1928 Brough Superior 980cc SS100
Registration no. TO 8252
Frame no. 959 (see text)
Engine no. KTOR/A 44091
This interesting early SS100 was re-commissioned for road use in the 1990s having previously been used for sprinting and other speed events by racing motorcyclist and Brough Superior Club President, Dick Knight. It would appear that Dick purchased the Brough in the 1970s intending to use it for speed events, in which it proved to be a capable and exciting machine. The SS100's early history is unknown and a Works Record Card does not survive (or may never have been issued, not all Brough Superiors had them) therefor it is difficult to establish whether or not the engine and frame left the factory together.
The engine is a JAP KTOR (number 'KTOR/A 44091') made around June/July 1925 and the frame is a 1926/27 type (believed to be number '959' although the stamping is largely illegible) while the date of first registration is recorded in the (copy) old-style logbook as 7th July 1928 ('TO' is a Nottingham City mark). Engines would often be kept in stock at the Brough works for some time before installation, so it is not uncommon to find machines that have an engine earlier than the frame or date of first registration for the road. The works would also take in used machines and rebuild them to be sold as new, often changing the engine, so tracing Brough Superior engine and frame numbers, particularly those of early machines, can be difficult. One of the owners listed in the old logbook was a resident of Tunbridge Wells, and the Brough Superior Club records have provided a black and white photograph of the machine taken at this location in the early 1950s.
Restored at date unknown, the Brough is believed to have been used at the early Brooklands Reunion meetings and in 1971, when fitted with a specially tuned racing engine, was timed at 122.36mph at the World/National Records Meeting at Elvington. After Dick Knight's death in 1988 his son Tom returned the SS100 to road trim, refitting the KTOR engine, and used the machine for local runs before it passed to the current owner, a Brough Superior Club member, in 2003. Since then 'TO 8252' has been extensively used for touring and Brough Superior Club and VMCC events. During the Brough Superior Club German Rally, the SS100 lapped the Nürburgring circuit, proving capable of keeping up with some much more modern machinery! On another occasion a visit to Scotland provided the opportunity to ride over the 'Pass of the Cattle' at Applecross, George Brough's favourite road and close to where his ashes are scattered. In 2007 the Brough was present at the 100th Anniversary of the Brooklands Track and a couple of years later it received the 'Best Vintage Performance' award in the arduous and prestigious Beamish Trophy Trial, an event retracing the Travers Trial of the 1920s.
We are advised that this SS100 is an easy starter and a good runner, with the gearbox and clutch working well, and that it has always been reliable and is a pleasure to ride. Its performance is said to be good, enabling the machine to be used in modern traffic, although the front brake is lacking in bite, a common Brough Superior failing, so judicious use of the rear brake is necessary. The magneto has recently been rebuilt by Dave Fisher at Moathouse Magnetos and the points may need readjusting after a few more miles bedding in. (Please note: Castrol R 40 is the required lubricant for the engine).
Eligible for a wide variety of the most prestigious motorcycling events, this delightful Vintage-era SS100 is offered with the aforementioned documentation, current road fund licence, MoT to August 2012 and Swansea V5 registration document.