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Norton Dominator Gallery

Norton had responded to the success of the Triumph Speed Twin model in 1949 with the release of the Bert Hopwood designed Model 7 twin displacing 500cc. The new model was followed in 1952 by a new twin combining the Model 7's twin cylinder engine and the "featherbed" frame, the marriage offering sporting road riders the performance of the "cammy" models in the range with the ease of use afforded by the twin cylinder engine. Early examples, equipped with a deeply valanced, sprung mudguard, were initially only available for export, however, by 1953 it became available to domestic purchasers. The same year saw the replacement of the unsightly front mudguard with a neater unsprung item. More Norton Dominator information..

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1952 Norton Dominator Model 7 1952 Norton Dominator Model 7 This model was the Norton factory's first twin cylinder machine of the modern era and made its debut at the 1948 Earls Court Show. Early versions used the plunger rear end frame with Roadholder forks, but in late 1952 the change was made to the swinging arm frame. The engine had a single carburettor and developed about 29 b.h.p., reasonable for its time.

In 1954 a more effective 8" front brake was fitted and the cast iron cylinder head was superseded by a redesigned light alloy unit. A characteristic feature was the small light underneath the headlamp. Although the handling was not in the Featherbed class, it was of a good touring standard and the clutch action was beautifully light compared to the AMC clutch fitted to other later Dominators.

From 1951, the Model 7 was rather overshadowed by its newer and more glamorous counterpart, the Featherbed framed Model 88, so sales of the former became somewhat fewer. It was quietly dropped from the range in 1956.

1954 Norton Dominator 88
Norton Dominator 88 Launched at the 1951 Earls Court Show, the Model 88 was the first of nine Norton road machines to be equipped with the Featherbed frame and very rapidly became a best seller, eclipsing the older framed Model 7 with which it shared the same engine unit. The new frame had a bolt-on rear section with a loop running around the back to carry the mudguard but from 1954 onwards, this was welded into place. An 8" front brake also arrived in 1954, and for the following year, an alloy cylinder head, Amal Monobloc carburettors and full width wheel hubs.

The Norton/Burman gearbox was replaced by the AMC box for the 1957 range and there was also a new camshaft. The cylinder head was modified for better heat dissipation, and the pear drop silencers gave way to a tubular design. Coil ignition with an alternator superseded the magneto and dynamo in 1958. There were then only cosmetic changes to the silencers and petrol tank until the Slimline frame came in for 1960.

During its 15 year span, the Model 88 was produced at various times in Standard, Sports Special and De Luxe versions. The Standard version was produced until 1963, but the twin carburettor 88 Sports Special (88SS) brought out in 1961 continued until 1966, with a downdraught head being introduced from 1962. The De Luxe had a rear tinware enclosure and was in production from 1960 to 1962.

1954 Norton Dominator 1954 Norton Dominator Model 88, 500cc.
1954 Norton Dominator Norton Dominator De-Luxe Model 88, Featherbed.
1954 Norton Dominator Model 7 Norton Dominator Model 7 The Dominator model 7 is a rare model as it was introduced prior the Fetherbead framed Dominator and therefore over shadowed slightly. They also continued this model through to 1955 used as a side car machines as they could not be fitted to the latter fetherbed model.
1955 Norton Dominator 88 1955 Norton Dominator 88  
1955 Norton Dominator 88 Norton Dominator 88 500cc, 32bhp. Wideline featherbed frame, Short road holder forks, 19" Barani flanged alloys front and rear, billet alloy top yoke, racing seat, rear sets, Amel cabretta.

1955 Norton Dominator 88 Norton Dominator 88 1955
1956 Norton Dominator 99, 600cc twin 1956 Norton Dominator 99, 600cc twin
1956 Norton Dominator 99 Norton Dominator 99
1957 Norton Dominator 77
Norton Dominator 77

The Dominator 77 is one of those motorcycles that seems to have been almost forgotten, probably because it is a comparatively rare bike, and also because they are easily confused with the 500cc model 7.

