Fragments on forgotten makes

No. 45: The Baughan

HENRY PERCY BALIGHAN started the Baughan Motor co. in 1919 with premises in Tyburn Lane, Harrow, Middlesex, where a prototype car was produced. Production commenced in 1920 from premises in Lower Street, Stroud, Gloucester, as Mr. Baughan was a Cotswold man.

The prototype car differed from the production car in that the former was a single-seater with a single-seat dickey whereas the latter had a bench seat fur two and a single-scat dickey. All Baughan cars were powered by a Blackburne twin-cylinder, air-cooled engine driving through a 2-to-1 reduction bevel-box to a Sturniey-Archer gearbox. Initially the 8-h.p. 998-c.c. engine and a three-speed gearbox were used but in 1922 the 1,100-c.c. engine was adopted-and a reverse gear added to the gearbox.

The carburetter was a Strebler (USA) and a BTH magneto and electric lighting were used. The engine was started by reaching outside the car and pulling on a starting handle. As for the body, this was in sheet steel. The chassis was underslung and was constructed from ash, the two side-members being 7 in x 3/4 in. ash, flexing of which gave the car as much comfort as elliptic leafsprings all round. Final drive was by chain.

The steering was direct until 1922, when it became geared. The rear axle was solid and was chain driven. Both the rear axle and the front axle stubs were machined from chromium/molyhdenum alloy steel. In fact, the works manufactured all parts for the car except the engine. gearbox and some proprietary items. Nineteen twenty three saw the debut of a sports model, a two-seater with a pointed tail, and in 1925 a four-seater model was produced.

At that time cyclecars were exhibited at the Motor Cycle Show at Olympia. but Baughans, in common with other less wealthy cyclecar manufacturers, would just park a car outside the Exhibition Hall with an advertising placard on it, to be observed in all show-goers. The sporting side was by no means neglected by Mr. Baughan, who had a sports model specially prepared. This car became quite well known as the “All Red Car” and it was driven by Mr. Baughan himself in most of the MCC long-distance trials. Many local hills were also climbed; Baughan was the only car to climb Ham Mill hairpin track. Nailsworth Ladder was climbed with three passengers, but a IHampton, another Stroud make, subsequently climbed this hill with seven passengers.

But, as with other makes, the h.p. tax and competition from the Austin 7 killed the Baughan in 1925. The “All Red Car” is the only known survivor, this car now with a 1,100-c.c. JAP engine being purchased from the recently-deceased Mr. Baughan by a local enthusiast. From 1925 until 1937 the Company produced shaltdriven motorcycles, then went on to producing special-purpose machines, which they do to this day. Mr. Baughan was, up to his death, a Vice-President of the ACU. I am indebted to Mr. W. E. Heywood, present-day Managing Director of Baughan (Stroud) Ltd., for the above information.—L.M. Loveridge