The following photographs have been copied from the official album. I have selected just a few and I hope you will enjoy!


These photos were taken just after purchase etc.


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Nothing but praise for these members for the sterling work they performed.



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This page will be used to display photographs of members and their bikes etc. It is hoped to develop this page as a means of introduction for all members.

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Taken at Stanford Hall Rally 2000. Neat LE in Valiant frame. Wonderful job and a very good noise! Don't know the owner. Details please


This picture was sent by Colin West of his 1949 Mk1. It looks to be in excellent shape! He has sent me a copy of the Mk1 spares book in Adobe Acrobat format. This has been laboriously scanned by himself and I can let anybody interested a copy of the file.



I was privileged to borrow the club's album of pictures that have been sent by members from 1950 to 1990 and I have copied a few of the interesting ones. Perhaps members can identify the machines or people?!!

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If you find these interesting, let me know, and I will scan some more!



(Reproduced by kind permission of Morton's Motorcycle Media)

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Recently, a remarkable leaflet came into my hands regarding a more remarkable 14,000 mile road test on a Mk.2. L.E. in Australia, set up by a dealership in Sydney. I have copied the report, so please find time to read it. It is very well done and a precise test that proves just how gutsy, strong and reliable the machines are!

Alan Britch

From the leaflet:-


The L.E. was engineered to car standards in smooth running, silence, serviceability and road comfort — yet to retain the economy of a lightweight motorcycle.

Construction of  this  water-cooled  engine, gearbox and clutch, and transmission by  enclosed propeller shaft, follow proven car design (no chains are used). Logically, this promised longer mechanical life than the normal motorcycle with far less need for attention, particularly  "tinkering'' adjustments. Owners have proved this;  we have claimed it. But it was only right that we should do something to show prospective users that our claims are genuine.

Further, there were some logical modifications in the 1954 models which indicated that serviceability would be even further improved, particularly when used by riders who do not fully regard the Factory’s recommended limits of speeds, engine revolutions and oil change periods. A test under Australian conditions seemed the sensible and fair thing to do.


The following parts were sealed in Sydney on the 6th November 1953 by the President of the Auto Cycle Union of New South Wales:-

IGNITION UNIT    so that no adjustments or cleaning could be made to any enclosed ignition parts including the make-and-break points, coils, automatic timing device, etc.

THE ENGINE. INCLUDING CYLlNDER HEADS.    This prevented dismantling of engine, even tappet adjustments.

SPARK PLUGS — so they could not be removed.

CARBURETTOR BODY     access to the jets.

ENGlNE-TO-FRAME, CROWN WHEEL & PINION, STARTER MECHANISM and SPEEDOMETER.    These seals prevented access tot the engine crankcase, gearbox, transmission and starter mechanism.

The machine was run in for 453 miles before sealing and was completely standard when sealed. The only instructions to the riders were not to exceed 50 miles per hour other, than in short bursts and to add oil and water when necessary and check tyre pressures. A cruising speed of 45 to 50 miles per hour could be maintained.


The Initial test was concluded after a test mileage of 14,000 miles. No roadside repairs had been carried out on the machine, and no mechanical replacements.

The total replacements made were one rear tyre and tube. which had been accidentally stone-cut, one ammeter glass, accidentally broken, one stud and one nut. The machine is running as smoothly as when new: it did not miss a beat under power at any time. Oil changes were made and oil filter element cleaned, usually each 1,000 miles, and in all cases the oil was almost as clear as when first put in. Only 1/4 to ˝ pint was used for topping-up between changes. (The plain engine bearings fitted  to the 1954 models are mainly responsible for the very light oil consumption; the oil-filter in conjunction with cooler running afforded by water-cooling, for the oil retaining its clearness.)

We advertised (for two weeks that we would be dismantling the L.E. under public view on Saturday, the 3rd April). First the engine was started up and ridden up the road and back in our Showroom to show that the machine still ran as new. Mr. Ray White President of the A.C.U, then disconnected the seals of the engine, spark plugs, ignition unit and carburettor. Cylinder heads and barrels were removed and the cover plate of the Miller ignition unit. The condition of the machine was excellent. There was no detectable wear in the bearings, the only measurable wear being:—

LEFT CYLINDER    wear at lip at top of barrel, across thrust diameter .0015 of an Inch.

RIGHT CYLINDER    same portion .001". Wear on the other parts of the cylinder barrels was even less

PISTON RINGS    Left side — gaps increased by .008 of an inch. Right side — ditto, by .009 of an inch.

These additional gap clearances were, of course, hardly visible. It is obvious that unless the machine is driven harder, or lubrication neglected, it could repeat this performance on the original rings. And a somewhat higher mileage still should be gained before cylinder reboring should be necessary.

There is no indication as to when the main or big end bearings would have to be replaced, particularly as an external oil pressure gauge connected lo test the oil pressure showed the same poundage pressure at 14,000 miles as when the machine was new. Several checks during the running of the test showed no variation.

We are re-assembling the machine with all the original parts referred to, even piston rings, with the intention of it being ridden In the Redex National Motorcycle Trial. (See repost later)

The main portion of the engine and the engine-to-frame connection are still sealed, which prevents the fitting of any internals, Including bearings and gearbox, transmission parts without it being known, and we look forward to being able to make a further statement In, say, 12 months' time.

The most extraordinary feature of this performance was the lack of attention given to the L.E. It would cover say, 300 miles on one day's run and go out the next day for say, 250 miles, without anything being done to it: in fact it needed no adjustment even after it’s trip to Brisbane and return Official checks were made twice, at a little over 5,000 and 11,000 miles. No replacements were made.

