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Early Stewart Speedometer

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  • Early Stewart Speedometer

    I've been gifted the Stewart Speedometer in the photos. It is labelled on the face Model No, 43. By the look of the position of the housing for the drive gear it is for front wheel drive.

    Can anyone give me an idea of its age, and on what machines it might have been used on in its day,

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  • #2
    Beautiful instrument! I really do not know for sure but a lot of Stewarts were used in early automobiles. I think this bracket was made to mount alongside a steering column in a car - the other half of the clamp is not pictured.

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    • #3
      Thank you Jerry. I assumed that the "Motorcycle Speedometer" on the face meant that it's not an automobile accessory? I wondered about the clamp but concluded that, if the speedometer was 1910-20 vintage or thereabouts, it could clamp to the top frame rail when it was exposed, as on early Thor or Sears motorcycles for example.

      With all these instruments, even if they are in good working order (which I'm told this one is), getting hold of the cables and sprockets to get them working on a bike is the big challenge.

      Cheers
      Mike

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      • #4
        I agree on the top tube location for the clamp.
        Robbie Knight Amca #2736

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        • #5
          I have a similar one only mine has the cable drive at the end instead of on the bottom at right angle. Yours is probably front wheel drive and mine is probably rear wheel drive. I now know what the missing needle and bracket on mine are supposed to look like. For some reason my pictures will not upload.
          Tom

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          • #6
            Originally posted by MikeW View Post
            Thank you Jerry. I assumed that the "Motorcycle Speedometer" on the face meant that it's not an automobile accessory? I wondered about the clamp but concluded that, if the speedometer was 1910-20 vintage or thereabouts, it could clamp to the top frame rail when it was exposed, as on early Thor or Sears motorcycles for example.

            With all these instruments, even if they are in good working order (which I'm told this one is), getting hold of the cables and sprockets to get them working on a bike is the big challenge.

            Cheers
            Mike
            Wow So much for an eagle eye. I looked and never saw that!

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            • #7
              Thank you again for the responses Guys. Tom, I'd like to see the photos of your example some time, if you can get them to upload. And I'd very much like to see a photo of one on a motorcycle if there is one out there.

              Mike

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              • #8
                Here is another attempt to upload my stewart speedometer photos. I had to print them as 4x6 and rescan them.
                Tom
                Attached Files

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                • #9
                  Tom, thank you for taking the trouble to post the photos. The instruments look exactly the same but for the different "plug in" fitting for the drive cable - rear or front wheel drive. There is something very satisfying about the weight and precision of these early mechanical instruments. It would be great to have mine reunited with an early motorcycle and on the road again rather than sitting on a shelf in the display cabinet.
                  Mike

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                  • #10
                    To add to the story, something about Stewart Speedometers jogged my memory and I rummaged through my bits and pieces stash and rediscovered this.

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                    I recall that I cut it out of a badly corroded 1915 Harley-Davidson rear wheel. The rim was rotted through but I saved the hub and gave it to a friend who is now well advanced on his rebuild of a 1915 3 speed. It was originally heavily plated in dull nickel, which is peeling off the back in places.

                    Being a rear wheel sprocket it wouldn't work with my speedometer but perhaps drove one like Tom's.

                    Mike

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