Exactly forty years ago on 19th July 1975, which was a Saturday, I visited a small vintage rally in the village of Southerndown near Bridgend. By chance I happened to see someone I knew and casually mentioned “I’ve got one like that at home” pointing to a small stationary engine, at which I was marched off to meet the show organiser who immediately encouraged me to bring it down on the following day; and so began a new era in my life.

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Shortly after my grandfather finally retired from his building business I assisted him to sort out his garden (now my garden) and help get rid of lots of building materials and tools. These had accumulated following the closure of “The Yard’, a premises on Coity Road rented from British Rail and their predecessors for decades.

One of the items we decided to retain was a semi-portable wooden saw bench with two sources of power mounted beneath the circular saw. There was a chunky electric motor alongside a small air-cooled petrol engine, the drive belt was arranged so either could be used by easily swapping motive power. Grampy decided the petrol engine could go and he’d just keep the electric one so I asked if I could have it, I have no idea why I wanted it, but into the boot of my car it went.

Over the next few weeks…

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