Author Topic: S.L. Bailey  (Read 13550 times)

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Offline cardan

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #100 on: 11 Dec 2018 at 21:14 »
Les's waistcoat buttons hint at why others were doing the riding in 1923.

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #101 on: 12 Dec 2018 at 02:11 »
SLB's "middle aged spread" can also be seen in this 1921 picture of him with the Douglas racing car at Brooklands!

https://www.gettyimages.com.au/detail/news-photo/douglas-racing-car-of-sl-bailey-at-the-jcc-200-mile-race-news-photo/624163318

Some details of the OHV engine can just be seen.

The frame of Lounde's bike posted above appears to be OB rather than OC given the front and rear brake shoe lever mounting lug locations? Rear wheel is obviously not OB, engine could be either OB or OC. Either way - as Leon said above -it deserved better!

well done Leon on getting to the 100th reply of this thread with the word "century" in the advert you posted!.



« Last Edit: 12 Dec 2018 at 21:47 by Hutch »

Offline Doug

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #102 on: 13 Dec 2018 at 00:37 »
All three bikes pictured at Wellington Speedway are (or started out as) OB models. The OC would have the rear axle lugs casting like the DT/SW and TT/IoM models had. OB had the simple plate lug like the RA.

-Doug

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #103 on: 18 Dec 2018 at 07:29 »
Doug, Thanks for the clarification on the OB/OC rear axle lugs. that confirms all 3 bikes to have started life as OB's

 I have just come across this interesting British Pathe film on the1923 IOM Senior TT. Great footage of RA's, the atrocious weather, Sheard finishing and  we catch a very short glimpse of Les Bailey moving towards the camera and out of shot at about 1:23 and then another with him congratulating Tom Sheard for the win.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GJQuuJc9-o


cheers

Ian

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #104 on: 18 Dec 2018 at 07:39 »

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #105 on: 08 Jan 2019 at 01:22 »
From the video of the 1923 TT win, there appears to be some poignancy in Les putting his hat across his chest rather that waving it in the air triumphantly for Tom Sheard, possibly because the day before (Thursday 14th June 1923) was the funeral of William Wilson Douglas? (reported in the Western Daily Press, Bristol 15 June 1923). He had passed away on Sunday 10th June 1923.

This, along with the death of Veasey on a Douglas during the senior TT, would definitely have put a damper on what otherwise would have been a huge celebration after all the efforts in getting the Douglas Factory Team ready for the TT (this information being presented by Clew in The Best Twin).

Unfortunately more bad news was to come. The following day, Saturday 17th June 1923, Miss Helen Douglas, daughter of John Douglas was tragically run over  by a taxi cab while crossing a road at Weston Super Mare on the first day of a holiday and died later in hospital – this was reported in the Western Daily Press on Sunday 17th June 1923.

This must have been an incredibly upsetting time for the Douglas family having a double bereavement in such a short space of time. Helen’s funeral was on Friday 22nd June 1923 with many shocked mourners in attendance including S.L. Bailey. Maybe no wonder we don’t see much of what Les was doing after this time - until he leaves for Australia - given the extremely sad occasion(s) and given he would have been busy with new models, Olympia Show (in October) and maybe also managing the  transition for Pullin to take over his role at Douglas?

-Ian
« Last Edit: 31 Jan 2019 at 06:52 by Hutch »

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #106 on: 23 Jan 2019 at 02:27 »
I have been looking into what SLB was up to during WW 1. Information has been hard to come by for that period but I have found a few items. Just before the start of the war we have Les being caught for speeding at Kingston Hill. The speed limit in that area those days was probably 30 MPH and going by newspaper reports of the day was regularly enforced in the UK, in particular when WW1 started. Les was fined what would amount to over 200 Pounds in today's money for exceeding the speed limit by 3/4 MPH! He was probably doing more than that......

"The Hut" in Weybridge appears to have been a "Tea Garden"  and a B&B. It is not far from Brooklands, so was probably where Les stayed when attending racing and testing there?

-Ian
« Last Edit: 23 Jan 2019 at 22:16 by Hutch »

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #107 on: 23 Jan 2019 at 02:41 »
In January 1915 Les was in Liverpool trying to expedite the release of a shipment of American made magnetos - maybe Splitdorf Dixie? - as the Bosch ZA2's were no longer available - for obvious reasons!. I have seen a picture (In the Classic Motor Cycle magazine) of lines and lines of 1914 Dougies at the factory awaiting magneto's so they could be completed and sent out for the war effort. I think that picture was from 1915......

-Ian

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #108 on: 23 Jan 2019 at 07:04 »
During 1915 there were industrial disputes at Douglas Bros' mainly over pay conditions and many employees walked off the job. On 3rd May 1915. SLB attended an industrial meeting of 800 men at Kingsley Hall who had downed tools and was reported in the Western Daily Press on 5th;

"...Mr BAILEY (a cycle racer) said they were just as much working for the war as the men the trenches. Personally he thought they should have formed their union without "downing tools." (Dissent.) Personally he would have preferred to have seen them form their union without ceasing work. The War Office had told them they wanted 250 machines week from Douglas's, but in order to do so they would need night shifts. . Enrolment of members in the union followed, during which audience sang " Tipperary" and other songs. ....."



