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December 27, 2020

made in Germany

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Hercules mopeds have this H logo on the headlight brackets

Welcome to Hercules mopeds, made in Germany by Nürnberger Hercules-Werke Gmbh, D-8500 Nurnberg Deutschland. Other German-made US-model mopeds are Kreidler, Kynast (Flying Dutchman), Solo (Odyssey).

Hercules mopeds have several brand names. In Europe they are called Hercules or DKW or Zweirad Union, in the USA they are known as Sachs, and in Canada and northern USA they are branded as Eagle. There are likely other brands of Hercules mopeds worldwide.

Hercules-made mopeds all have Sachs engines, made in Germany by Fichtel + Sachs AG, D-8720 Schweinfurt Deutschland. The Sachs brand mopeds, sold in the USA, all had Sachs 504/1 or 505/1 one-speed automatic engines. The Eagle brand all had Sachs 505/1, with the Sachs logos removed to conceal the identity.  

1936 Hercules Liliput with
98cc Fichtel & Sachs engine

Hercules History: In 1886 Carl Marschtz founded a company to build bicycles, and adopted the company name Hercules in 1900. Here is a excerpt condensed from https://herculesmuseum.wordpress.com/hercules-werke-ag-nurnberg-germany/

Hercules made motorcycles since 1903, cyclemotors, mopeds, scooters, and cars. The main focus in the early 1900’s was on motorcycles with small capacity engines. They began to increase to larger machines in the thirties and even saw some competition and long distance endurance success. They made various commercial vehicles between 1905 and 1928. In 1932, when tax reductions made 3-wheeler cars profitable, they made the Hercules Coupe, powered by a 200cc ILO engine. It was only in production for one year.

Hercules and Sachs: The partnership of Hercules and Sachs began as early as 1905, when Ernst Sachs invented the Torpedo brake hub which provided a revolution in bicycle manufacture – and in bicycle sales. Hercules involvement with Sachs led to the development of a very refined moped engine just before WW2. With the declaration of war in 1939, there had been no time to develop this ‘Saxonette’ further. But DKW engineers re-designed it during the war. Their plans were impounded by the British after the war, and led to the arrival of the Cyclemaster, a rear wheel and engine unit for bicycles.

1959 Hercules Prior Sport

After the War, Hercules/Sachs were ideally set up for distribution abroad, and most Sachs engined mopeds used the Hercules name. Interestingly, Great Britain already had a well-established bicycle manufacturing company called Hercules, that was not connected to the German marque. When The British Hercules company introduced their own moped in 1954, they had to change the name from ‘Hercules Grey Wolf’ to ‘Her-cu-Motor.’

In the 1950’s and 60’s Hercules made a variety of beautiful curvy mopeds and scooters. They merged with Zweirad Union after being purchased by ZF Sachs in 1963. In 1974 Hercules became the first company to offer a Wankel-rotary-engined motorcycle for sale to the general public. Here is more http://cybermotorcycle.com/euro/brands/hercules.htm  and more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hercules_(motorcycle)




German Speed Versions: In Germany, there are three kinds of mopeds:German flag

1. Mofas are 25 km/h (16 mph), no licence required, minimum age 15, no passengers.

         “Mofa” is short for motorisertes fahrrad (motorized bicycle).

2. Mopeds are 40 km/h (26 mph),  drivers license required (any class), minimum age 16. 

3. Mokicks are kick-start mopeds with no pedals 

         This is why Sachs 504 and 505 engine cylinders say “40km” or “25km”.