Early small capacity Blackburne engine motorcycle or utility use 1928

Early small capacity Blackburne engine motorcycle or utility use 1928


Early small capacity Blackburne engine motorcycle or utility use.

  • Engine with compression
  • Engine turns
  • Lucas MA1 Magneto
  • Villiers carb
  • Best & Lloyd oil regulator

OK, I am sure that a Blackburne expert out there will put me straight very quickly. I believe this is a little 175cc from 1928. I believe it may have been supplied mostly for utility use such as stationary engines, or lawn mowers. Although, records seem to show that some were supplied to motorcycles. Either way, this is a lovely little small capacity Blackburne engine that could make someone’s day and complete their pre 1930 lightweight project.

I believe it’s a Blackburne OCA, 175cc.

Early small capacity Blackburne engine motorcycle or utility use 1928Why do I think it’s a 1928 engine? Well the magneto drive method is the key. In 1928, Blackburne made a significant development. They revised the 175cc SV engine, with novel timing gear. In this new engine, a skew gear drove a camshaft running at right angles to the axis of the crankshaft. Separate cams, with circular followers operated the inlet and exhaust valves. An extension to the cam shaft drove the magneto via a spring coupling. The Blackburne-designed plunger-type oil pump is driven from the other end.

They are sometimes referred to as a cross-camshaft design, as the camshaft is driven off the crankshaft via skew gears positioned at 90° to one another.

I have included an image of an advert by Blackburne, in 1928. It shows an image of a very similar engine in their range. The bore and stroke is 53 x 79. (The 300cc version is 67 x 79)

This engine has probably been used as a display engine at some point. The engine number is shown in the images. I believe some people refer to this engine as the “OCA engine”.

Condition of the small capacity Blackburne engine

It will need a small amount of work to get it going. The Lucas MA1 magneto isn’t giving a spark. The magneto mount has a small crack. Someone has made an unsuccessful repair. It’s actually a part that could easily be machined. The top of the Villiers carb is damaged. These parts are readily available.

Other than those relatively small matters, this is a great little engine. When I turn it by hand, I can hear it sucking and squeezing. It also has compression.

Uses for the small capacity Blackburne engine

You decide. While Blackburne made these mostly for light industrial use, they did supply them for motorcycles.

I think it would look great in a lightweight flat tank motorcycle from about the same year as the engine. So, if you have one of those frames, this is a great chance to get a small capacity Blackburne engine for your vintage motorcycle project.

Other vintage and veteran motorcycle parts.

Looking for parts for vintage motorcycles between 1915 and 1930? Go here and scroll through lots of pages of parts. 

If you don’t see what you need, send me a message on the CONTACT Page.



Shipping is charged ON TOP of the price for the item. There are too many variables to include shipping in the checkout, so please contact me before you buy and I will give you a shipping price.

I usually ship to most destinations.

International shipping available. Let me know where you are and I will send you a price for shipping with tracking

Combined shipping available. 

Viewing: Please come and check it over before you buy. It is at PE28, near St Ives in Cambridgeshire.

Collection: If you don’t want it shipped, I have plenty of space. If you can’t collect for a while, it’s not a problem. However, I will need to be paid very soon after the sale. Thanks.

Payment: Good old fashioned money on collection is preferred. I can accept payment through PayPal or by bank transfer as well. I can accept EUROS. Please ask. 

Import Taxes: Please note that IMPORT DUTIES are not something I can control. If you are buying from outside the UK, there is a chance that you will have to pay import taxes. Import taxes vary from country to country. If there are charges to pay, it is the buyer’s responsibility to research the cost and pay the duties. The price that you see on my advert is for the item and not the item plus whatever taxes might be due.


SKU: 0524-H411p - Need Help? Contact Us Leave Feedback