Hetchins production falls into the following periods:
Pre-War Tottenham, from 1934
Post-War Tottenham, until 1974
Southend-On-Sea, 1974 to April 1986
Bob Jackson (Leeds), April 1986 to 1993
David Miller, 1993 to present
With the exception of the above-pictured one, Hetchins's catalogs were not dated. In dating them, we go by what models are introduced for the first time (corrolated with early sales in the ledgers), and prices. Hetchin's catalogs exist for the following years: 1935, 1937, 1938, 1940, 1946, ca. 1950, 1951, ca. 1953, ca. 1956, ca. 1960, ca. 1962, ca. 1964. Up until 1964, they remained largely unchanged in format, differing only in the models or lug patterns offered (and the prices, of course). The catalog illustrated above is from 1938; below, 1962. Four brochures were issued in the years 1985 - 1992.
1962 catalog: 21x15 cm, printed in monochrome.
The models and lug patterns offered are at first confusing. The inside cover of the 1962 catalog lists the following models: Road Racing Model No.2, Road Racing Nos. 3 and 3A, Road Racing No.4, Road Racing No.6 (replica of "Tour of Britain"), Path Model No.10, Circuit of Britain. Later pages list the Mountain King and Track Supreme models. These are distinguished by various head and seat tube angles, bottom bracket heights, and so on. All were available with vibrant or straight stays. In addition, various lug patterns were offered, as illustrated on the other pages: Vade Mecum, The Plus, Experto Crede, Nulli Secundus, Magnum Bonum, Magnum Opus, and Brilliant.
'Hetch' explained the procedure on Page 2: "Dear Fellow cyclists, we are pleased to offer you a brochure to illustrate our bicycles. On its pages you will find most of the information required concerning current frame designs, finishes, and (we hope you will not need it) repairs and renovations. For your scrutiny a separate page has been added illustrating our latest lug cut-outs and their appropriate names, and to avoid any confusion with names and frame designs, we give examples of how the names of the lug patterns are used and linked with the frame designs. A customer, for instance, requires a path design, and finds suitable our design No.10; his financial commitments limit him to, say, 16 pounds. Which means that he orders our "Experto Crede" lug pattern built to Path Model No.10. Another definition of our method could be like this: the customer decides on the Road Racing Model, design No.6, and chooses the Magnum Bonum lug pattern (the stiffener on fork blades are standard fitment), total cost quoted is 18 pounds. What could be simpler?"
Well, it could indeed have been simpler, given that there were at least eight different "types" (or fixed geometries) and at times up to twelve different lug patterns, yielding 96 possible combinations. Plus set-ups, to customer spec., with either non-standard geometries and/or customer-supplied lugwork (such as Nervex). Alf's motto was, "the customer gets what he wants."
Below are links to scans of extant catalogs and brochures from 1935 to 1992. They contain a wealth of information about models, geometries, finishes and transfers, and components typically supplied with complete bikes. They also highlight Hetchin's dedication to racing and some notable track successes.
Click here for the complete 1935 catalog.
Click here for the complete 1939-40 catalog.
Click here for the complete 1949 catalog, Latin Series introduced.
Click here for the complete 1951 catalog, MO Mk.II & Mag. Bonum introduced.
Click here for the complete 1953 catalog, Vade Mecum introduced.
Click here for the complete 1956 catalog, Experto Crede with pressed lugs introduced.
Click here for the complete 1960 catalog, Plus introduced, Brilliant comeback.
Click here for the complete 1962 catalog, Mtn. King and Track Supreme introduced; final issue from 'Hetch'.
Click here for the complete 1964 catalog, first issue from Alf, last issue from Tottenham.
Click here for the 1985 brochure, first issue from Alf, Southend.
Click here for the 1987 brochure, last issue from Alf, Southend.
Click here for the 1987 - 1992 brochures, Jackson Cycles period, Leeds.
Click here for a summary, compiled by Len Ingram.