Matchless G3

1936 Matchless G3C Trials.

MATCHLESS G3 EARLY HISTORY
In the early 1930's Matchless was enjoying great success with its side-valve & later OHV singles. It was only natural to continue to develop this line, and in 1936 Matchless introduced two new distinct 'families' of motorcycles: The "Clubman", and the "Tourist". Available in 250, 350 & 500cc, the Clubmans were high-performance OHV vertical singles, while the Tourists were milder-tuned, and only available in 250 & 350cc side valve singles plus a 990cc V-twin. The G3 was the 350 version, or more precisely, a 347cc OHV single. And this began a long line of G3s (soon to expand incrementally to 348cc) through WWII, the go-go 50's and well into the 60's, up until Matchless production ceased.

MATCHLESS G3 STANDARD & SPECIAL
While the new 350 engine had been introduced a few months early to 'test the market'. When it arrived for model year 1936, the G3 Clubman came in two forms: the Standard Clubman & the Clubman Special. Both used a single exhaust port, vertically-oriented cylinder, hairpin valve springs, a magneto for spark & a dyno for lights (both made by Lucas). The Standard model listed for 52 pounds 10 shillings & was a good solid machine. The Special commanded a premium at 57 pounds 10 shillings, and was specially designed to appeal to the trials enthusiast. It had better mudguards (fenders), tyres (tires), front forks (upgraded for off-road use), twin tool boxes, modified center & side stands, solid-mounted handlebars (not rubber-mounted like the Standard), fully adjustable controls, & lower gearing. All G3s also had strengthened frames for 1936.

MATCHLESS G3 GETS A NEW ENGINE
1937 was a big year for Matchless, as they purchased the Sunbeam Motorcycle Company, then changed their name to Associated Motorcycles or AMC for short. They also came out with a new range of improved singles for the 1938 model year. The new engines had an entirely new cylinder head with enclosed valve gear & heavy finning, all in a single casting. The new bottom end was based on the existing engine range, but with extensive improvements, including modifications to the oil pump and feed & return lines. The gearbox was a Burman 4-speed with foot change. All Matchless Motorcycles now had 14mm spark plugs.

1951 Matchless G3L


Check out these MATCHLESS BOOKS

MATCHLESS, ONCE THE LARGEST BRITISH MOTORCYCLE MFR


HISTORY OF MATCHLESS MOTORCYCLES, KINDLE


MATCHLESS MAINTENANCE MANUAL 1939-1955 SINGLES


BOOK OF MATCHLESS 350 & 500 SINGLES 1945-1956


BOOK OF MATCHLESS 350 & 500 SINGLES 1955-1966


MOTORCYCLE APPRENTICE: MATCHLESS - IN NAME & REPUTATION


MATCHLESS & AJS RESTORATION, ROY BACON


MATCHLESS: THE COMPLETE STORY


AJS & MATCHLESS GOLD PORTFOLIO 1945-1966


AJS: THE COMPLETE STORY


SERVICE & OVERHAUL MANUAL: AJS & MATCHLESS SINGLES


SERVICE & OVERHAUL MANUAL: AJS & MATCHLESS TWINS


MORGAN 3-WHEELER: THE COMPLETE STORY






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