It is more or less a swinging arm, single downtube ES2 chassis with a 600cc Dominator 99 engine, and it was in production at the same time as the Dommi 99, with its acclaimed Featherbed frame.
The Manx was of course busy making the Featherbed frame into a household name on circuits around Europe at the time, so it is not difficult to see why the Model 77 seems to have been forgotten!

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1957 Norton Dominator 99 1957 Norton Dominator 99
1957 Norton Dominator 99, 600cc 1957 Norton Dominator 99, 600cc” The Model 99 was added to the Norton range in 1956 in order to provide a machine with a bit more power than the existing 500cc Model 88, the extra torque quickly establishing its popularity. The larger capacity was achieved by increasing both the bore and the stroke of the engine, with which it is otherwise identical. The original magneto and dynamo electrics were replaced in 1958 by a coil, distributor and alternator set up; the Model 99 however, never did get the downdraught cylinder head.

The paint finish for the Standard version was polychromatic grey with options of blue or Post Office red.

The Wideline Featherbed frame on the first Model 99 was superseded by the Slimline in 1960, coinciding with a twin carburettor 99 Sports Special (99SS) being made available. There were some modifications to the clutch in the same year, the plate order being juggled in order to have the sprocket plate as a solid one.

The De Luxe version was produced to satisfy a largely imaginary demand for semi enclosed machines and was Norton's response to similar efforts from Triumph and Ariel. The front half of the side panels are quickly detachable to permit access to the battery and other parts, with the rear part lifting up to facilitate wheel removal. The seat also hinges up to reveal the tool tray and the oil tank filler. Produced in the heyday of the coffee bar racer, a great many De Luxes were stripped for these purposes, resulting in it being a very rare model these days in its original trim. Colour options for the De Luxe were either red / dove grey or blue / dove grey.

1958 Norton Dominator 88 Norton Dominator Model 88  
1958 Norton Dominator Model 77 - 600cc 1958 Norton Dominator Model 77 - 600cc
  • Engine - four-stroke twin ohv
  • Top Speed - 90 mph
  • Gears - 4 (foot)
  • Starting - Kick
  • 1958 Norton Dominator 99 1958 Norton Dominator 600cc.
    1958 Norton Dominator 99
    Norton Dominator 99

    Norton had introduced their first parallel twin during 1949 with the introduction of the Model 7 Dominator 500cc. This was joined in 1952 by a "featherbed" framed version typed the Model 88 which utilised the same 500cc twin. Demands for increased performance saw the introduction of 650cc twins from both Triumph and BSA nesscitating a response from Norton which was announced during 1956. The new machine utilised the 88's cycle parts housing a new engine with dimensions of 62 x 82 mm resulting in a swept volume of 596cc.

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    1959 Norton Dominator 99 1959 Norton Dominator 99 Dunstall Pistons,Dunstall Rear Sets, Dunstall Silencers, John Tickle Yoke, Borrani Alloy Rims 19's front & Rear, Drilled front discs, Front and Rear race shoes, Tomaselli Throttle, Tomaselli levers, 5 Gallon Alloy Manx Tank, Alloy Central Oil Tank, Unity Manx Seat (new), Unity Manx Alloy mudguards (new), Stoved black frame paint work excellent, Swept Backs.
    1960 Norton Dominator 88 Delux 1960 Norton Dominator 88 Delux The bike was dispatched to Cromfords Motorcycles 16th May 1960.
    1960 Norton 99 Dominator 1960 Norton 99 Dominator Slimline featherbed Dominator.
    1960 Norton Dominator 1960 Norton Dominator
    1961 Norton 600 Dominator Cafe Racer 1961 Norton 600 Dominator Cafe Racer
    1962 Norton 650 SS Dominator Norton 650 SS Dominator
    1962 Norton Dominator 88, 497cc 1962 Norton Dominator 88, 497cc
    1963 Norton Dominator 650SS Norton Dominator 650SS Sports Special.

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