Our sister site at Southern Counties Omnibus Collection has been updated with news and pictures of the recent work on Leyland National 1178. At the same time I decided to get our crew room on 5807 operational giving us somewhere to sit in the dry and have a hot drink or hot food. This now done but still needs completing. It's one of those jobs that isn't connect to keeping the buses on the road but still needs to be done.
With all the cold wet weather, it hasn't really been the weather for working on the buses in bleak windswept yard. However, with a bit of a respite from the nastiness a few weekends ago, Claire and myself decided to give some of the girls a run up. Nuw was fired up and turned around as she has a rather leaky window over the stairs that was getting the worst of the weather. When it warms up, the mastick will be out to fix the gap in the rubber I hadn't spotted until now. As noted earlier, all of Nuw's seats have been lifted up and stored on the seat backs to prevent water damage rotting the side of the cushions. This does seem to be problem in Titans, not helped by the way the seat material covers the whole seat where as with our ECW Bristol VRs, they have leatherette trim at the side of the cushion which helps protect them somewhat from the damp. I had hoped to start working on Nuw's rear driver bulkhead but on checking our glass stocks, we don't have the part to replace the board behind the cab seat so this will have to wait.
7041 (MFN41R) was also given a run up and moved around the yard. Alas, she couldn't be driven all the way around due to it being a tad too muddy and I didn't fancy her sliding into a caravan or getting stuck! The usual leaky ECW windscreen has made the soft trim on the dash area a bit green. I removed this and the trim on the cab door to reveal the original 'MIND THE STEP' sign! It needs a clean up still but is very tidy underneath that trim. When the weather warms up I will attempt to sort out 7041's ball joint too, making her another step forward to an MOT.
As of late, we've been busy organising our store bus 5807. Due to a change of management at the former East Kent Heritage garage at Sandwich, all of our spare parts have now got to be moved - and that's quite a lot of spares! Paul Tripptree and myself removed the last few bits of exhibition units downstairs to create more room.
Just a reminder that today, our sister site has been updated with news on 3131, 7681, 5137 and 5807. Also a new YouTube video has been added, a link to which is below.
The last few weeks I've been commuting to work on the bus due to the taxi having a few issues with the steering box. Sitting on these all singing all dancing low floor Breeze buses, you can't help but think whether they'll last long enough to reach preservation. Stagecoach are already having huge problems with the chassis on their N, P and S reg Volvo Olympians which are cracking BIG time. Apparently, so I'm told, this was due to Volvo making the chassis out of recycled metal which has created imperfections which have grown into cracks. With the Enviro 200s and the earlier generation of Dennis Dart there are problems with rot in the rear of the chassis. The Scanias that are the previously mentioned Breeze buses have also had a few mechanical issues as of late too. Is there any type of modern vehicle that is built to last? The chassis cracks in the Olys is bad news to Stagecoach and also the dealers who would sell these 86 seat buses on for further use - mostly school buses. This would've lengthened their service life considerably, many finding use with small bus and coach companies up and down the country. This won't happen now with most of them destined to be used as spares and/or broken up by dealers. The low floor double deckers tend to have lower seating capacity so aren't as useful to the smaller operator (unless they do rail replacement work) - this proven by some having been withdrawn from London and getting scrapped! So I wonder if these modern wonders will have the 15-20 year life span of the older vehicles, the VRs that plod on forever and the faithful Atlanteans and Fleetlines? Somehow I doubt it.
I've finally fixed the pesky water leak on 5137 and she drove around the yard today for the first time in a year. This of course is the problem with not having inspection pits...
1178 was also whisked around the yard by Claire and is now parked in the line up with the 'deckers in the fleet as opposed to being shoved at the back. With 7980 no longer here it does allow us more space.
With all the MOT work it would be easy to forget 5807, my Camperbus 1! Although she's not on the road at the moment she still get runs around the yard and moved about. I've also been looking at maybe trying to improve the engine cooling grills on the side panels as they seem smaller that the original series 2 grills and could be contributing to her getting hot and bothered. She also doesn't have the grills on the rear advert panel which I will put in too.
Click here for the archive news pages dating back to 2008.
Owner of 5807, 5809, 5137, 7656, 7681, 7041 & 40301
All pictures and information contained within this website are the copyright of J Bamford, R Addison, P Tripptree, B Sealy & R Harrison 2008-2019. Any images or information supplied by individuals will be credited to that individual and will be copyright of that person/persons/website.
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