1902 Alldays & Onions Imperial Path Racer
3″ Sloping Top Tube
Brown Model 79 Racing Saddle
Path and road racers were very popular at the turn of the century. Before the advent of motorised vehicles, cycle racing was one of the top sporting activities: think of it in the way football is popular now. Everyone knew the top racers of the day, as well as the bikes they rode.
Every large manufacturer had some sort of ‘path racer’ and ‘road racer’ in their catalogue, invariably a stripped down version of their standard roadster. Any company also made special bikes to a customer’s order if requested (they could easily buy in frame variants through the trade if required).
1902 ALLDAYS & ONIONS VIDEO
The War Office gave Alldays their first large government contract in 1898 which was rapidly followed by four more contracts and in February 1901 by the largest contract to be awarded to the company so far, for 800 cycles. More than 40 of the company’s cycles were used by dispatch riders in the South African Boer War.
1900 NATIONAL CYCLE SHOW
Crystal Palace, London
Alldays & Onions Ltd, Matchless Works, Birmingham, show a tandem-seated voiturette. This may be described as a modified quadricycle with wheel steering, the body being mounted on a substantial steel frame. A two and three-quarter horsepower air-cooled motor is set at the rear of the frame, and drives through a two-speed friction clutch gear on to a spur wheel round the differential gear in the usual way. It is provided with one foot lever brake on the axle, and one hand lever on the clutch gear. It is somewhat of a misnomer in our opinion to describe this vehicle as a voiturette; it is really little more than a motor quadricycle.