Frank West fell in love with the paintings of motorbike maker MH Jones. (ABC Radio Perth: Emma Wynne)
Global’s oldest-known message in a bottle discovered on WA seashore after 132 years
Frank West were an enthusiastic bike owner for many years when he discovered an advert on-line that looked as if it would are compatible the invoice for an outdated motorcycle body stripped of its markings that he may repair as a undertaking.
“I rang and the vendor mentioned, ‘It is a magnificent little body by means of a man known as Milton Jones; my dad had this body particularly constructed by means of Milton’,” Mr West mentioned.
“He mentioned, ‘I might like this body to stick in WA — in case you come down this night you’ll be able to have it’.”
Mr West purchased the body and his curiosity in realizing extra about Milton Jones, who died in 2013, used to be piqued.
Milton ‘Spike’ Jones used to be well-known amongst Perth cyclists for his personalized frames. (Provided: WA Ancient Cycle Membership)
“I appeared on-line and the one article I may in finding used to be an obituary by means of his spouse Mavis,” he mentioned.
“In that article she hinted that relatively quite a few state representatives had ridden his motorcycles and there used to be a chap known as Rod Evans who broke quite a few Australian and global data on his motorcycles.”
Discovering ‘Spike’ Jones
Mr West tracked down Mavis Jones and Rod Evans and realized what he may concerning the guy who had made his motorcycle.
“Milton Jones began within the motorcycle business concerning the mid-1940s as a tender guy,” he mentioned.
After operating in numerous motorcycle stores, in 1956 Jones opened his personal — Tremendous Sports activities Cycles in North Perth.
He later moved into operating in motor and marine engines, however endured making bicycles in his shed at house below the names MH Jones or Capo.
“He used to be widely known a few of the biking fraternity to the purpose the place at main races, if a rider rocked up on a brand new Milton Jones motorcycle, the decision went out, ‘you have got your self a Jonesy’.”
However Mr West additionally found out that Spike’s motorcycles have been disappearing and got down to in finding and file the frames that survived.
Milton Jones created many tradition frames for his consumers in his shed in Willagee. (Provided: WA Ancient Cycle Membership/Frank West)
Mr Evans, who broke six global biking data between 1989 and 1994, advised Mr West he nonetheless had a few of his Milton Jones bicycles.
“He advised me he had put one out at the verge, which used to be the motorcycle that he was once the primary Australian to go Australia on, that were given picked up and that is the reason long past,” he mentioned.
Mr West spent 12 months restoring the body he had purchased then took it to turn Mrs Jones.
“She used to be actually just right to me and useful,” he mentioned.
“And he or she mentioned, ‘You already know, I have nonetheless were given Rod’s motorcycle within the shed’.”
One of the most Jonesies made for Rod Evans, now in Frank West’s ownership. (ABC Radio Perth: Emma Wynne)
It used to be the fluorescent yellow bicycle Mr Evans rode for 24 hours to set a file at Midvale Velodrome in 1994; it had survived, dusty however intact, in Jones’s shed.
Mr West started a sign in of Spike’s motorcycles, recording no longer best the place they have been however the tale of the way and why they got here to be made.
He offers each and every proprietor he unearths a plaque and collects their main points and images of the motorcycle, hoping to encourage the landlord to stay and treasure their Jonesy.
Whilst lots of the motorcycles don’t seem to be specifically outdated, they’re distinctive and inform a tale of Western Australia’s biking historical past.
They’re additionally items of good craftsmanship.
Frank West offers each and every MH Jones motorcycle proprietor he unearths a plaque and provides it to the sign in. (ABC Radio Perth: Emma Wynne)
“Through getting a tradition motorcycle you necessarily get a motorcycle that he is made exactly for your dimensions to serve as in addition to imaginable for the surroundings that you need to race in.
“So the biking cognoscenti would really like say, OK, I want a custom-built body, so they’d cross to Spike and he would measure them up.
“In his little manufacturing facility over in Willagee he would sooner or later assemble the body; incessantly it could take numerous conferences with other people best as a result of he used to be any such magnificent storyteller.
“He used to be infamous for no longer being the quickest of body developers and he used to spray them as smartly so a few of them could have taken a few weeks, and I believe some most definitely even a couple of months.
“He would do stunning lugwork, completely no submitting marks, unbelievable consideration to element.”
Jones didn’t simply make racing motorcycles, he additionally made youngsters’s tricycles, tandem motorcycles and 3 ordinary miniatures, one in every of which is now held by means of the West Australian Museum.
A kid’s tricycle made by means of Milton Jones within the 1960s. (ABC Radio Perth: Emma Wynne)
“There have been numerous motorcycles for charity, together with three-wheeled motorcycles for other people with a couple of sclerosis, a tandem motorcycle that used to be taken to Europe the place it broke a file for a visually impaired rider,” Mr West mentioned.
Despite the fact that he has been monitoring down homeowners for a number of years, on Saturday Mr West will host the most important ever amassing of Milton Jones motorcycles and their riders.
It is an match he’s each excited and concerned about and is hoping he would possibly in finding the 50th Jonesy so as to add to the sign in.
“Those present motorcycles will someday be of historic curiosity,” he mentioned.
“I am ready to apply up with one of the cyclists and get one of the tales direct from other people’s mouths concerning the development of the motorcycles and who they raced with.”
“This actually is only a very pleasing hobby.”
Main points of the MH Jones sign in and open day can also be discovered on the WA Ancient Cycle Membership website online.