1965 Dunstall Norton Atlas
Closed Auction
1965 Dunstall Norton Atlas
Closed Auction

1965 Dunstall Norton Atlas

US
Santa Monica, CA, US
US
Estimate
35,000 USD
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About the item

“This classic British hot rod was hand built by Paul Dunstall for playboy, daredevil and tobacco heir Zach Reynolds. He picked it up in London in ’65 and even reportedly took a lap on the Isle of Man. It’s one of the only bikes known to have been modified in-house by Paul Dunstall Motorcycles. It rides beautifully at speed.” -Adam Lindemann Introduced in 1962, Norton’s Atlas was the firm’s first 750 cc twin, and it featured the company’s legendary featherbed frame. This iconic frame design brought the Birmingham-based company countless championships at the highest levels of competition and was most notably used by the famous Norton Manx, considered by many to be the greatest racing motorcycle ever produced. For those seeking even more speed from their already-potent Atlas, various aftermarket companies offered a slew of performance parts. By far the most influential and highly regarded was Paul Dunstall Motorcycles of Eltham, UK. While the company produced an impressive and extremely high-quality parts catalogue, it is believed that very few road-going Atlases were actually built up and assembled to order in-house during the 1960s. However, according to documentation and copies of period photographs on file, this extremely special example was modified when new by Paul Dunstall Motorcycles at the behest of a very special client, Zach Reynolds. Born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina in 1938, Reynolds was the heir to the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco fortune. Reynolds’ wealth, daredevil attitude, and insatiable appetite for speed made him a local legend, and his rocket-powered Ford Galaxie certainly made an indelible impression on his quiet hometown. A true eccentric who was friends with Steve McQueen and Bob Dylan, Reynolds was a stunt-pilot, drag racer and avid enthusiast. He amassed a collection of about 50 motorcycles before his untimely death in a small plane crash in 1979. One of the most significant of these motorcycles was the Norton Atlas offered here. A copy of a black and white photograph on file shows Reynolds and Paul Dunstall himself with the bike outside Dunstall headquarters in the UK in 1965, still wearing British registration HGK 45C and fitted with an incredible array of Dunstall parts. Original invoices, still in their original Dunstall envelope and signed by Paul Dunstall himself, document the extensive upgrades fitted to the bike, including .40 over pistons, Avon GP tires, clip-on handlebars, Domiracer fairing, Domiracer camshaft, Dunstall seat, 19" alloy rims, and racing megaphones, among many others. In a letter dated July 7, 1965, Dunstall thanks Reynolds for his payment for some additional spare parts and a letter on July 9 notes that Dunstall would be packing the bike for air transport to the US. Reynolds retained the motorcycle in his collection until his passing and Charles White of Winston-Salem, North Carolina acquired the Norton for $2,900 at the 1984 estate auction of Reynolds’ motorcycles. The auction copy read, “A collector’s bike, 1965 Dunstall built- a full Dunstall 750. Almost 20 years old- mileage…an unbelievable 1,471 miles. British fanciers…here is your chance.” Adam Lindemann acquired the Atlas in 2019 and has since used it sparingly, enjoying its incredible patina and originality. At the time of cataloguing, the odometer showed less than 1,800 miles and the bike even retains its original 1965 British tax disc on the left front fork leg, along with countless other period hallmarks. Accompanying the Norton is an original Paul Dunstall parts catalogue, as well as a Norton maintenance manual, twin cylinder manual, and 1964 spare parts list. The file also includes the original estate auction program from 1984, the purchase receipt from the auction, as well as a host of other articles and correspondence, including a letter from Zach Reynolds’ wife. This bike is believed to be one of the only surviving examples of a road-going Atlas built to order by Paul Dunstall Motorcycles. This is thus an exceptional and rare opportunity to acquire a true piece of motorcycling history with a fascinating provenance and irreplaceable patina. View the interview with Adam Lindemann Learn More with Specialist Angus Dykman *Please note that this vehicle is titled as a Norton. car
US
Santa Monica, CA, US
US
Estimate
35,000 USD
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