Log cards were carried and each rider had signatures from either a Police Constable or J P. at each farthest away centre from Sydney on each run. The machine under test was a standard 1954 model L.E. embodying the following features:-

New lubricating system with external fabric oil filter, Plain big end main bearings, 40% larger oil sump capacity, Miller full wave generator in which no brushes are used, having nearly doubled the output of the previous generator, 3 plate clutch and larger rear break in the later 1954 models, the frame had been modified to improve accessibility.

It is of interest to owners of 1953 and earlier L.E. models that the Velocette factory has produced conversion assemblies enabling any earlier engine to be fitted with the 1954 type plain big-end bearings and the external oil-filter. In 200cc models this conversion can be made at a slightly lower price than the previous charge for renewing big-end bearings of the roller type. We feel that a very clear indication has been given that the water-cooled L.E. is capable of covering larger mileages without replacements and with much less attention than the normal motorcycle. This is a great assurance to anyone who values the fascinating, smooth, silent performance of the L.E. and the many other comforts and conveniences which it provides.


The riders comments:-

SEVAN WILLIAMS:     "My first trip on the L.E. through Walcha and the New England Tablelands was In wintery weather; conversely, the next trip several weeks later, through Dubbo and other Western districts, gave the machine a severe test in really hot weather (about 120 degrees in the shade) and grasshopper plagues. The value of water-cooling was very apparent here as the machine showed no tendency of tiring and the wide valanced front mudguard effectively shielded the radiator from the grasshoppers. The return trip I made from Brisbane was very enjoyable until I had to mess around for a couple of hours in Singleton to get petrol at 5 o'clock in the morning and then I ran into a cloudburst between Newcastle and Sydney. The water came down in sheets, but the L.E. ploughed through faithfully without a miss. My total time from Brisbane to Sydney, riding through the night, was not quite 25 hours."

BILL SMITH:     “On my first run down to Milton, I crossed the mountains between the coast and the top of Barrengarry Mountain twice, as I wanted to see how the new type rear brake stood up to the task of mountain descents. I coasted down both Barrengarry and Cambewarra mountains In neutral, using the brakes all the way, stopped and checked half-way to test that they were not getting too hot, and was pleased to find that there was no sign of fade. Later trips on it have been through arduous conditions and hit one long water splash at about  45 m.p.h., but It didn't stop the L.E. I really like this little bike and now prefer an L.E. to anything,"

BRYAN LEMON:    "Although I encountered many changes of conditions, I must say that all my trips were rather uneventful. I just started up the machine and it took me to where I wanted to go. I was a little amused on my arrival in Melbourne. They welcomed me with: "Now run the machine up to the Workshops so that we can service it" and seemed a little nonplussed when I replied that it didn't need any servicing."

JACK BAXTER:    "Being used to speedway racing and the performance of 500cc o.h.v. models, I felt a little apprehensive at a long trip to Brisbane and back on a '200',  so I started off rather early at 7.3O a.m. on the Sunday morning. It seemed quite amazing the way the miles passed by, cruising at a steady 45 to 50  and I reached Armldaie by 4 p.m. without seeming to hurry. Passed a couple of hours with my old speedway friend, Lloyd Horsburgh, then carried on to Glen Innes, where I spent the night. Next morning I wired Vie Huxley from Warwick that 1 would be seeing him in Brisbane at 2 p.m. and was pleased to arrive right on the dot, despite encountering a hold-up through a road blockage caused by a fallen tree that had blocked about 30 cars."

CEC WEATHERBY:  "On one of my trips I covered a few roads that I had run over before In reliability trials, where I had to 'hunt along' to keep up the average. I still can't quite understand why the L E. took me over these passages without feeling that I was going fast, but arriving at each place earlier than I expected. Probably it's the smoothness of the motor that makes these trips feel so easy and comfortable."


Running the same L.E. through the 2,500 mile 1954 Redex National Motorcycle Trial, following its 14,000 miles road test, clearly demonstrates its ability to withstand punishment. And it still doesn’t need any attention, it runs as sweetly as new, and has all the original mechanical parts.


Quotiny - Bevan Williams, the rider:-

"It may not be generally known that machines of all sizes were set the same speed averages. The first day we struck headwinds of gale force. The second day was 410 miles. starting with slushy mud up to 2 deep through Tumut and Jingellic. By the time I reached Adelaide I was overjoyed to find that the machine had not lost an atom of its power." "Thursday's run of  314 miles from/ Broken Hill to Hillston was as severe a test as you could imagine, for many miles I drove the machine “flat” in low gear through thick mud at about 30 m.p.h.. Not a miss nor a protest. On open stretches I cruised at 45– 50 m.p.h., occasionally touching 60. In other sections of mountainous, twisty, bumpy, dirt-gravel roads there were so many bends that it was faster to leave it in second gear, so I rode it for miles in second getting it up to  45/50 m.p.h. on most short straights."


“Despite this harsh treatment the machine kept up its peak of tune all the way; The only two sections at which I lost points was the return from Adelaide via Broken Hill, were at Ivanhoe, 13 points,  (13 mins late through taking the wrong bush track) and 4 points from Oberon to Meadow Flat."


“Tools were used only 3 times; once to drain and refill the oil, once to replace spark plugs as a precaution and once to dress up the distributor points. Not a bolt or nut came loose or was checked with a spanner."


“At the finish the oil was a clear as new, yet it had covered over 1,200 miles since the refill at Adalaide and had only been topped up twice since, the last top-up being in Oberon."


“The machine ran perfectly right through the trial. It was a relief not to have any chains to adjust or to do any greasing at all."

The true value of these performances is to indicate the extremely large mileage that the L.E. will cover under normal conditions with the very minimum of attention and upkeep cost.



74-78 Wentworth Avenue. Sydney. N.8.W.
Telephone: M 4668


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