Replicas, specials, fakes and forgeries

This beautiful AJS V-four was scratch-built (the build was featured in our November 2006 issue). Ground-up rebuilds like this sit in the grey area between ‘replica’ and ‘new bike’. It is a very handsome machine.

While it may be an ugly topic and not one that many classic motorcycle devotees like to spend much time thinking about, it is an unfortunate truth that there are some insalubrious characters out there in the world that view classic motorcycles more as a way of making a few bob than as meaningful, pleasurable pursuits.

There are several patches of ambiguity that cause unwanted confusion and obscurity (such as what happens to the value and provenance of a historically significant machine when you introduce replica components, and vice versa) and these abstruse areas are occasionally utilised as convenient cover by some, who will ‘embellish’ certain machines and make them rather more worthy than in fact they are.


Read more in May’s issue of TCM

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