Hillman, Herbert&Cooper Double Hollow Fork (DHF)

Hillman, Herbert & Cooper built all kinds of ordinaries. This DHF (Double Hollow Forks) was top of the line for ten years.
It was introduced in 1878 by HHC and Singer: the patent was written on both names. Singer built a few, but HHC continued building these very light roadsters (for those days, around 1880). It also was one of the first designs that used front wheel brake. The DHF-model is beautiful, with its open steering head, but not specifically rare, since a lot of these high classed bikes have been saved in sheds and museums. The DHF was built until 1886.

In the first years they had plain bearings, but from the early 1880's the characteristic HHC-front wheel double ball bearing was used. In later years a single ball bearing is applied, as you can see on the other HHC on my site.

This bike has been restored. Saddle, spring (Humber model) and rear hub are not original, but the rest of the bike is. I guess the red lines are a fantasy pattern. Serial number is 5242 and it is estimated 1880. It still has the open upper ends of the front fork tubes. Later models had these closed. It also has the double ball bearings.
The last picture, taken in the Velorama museum, shows very well the centres steering in the nickled 'open head'. 

I made a graphic drawing of HHC / Premier serial numbers, click here.