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 Velocette - KTT usine
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Velocette D2-492-66-01
Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 500
Model : KTT usine
Production : 1937 -
Category : (R) Racing


500 KTI Works Racer I Stanley Woods -1937

Designed by its rider

Velocette, a success with 350cc racing, moved up into the 500 class in 1934. That first year, Walter Rush won the 500 Ulster GP mainly because most of his rivals retired! Velocette's first 500 was no match for Norton's works machines. To boost its chances for success, Velocette recruited Stanley Woods, after his 1935 victory in the Lightweight and Senior Isle of Man TTs with 250 and 500 Moto Guzzis. Woods, who had seen the 350 Velocette at that same event and recognized its potential, joined Velocette in 1936.

Brand-New Machine

Woods had very precise ideas on motorcycle design and had a marked influence on Velocette's technicians. After racing with a transitional machine in 1936, a completely new works 500 was designed in 1937 and only underwent minor modifications until the 1939 season was cut short by the start of WWII.

Beaten by Seconds

The frame, derived from the 350 KTT's, was fitted with swing arm rear suspension and tested in 1937. Partly conceived by Woods, the suspension was oil-damped; pressurized air functioned as the springing medium. The engine was the 350cc unit enlarged from

74x81mm to 81x96mm. Sadly, the 500 KTT Works Racer never achieved the success of the Norton. Though Woods did win the Junior TT in 1938 and 1939 he was a brilliant second in the Senior TT in 1937 and 1938 – beaten both times by just a few seconds.


Engine: 495cc (81x96mm) air-cooled single cylinder four-stroke; magneto ignition

Power Rating: 40 hp @ 6500 rpm

Valves: shaft-driven overhead-camshaft; 2 valves; hairpin valve springs

Fuel System: 31 mm Amal RN racing carburetor

Transmission: Velocene 4-speed, chain final drive

Suspension: Webb girder forks (front); swing arm with oleopneumatic spring/dampers (rear)

Brakes: special full-hub dmm (front & rear)

Wheels: 3.00x21 inch (front); 3.25/ 3.50x19 inch (rear)

Weight: 337 lb

Maximum Speed: 120 mph


This 500 Velocette had the distinctive feature of oleopneumatic rear suspension at a time when many machines still had rigid frames .

Motorcycle encyclopedia Moto Passion, realised by François-Marie Dumas, include almost 2000 photos presented with an exhaustive history of the motorcycles exhibited.

This unique collection has been realised with the participation of many specialists. With many thanks in particular to Yves Campion, Michael Dregni, Didier Ganneau, Jean Goyard, Helmut Krackowizer, Michel Montange, Christian Rey, Bernard Salvat, Mick Woollett, etc

One can order here

  • Original cards on paper (in french)
  • High resolution scans or original documents presented and signed with my name.

Please contact me at for conditions and copyright.

© Tous droits réservés
François-Marie Dumas

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