Monday, September 29, 2014

Photos from the archive of Ross Slaughter on his father, Les Slaughter, a well known Australian racer on Velocettes....

Les Slaughter was a well know name just prewar with racing Velocettes in Australia up to his untimely death in the 1956 Ampol Trial in an MG TF.....
Les, left with Bill Mayes on the promenade of Bondi Beach in Sydney with his MGTF just prior to the start of the 1956 Ampol Trial.
Sadly the car rolled on a bridge and they ended upside down in a creek, with little water, but with no help they both drowned...a terrible ending for men intimately involved with the motor trade in Sydney.Les was a foreman at P & R Williams the NSW Velocette distributors then later involved with BMC cars...
His son, Ross, has kindly helped with copies of his father's photo archive and they are of great interest and I'll run several posts to cover them....
As well as road racing Velocette's, Les scrambled and hill climbed BSAs and was involved prewar with Penrith Speedway west of Sydney.
So lets have a look at some of Les's pics from just prewar up into late 1940's..


 Looks like Les on an OHC Norton and on the Old Vale Circuit at Bathurst which was last used in 1937...

1939, Les on a BSA at the Mt.Nebo Hill Climb near Wollongong, south of Sydney.


Three pics of Les on a 2000 mile economy run in 1940.....
 Les on his 500 Goldie at Bathurst entering conrod straight.... Senior race 1940.


The 1946 NSW Victory TT at Bathurst, Easter 1946....Les on a Mk.7 KTT Velocette.
 
 Bathurst 1947, Les,#8  Mk.7 KTT chases #94 W.Hedley, Norton....
Probably late 1940's, but unsure where...Les to the right, Alan Burt with a MAC scrambler of sorts and beside him, Jack Humphries...


 The ladies, pit crew...urge on #24 Les Slaughter and #8 D.Nichlos at the Poplars circuit, 05.03.1949.

Les on the dirt, unsure when or where....

Geoff Duke was in Australia in early 1956, during the European racing off season.....

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A look at trade advertisements in the August 1935 copy of "Motor Cycling in NSW".....this monthly magazine was sold in Australia from 1933 until 1938 when it was incorporated into "The Australian Motor Cyclist".....

Trade motorcycle advertisements in motorcycling magazines give a fascinating look at what was sold to the general motorcycle enthusiast.
The magazine I've chosen for this...for no obvious reason...is the August 1935 copy of "Motor Cycling in NSW", taken from my archive....
Little comment is needed from me other than to remind you it was an Australian magazine, but British  and American Motorcycles were supreme at the time.


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Velocette Factory....... looking through some Veloce Ltd. and other sources photographs......

As I've said in the several previous posts (1), (2) (3) I've done on Velocette publicity photographs, I often acquire more, many from different sources....
Veloce Ltd of course manufactured the Velocette motorcycle....

Lets have a brief look at the factory at York Road,Hall Green in Birmingham they occupied from around 1927 and some earlier factory pics in the 1920's.
Originally it was the old Humphrey and Dawes works in which OK Supreme motorcycles were made.
Following the success of the K engine in the 1926 IOM Junior TT, demand increased for Velocette motorcycles and a decision was made to expand and thus the purchase of the Hall Green factory occured.
Veloce Ltd remained in this site until their closure in February 1971.
Veloce Ltd were in several premises prior to Hall Green....
The following is not a complete list year wise, but a guide...
In 1905 Veloce Ltd was in Gisolt Passage, Spring Hill, Birmingham
In 1913 Veloce Ltd was in Fleet St., Birmingham 
1920 Catalogues show Veloce Ltd in Victoria Rd., Six Ways, Aston in Birmingham.
Then by 1927 Veloce Ltd was in York Rd., Hall Green, Birmingham

So I'm not always sure of their origin, but there is a good chance they came from "The MotorCycle" and "MotorCycling" , the copyright of which is now held by Morton's Motorcycle Media in the UK and to who I acknowledge credit if applicable.

Some are from Titch Allen's "The Velocette Saga", published originally over 16 editions of the monthly magazine "MotorCycle Sport"from Jan.1969 to April 1970, then as a hardback book under the same name in 1994. Others are from the Burgess & Clew book "Always in the Picture", first published 1971. Then of course Ivan Rhodes, "Velocette...Technical Excellence Exemplified", first published 1990.
Mick Walker's "Velocette, production motorcycles" publishes 2006; George Beresford's "The Story of the Velocette", published 1949 and Len Moseley's "My Velocette Days", published 1974.
Dai Gibberson came over for the 2012 National Velocette Rally at Bundanoon, NSW in October and we shared files.
Some of these are from his sources....thanks Dai.
So lets have a look at the Velocette Factory over the years...



Hall Green works.......

Around 1939, Stanley Woods opens the next test house .
Tommy Mutton in the new test house with a mk.8 KTT engine on test.

Drilling LE crankcases and above photo setting up LE conrods for machining.Welding the box section LE frame in a jig.
Must have been cold in winter in the works....
Peter Goodman, to the right, with the last LE off the production line at liquidation of Veloce Ltd.
After liquidation in Feb. 1971, the Veloce Ltd sign is now gone....

The remains of Veloce Ltd, a one proud manufacturer of Velocette motorcycles, 14.06.1972....