 SLB also spoke at the Douglas works, doing his part for industrial relations as reported in the Western Daily Press, Bristol May 8 1915;

"THE DISPUTE AT KINGSWOOD. WILLIAM DOUGLAS & HIS MEN. Yesterday, Messrs Douglas Bros.' employees, numbering 458. who are still at work, assembled in the dining hall adjoining the works, and heard what Mr W. Douglas had to say on the present crisis. Mr W. Douglas, who spoke on the war crisis, said he did not think it was an occasion for anyone to think of money-making before duty. He added: I have been quite satisfied to supply goods to the War Office and the Government, not only the old price charged before the war, but even at reduced prices. A good many people are under the impression, that have received enhanced prices, owing to the demand, but this is not the case. To show my appreciation in practical manner of the men who have stood me, they shall receive an advance of per cent wages each week, every man and boy on the place. (Applause.) In addition to this, I am going to give you another 5 per cent., which will be added to a card given each one for the purpose every week; but this you will draw at the end of the war, or. if the war is not over by Christmas, 1915, we will make the first payment on the Christmas. (Applause.) I know it is necessary you should have some increase, on account of the, increased cost food and provisions of all kinds. Speaking to the workers subsequently, Mr S. L. Bailey said the bonus being given by Douglas did not come from the Government, it was from his own pocket. After alluding to the fact that the works had been kept open for the sake of the men in the early days of the war, and machines were accumulated without any prospect of their sale, he said had been a slice of luck that they were able to sell the machines to the Government. He added: There are quite a number of pals having a rest, who went out on Monday, and are not coming back until they are tired having a rest. Now, on Monday morning Mr Douglas walked through the works, and not a single complaint was made to him, neither did a single man speak to him. and no mention was made that the men required anything fresh. He walked down the road the works the men were leaving for their lunch-time. and not a single man complained. However, the men did not return after lunch. In future, that there will be no excuse for complaints, we are having a suggestion box. That box will be the means of direct communication between " man" and " master.' It will there for you workmen to put any complaints or suggestions, except, of course, trivial things, as we do not want the box abused. Another thing I want to mention. You may have pals relations who think the works are closed to them. Now. if you see any them will you tell them the works are open, and always will open, for the men to return either individually collectively, and they will not victimised in any way. They can return singly in a body, whichever they like. (Applause.) Not a single man will be victimised in any way. Mr Bailey added that all the workmen were to have badges shortly "

It is interesting the statement by Bailey which seems to imply that without sales to the government for the war effort Douglas might have been struggling to sell motorcycles!

-Ian
« Last Edit: 23 Jan 2019 at 22:19 by Hutch »

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #109 on: 25 Jan 2019 at 06:01 »
The strike was over fairly shortly afterwards with most men returning to work with a 10% pay rise. I am still trying to find out the significance of the badges that they were issued with.

On the 29th May 1916 the Bristol Western daily Press reported that there was a Quarterly meeting of The "Douglas" Soldiers fund and that the chair was held by Bailey, who remarked after reading the balance sheet that the results disclosed were "surprisingly satisfactory"! The fund had been started by a Mr. Hodges who was a workman at Douglas Bros. and the primary aim of the fund was to regularly forward parcels of smokes, groceries, comforts etc. to their "late" fellow workmen who were new to active service. By that date 734 parcels to 104 soldiers had been dispatched. 8 soldiers on leave and 5 patient inmates in military hospitals had received monetary assistance in lieu of parcels. Bailey suggested that as well as dispatching parcels the fund could also offer a little relief to the wives of the soldiers.

On Feb 7 1917 The Western Daily Press reported that Wounded soldiers were entertained at the dining hall at Douglas's and later that year on 2nd November it was reported that Bailey attended court in a hearing relating to a theft from the factory. interestingly it refers to his position with the company as being the manager of the munition department.

-Ian

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #110 on: 29 Jan 2019 at 07:03 »
Just jumping forward for a moment to 1920 as I have found a possible link to William John Webb that was mentioned in posts #11 and #12 on this thread by Paul and Leon in regards to SLB's B.M.C.R.C. medal for the 1912 All Comers Handicap.

The funeral of a William Webb was reported in the Bristol Western Daily Press 4 March 1920, he was the licencee of the Kingswood Hotel and was 52. This would probably make him to old to be the William Webb whom Paul refers to, but he had a son who is also named William and could possibly be the recipient of Les's medal.


"FUNERAL OF MR WEBB, KINGSWOOD.

