The Gough Special
I noticed the photo of the Gough Special in OBA 57. This was one of many specials built by Bill Gough of Launceston. According to Sid Woodfield this bike suffered a major blow up at a later speed attempt and Bill could not afford to have the complicated crankcases remade (apparently the originals were cast in Victoria). I am not sure if the machining was done in Victoria or Bill did it himself. Two other Gough Specials survive; the M20 BSA owned by Sid Woodfield and now in the motor museum at Launceston. This bike achieved 102.8 mph and according to the details on the back of the photo at Bakers Beach on 29th January 1960, the rider Everly Dadlier was the first man in the world to attain a speed in excess of 100mph on a single cylinder side vale. Another Gough Special owned by myself is based on a 1928/29 KSS Velo motor which Bill reduced to 125cc and made a DOHC conversion. Hew then made a Featherbed style frame, made a fuel tank out of a long range tank from a WW2 aircraft. This bike was built around 1949. It showed promise but Bill normally lost interest before the bugs were ironed out and would move on to his next project. I am currently making a new flywheel assembly with a much shorter conrod and have modified the lubrication system to increase oil to the cam lobes. These mods were suggested by Bill before he died. Bill also had a potent JAP engine in a Rudge Ulster rolling chassis which performed well at Hill climbs and speed events. Bill had a talented mechanic/machinist working for him – Everly (Ev) Sadlier. No doubt Ev had a hand in building these bikes. Ev even had a letter (now lost) from the Goodmans at Velocette asking what he and Bill were doing to their bikes to get them to perform so well. Ev had Velocette MOVs, Macs and KSSs, mainly in 250cc form constantly clocking around 100 mph in speed trials. Bill and Ev were two very talented motorcyclists. Also, regarding the G45 Matchless story in the same issue, according to Ian Tilley only one G45 came to Tasmania – Bill McGregor’s – possibly bought from agent Don Gorridge. Later owners were Peter Ricketts, Ike Chenall, Ian Tilley and Jerry Allberry, who owned it until the late ‘sixties. I last saw this bike around this time at Barry Sulzberger’s house when it was for sale for $300. There were no buyers in Tasmania and apparently it then went to Queensland. I think it may have had a Triumph engine at this time.
The British television series ‘Coast’ has recently completed filming a segment in Tasmania and features a segment with the Gough M20 BSA running at Bakers Beach, just as it did in the old days. It should be shown on Australian television later in the year. Jeff Francombe Hobart, Tasmania