1910 Flying Merkel Twin tops Bonhams bike sale at Barber museum

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The large crowd in the museum for the auction | Bonhams photos

A 1910 Flying Merkel Twin sold for $100,000 this past week at Bonhams’ second auction held at the Barber Motorsports Museum in Birmingham, Alabama. 

“Crowded, lively and surrounded by the multi-level grandeur of the most impressive motorcycle museum in the world, Bonhams’ sale – produced in conjunction with the Barber Vintage Festival – was an event unto itself,” the auction house reported.

“The exciting collection of Vincent motorcycles and accessories discovered last spring in a warehouse in the Midwest brought strong global interest. Bidding in person, online and on the telephones by persons on four continents saw the collection, which included Black Shadow, Egli and Comet models, plus Black Prince and Rapide projects, 100 percent sold.”

While that collection sold out, Bonhams did not report an overall sell-through rate, nor did it report a sales total for the auction. The top-10 results below were compiled from the company’s website.

1910 Flying Merkel is only bike selling for six figures

Top 10 sales, Bonhams Barber museum sale 2019

  1. 1910 Flying Merkel 884cc Twin, $100,000
  2. 1951 Vincent 998cc Black Shadow Series C, $54,050
  3. 1913 Thor 500cc Single, $51,750
  4. 1955 Vincent 998cc Black Prince project, $48,300
  5. 1955 Vincent 998cc Black Shadow Series D, $56,000
  6. 1952 Vincent 998cc Black Shadow Series C, $40,250
  7. c. 1968 Egli-Vincent 998cc Black Shadow project, $37,950
  8. 1990 Honda RC30, $34,500
  9. 1913 Indian 4hp Model E, $29,900
  10. 1913 James 4¼ hp Combination, $27,600
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(List based on reported sales on Bonhams website; prices include buyer’s fees.)

Bonhams next motorcycle auction in North America is scheduled for January 23, 2020, in Las Vegas. It’s next motorcycle auction in Europe is scheduled for October 19-20 in Staffordshire County, England.

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A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the Web and becoming the author of more than 15 books. In addition to being Editorial Director at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times, writes a weekly automotive feature for The Detroit News and is an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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