The funeral yesterday Mr Win. Webb (52), licensee of Kingswood Hotel, who died on Saturday as the result a motor cycle accident, at Holy Trinity Church, Kingswood, was largely attended. The chief mourners were Mrs Webb (widow), Wm. Webb (son), Mrs Hunt (Redditch), and Mrs Edkins .(Studley, Warwick). There were also present:—Messrs W. Douglas, W. W. Douglas, S. L. Bailey, Gwynne Parry and Geo. Bayley; Messrs Burnham (chairman), S. Fox and P. R. Betty, Kingswood Urban District Council; Messrs P. McWhirter. S. Britton, W. Golding, E. Greenland (Bradford-on-Avon) and McCrae, representing the licensed victuallers; Messrs Arnold Matthews. S. Fox, E. R. Candy, John Mortimer, Issac Bryant and F. W. Higgins representing Kingswood Horse Show; Messrs W. Douglas, W. W. Douglas. S. L. Bailey, W. B. Cox, G. Allan, and H. Harris, the Douglas Club; Messrs T. Mackay and W. Bryant, Douglas Anglers' Club. There were also present:—Messrs W. C. Stone, W. Bryant, A. G. Davies, H. Howes, W. Joines, F. Smith, J. Frv, W. E. Phipps. T. Evans, E. Joy, E. Morris, W. H. Morris, G. Blann. A. Short, A. G. Davies, Mr and Mrs Squires (Fishponds), Mrs Stevens (Brislington), Inspector Goulder, G. Olds, Geo. Randall. C. Manning, F. Pratten. Richardson, T. Evans, W. B. Cox, T. Mr and Miss Evans (Trowbridge), E. Harris, and Baker. The Vicar Kingswood (Canon Dandy) officiated. There were wreaths from Mrs Webb, a iarge cross from deceased's smoke room friends. friends at Studley, Warwickshire, Mr and Mrs Fred Iles, Mr and Mrs Coleman, Mr and Mrs McWhirter,Mr  and Mrs Wallis, Mr and Mrs S. L. Bailey (Staple Hill), Lily and Laura Squire (Fishponds), Mr T. Evans and family (Wingfield), Ashton Gate Brewery. and Mrs Manning. Dorothy and Madge. Mr and Chapple Mrs S. R. Stevens (Brislington), Mr and Mrs Payne (Bedminster), Mr and Mrs Iles. Misses Elsie and Flo Iles, Mr and Mrs Blake,Mr and Mrs Chandler. Mr and Mrs F. Pratten. Mr and Mrs F. Shellard, Mr and Mrs R. Fudge, Mr and Mrs Brown and Doliy. The funeral arrangements were carried out Mr S. Boulton, Kingswood. "

-Ian

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #111 on: 31 Jan 2019 at 02:31 »
I found a reference to a donation made by a W.J.Webb of the Kingswood Hotel so seems to confirm one connection between Douglas, Bailey and Paul's Great Grandfather.

I have not managed to find much more on what Bailey was up to during WW1.... yet, but moving to 1919 I came across some interesting links between Bailey and Sir John Alcock - the pilot of the first Atlantic non-stop crossing by aeroplane. W.W. Douglas was also a friend and I gather they had known each other for some time. Sir John raced a Douglas car at Brooklands and was going to be presented with a new one from the factory for his success in crossing the Atlantic, but unfortunately he was killed in a plane crash in December 1919 before it could be delivered.

This article appeared in the Bristol Western Daily Press the day after Captain John Alcock and Lt. Arthur Whitten Brown's landing in Ireland.

I had read a later article on Bailey when he returned to Australia that stated he had been involved in some aviation activities but I didn't know at the time he was probably  referring to these events. It does appear he played some role in events leading up to the successful crossing.

-Ian

« Last Edit: 31 Jan 2019 at 03:42 by Hutch »

Offline Doug

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #112 on: 01 Feb 2019 at 15:40 »
Some more pictures of the early ohv engines. First is a better picture of the timing side of the 'steel' cylinder engine built for SLB by Bradshaw. Unfortunately I did not document the publication, but it looks like one of the motorcycling periodicals.



This second image looks like the machine seen early in this thread mounted by SLB and F.G. Ball; here being riden by Kickham. Not the clearest of pictures, but I don't think it has the axial fins of the steel cylinder SLB engine, but the radial fins.






-Doug




Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #113 on: 14 Feb 2019 at 04:13 »
Great pictures Doug!, the one of the Bradshaw / Bailey creation showing a lot more detail than the ones previously posted. The one of Kickham at the Liverpool MC speed trial is interesting as it looks very similar to the one shown of Alfie Alexander is on in Leon's post #33 from Jeff Clew's "The Best twin", but from the other side?

I found out that the badges that SLB refers to in post #108 were badges that identified that the wearer was doing important work for the war effort and was needed at home rather than enlisting. These were worn as some members of the public were quite vocal in letting their patriotic feelings being heard and harassing any eligible male to enlist - even if they were needed on the home front in specialist roles.

