Laidley Swap – a good one
Cob sets up stall at one of the biggest annual bike swap bashes. Laidley swap was conducted in fairly warm conditions with rain sometimes threatening but not arriving. There were some 250 site holders and approximately 2200 lookers come through the gate. John Robinson from Bundaberg was the winner of the lucky gate prize, the 650 Unit Triumph, a photo of which was in my last column. As well as this prize being drawn on Sunday there was the Show & Shine. The classes here were for pre 1931, 1945, 1952, 1972, 1985 and Competition. On Saturday I got to meet Graham Nedwich. Several years ago he purchased a 1959 T120 Bonneville from Robert Sullivan. It transpires that this person is the owner of Sullivan Enterprises which specializes in selling of motorcycle, Jet Ski and Snow Mobile parts and accessories. He is also the distributor of Joe Rocket motorcycle clothing and boots. Sullivan has approximately 100 restored Triumphs. Graham’s machine was originally restored by Randy Baxter of Baxter Cycles Maine USA, for a NASCAR Museum in Orlando Florida. Although this machine has covered 7,000 miles in its life it has only done 3 miles since being restored. Graham showed me a copy of the book of approximately 100 pages or thereabouts titled One Man’s Obsession which is about Sullivan’s machines. One photo was of his company’s board room in which were about two dozen or so Triumphs.
I also spoke to that larrikin Ken (Wally) Williams from Toowoomba, also a Triumph enthusiast. He recently purchased a machine that has had a number of modifications. One of these is an alloy barrel bearing both the Triumph emblem and the name Gilardoni. So what on earth is an Italian sounding name doing on a good old British Triumph barrel? Well it transpires that Vittorio Gilardoni is a manufacturer of cylinder heads and barrels based at Lake Como in Northern Italy. Their products were used extensively in Moto Guzzis. They were also used towards the end of the production of the T140 Triumphs manufactured by L.F. Harris as well as being available in kit form with a 76 mm Nikasil bore. However there were some problems with the tearing of threads by those who tended to over tighten the head studs. This was overcame later with the introduction of a coarse thread. Dennis Sang a veteran enthusiast won the pre 1935 with his 1914 600cc Side Valve L.M.C. (Lloyd Motorcycle Corporation). What caught my eye with this machine was that it has two forms of final drive. It is two speed; 1st gear is chain driven on the right and 2nd is belt driven on the left. Dennis tells me that it has a clutch for each gear. He believes that although there are a number of other L.M.C.s still in existence there is only one other of this twospeed type in the world, the other being in New Zealand. He purchased this machine partly restored in Broken Hill about 6 years ago however the earlier history of this machine is unknown. He is open to offers if any person is interested in purchasing this machine and can be contacted on 0428 622 633. The other extreme from the LMC is Donny Coveny’s Triumph Dragster. The only components that are Triumph are really the head and rocker boxes. He has undertaken a considerable amount of work to build this machine over about a 12- month period and no doubt incurred some considerable costs. The 360 degree crankshaft is made from EN30B with the normal 82mm stroke but 81mm bore creates a capacity of 850cc. The engine is fed by a 1420 Shorrock Supercharger. A 6 speed Harley Davidson gearbox is fitted to deliver the power to the 8 inch slick tyre. It has not yet been raced but will compete in the Nostalgia Category which is for machines up to 1984. So it can be seen that in attending the motorcycle swaps there can be a gain of contacts and knowledge. It is never too late to learn and experience new things about people, places and parts. See you next issue, Pete
Two-speed, two-clutch 1914 LMC caught Cob’s eye. Made in Italy. Gilardoni’s Triumph barrel.