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John Britten Paperback – 2003

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Craig Potton Publishing (2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1877333085
  • ISBN-13: 978-1877333088
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.8 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,502,351 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Born2Late65 on November 4, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I don't write spoiler reviews. I bought this book due to the Britten's accomplishments, & what I'd heard of John. After reading this lengthy biography. I must say. He's not the hero I thought he was. The book is a bit monotonous @times. The author spent over five years researching it. It paints a picture that isn't always flattering to John Britten's memory. He's a hero in NZ for what his project was able to accomplish. He sounds like he was a neat guy. Until you learn of his using, & throwing people away. Until you learn of his stealing patents from his trusted inner circle. That's more of a spoiler than I usually write. I think when one speaks ill of the dead. One needs to qualify it. I'll say no more on it. Yeah, he managed to do some great things himself, & orchestrate more. The Britten V1000 is an amazing bike. The wrongs he did to the people he owed the most to, however. Simply outweigh the positives in my book. If you can find a reasonably priced copy (Britten family estate quashing it?). Read it, & judge for yourself.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By C. Fortier on December 16, 2013
Format: Paperback
Great book telling the true tale of the V1000 and other assorted adventures in Britten's life. Sometimes hard for me to read in that it seems almost every page is full of headaches, deception and backbiting that involves the projects. When you have dozens of cooks in the V1000 kitchen and you put across that it is your bike, your design, your dream, then it is just publicity hype. As a designer myself I find it unthinkable that the team behind the construction and development of this bike were never given the credit they deserved by Britten. It was a carefully crafted story of a guy in his garage beating the factories when truth be told it was a high dollar endeavor that in the end spent millions. This was a millionaire (inherited) rich kids toy. What hit me the hardest was when two members of the development team wanted to modify the fork blades and swing arm to improve the performance and safety of the bike, Britten said no! They went ahead anyway and I guess that was the bottom line. The John Britten legend was already established, why let others in on the truth that it was a team effort that made the bike great.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joe Marietta on September 4, 2014
Format: Paperback
This book will tell you pretty much everything you ever wanted to know about John Britten and the V1000. This is a great book for the motorcycle enthusiast and is high recommended. It's very long and took some time to get through but it was never tedious. What I really liked about this book was that it is such a comprehensive source of information on the subject that my knowledge thirst was quenched.
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By Borris on February 13, 2011
Format: Paperback
I am not a motorcycle enthusiast, I came across the story of John Britten after he died, having watched a television documentary about the making of the Briteen V1000 and it's trip to Daytona for the Battle of the Twins. It was an amazing story of building a bike in his garage that took on the world (and eventually winning quite a few times). It seemed preposterous and it caught my attention. It didn't hurt that there was some national pride involved. I was also fascinating that Britten had built an amazing house of his own done some great restoration jobs on old motorbikes and trucks at a pretty young age and had ambitions to build an ornithopter. To me this seemed to be a story about human potential.

Eventually (last week) my curiosity rose to such a pitch that I had to know more and so I got this book, it's a pretty hefty tome 450 large pages of text, I thought it would satisfy my curiosity.

I have now read it and while the story wasn't quite as simple as that documentary would have had me believe, it is still an amazing story. Britten's early life is absolutely fascinating, he had amazing talents a unique mind and people seemed drawn to him.

Britten was not a great reader or writer so we see very little of the story in his own words, and actually the book becomes more of a story of team Britten after the V1000 is created and that's good to see that John had more than a little help from his friends. He doesn't seem to have been such a great manager as he was an innovator. But he was a man that was well loved and he also had big responsibilities put upon him.

All in all a fascinating story of incredible achievement, triumphs, but also sadness and disappointment. A very human story. And then there is the Britten what can you say? it was a thing of beauty, very innovative and it went amazingly fast. This is a man who made a difference. A very human story I highly resommend it.
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