking with laughter.
Just as we were getting over our laughter, the elderly lady from next door came out onto her front verandah and with a perfectly straight face and great solemnity announced, "You know that excavation is not permitted within four feet from the boundary fence. We will report you to the council if you do any more excavation near the fence." Well, after what had just happened to us, we all just started laughing again ... the DKW had just been described as an excavator!
We fixed the throttle linkage and had a few more runs around the yard, to check that it was working okay. Then we assembled all of the bits we had stripped off, threw the Deek into someone's ute and took it up to the club sheds at the back of Alwyn Sobey's place. From then on, it was planned to become the clown's bike when we were putting on our Stunt riding displays. I cannot now recall whether or not we actually used it in performances.

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This page was last updated on 07/02/08 at 07:12:50 Hong Kong Time.

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