Water, water ev­ery­where

Old Bike Australasia - - LETTERS TO THE EDITOR -

In the OBA 71 Cob Smith writes about Paul Dempsey’s water cooled head Tri­umph mo­tor. Well, I have done a bit of re­search into this sub­ject. About 1970 here in Aus­tralia this craze was tak­ing off in NSW, Vic­to­ria and SA. These lit­tle boats were nine foot long, made from bond wood or ma­rine ply, like a lit­tle skiff, the rider sat or knelt in the back of the boat and had tiller like con­trol to steer the boat, fit­ted with a twist grip throt­tle, engines were di­rect drive to the prop. The mo­tor sat in front of the driver. I have been told they raced up Dubbo way, NSW, Lake Ep­polock, Vic­to­ria, Goolwa and The Patawalung­a at Glenelg, SA. These places have shal­low bot­toms, so it was easy to re­trieve the boat if they sank. I have two Jawa mo­tors with the gear­boxes cut off, one fit­ted with a water cooled head, both have been in boats here. I have owned a 650 Tri­umph mo­tor with water cooled head and bar­rel, which had also been in boats here in SA. I know here of ES2 Nor­ton, BSA sin­gle, and Tiger 100 Tri­umph mo­tors used as well. The Tiger mo­tor holds an Aussie Speed record of 83mph set at Goolwa. There were 12 boats of this type used for rac­ing here, but the craze didn’t last long us­ing bike engines. As they de­stroyed them­selves, the driv­ers went to rac­ing out­board mo­tors. I have in­cluded a photo (be­low) of a boat fit­ted with a Briggs and Strat­ton mo­tor. Orig­i­nally it had 250 Jawa mo­tor fit­ted. Paul Wilkins South Aus­tralia

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