D.K.R. Scooters

DKR was founded in 1957 by three industrialists; Barry Day, managing director of the Willenhall Motor Radiator Company, Noah Robinson, a director of the Willenhall Motor Radiator Company, and Cyril Kieft, who built racing cars, and imported motor scooters.

The company was run from premises at Pendeford Airport. Cyril Kieft designed the machines, which were constructed at the Willenhall Motor Radiator Company's factory in Neachells Lane.

DKR’s first machine, the 'Dove', appeared in July 1957. It was powered by a Villiers 147c.c. fan-cooled engine with a "square" bore of 57mm x 58mm, and a compression ratio of 7.5:1. It developed 6.3b.h.p. at 5,000r.p.m.

The Dove was fitted with a three-speed gearbox, and a kick starter, and was painted in 2 tone blue. It sold for £162.15s.0d.

Sales were very good and more models soon followed.


An advert from Motor Cycling magazine, 25th July, 1957.

The front cover of the sales literature.

Courtesy of Brian Shaw.

The technical data page in the sales literature.

Courtesy of Brian Shaw.

Another page from the sales literature.

Courtesy of Brian Shaw.

The specification of the 147 c.c. Villiers engine.

Courtesy of Brian Shaw.


An advert from 1957.

The 'Pegasus', 'Defiant' and 'Manx' were introduced in 1958. The 'Pegasus' and 'Defiant' were identical apart from the engine.

The 'Defiant' was powered by a 197c.c. blower cooled, single-cylinder, two-stroke Villiers engine.

It had a 12 Volt Siba 'Dynastart' electric starter, which ensured first time starting. It was also fitted with a four-speed gearbox, a Villiers carburettor, and could could achieve 60m.p.h.

The petrol consumption was 90m.p.g. at 30m.p.h. and the selling price was £189.15s.5d. 

The cheaper 'Pegasus' was fitted with the newly introduced 148c.c. Villiers 31C/3SF engine. It sold for £177.11s.11d.


The 'Defiant' from the 1958 catalogue. Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.


The 'Defiant' with the side panel removed, to expose the compact engine. Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.
The 'Defiant' and 'Pegasus' had a Reynolds all-welded main frame, and sub-frame, carrying a 10 piece panel assembly. 14s.w.g. mild steel plates were added to the tubular frame to give further rigidity.

Girling type MDL lightweight suspension units were fitted, and the side panels were easily removed to provide good access to the interior.

Both wheels had 3.5" x 10" tyres. The front wheel was of the split disc type, with a 5" diameter brake. The rear wheel was fitted with a 6" diameter brake.

The front forks were designed by DKR and fitted with Girling units, and hydraulic damping.

The welded steel petrol tank had a capacity of 1.75 gallons, and each machine was supplied with a tool kit, spare wheel and chrome luggage carrier.


An advert from 1958.


The 'Defiant' handlebars and neat control panel. Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The  control panel on the 'Pegasus' and 'Defiant' had a large ignition switch, a starter button, warning light, 3 position light switch, and an 80m.p.h. Smith's speedometer in the centre.

The handlebars, headlamp rim and exhaust tail were chrome plated. A 2 tone colour finish was available for all models in the following combinations:

red, green, pink, black, blue or maroon front and side panels with an ivory centre body, or black and green.

Below the seat were the two 6 Volt high capacity Silver Exide batteries which were wired in series to give 12 Volts.


Photo courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The side panel could be easily removed to expose the 197c.c. engine.

Photo courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

Twin dampers were fitted front and rear to ensure a comfortable and stable ride.

Photo courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.


The side view of a 'Defiant'. Courtesy of Eric Loffman.


Another view of a 'Defiant'. Courtesy of Eric Loffman.

Another view of the 'Defiant' and 'Pegasus' handlebars and control panel. Courtesy of Eric Loffman
A detailed drawing of the 'Defiant'.


Courtesy of Eric Loffman.
 

The highly efficient DKR silencer with detachable end plate for easy cleaning.

 

Courtesy of Brian Shaw.

The 'Defiant' was powered by a 197c.c. Villiers Mark 9E/4SF engine. 

The engine had a 59m.m. bore and a 72m.m. stroke, and had a compression ratio of 7.5:1. It produced 8.4b.h.p. at 4,000r.p.m., and was fitted with a Villiers S25 carburettor.


The Villiers Mark 9E/4SF engine. Courtesy of Eric Loffman.

Another view of a  'Defiant' with the side panel and seat removed, showing the ease of access to the engine.

Courtesy of Eric Loffman.

Eric Loffman riding his 1959 'Defiant' at the Festival of Black Country Vehicles, at the Black Country Living Museum, in July 2009.
Another view of Eric Loffman's fine 'Defiant'. At the 2003 Black Country Vehicle Rally at the Black Country Living Museum.
A day out on a 'Defiant'.
 

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The 'Defiant' offered cheap daily travel.
 

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The 'Defiant' luggage carrier was ideal for day-to-day shopping.


Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The 'Defiant' that is in the collection at the Black Country Living Museum, Dudley.
Another view of the 'Defiant' at the Black Country Living Museum, Dudley.
'Pegasus' scooters being evaluated for police duties, in 1959.

Left to right:
WPC Blossom Timmins, Inspector P.D. Peterson, Jimmy Goodhall (DKR Sales Manager), WPS Monica Taylor, Chief Constable Norman Goodchild O.B.E.

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

A 'Defiant'.

Courtesy of Brian Shaw.

The top of the range model, the ‘Manx’, was powered by a 249c.c. Villiers twin-cylinder, two-stroke engine, had a top speed of 70m.p.h., and sold for £214.9s.7d. It did very well in competitions.

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Brian Shaw.
     


Courtesy of Brian Shaw.

1960 saw the launch of the 'Capella', powered by a 148c.c., single-cylinder, two-stroke Villiers engine, with a top speed of 53m.p.h. and a selling price of £144.9s.6d. 

It was fitted with a 3-speed gearbox, Villiers carburettor, and had a kick starter.

There was also the ' Capella Standard', fitted with a 173c.c. Villiers engine, a four-speed gearbox, and sold for £152.13s.6d.

There were also two de luxe versions with an electric starter. The 173c.c. model was priced at £166.10s.10d. and the 200c.c. model was priced at £173.13s.10d.

Sadly production ceased in 1966, due to falling sales and increased foreign competition.

 


The front cover from the 1960 catalogue. Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

An advert from the Motor Cycle magazine, 6th October, 1960.


The 'Capella' specification and price list. Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

'Capella' accessories and price list.

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The centre picture in the 1960 catalogue.

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The 'Capella' handlebars and headlamp cowl, designed for easy visibility of the controls, with limited beam adjustment.

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

When lifted, the seat exposed the filler cap, fuel tap, and sparking plug.

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The rear wheel could quickly be removed by releasing the four wheel nuts.

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.

The front suspension consisted of a pivoted fork with twin hydraulic dampers.

Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.


Another picture from the 1960 catalogue. Courtesy of the late Jim Boulton.


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