Wednesday, January 22, 2014

A visit to "Fellside Cottage", the home of Ivan Rhodes...Mr Velocette to so many people worldwide...part 1

As I mentioned in a previous post, Mrs DQ and myself were in Europe in September 2013 and I took in Velocette friends in The Netherlands and Germany.
Traveling home to Sydney I made a "dog leg" via Manchester, UK with a train trip to Derby, set up in a hotel prior to a per-arranged three day visit with Ivan Rhodes for archival and historic exchange on Velocette...

Ivan arrived on the Saturday morning in his 1925 model 20 Rolls Royce which was a surprise and we took a detour to the Rolls Royce Heritage Centre where there was an open day....
Nothing like a Rolls Royce Merlin V-12 aero engine mounted on a trailer and started for the visitors...
Then off to "Fellside Cottage".....
Visitors were expected so Ivan had a quick tour of his garage where the Roller lives...nice early Velocette, possibly 1913ish, then a KTT with a works head in a road frame setup...and a Geoff Duke special....before we moved into his workshop proper...


Note the MAC oil tank used as a test petrol tank to allow access to "the works"...
Works racing "lowboy" frame used for the 1951 IOM TT racers....
Below....The Geoff Duke Velocette with KTT engine and showing the in-frame primary chain oiler.



The extensions at the bottom of the forks, soft soldered on, were done by Eric & Harry (jnr) Hinton when they owned it in 1958 and campaigned it in Europe. Harry came 5th in the West German GP on it and according to Eric thought the older ex works engine it had in it at the time, different to the one in it now, was quicker than their Manx Nortons.
A pic from the Hinton archive of the time...


A glance at the rear garden of "Fellside Cottage", the photo "stitched" together hence the strange light effect...
Then into the workshop, almost clinically clean...





A welcome visitor was Dennis Frost, The UK LE Club Archivist and Historian. He'd driven the 3 hours up from London with the ex Bertie Goodman Mk.1 KTT in his van, then Bob Higgs rode over on his Velocette Vulcan 1000cc V-Twin special with Steib S501 sidecar attached...we were off to a pub nearby, one of Ivan's locals for lunch where John Goodall joined us on his Mk.1 KTT....DQ was ushered into the sidecar and we were off....


The outfit built by Bob who has been involved with Ivan's projects...The Roarer and Wiffling Clara....had completed over 95,000 miles with a replacement big-end at 60,000 and Bob was off to ride to Spain on it the following week.
The engine is so quiet and powerful, I asked Bob the top gear ratio... 4.4:1... a Venom is 4.9:1.!!
The folding gearlinkage to facilitate easy kick starting is very clever Higgs design...



Well that's it for this post......Ivan and the lads are joining me for lunch...!
Why not join me in a later post for more on my time in what has become to many "Hall Green".....

1 comment:

occhiolungo said...

Ed G. had sent me your photo of the KTT motor in the 1930's road chassis. Wow, it looks great! That would be just the thing for our summer rallies. :)