Saturday, April 12, 2008

From Viceroy Scooter to small Hovercraft






The 1964 Viceroy engine with cyl.head fins milled to a "pent-house" shape to reduce resonance.


The Velocette Viceroy scooter had a brief production run from 1960-64 during which time less than 700 were made. Sadly it epitomised what a motorcyclist felt a scooter should be, rather than what the market thought and as such was not popular with buyers and eventually withdrawn from the market. In fact the design and tooling was financed by a loan in 1959 of £75,000 of which some £45,000 was still outstanding when Veloce Ltd went into voluntary liquidation in 1971.
Additionally Veloce sold 38 engines for the Viceroy to DMW motorcycles for a scooter they were marketing and were approached by Hover-Air Ltd., of Peterborough UK, who had found that the engine had a good power to weight ratio and would be ideal for both lift and propulsion for their Hoverhawk hovercraft.
They used three engines, one for lift and the other two for propulsion. The Hoverhawk had a maximum speed of 25mph over water and 35mph over land.
By September 1967, Veloce had supplied 165 Viceroy engines for this hovercraft.





left.....Hoverhawk HA5
Sixty seven of the Mk1 and Mk2 Hawks were believed built using the Viceroy engines but from then on they were fitted with Sachs Wankel engines [Mk3].

Production started in 1967 and ended in 1971.
Nothing appears to be known about the Hoverlark other than it possibly used only one Viceroy engine..
Additionally several engines were supplied for use in powered gliders.
The information for this came from Drew Duncan and Alan Dean both members of the Aust. VOC who contributed material to me for inclusion in FTDU320 of June 2002 and FTDU322 of Dec.2002. I also re-read the thesis and quoted in part from it; “A History of Veloce Limited, Motor Cycle Manufacturers, Hall Green, Birmingham”, submitted by Joseph W.E. Kelly, MSc, C.Eng. in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Bradford, UK, March 1979.The section in Dave Masters book, "Velocette, An Illustrated Profile of Models 1905-1971" was also read .
Left click on photos to enlarge.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey, sorry, i work on the hoverlark at the hovercraft museum in Lee on solent, it uses two Stihl Chainsaw engines, both of about 12 hp

Vitor Miguel said...

HELLO MY NAME IS VITOR MIGUEL
I HAVE IN SINTRA PORTUGAL A
HOVERCRAFT
MARCA : HOVERHAWK
MODEL : HA5 MK III
i want sell it
if same one are interest my direct number is 00 351 91 9277610