Denmark’s Nimbus began producing motorcycles in 1919, starting, developing and ending production in 1954 with a single 4-cylinder design. An offshoot from vacuum cleaner manufacturer, Fisker & Nielsen, the notably smooth, low compression, air-cooled inline ‘4’ was mounted longitudinally in the frame and was akin to “riding on a a cloud”, hence the name. With 22+ horsepower, shaft drive, and a pioneering use of telescopic forks from the mid-1930s, this was all very innovative stuff. Original frames were a distinctive and elegant tubular spine design that doubled as the fuel tank, known as the ‘stovepipe’.
Production was suspended in 1928 to concentrate on the vacuum cleaner business but resumed six year later with the new Model C powered by an overhead cam engine with a strong resemblance to a car power unit design hanging in a pressed-steel frame. A 3-speed gearbox transmitted power through a shaft to the rear wheel. The design lasted 20 years until the end of the model run. Though produced in limited numbers, the robust Nimbus was a popular steed for the Danish military and post office alike.
The late-production example on offer here was restored a few years ago by a collector in the bike’s home country of Denmark. On static display for a couple of years in a private collection, the usual recommissioning will be needed to return the bike to regular road use.