It appears that Captain Sir John Alcock had a few links with Bristol and the Douglas factory. On the day he was knighted with Brown he attended a Gymkhana organised by the Bristol Motor Cycle Club. This was one of a series of events organised by the club in connection with a visit by members of the Auto-Cycle union and reported in the Bristol Western Daily Press June 23 1919. As part of these events a tour of the Douglas works was made on the 21st and S.L.Bailey announced at the luncheon that Sir Alcock would be coming direct from his visit to the King at Windsor in order to attend their (the Bristol MCC) rally. Sir Alcock also was the guest of members of the Bristol MCC at a dinner later that evening.

In the Whiltshire Times and Trowbridge Advertiser June 21st 1919, it was reported that a congratulatory telegram was sent to Alcock after his successful flight by his good friend Mr. Fred W. Ball of Home Hill Buildings, castle St. Trowbridge, who was Mr. F.G. Balls father. It is stated that at the time that  Frederick George Ball was the head of the experimental and competition department of Douglas Motors and that he had flown with Alcock a number of times in the past.

Very soon Sir John Alcock and Sir Arthur Brown were national hero's and celebrities and very much in demand by the public and Alcocks connections with Bristol as noted in the press is limited. In September 1919 Alcock attended a sports meeting in Kingswood, Bristol to sign 12 programmes for the public (reported in Bristol Western Daily Press September 8th 1919). This sports club was part of Douglas with President Mr. W.Douglas, Vice President Messrs W.W.Douglas, J.Douglas and A.P. Douglas, chairman and treasurer Mr. S.L.Bailey and hon Secretary Mr. F.C. Dunn

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #114 on: 18 Feb 2019 at 04:41 »
What are the chances of finding a copy of the telegram from Alcock to Bailey sent from Clifden if such a thing existed? Close to zero I would have thought. This find seems almost too good to be true.....but I guess stranger things have happened.....?

from: http://www.battle-axe.org/gallery/index.htm

-Ian


Offline cardan

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #115 on: 17 Sep 2019 at 08:20 »
The caption on Doug's image above (https://www.douglasmotorcycles.net/index.php?topic=7014.msg27948#msg27948) for SLB's December 1912 73-mph ohv Douglas/Bradshaw gives a clue to the internal configuration of the the engine.

Bradshaw's horizontally-opposed racing ABC engine certainly used THREE con rods, but in the caption for Bailey's Douglas engine is describes the cylinders as "offset". This suggests the crank and rods were in the usual Douglas configuration, rather than the three-rod ABC design in which the cylinders were in line.

Cheers

Leon

Offline cardan

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #116 on: 17 Sep 2019 at 11:28 »
I've not read anything "official" about the con rod/crankshaft arrangement in Bailey's 1912 ohv record-breaker; at least nothing that says unambiguously that "the bike had three con rods".

Higher up in this thread I proposed that the bike did have three rods (as in the 500cc ABC being developed at the same time by Bradshaw at Brooklands). In the last post, I thought I had some evidence that the engine had only two rods. But I've changed my mind again! Sorry.

Have another look at Doug's image of the engine, which likely comes from "Motor Cycling" some time around Dec 1912 - Jan 1913. It clearly shows that the cylinders are "offset", but rather than offset side-to-side they are offset up-and-down. So "offset" describes the "De Saxe" arrangement of the cylinders relative to the crankshaft. The De Saxe arrangement, with the axis of the cylinder ahead of the crank shaft, was quite popular at the time (and at various times since).

In the 24 December 1912 edition of Motor Cycling (posted by Doug early in the thread) there are some details of the engine, which is described thus:

"...Specially light pistons were used, and the connecting rods were set centrally, and are not staggered as on the standard Douglas..."

If "offset" refers to up-and-down, "set centrally" suggests the cylinders were in line, viewed from above.

This can be done with two con rods (knife-and-fork on a common crank pin), but I doubt an engine like this would run free on the stand to 6,700 rpm without shaking to bits.

The other solution is to use three rods and a three-throw crank, as on Bradshaw's ABC racing engine. https://www.douglasmotorcycles.net/index.php?topic=7014.msg27401#msg27401

Re-reading the various descriptions, it's almost certain (!) that Bailey's 1912 record-breaking Douglas used a De Saxe, three-con-rod, three-throw-crank engine.

Cheers

Leon

Offline cardan

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #117 on: 21 Sep 2019 at 02:30 »

Just tidying up a few loose ends in my "ohv Douglas history" files.

Higher up in this thread ( https://www.douglasmotorcycles.net/index.php?topic=7014.msg27414#msg27414 ) there is a photo of Alfie Alexander on an early ohv Douglas with the unusual number plate AE-P2.

I asked if this was a Douglas trade plate.

In my ABC file I have a photo of a rather nice fore-and-aft ABC of unknown age (from the gearbox maybe late/post WW1?) carrying a similar plate P2-AB.

Does anyone know the meaning of these unusual registration numbers?

