Royal Enfield Interceptor Mk2



Re-commissioning a fairly rare Royal Enfield



    A good friend of ours asked me if I would have a look at a Royal Enfield Interceptor MK2 belonging to an old friend of his, as he no longer rides it and ought to pass it on to someone who would. It was in a bedroom of an old but weather-tight house and hadn't been on the road since 2006, so would need checking over and any necessary parts replacing, together with the usual oils and filters.  I went round to see it and was pleasantly surprised at the generally good overall unmolested condition - the only obvious replacement parts needed were the rubber fork gaiters which were split in many places and one footrest rubber but there are bound to be other parts needed as work proceeds. Although I was busy with other jobs, the hydraulic bike bench being occupied by a long term 400/4 restoration, I promised I would get the bike to a saleable standard for him at some point.


    Eventually I did manage to clear the bench and arranged to borrow a trailer and we made the trip to pick the bike up and although a few tight corners had to be negotiated in the house, without damaging any decoration, it only took about 15 minutes to extract from its resting place.  Once outside in the open air, a better assessment could be made and sure enough, it would certainly live to fight another day! 

    We trailered it home and loaded it onto the bench and then returned the trailer to its owner. I ordered the fork gaiters and footrest rubbers from Hitchcock's and set to, removing the front wheel, mudguard and fork legs in readiness for the new gaiters.  The wheel - the same as Norton Commando, together with the twin leading shoe front brake cleaned up really well and after lubricating the pivots and cams, set it to one side until the parts arrived for reassembly.


A couple of hours with Solvol soon cleaned up the pipes and silencers to a very acceptable cosmetic standard, with only a small amount of pitting evident - this bike will not be concours but should make a very presentable and useable classic machine.  The twin Amal concentric carburettors were next off and stripped completely before a good clean in the ultrasonic bath. The fuel in the tank stank terribly so I swilled it around for a while before draining it completely. The inside of the tank looked pretty good so I just put half a gallon of fresh fuel in. The battery was absolutely bone dry and not even registering millivolts on my multimeter so I fitted one from my 400/4 as a temporary measure to see if the thing would start. Having Boyer Bransden electronic ignition would hopefully prevent too much sweating while attempting to start it. The oil was very clean so decided to leave it until I could get it hot before draining and renewing.  Turning on the ignition, closing the chokes, tickling the carbs until fuel came out, it was now time to try starting. Three prods on the kickstart and away it went, along with half of the tools and nuts and bolts on the bike bench - hell these large capacity parallel twins vibrate - good job I've still got most of my own teeth!!

    The Q/D rear wheel was easily removed once I let the air out of the tyre to give clearance between the drive flange and swinging arm and again the linings were near new, so needed little more than a good vacuum plus then the pivot and cam lightly lubricating. I cleaned around the swinging arm and chain-guard before re-fitting the rear wheel and everything now looks very presentable.



That's it! - running and cosmetically a good bit better than when I first saw it.  It's now for sale, so if you would like to be the next custodian, please email me (ianstallard 'at' hotmail 'dot' com - rearrange to make valid address) and I will put you in touch with the owner.  Transport from Orkney can easily be arranged using our excellent couriers McAdie and Reeve who are motorcyclists themselves and have transported my bikes for me in the past.


Back to Bike Stories

Back to Main Page