F.N. 3 h.p. 4-cylinder motor cycle, 1905


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F.N. 3 h.p. 4-cylinder motor cycle, 1905. From a colour transparency in the Science Museum Photographic Archive.
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

F.N. 3 h.p. 4-cylinder motor cycle, 1905

Early on in the twentieth century, a few motorcycle designers were hoping to reduce vibration and improve reliability. They henceforth produced large touring motorcycles powered by four-cylinder engines. Some of these machines were reasonably successful at first, but their ultimate decline was due more to their high initial cost rather than their technical complexity.

This Belgian motorcycle was built by Fabrique National d’Arme de Guerre of Liege and is known as an ‘F N’. The four-cylinder, in-line, air-cooled engine has a cylinder bore of 45mm. and a stroke of 55mm. giving a total capacity of 363 c.c. The inlet valves are automatic and the exhaust valves mechanically operated. A Bosch high-tension ignition and a Brown & Barlow carburettor are fitted. The technically advanced transmission includes a pair of spur gears to the final shaft drive contained within the rear frame stay.

This design of F N. motorcycle proved to be quite successful and manufacture in this general form continued up to 1923.


Road Transport
Object Number:
motor cycles and motor cycles and
Clare's Motor Works

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