Thanks

Leon

Offline cardan

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #118 on: 23 Sep 2019 at 00:16 »
An extract from: http://www.metadyne.co.uk/pdf_files/CarReg.pdf

"Dealers marks burgeoned and it was not long before there were problems. Firstly they emerged in a wide variety of colours. Secondly some unforeseen usage arose. It appears that the plates consisted of the usual one or two letter mark from the issuing authority, followed  by  a  further  mark  (for  example  ‘XA’)  indicating  the  trader  or  dealership,  thence  a  serial  number  relating  to  the  dealer.  It  also  seems  that  manufacturers got  into  the  habit  of  obtaining  just  one  ‘dealers’  mark  and  using  it  for  all  their agents around the country, creating extensive problems for local police in tracing usage  of  vehicles  and  difficulty  in  pinning  down  blame  for  any  shortcoming  in  the  dealers record keeping. The 1904 Royal Commission on Motor Cars suggested that all plates should be red and that all dealerships should register locally."

Following this guide, the number AE-P2 on a Douglas (from Bristol) is "AE" (the two-letter code for the Bristol issuing authority) + "P" (referring to Douglas or a Douglas dealer) + "2" (the second plate belonging to Douglas or the dealer)?

It seems the Bristol Record Office, B Bond Warehouse, Smeaton Rd, Bristol. BS1 6XN (0117 922 4224)
has a Card index to 1963 (AE to reverse YAE). It might even include trade plates.

Perhaps a local could drop in and see?

Cheers

Leon

Offline Doug

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #119 on: 23 Sep 2019 at 00:40 »
Leon,

Does sound like they are trade plates. There is a picture in Jeff Clew's Book "The Best Twin" showing Graeme Brown's dealership storefront. Parked at the curb is a new 1928 600EW, with plate PK-31. There is also a photo of Prince Albert (King George VI) on a 3-1/2hp Sports model with number XH-81. Maybe royalty was allowed to run around on trade plates?!

-Doug

Offline cardan

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #120 on: 23 Sep 2019 at 02:42 »
Hi Doug,

I'm feeling pretty certain that AE-P2 is a trade plate, and as well as P2-AB mentioned above I have another pic of the prototype ABC Firefly 250 (c1915-16) carrying P3-AB and a c1911 BSA with AB-R6.

The weird thing about these plates that makes them very "non-British" is that they have a letter in both parts of the number, and that they were RED!

The 2-letter + 2-number plates are unusual, but are probably ordinary numbers. As today, a low number carries prestige. From the above article it seems that the format of the trade plate was changed in 1921, so I think the weird trade pates were mostly 1904-1920.

Has anyone seen a Douglas with AE-P1 or AE-P3?

Cheers

Leon

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #121 on: 23 Sep 2019 at 04:05 »
Leon and Doug,

I just had a quick look through pictures i have of Dougii and the only bike I have found so far with what looks like a "trade plate" on it is the miniature Douglas reported in these threads - AD-D2;

https://www.douglasmotorcycles.net/index.php?topic=4841.msg27658#msg27658

https://www.douglasmotorcycles.net/index.php?topic=1863.msg6756


Cheers

Ian

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #122 on: 23 Sep 2019 at 04:36 »
The crankcase used on the 1912 Douglas/Bailey/Bradshaw OHV engine appears to be derived from the standard 1912 2 3/4 HP Douglas. Note the angles between added OHV pushrods and the tappet rods !

Ian

Offline Dirt Track

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #123 on: 03 Oct 2019 at 01:46 »
G'day all.
Here are Les Bailey's bound volumes of MotorCycling, I have decided to have them all rebound in green leather.
Howard.

Offline cardan

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #124 on: 03 Oct 2019 at 09:22 »
It's a lovely collection Howard.

Have you found any SLB doodles in the margins, or perhaps scratched out eyes of evil opponents? Did he write his name on the covers?

Cheers

Leon

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #125 on: 06 Oct 2019 at 11:59 »
Leon,

The picture of the lovely lady was taken at Brooklands so now I know who she is.  I have been trying to find out for some time.  I now need to find out why the Douglas carries the number 0 as race numbers always started at one.
To add to your timeline Bailey's firs race at Brooklands was on 27 May 1912 where he was entered on a Humber.  Kickham was entered on a Douglas and by the following Saturday Bailey was not only riding a Douglas but won the race.  He continued racing at Brooklands until June 1923 although he preferred sidecar outfits from late 1921.
In view of the number of patents (around 50) he must be regarded as a significant innovator so I see no reason why he was not responsible for the ohv conversion in 1912.  He and Freddie Dixon patented the banking sidecar in 1923. 
My interest is in Granville Bradshaw whose expertise was rapid prototype production and I believe most of his designs and patents were copied from others.  In 1912 his main interest was in  the use of steel cylinders machined from solid and as an ohv  conversion would require new cylinders he would have been an obvious choice as provider.  Bradshaw was also able to get the head cast and machined.  I must doubt the view that the modified engine had a three, rather than two, throw crankshaft as there is no mention of a new crankshaft being supplied. 
 Roger

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #126 on: 06 Oct 2019 at 22:45 »
Roger,

Welcome to the forum !

I could be way off the mark and just a guess, but maybe "0" indicates the scratch man in a handicap race??

