Empire Cycles

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Ferrovelo
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Empire Cycles

Postby Ferrovelo » Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:19 pm

Does anyone happen to know any information about Empire Cycles?

I haven’t found anything with a quick search, but from the decal on this bike it looks like: Empire Cycles, Something St, Windsor

It’s a lovely looking old bike, I especially like the pattern on the seat tube and the shape of the handle bars, although she’s a bit worse for wear in the rust department.

I’m a bit confused now this bike was stopped too, there’s a freewheel but no brakes or obvious drilling/mounting for brakes?
Any age suggestions? 50's? earlier?

pics here :
http://yfrog.com/mxsany0032jx

Image
http://ajsblogcycle.blogspot.com
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Torana68
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Torana68 » Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:30 pm

borrowed from the Ozpushies database
"Empire" by Empire Cycle Works Henley Beach Road Torrensville SA , could have been more than one, pretty common name years ago.
Roger
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Verbs & Nouns
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Verbs & Nouns » Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:41 pm

Looks a lot like a Super Elliotts "E" on the front... maybe ask 5* Rolf or Silverlight.
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brauluver
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby brauluver » Sun Aug 15, 2010 8:03 pm

Verbs & Nouns wrote:Looks a lot like a Super Elliotts "E" on the front... maybe ask 5* Rolf or Silverlight.


Image

Mmmm E looks like an elliot, but it has empire on the DT.

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Verbs & Nouns
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Verbs & Nouns » Sun Aug 15, 2010 8:26 pm

Built buy Elliots, badged by Empire?
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Ferrovelo
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Ferrovelo » Sun Aug 15, 2010 8:47 pm

Could be, but I'd guess not because the E actually has Empire cycles within it, as if it's their own logo.

Image
http://ajsblogcycle.blogspot.com
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bicyclepassion
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby bicyclepassion » Mon Aug 16, 2010 1:45 pm

The 'E' decal has the address '154 Chapel St Windsor' written in it. This is Windsor Victoria. I have one in my collection with quite readable decals, but I dont have any other info on the brand. This bike looks like 1930's to me, with the clip head and the handlebars fixed to the stem. Not many bikes with this combination of freatures around after the war. The freewheel may well be a ring in. Is it 27" or 28"? Warren

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Ferrovelo
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Ferrovelo » Mon Aug 16, 2010 2:40 pm

Thanks for that extra bit of info. I couldn't make out the steet details. I'll check the wheels next time I get the bike out, I think they may be 28" but I'll have to check.
http://ajsblogcycle.blogspot.com
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Perte
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Perte » Mon Nov 26, 2012 3:58 pm

My family owned Empire Cycle Works, Adelaide.. Torrensville & Unley.. my mum used to also build & paint them..
Unfortunately caanot send emails as i'm away from home til late next week...
Peter Ramsey
perter@internode.on.net

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hazarama
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby hazarama » Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:36 pm

Picked up an Empire step through which is quite a lightweight frame. I've got a few step throughs but nothing quite like this with the really thin seat and chain stays. It accelerates nicely for such an upright position and really is a pleasure to ride. My only complaint would be that with the thin tubing, this frame design gets a bit unsteady when I'm pushing it hard and felt like it was going to deform around a sharpish corner. Nonetheless, it's a really fun ride.

It has Empire Cycles 154 Chapel St Windsor on the Seat Tube decal, which must have been a separate business from Empire Cycle Works - as Perte mentions they had three locations all in SA.

The other conundrum mentioned above is the use of the Super Elliot emblem, it's an absolute exact match! Even if they sourced their tubing etc from Super Elliot it seems odd to resue the Super Elliot emblem.

Anyway, here are some pics...

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bicyclepassion
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby bicyclepassion » Tue Nov 08, 2016 5:26 pm

Nice find. Not many of these "Ladies Sports' style frames turn up. I have seen them built by Malvern Star, and Morton. No reason that they could not have been built by others, but they dont appear very often in collector circles.

As far as the 'E' brazed on the front, another way you could think about it is that Elliotts used the same E as Empire, rather than Empire borrowing from Elliott. I suspect that both companies sourced the 'E' from the same wholesaler or small engineering works. (Or someone likes Bates in Melbourne, who had a press and dies to punch out these letters, Malvern 'stars', Master Sports 'arrows', Hartley 'Hearts', etc.)

Warren

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Ferrovelo
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Ferrovelo » Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:34 pm

Nice bike.
I see the photos of my Emprie aren't working anymore, ill re-add them.

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Ferrovelo
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Ferrovelo » Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:36 pm


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hazarama
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby hazarama » Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:04 pm

Ferrovelo wrote:https://goo.gl/photos/41DCVov9ZAZrKj2V7


Thanks for putting them back up, such a nice bike too.

I can't seem to find anything about Empire Cycles apart from the odd newspaper ad. Here's a good one though it's on the bay

Image

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Clydesdale Scot
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Re: Empire Cycles

Postby Clydesdale Scot » Fri Nov 11, 2016 6:31 am

It would be interesting to compare frame details; lugs, frame number etc with Super Elliotts of the same period.
As has been suggested they may have been made by Super Elliotts and sold as Empires in the Victorian marketplace.

A quick check on Trove shows two distinct periods of Empire advertisements; 1900-1906 and then 1940-1954.
http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/resul ... acets=true
(expand the decade)
Discounting the first grouping (different location), we see that Empire Cycles began advertising modestly in 1941 and then only 8 times in the rest of that decade. Advertisements appeared again in 1952 and stopped in 1954.
They lacked the marketing skills of Bruce Small.
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