Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,404 pages of information and 233,863 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Frederick William Barnes

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Fred W. Barnes (1877-1943) of Zenith Motors and designer of the Gradua gear.

1877 Born in Didsbury, Lancs., the son of William Henry Barnes

Ed. Nottingham. Training: Nottingham University.

1901 Boarding in Hunslet, Leeds. Engineering Draughtsman.[1]

Started work with Humber

1906 Married in Surbiton to Gertrude Elizabeth Lewington

1909 March 29th. Sets first motorcycle record on the newly opened Brooklands test hill in 18.633 seconds on a 3.5 h.p. Zenette-JAP with Gardua gear.[2]

1911 Living at 28 Claremont Road, Surbiton: Frederick William Barnes (age 33 born Didsbury, Lancs.), Works Manager - Motor Cycle Manufacturers. With his wife Gertrude Barnes (age 32 born Islington), Costumier, and their daughter Freda Barnes (age 4 born Subiton). Also two assistants to his wife's business. Two servants.[3]

1922 Automobile Engineer; Director and Works Manager Zenith Motors, Ltd.; Career: Designer and Patentee of the Infinitely Variable Gear for Motor Cycles; Designed and Patented one of the first Spring Frames for Motor Cycles; Patentee of Positive and Friction Clutch combined; Patentee of Front and Rear Brake for Motor Cycles, etc.

1943 February 10th. Died. Of Rex, East Beach, Selsey.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. 1901 Census
  2. Bikes at Brooklands in the Pioneer Years. Peter Hartley. 1973. ISBN 0 900404 20 5.
  3. 1911 Census