Cheers

Ian

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #127 on: 07 Oct 2019 at 00:04 »
Roger,

Maybe this might be a clue to the meaning of "0" and I was most likely off track with my comment of it indicating scratch position. Perhaps women were not permitted to "officially" enter the events at Brooklands at the time (or not even welcomed to do so by some?) so were assigned the racing number "0"? Here we have Mrs. Eric. Longden (Violet Longden) on a Douglas, reported on 15th April in "The Motorcycle" at the Brooklands re-opening event. So possibly "0" was used for entries not in the official race programme?.

Ian
« Last Edit: 07 Oct 2019 at 03:09 by Hutch »

Offline Brooklander

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #128 on: 07 Oct 2019 at 11:06 »
Ian,
Thank you, another two problems solved!
Both Bailey and Kickham were entered in the Victory Handicap but Violet Longdon is not in my list of entries until 17 July 1920.  As she clearly did race on the 5th May she must have been a late entry and this is exactly what the report says.  I love the description that her skirt slowed her down.
It seem likely that late entries were allocated the race number 0 and this explains why I failed to find the first race that Nigel Spring won in 1923 carrying the number 0.  The museum's database is largely made up from the race programmes although we don't have a complete set so I assumed that the race was in one of the missing programmes.  Interestingly the there were one other late entry as number 29 is also not listed.
Women were not allowed to race in BARC events but they were in those run by other clubs at the track.  Part of the reason was that there were no facilities for women in the Paddock until the Clubhouse was extended in 1930 but even they they were not allowed until 1935.  The match race between Gwenda Stewart and Kay Petre was banned on safety grounds but they were allowed to do timed laps.  Both exceeded 135mph which placed then in the top ten all time speeds and BARC were forced to allow them to compete with men after that.
Roger

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #129 on: 08 Oct 2019 at 08:10 »
Leon and Ian,

The key point about the trade plates you have cited are that they were white characters on red background to distinguish them from the standard plates that had a black background.  Unfortunately the orthochromatic films used at the time renders red as black so this is difficult to recognise in pictures.
I am not aware that the format for trade plates changed with the 1920 Road Traffic Act and it is more likely that the licencing authorities were allowed to use their own format.  The initial letter(s) denote the county and the second letter(s) the company.  So P 2 AB would be a Surrey registration and AB the company in this case ABC.  Each company could have as many numbers as they needed or  could afford so ABC had 1-3.  AE P 2 is a Bristol registration and Bristol had a different format with P denoting the company as they appear not to use the company initials but allocate the letters in alphabetical order.  The same is true of AB R 6 which is Worcestershire.  The AD D 2 is a Gloucester registration where the D ties in with the Douglas company in Collingwood, Gloucestershire.
The format letter-number-letter format dates to before 1921 and avoids confusion with later three letter  numbers such as ADD2 which was again a Gloucestershire registration issued in 1935.

Roger


 

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #130 on: 09 Oct 2019 at 00:18 »
Leon, Roger and Howard,

Thanks Roger for the great information regarding Women at Brooklands and the BARC and also the extra information on the trade plates. Bit by little bit some of it is falling into place. Yes it does appear that "0" was used for late entries to events that were not published in the official race program.

The comment about Violet's dress slowing her down is amusing (but maybe not so PC these days!), considering she appears to be wearing trousers rather than a dress!. I found this picture of Mrs and Mrs Longden in August 21st 1913 edition of The Motorcycle which makes comment about her prefered motorcycling riding attire at the time. As Eric Longden was from Australian then one could possibly assume that they were friends with Bailey?

After I looked at this picture, I thought about my question posed in post number 46 and replied to by Leon in post 49 of this thread, that the lady on Les bailey's bike AD5724 was his wife (well she does have a wedding band on). It occurred to me that it could actually be Violet on the bike, but I have not seen a good picture of either Catherine Bailey or Violet Longden to be able to compare them and confirm it either way.

Howard, are you able to have a quick check of Bailey's magazine from August 21st 1913 and see if the original picture in the magazine is better than this one? (...maybe Bailey marked the page ?..... :) ) Or maybe Roger has seen a better picture of Violet from the Brooklands Museums Archives??. I will see if I can find a better picture of either of them.

Cheers

Ian



« Last Edit: 09 Oct 2019 at 00:35 by Hutch »

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #131 on: 11 Oct 2019 at 10:37 »
Ian,

Political correctness has changed with the times.  In England before the Great War ladies would not have ridden in anything other than a long dress although a long split skirt may have been acceptable.  Trousers and long boots would not have been acceptable so the comment about her skirt slowing her down would have been to dispel the view that she would have raced at Brooklands in anything other than a skirt - the BARC would have banned her from racing.  The motorcycling world was more in tune with the realities of life rather than the committee of the motoring Ascot so were able to publish the picture.
I must find out when it was acceptable for ladies to give up riding sidesaddle on a horse, it was certainly after the war that riding sidesaddle was barred on a motorcycle.
A slightly better picture is attached and it could certainly be Violet - well spotted.
I can't find any pictures of the Longdens in the lists that I have of the museum's archives but I will try to check when I go in next week.
Regards,
Roger

