1972 SCO Urania Long John Carrier, ex-Copenhagen Shipyard

1972 SCO Urania Long John Freight Bike

I searched for a long time before I eventually managed to find a Long John.

This particular one was purchased by Giles, the previous owner, about 15 years ago from a Copenhagen shipyard that had closed down. He says they had 100 of them there. I believe the sign translates as ‘machine workshop.’


Long Johns have been made in Denmark for over 70 years. SCO (Smith & Co), of Odense, Denmark, were one of the original manufacturers. In the mid-fifties, they also made Sachs-powered SCO autocycles.

Urania was one of many companies that manufactured Long Johns. After Smith & Co took over Urania in the 1960’s, SCO Long Johns used a Urania badge. Urania Cykler is still a major bicycle company in Denmark. Below you can see one of their prewar motorcycles, a 1937 model with 98cc Fichtel & Sachs engine. (The US98 was the Gents frame, while UD98 was the Ladies model)




On my Long John, the frame number S29050J is stamped on the cross bar at the seat end.

According to the Long John website, the S prefix denotes the manufacturer SCO (Smith & Co) of Odense, as above. The J suffix makes it a 1972 model.



Below you can compare the old-style Long John with one of the new models made by Velorbis.

The Long John is ideal for fitting a box and car seat in its cargo area. I like the photo below, from the Dutch website http://www.workcycles.com


Since taking these photos at Stanmer when I first bought this Long John, I’ve replaced the saddle with an excellent Dutch one. When I eventually get round to removing the Urania from my storage, I’ll take some up-to-date pictures of it.



Published on November 5, 2008 at 5:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

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