Barn find alert! Its very rare that you come across a classic motorcycle that has been sat in a garage or barn for over for over 50 years, which makes this Sunbeam S8 a true motorcycle barn find. This example was last registered for road use in 1964 when road tax was £1.13!
Very low mileage for a barn find
This example has only covered 2500 miles, which is exceptionally low for an original bike. The S8 like the S7 have a ‘line-ahead’ twin cylinder engine where the cylinders follow the spine of the frame, rather than more conventional across the frame layout we see today. This also made the implementation of shaft drive simpler by also having the gearbox inline with the frame.
Fully restored examples are currently listed for around £7,000, so purchasing an original unrestored barn find example could be great for a light restoration rather than a complete rebuild back to showroom condition. I like to see some wear on original motorcycles rather than spotless show bikes, as they were used when purchased in the 1950s.
This would be a great project because everything looks to be intact and ready for someone’s imagination to take holder to bring this bike back to life. If I had some extra room I’d snap this up as my next project! If you are looking to undertake this barn find restoration and don’t know what tools could be helpful, remember to check out my workshop tools page which could help you on the right road. Also remember plenty of cups of tea and swear box for when that rusty bolt won’t come lose 🙂 Owner clubs and forums are also a great resource.