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #132 on: 11 Oct 2019 at 15:44 »
Doug,

In post #65 you wrote "Walter Moore did leave Douglas for ABC in 1922 (not sure what month), so they might have lost their key developmental guru for assembling a Works entry."
I am interested in the history of Norton and my understanding was that Moore joined Norton in 1923 from Douglas.  ABC Motors (1920) was in severe financial difficulties by 1922 and Ronald Charteris resigned his directorship in April and the company went into administration in September.  Although ABC Motors was reformed the administrator didn't give consent to this until December 1923.
I am surprised that Moore would join a company so close to liquidation unless Douglas were in a similar situation. This would explain why they didn't enter the TT and why SLB entered himself and two other riders in the Brooklands Royal Meeting on 22 May 1922.   In 1923 Cyril Pullin was the Douglas team entrant and Rex Judd joined the team leaving O'Donovan who was the Brooklands race manager for Norton.  He had left Norton to go to Velocette in 1922 but returned in 1923 and recruited Bert Denly which is where my interested started.

Regards,
Roger

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #133 on: 11 Oct 2019 at 18:49 »
Roger,

That info was from Jew Clew's book "The Best Twin", page 68 in the 2nd edition. Sometimes in Clew's books it can be difficult to date an event as he will span a few topics without a date being mentioned and one is never really sure if he has jumped out of chronological order. but this is sandwiched in between events in 1922, hence that is when I assume it took place.

It was also mentioned that Moore was enticed away to specifically sort out the production problems ABC were experiencing, by a significant increase in salary, and some dissatisfaction at his position at Douglas. So maybe that and a less than candid description of Sopwith by Tom Sopwith during the job interview about the actual financial future lead him to think it would be a good - albeit brief! - career move.

-Doug


[edit reference to Sopwith to clarify the individual rather than the firm. 11Oct19. -Doug]
« Last Edit: 12 Oct 2019 at 01:10 by Doug »

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #134 on: 11 Oct 2019 at 22:08 »
Doug,

Thank you for the source, I have the same problem with dates in Jim Sheldon's Veteran and Vintage Motor Cycles!. 
Sopwith Aviation went into liquidation in September 1920 so it would have been ABC Motors (1920) that Moore joined in 1922.  They were part of the Hadfield Bean group and had gone into the production of the ABC car to use up some of their spare  manufacturing capacity  built up during the war.  Jim Shelton also thought that ABC Motors (1920) were producing the motorcycle and bought shares in the company which promised rich returns on the investment with guaranteed orders for 4000 cars from the parent company each with a £30 profit.
There were problems with the car production but these were mainly due to the parent company forcing the use of heavier transmission components in what was essentially a cyclecar.  Would Moore have attempted to sort out such problems?

However, I have just found a picture of an ABC motorcycle with the registration P 1 HB which opens up the possibility that the original ABC Motors sold a licence to manufacture motorcycles to Sopwith rather than an exclusive licence.  The wording of the transfer of assets to the new company include the motorcycle so Moore could well have been enticed from Douglas in early 1922 to sort out those problems.

Graham Walker left Norton in 1923 following his use of Webb forks in the TT and Moore replaced him.for the 1924 season.  Bristol based George Tucker won the sidecar TT in 1924 with Moore as passenger.  Quite what he did in between we will probably never know.

Regards,
Roger

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #135 on: 12 Oct 2019 at 01:07 »
Roger,

Slight correction to the use of "Sopwith". I see now it could be read as the firm Sopwith, when in Jeff Clew's book the reference pertains to a job interview with Tom Sopwith at the 'Bear' Hotel in Esher. I have made an edit to the previous post, highlighted to show the change.

-Doug

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #136 on: 12 Oct 2019 at 06:04 »
Roger,

Thanks for the much better image of Violet !. Yes I think it could be her on AD 5724, especially as there is probably about 6-7 years between the pictures of Violet with Eric and the Brooklands picture. Fingers crossed a better picture of either her or Kate turns up so it can be confirmed either way. Looking forward to seeing how you go in the Brooklands Museum Archives.

The question of the Bradshaw / Bailey OHV conversion was playing on my mind a little.......2 or 3 throw crank, De Saxe or not?? etc,  so I thought I would do a bit of an experimental mock up to see how they might have put their engine together using a standard crankcase from 1912. Now I don't have a 1912 crankcase so I used a 1919 one which for the purposes of these experiments should be ok. If anyone knows of significant differences between the 1912 and 1919 crankcase that would render my theories as incorrect please let me know! :-).

Most Douglas enthusiasts would, I think be familiar with the normal 2 3/4 HP setup with regards to the barrels and conrods and crank. That is, the conrod is offset to the piston centre line. See picture A below. This was done to reduce the rocking couple between the front and rear cylinders and hence reduce engine vibration. This results in the barrels to being offset from one another by 1/2" or so.

