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Italian Motorcycles

Moto GD - GD Ghirardi Motorcycles


Le moto G.D

Al Velodromo debutta, con una brillante vittoria, una bicicletta a motore guidata da Mario Cavedagna. E' fabbricata dalla G.D (o GD), industria meccanica appena fondata in viale Aldini dall'avvocato Mario Ghirardi e dall'ingegnere Guido Dall'Oglio.

Nei primi anni di attività la G.D domina in campo agonistico con una motocicletta di 125 cc di cilindrata, che nel 1924 stabilisce il record mondiale sul chilometro lanciato. Fino al 1930 vince la maggior parte di gare a cui partecipa, tra le quali il Gran Premio di Monza e quello di Germania del 1925.

In questo periodo la G.D si accompagna a numerose altre officine bolognesi, impegnate nella fabbricazione di moto o parti di esse: dalla MM di Morini e Mazzetti, sua principale rivale nelle corse e sul mercato, alla C.M di Mario Cavedagna.

L'azienda si caratterizza per il decentramento produttivo: in officina si esegue solo la lavorazione dei telai e il montaggio dei componenti, prodotti, su disegno della G.D, da numerose aziende artigiane cittadine specializzate in lavorazioni particolari, come la Laurenti per i motori, la Labanti per i serbatoi, la Stanzani per le forcelle, ecc..

Rilevata dai cugini Enzo e Ariosto Seragnoli nel 1942, durante la guerra la G.D concentrerà la produzione sul motocarro Ursus e sulla costruzione di componenti di mitragliatrici.

Dopo il conflitto la ditta modificherà completamente la sua attività, specializzandosi nella produzione di macchine confezionatrici e imballatrici di caramelle, sigarette, medicinali, divenendo protagonista della "Packaging Valley" bolognese.

Source: Biblioteca Salaborsa Licence: CC BY 4.0


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Manufactured 1923-1938 in viale Aldini, Bologna

Fabbrica Italiana Motocicli GD was founded by Guido Dall'Oglio and the brothers Gherardo and Mario Ghirardi.

The GD machines soon became recognised for their excellent performance, taking the 125cc one kilometre world record in 1924. That year, works rider Mario Cavedagni finished second to his team mate Renato Sceti in the 1924 Italian Championship, and did well the following year at the GP des Nations. Cavedagni won most of the races he entered over the next three years. Other GD 125 Corsa riders won the German GP and the Italian Championship in '25, so the radios and sports pages were blaring the marque's name all across Europe.

In 1925, Gherardo Ghirardi and Dall'Oglio both left the company, the latter forming the Dall'Oglio marque.

In 1926 GD were building 5 different versions of their horizontal twostroke, one of which they raced at the Monza Grand Prix. Manufacture was decentralised to a degree, using a variety of suppliers to produce their components; Laurenti for engines, Labanti for tanks, and Stanzani for forks.

The following year they introduced a 4-speed 250cc vertical twin, and 1930 saw the introduction of 175cc and 350cc four-stroke models. Mario Cavedagni had left GD to form CM with Oreste Drusiani, and the 175 was supplied to CM who sold it as the GD70.

Included in the range were light two-strokes of 100cc. Production appears to have halted in 1931, and restarted in 1935, initially with motocarro and in 1938 a 250cc version of the previous 175, using a CM engine. With war looming, GD ceased motorcycle manufacture and joined forces with weapons manufacturer Beretta.

Control of the firm passed to cousins ​​Enzo and Ariosto Seragnoli in 1942 who, in addition to producing war material, built the Ursus three-wheeler.

Moto GD Models

GD Stella 1923


  • Engine: Horizontal two-stroke single. Bore 51, stroke 60 mm, capacity 122.5 cc
    Ignition: flywheel magneto
    Carburettor: Zenith
    Lubrication: petrol-oil mix
    Transmission: Direct to the wheel by belt
    Frame: simple cradle in steel tube
    Maximum speed: 45 km/h

GD Corsa Alfa R2 125cc 1926


  • Engine: two-stroke single with ball and roller bearings. Bore 51, stroke 60 mm, capacity 122.5 cc
    Ignition: Bosch magneto with manual advance
    Carburettor: Amac
    Lubrication: petrol-oil mixture
    Fuel tank: 10 litres
    Primary transmission: gears
    Gearbox: 2-speed
    Final drive: chain
    Chassis: Simple cradle, steel tubes
    Wheels: tyres 26x2
    Maximum speed: km/h 80-85

    This machine was very successful in the late 1920s with the likes of well-known racers Baschieri, Bernardoni, Rossetti, Sandri, Tenni and others frequently gaining the podium.

GD 175cc CM Turismo 1929

  • Engine: single-cylinder vertical 2-stroke. Bore 58, stroke 65, capacity 171.6 cc
    Ignition: Bosch magneto
    Carburettor: Gurtner
    Lubrication: petrol-oil mixture
    Primary transmission: gears
    Gearbox: 3-speed
    Final drive: chain
    Chassis: Open cradle, tubular steel
    Wheels: 25x3 tyres
    Maximum speed: 75-80 km/h

    This machine was introduced in response to the new regulations which came in to force the previous year.

GD 70 A Normale 1931

  • OHV vertical single-cylinder with cast iron barrel and head, single exhaust port. Bore 58.5, stroke 64.0. Capacity 171.9cc. V
    Ignition: Bosch magneto
    Carburettor: GA 16 (replace by Amac on some surviving examples)
    Dry sump, Best & Lloyd oil pump
    Primary: chain drive in steel chaincase.
    Multiple dry disk clutch
    Three-speed Burman gearbox
    Final drive: chain
    Frame: steel tube
    Front suspension: parallelogram
    Tyres: 3.25x19
    Brakes: Expansion lateral
    Maximum speed 85 km/h

Bibliography: Moto G.D. - L' Aquila a due tempi by Enrico Ruffini

Sources: motoclubstoricoconti.it, museibologna.it, wikipedia.nl, moto-collection.org, Biblioteca Salaborsa, correspondence.



Thu Mar 11 2010
mmoss62<at>gmaildot com
GD Motorcycles
GD any
I am an American looking for a GD motorcycle, any help with this would be appreciated. Any condition
Richmond, Va USA


Mon Jun 19 2006
rocom at dnet.it
Motore moto gd 175 bicilindrico
Vendo motore gd bicilindrico del 1927?
bolzano

GD 175 c1927.jpg
GD 175 c1927


Wed Oct 26 2005
prima.ribica at siol.net
moto GD
Hello, I have one of the moto GD. Where I can find spare parts for it? I am from Slovenia
Thank you, Matej

Thank you for your fast work. I have two pictures of that moto. You can see, that the reservoar and front light are not original. I dont know of other parts. The frame is a litle bit modyfied. I have the book Moto GD l'aquila a due tempi. From that book i think that it may be tipo Monza  - modelo S.S.1 on the page 77.

Thank you, Matej


January 17th 2005
There is a superb book on Moto GD by Enrico Ruffini
Moto G.D. - L' Aquila a due tempi
ISBN: 88-7911-042-X



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