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Sammy Miller Museum - Review and Pictures

Radar

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Sammy Miller Museum - Review and Pictures
« on: November 26, 2017, 09:51:40 PM »
A couple of weeks ago I rather unexpectedly got the chance to spend a few hours in the superb Sammy Miller Motorcycle Museum. It is located 15 miles west of Southampton, 10 miles east of Bournemouth, in a place called New Milton. I had heard about it for many years and I have been meaning to take a trip there. I was staying at a friend's place in the area and when he suggested we visit I jumped at the chance. He isn't a biker so I was surprised he suggested it to be honest, but I am glad he did! Another couple of bikers were with us, including ID (The Great Leader) and Rich who did the Northern Spain tour with me in 2014.

The museum is owned and run by Sammy Miller, a highly successful Trials rider and erstwhile motorcycle racer. He racked up record amounts of trails wins and championships and is a proper full-fat motorcycling legend. So it was with some glee that we noted as we arrived the man himself was outside tending to an immaculately restored two stroke race bike. The engine note and smell were so evocative...I want another RD.

Once inside we were greeted by an astonishing array of classic bikes from right across the globe, the best that Great Britain, Germany, USA, France etc had to offer. Right from the dawn of motorcycling to the more modern day machines. There were even bikes that I have owned and ran. Not sure I am too happy about this as it just serves to highlight I am getting on a bit! 

The vast majority of the bikes were absolutely pristine and had been either restored or prepared to the highest standard. Many have been worked on in the on the onsite workshop by Sammy and his team. The exhibits are in a number of halls, each having a particular focus, like the newly opened Norton Hall, which as you would expect has its focus on Norton machinery. I was particularly struck by how many brands of bike had been produced in Birmingham and the surrounding area. Made me proud as a Brummie, but also a little sad too as so little of it is left. The recent success of Triumph and Norton in market place has been heartening however. Dotted around the bikes were memorabilia, the vast array of trophies Miller won in his career and even a small area dedicated to old sewing machines. The museum also boasts an excellent on-site cafe, I can recommend you try it, they do a fantastic 'salad' roll....

We took several hours looking about and drinking it all in, much to the delight of our non biking friend! I will let the pictures take over from here, but suffice it to say, if you get a chance go to the superb museum take it...it is only £8.50 to get in, which seems a pittance when you consider the quality of what is on display and how well they are presented.


The man himself, tending to a customer's bike. Sounded fantastic


In the 'Flat-Tankers' area




Magnificent Indian


This OEC was on display in as 'as found' condition....I loved it, one of my favourite bikes, so much history, so many stories to tell...


Craftsmanship of the first order... a wooden replica of one of the other bikes on display
 

Enticing...


I had one of these in 1986...it was terrible! Cult following these days


Pretty 254 Benelli, four cylinder two fifty that owed more than a little to the Honda four cylinder bikes of the era, I remember really wanting one of these early in my biking career


ID checking out the mysteries of a rotary engine RE-5 Suzuki


Yours truly with a CB400N. I owned the 250 version in these very colours. It was the first bike I ever crashed...


Rich had one too, but being a flash git he had the DX with black reverse 'comstar' wheels rather than this humble N-A


Very cool Henderson


More enticement...






Some bits and bobs from around the museum


BSA Gold Star. Magnificeint


More enticement...


Pretty Triumph 350 Bandit, a prototype from the early 1970's that never made production...another 'if only'



Meanwhile in the Norton hall


Miller was a hugely successful trials rider and this neat prototype was an attempt to bring that experience to the market place for others to benefit from. Sadly it didn't go into production, pity


As a ever loyal Villa fan I was rather pleased to come across this machine in the part of the collection dedicated to race bikes


Now that's a FULL fairing....


Rich and ID deep in debate...'I am sure that the thingy bob retaining grommet acts directly upon the overhead underhang....'


Wanted to hear this fire up...


Even more enticement...

Details of the museum and how to get there:
https://sammymiller.co.uk/

Sammy Miller:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sammy_Miller


« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 12:04:28 AM by Radar »



Re: Sammy Miller Museum - Review and Pictures
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2017, 10:24:01 AM »
It really was one of the best motorcycle museums I have seen. Lots of interesting, rare stuff and very well laid out. As you said, most bikes were in pristine condition.

Excellent photos and write-up as usual!

Radar

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Re: Sammy Miller Museum - Review and Pictures
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2017, 03:54:26 PM »
It really was one of the best motorcycle museums I have seen. Lots of interesting, rare stuff and very well laid out. As you said, most bikes were in pristine condition.



I would have to agree, I rate it above the National Motorcycle Museum for example