A conrod offset from the piston centre line would not be a good feature to have for a "high" performance engine due to the eccentric loading on the conrod. This would obvious lead to flexing and fatigue of the conrod and uneven wear on the big end bearing etc. (which is a common problem on 2 3/4HP engines I have seen). If you flip the pistons over on the rods (Picture B attached) you can more or less get them in line, but due to the offset of the barrels in the crankcase (required because of the web in the crank between the two big ends, you cannot assemble the engine without serious machining work. The period articles on the Bradshaw / Bailey OHV engine of 1912 appear to state that a standard crankcase was used - so how did they improve things and use conrods inline with the centre line of the pistons?
« Last Edit: 12 Oct 2019 at 07:19 by Hutch »

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #137 on: 12 Oct 2019 at 06:54 »
As Bradshaw machined the barrels from most likely round steel stock, he could have easily offset the "spigot" on the barrel that goes into the crankcase recess. To line up the front and rear barrels would require them to be offset inwards by 1/4". I found this was not quite possible, but you can get close. I think I noticed that in the literature it was stated that the barrels were not quite on the crank centre line - is this the slight offset that they were talking about? I will have to re read the previous posts carefully.

I didn't have any suitable steel laying around, but I did have some PVC. Not quite up to building an engine with (!) but ok for a demo. A bit of playing on the lathe and this mockup is the result. The conrods can be central to the pistons and  if you offset the front barrel toward the timing side and offset the rear barrel towards the drive (flywheel) side you can end up with the barrels almost in alignment with each other (not quite, about 1/4" offset, but maybe close enough?). If you wanted to be brave with the machining you could get closer, and if you were to machine the cases slightly you would be able to get them aligned. Note that this setup would not be able to be used with a standard crank but would require the 3 throw crank to be used, as previously stated by Leon.

If you offset the barrels the other way, i.e. front towards the drive side and rear towards the timing side, it appears you could possibly use the standard crank and the barrels would be offset from one another by 3/4" or more. The centre to centre distance between the rods on the standard engine looks like about 1 3/16", so not perfect alignment but possibly better than the standard setup with regards to conrod / piston alignment.

If Bradshaw used detachable heads, then the front and rear barrels could be swapped and inverted so the offsets could be outward to use a standard 2 throw crank and inwards for a 3 throw crank?? So possibly the Bradshaw / Bailey OHV engine was used in both configurations??

The Bradshaw / Bailey OHV barrel and head conversion therefore appears to be able to be used with a standard crankcase with either 3 throw cranks and special pistons and rods (i.e. 3 rods) or with the standard 2 throw crank (and possibly standard pistons and rods). I wonder if they had thought of selling it as a conversion? Also did Bailey take the engine parts with him to Australia to put on a standard 2 3/4 HP, or did they stay in the UK?

Can this eccentric barrel idea be used to get a De Saxe setup? Yes it appears to be able to do this but I need to do some playing to see if it can get the offset shown in Doug's picture of the engine.

-Ian

« Last Edit: 12 Oct 2019 at 08:33 by Hutch »

Offline Hutch

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #138 on: 12 Oct 2019 at 07:51 »
Oh I forgot to add, the bore of the grey plastic eccentric part is 60.8mm.

Also, thinking about the possible De Saxe setup on the Bradshaw / Bailey engine, I don't think my demo system would give enough offset to be worthwhile, unless maybe slipper pistons were used so that their bore could overlap the cylinder holes in the crankcase by an amount and more offset of the barrels could be gained. The "spigot" on the barrel would then not be a full circle tho', but maybe that is not a major issue on a racing engine?

-Ian
« Last Edit: 12 Oct 2019 at 08:30 by Hutch »

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Re: S.L. Bailey
« Reply #139 on: Yesterday at 16:04 »
Ian,

You have been busy in the workshop while I have been looking at the magazines.  I think that we have reached the same conclusion that the revised engine must have needed a new crankcase to provide the desaxe offset.  I don't know whether it would have been possible to use unmachined blanks to achieve it.  Colmore sponsored SLB so they would have had access to such spares but there is the alternative that the usual racing engines already used an offset.  It was not unusual on racing engines and the 2.7 litre JAP 90 degree V-twin used by Will Cook in 1909 had such a large offset that the angle between the cylinders was close to 80 degrees.
Looking at the very few pictures we have of the early ABC with the three throw crankshaft the conrods have very narrow big ends which would explain why replacement rods were required.  The reason for this is that Bradshaw used roller bearings so the big end was the same width as the rod.  This would reduce the offset and put the centre of the rod almost in line with the centre of the cylinder using the standard  crank offset.  The attachment is taken from the 1913 catalogue on your site.
I am still working on whether the engine used a three throw crank but the were popular in 1913/4 but rarely get a mention in the press.  ABC appear to have dropped the idea quite early as the one used by Emerson in its first outing  in January  1914 had a two throw crank.  Emerson was involved with the development in 1913 together with Dougal Marchant.

Regards,
Roger