Grey Flash 2751

The history and restoration of a Vincent HRD Grey Flash

The Grey Flash features an extensively drilled and lightened headstock casting.

Quite a bit of dead weight removed here…

The Works must have deemed this appearance a little unsightly so an alloy cover plate was devised to cover up the holes and provide a place for the mercury crest transfer.

We believe this to be the original item.
It has been sandblasted on both sides.

I’m convinced this is original to the bike; accurately constructing a similar part wouldn’t be hard but correctly replicating the dimensions would require more diligence and it’s very unlikely anyone would have bothered with such a trifling task in decades past.

Period shot of the part on 2751 – the profile is identical.
Loosely affixed with what appear to be the original screws.

The question here is what might the original finish of this component have been? Usually they were polished. I feel certain that it wouldn’t have been blasted – some of the visible dings have also been subjected to this treatment indicating that the blasting was undertaken later on in the bike’s life. As the finish/presentation was a very important aspect of this early Grey Flash I suspect this plate would have been anodised along with many other of the aluminium parts. Re-anodising might be one answer or perhaps carefully removing the blasted finish with a suitable grade of wire wool. We need to have a careful think about this before coming to a decision.

The cover plate on what is believed to be GF2921.

Drilling Patterns

Detail of the drilling of the headstock casting.

One thing we’ve noticed about the drilling on the headstock casting is that it differs from that of later examples. David Dunfey has kindly sent me some images that show a different pattern of 5/16″ holes.

Later UFMs would have been drilled thus: six additional holes in the tank bracket and the omission of the fifth hole in the casting – as indicated.

2 thoughts on “The Steering Head Cover Plate

  1. Somer Hooker says:

    I’d love to get a tracing of that for my UFM.



    1. humphsmith says:

      More than happy to oblige, Somer; sharing is a win-win IMO! I can have it traced and sent to you. This fact needs to be recorded with DD though. Please send me your postal address to the email provided in the blog.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: