Hi all, ive just collected my Scott, its the 1937 model that was on ebay a while ago,the top bidder was a scammer,so i got it!
in the advert(which has now time expired) there was a paragraph of info supplied by either the Scott club librarian,secretary or historian.
if anyone reading this either wrote it, or knows about it anyway, could you share the info with me?
all i remember is that it is a 1937 reynolds plunger framed Squirrel,
and i think its a tourer,has the big valanced front mudguard.
the engine is a DPY.
ive been told this may only have been built for two years?
also, i would like to know a safe routine for starting it,as i dont yet have the handbook(though have many Scott history books) ie fuel,settings for levers,PUMP settings etc.
i will of course be joining the club soon,
im 17 tomorrow so i couldnt have had a better birthday,my dream of owning a Scott has come true!
anyway id be grateful for any help you could give me.
all the best,
When you join the club you will find the name of our registrar is John Underhill.
We are tremendously lucky to have such a man in our club.
He has a vast fund of knowledge about Scotts
I suggest you write him a letter, as he does not have a computer.
His contact details are
74 Greengate Lane,
Leicester. LE4 3DL
Please quote all the info you have especially the frame, engine and gearbox numbers. In some cases the works records will show what kind of lighting and carb was originally on it, so quote this info too.
I remember having my first Scott. I was 28 and a reasonably able engineer. I still had quite a bit to learn.
If you would like input, just ask. The SOC has many very knowledgeable members
Although those with internet facilities only number about 150 out of a membership of 700, this figure is growing steadily.
We will be happy to help you all we can.
Just one comment about Scotts.
If they are in good condition, assembled correctly and used sensibly, they are delightful.
Try to avoid the temptation of the rough and ready fix.
Very Kind Regards
Hi Dan – Welcome
Email me your mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send you a CD of the book “Technicalities” (See Forum Posts under Technicalities CD Free for more details) – In short it will give you more than enough technical information you need. Combine this with the very friendly personal club advice and your in business…
Congratulations Norman Nippy. I greatly admire you for jumping in at the deep end. Thats the sort of attitude that built the Empire!! Good luck with it, best wishes,
So you are 17 today.
May I, on behalf of Scott owners and lovers everywhere, wish you —
A VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY
We need more young men like you — many more!
Do consider writing the occasional piece for Yowl about how you are going on and keeping up updated here!
As for starting
If it has been standing for a while,
Remove doors and check that the bottom end is neither rusty or blue.
Turn the engine over a couple of times to see if there is any excessive movement or “Clanking,
Mop out bottom of cases (wells)
If big ends look dry, just a small squirt of oil from a can.
Check the fuel in the tank is not more than about 4/5 months old, as it goes thick,
Drain down carb float chamber to get rid of thick fuel residue if it has been standing,
Turn on petrol tap and leave for 15 secs for it to fill float chamber.
Press tickler about 3 secs to elevate fuel level in float chamber but not flood it,
Open throttle, spray in a 2 second burst of WD 40,
Give it a kick.
Providing the spark is there, it should go.
If it does not
Now you become a detective!
When a Scott is left standing for long, oil drains down into the bottom of the crankcase. If you try to start it with this thick goo inside, the rod lashes it upstairs and the engine will not be inclined to fire easily.
If the engine runs a few strokes after using WD 40 but dies, you will know that the sparks are ok, but you have a fuel supply problem.
Best of luck
Thank you very much for that Roger,i can see that the Scott scene
is full of very friendly people!
and to everyone else who has helped me out.
Thanks for that list,shall be copying it and posting it up in my shed(oh yes i have my own!)
unfortunately,i have no spark.
i believe that there must be a regulator somewhere in the circuit,but i cannot find it,so think its missing.
i could really do with a wiring diagram,or a simple circuit to just connect the mag up to the plugs.
basically, the mag is a Lucas(will check type in a bit)with the mag and points below with a kill switch facility, and the dynamo above.
should there be any wires(earths etc) coming from the mag itself?
on the dynamo there is a POS and an F next to two terminals,only the POS had a wire on it,but of course cannot presume it is correct.
if you have an idea of what could be wrong id love to know!
thanks again for all your kind words,i managed to save a few quid in the bank account to join the club,but im going to be working some serious overtime this month!
all the best,
I have written the following in simple terms.
Please accept that this is not meant to insult your intelligence, but just to be sure that I did not miss anything.
By what you describe, your electrical apparatus is made up of two distinctly separate devices, They are attached together only because they need to be rotated by the engine and if you put them together, it is only necessary to provide one input drive from the engine.
The two elements are
1) The magneto. This is a totally self-contained generator of high voltage current to make the sparks. It has, in this case, two “High tension” leads that go directly to the spark plugs. A magneto is also usually provided with a connection for a wire that can go to a “Kill” switch on the handlebars. When such a switch / button is activated, the magneto is unable to make sparks and the engine then stops.
2) The dynamo. This is a DC generator that makes the electrical current for lights, horn etc. via the battery. There will be a regulator to control the amount of electrical current produced, so that it makes what is needed, no more, no less.
In your case it would seem that you have a problem with your magneto.
This is a common problem that can have several causes.
Let us consider the simplest options first.
Take off the end cover opposite to the drive end.
If it is oily or dirty, remove the centre screw and take out the rotating centre element that contains the contact breaker with its fibre shoe.
Now clean it up and check that the contact points are clean and do not have either lumps or holes in them.
If there is a lump, try to use a stone to rub it off by hand, not on a powered grinder..
Re assemble and set points when the contacts are open to 0.012″ / 0.015″
Check that the leads to the plugs are in reasonable condition
Remove the connector pieces where the leads to the spark plugs connect to the sides of the magneto body.
There are carbon “brushes” with springs behind them that rub against a non metallic ring with two strips of brass let in to it.
Check the carbon brushes are not broken, are not swamped with oil, and are free come out of their housing if you push them in against their light springs.
See if the area they rub against inside is clean.
If not, put a rolled up bit of rag down the hole and rotate the mag by turning the back wheel in gear on its stand, or by kick starter.
If it is very dirty, make a wad of fine wet and dry paper and try to push it down to clean up the track.
Please be sure not to lose bits inside if you can help it.
Take out spark plugs
Connect leads to plugs but do not allow leads to touch engine
See if you can lay the plugs so that the body is against the engine, but not the top terminal.
Now kick the bike over and see if there is a spark
If not, it could be that the rotating part called the armature has a break in its windings of fine wire. This would be unfortunate, as these are quite expensive to have repaired.
Do not panic yet!
Sometimes, if a bike has been stored in damp premises, the damp gets into the mag windings and causes problems.
In past years, it was a custom to take the mag off the bike, if it was not going to be used during the winter. The mag was put in the airing cupboard to keep it nice and dry until it was required again.
If you try what I have suggested and still have no sparks, take off the mag and put it in the airing cupboard for a couple of weeks while you check out all the rest of the bike.
I have known the mag to revive if nicely dried out.
If you want to know more, I can lend you a book on magneto’s and dynamos.
If you wish this, email me at
and give me your address.
All I need then, is your promise that you will return it at some point, so it will be available for someone else.
Do try and be patient.
It is very difficult when you start.
So much to learn.
Sometimes due to limited funds you may have a bike that has a few problems.
And to add to these difficulties, it takes time to build up a good toolbox.
Remember, we have all been there before you.
With Patience and persistence you will succeed
ps their might be a few items of info on my website that might help.
In fact I think I will put some of these answers on it, but I have been too busy to do much with it recently.
Hi Roger,many thanks for your helpful reply,ill go through the list and see what i can find.
do you know where i can get new leads or brushes for it?as one of my brushes is missing.
once ive finished all the other small jobs on other bikes ill be able to spend more time on it and sort it out properly.(im doing a bike test and course after this week and plan to ride the scott to the annual rally in september at Stanford hall)
many thanks again,
Good luck starting the Scott. If all else fails, give me a ring on 01785 713862 and I’ll come over and have a look-see.
One clever dodge to start a Scott that has been standing some time is to use the Magic Secret.
The Magic Secret is to put your hand completely over the carb inlet and give two or three kicks to draw in a rich mixture. When stopping the engine say overnight, stall the engine out the same way.
The rich mixture will help it start the next day.
Dont tell anyone the Magic Secret.
Just to add to the excellent advice from Roger and Stan: If your dynamo has two terminals – one called POS and the other called F1 or just F, I believe that there is a strong possibility that no regulator should be anywhere in the system. The F-terminal connects to the field coils in the dynamo, and on my 1936 Squirrell a cable leads from the terminal up to the headlamp. The switch on the headlamp will direct a current from the battery through a resistance coil on the rear side of the switch to the field coils whenever the headlight is off, to avoid overcharging the battery. When lights are switched on, the field coils will receive much more current, to compensate for the electricity consumed.
On my 1938 Squirrell there is a current regulator, and no resistor in the headlamp.
I will therefore advice you to look inside the headlamp to see whether a resistor coil is mounted between terminals on the rear side of the switch.
I have a Lucas manual covering the magdyno from the period, and can copy it for you if needed.
As Roger indicates – if the armature of the magneto is damaged, it can be rewound and fitted with a new condenser. I have just had it done in the U.K. – it cost about £200.
I wish you the best of luck!
Hi guys,thanks for all your help,shall be doing more investigating.
also my names not norman,its daniel, i just use the norman nippy id name after a joke we had of names you could use that were also bikes,in this case the norman nippy moped, others could be vincent firefly,or even one of the scotts!
I am delighted to see the members helpful responses to Dan’s newly acquired Scott questions .. This is surely more like the Club should be !!! More prospective members are likely to join a club which has a helpful ,positive attitude. Thank you gentlemen !!! Peter.
Hi Norman, (I think you will be saddled with that nick name)
There’s lots of “nicknames” in the Club. “Potty” Chambers, Lofty Avis, Gov Johnson, Oil-pipe Ernie, Swarfy Lambert etc.etc.
Your dynamo should have two terminals marked “F” and “D”. These go to a Lucas MCR Type 1 regulator, with the terminals marked F.A.D.E, (which is about right for Joe Lucas products). F means “field” from the “F” connection on the dynamo. “A” is the wire up to the ameter, “D” is the “dynamo” terminal on the dynamo, ans “E” goes to earth on the frame.
It is quite true early dynamos had no regulator – just a “half charge” resisance in the headlamp. But if that is the case on your set up (which is a bit late for a 1937 machine) your dynamo will have a cut-out inside the casing. Without a cut-out, the battery will discharge though the dynamo.
Let us know if you need further advice on the dynamo or the bike in general.
Just a word of advice from a non-expert based on my experience. When I re-assembled my bike after an engine re-build by Tim Sharp, I set up the points and kicked it over – a single backfire only. Kicking would just not get it going. The first check was to remove a plug and check for a spark – a very big fat one. Put it back and a few more kicks and still no effect. I then got the idea to switch over the HT leads – it fired up first time!!!
It sounds as if you have a bit to do before you get to this stage,
All the very best,
many thanks for all your info,most apprieciated.
ive looked a bit closer and find that before i can get anywhere i need to get hold of two carbon rods and springs that go on the end of the 2 leads.
one appears way too short and the other is missing.
any ideas where i can get hold of them?
all the best,