Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


BenHawkins last won the day on January 1

BenHawkins had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

12 Good

About BenHawkins

  • Rank

Personal Information

  • Location
  • Occupation

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. We have just spent a few days in the Cotswolds which included providing transport for the wedding of some good friends. Getting the bride to the church on time adds a little stress to the drive. But after that trip went so well it was much less concerning to make it to the village social club. The cab, doors and windscreen provided ample weather protection as described in the original sales catalogue (40mph winds and rain). Back to the venue where the sun came out for the photos. The hill performance is slowly improving (and probably my driving also), but there is probably some more tuning to be done.
  2. Dimensional drawing of the T4 engine I need to find.
  3. I only found this drawing after Steve had problems with his. 1920 piston design for M type engines All the old cast iron piston drawings I have seen show the top of the piston a few thousandths smaller to allow for the thermal expansion.
  4. I think the valve caps have been removed at some point and replaced at random. Period literature suggests there should be dual ignition on a 1908 Singer but there is no magneto bracket in the kit of parts. The reliability was certainly a good reason for two ignition systems. It is possible this chassis started life as a taxi. I can see for that type of work that the trembler coil ignition would be quite useful; when waiting for your passenger you can turn both ignition systems off and stop the engine. When you are ready to go it should be possible to switch on the trembler coil; if the engine still has a charge of fuel in the cylinder it will usually start without the need to get out and crank. Switching to magneto then conserves your battery charge. Having put some light oil in each of the bores last night it was possible this afternoon to rotate the flywheel several degrees. I will not turn it any more until I have taken the sump and/or cylinder blocks off.
  5. We had a trip out to East Yorkshire today and collected this 1908 Singer. It is believed to have been converted to a lorry for war work in Aberdeenshire during WWI but we only have documentation going back to 1945 when it entered preservation. I would be interested if anyone could confirm what vehicles like this were used for. A few things were borrowed from it over the years to keep the 1907 Singer car going but most of them have been returned. All the metal work was given a coat of red lead paint and this (along with dry storage) had kept it in remarkably good condition. The mudguards will need quite a lot of welding and reshaping but I am keen to get them serviceable. Mechanically it is almost complete. The engine is an 80x90 four cylinder White and Poppe; this is missing both the ignition systems (trembler and magneto), the fan and the water pipes. The water pump is in a box and requires some repairs and one valve and tappet parts are missing. It is unsurprising that the engine (probably not run for nearly 100 years) is seized but seems to be in reasonable order. I have put a little oil in each bore; hopefully it will make getting the pistons out easier when we get that far. The clutch springs are in a box but the studs probably need replacing. The casting that carries the pedals is broken; it may be repairable. The bronze blocks are missing from the universal joint. The gear selection mechanism is loose but the gears look to be in extremely good order. Some new shackle pins will certainly be needed for the rear suspension but over all I am amazed by how good the condition is.
  6. It has been a good week for the purchasing department. There were a couple of good purchases from eBay including a job lot of Rotherham's of Coventry parts and we found quite a lot at Beaulieu autojumble. There is at least one item for each of the vehicles and quite a lot for stock. The Dennis car hub cap is just for the display case (not quite enough to start a project, yet).
  7. I don't think there was any requirement for headlamps to start with . This one left the factory with only sidelamp brackets but had a headlamp added by the original owner, I don't think my 1908 Dennis ever had any fitted. Period photos often show a single headlamp on early vehicles but most surviving vehicles have now been upgraded to two. Did the subsidy specification require two headlamps? Thanks for all the positive comments!
  8. I booked Friday afternoon off work and went for a drive to the nearest weigh bridge. It is only one and a half miles from home but gave us the opportunity to try another couple of short moderately steep hills (in the form of canal bridges). The bridges are not steep enough for gradient marker signs but we are gaining confidence to take it further afield. If does go better in warm weather; I don't know if that is just the oil being thinner in the transmission and wheel bearings. Anyway, the result was a total mass of 2580kg. 1100kg on the front axle and 1480kg on the hind axle. The petrol tank was half full and there was a supply of oil and tools. Technically it would just go on a car transporter trailer but a serious tow car would be needed.
  9. As mentioned on another thread we are preparing for future projects. There were a few hours spare this afternoon so we got the paint stripper out and started to clean the green paint off the valve caps and distributor drive. Under the green was red paint from its past life in a Liverpool salvage tender.
  10. We decided the London to Brighton run was too optimistic for 2019. Clayton hill has a 13.6% maximum gradient and we were unable to get up the 17% gradient nearest our house. There have been lots of things to concentrate on so we have been catching up on other projects and making preparations for future projects. Some progress has been made on the Dennis though, the universal joint gaiter has nicer looking clamps. I got fed up with starting handle blisters from the split wooden sleeve so have turned up a new one in brass. Generally both this and the Morris car are starting first time (and I sometimes remember to put on a glove) so I have been blister free for several months. And we have added a crude choke return spring. A couple of the previously unexplained stops turn out to have been the choke being sucked closed; once the engine stopped the flap would drop open again so it was difficult to spot the cause until the occasion where we managed to keep the engine going long enough to spot it. This weekend we have probably driven another ten miles or so, starting with a simple circuit locally with many of my visiting relatives taking short rides. We still can't manage the 17% incline from a standing start but with the improved reliability we took a drive into the town up an incline of around 11% with no trouble at all. We still have fine silt coming out in the petrol filter but there is not enough to be a problem now if we clean it out every ten miles. I imagine this service interval will increase as we use it more. The Claudel Hobson has a 1.1mm jet so is fairly immune to fine particulates but the Zenith I have rebuilt has a much smaller orifice in the slow running device and may be more susceptible to blockages so we will persist with the Claudel until the fuel is coming through a little cleaner. One of the Zenith carbs I found had the float weights retained with small nails; these had rusted solid in into the weights and it was impossible to extract them. I was not is a rush to recover these components so we immersed them in a solution of Aluminium Ammonium Sulphate for around four months; there was no damage to any of the brass and just a small amount of black sediment to remove from the holes. Thought this trick might be useful to other people with ferrous parts rusted into brass as drilling out is rarely satisfactory.
  11. Wow, it has been a year since the chassis arrived and I have only really managed to do research! I decided to have a scrub at the side of the chassis to see if I could find the chassis number in this location. No luck, but after rubbing through the top layer of greyish paint the Carter Paterson red is exposed. I like the idea of restoring this one as a commandeered lorry made into a mobile workshop. So when I saw this Austin lighting set I had to add it to the collection (I do like T head engines with separate cylinders). It needs quite a lot of work as the water jackets are split, it has the wrong carb and has been converted to coil ignition. The dynamo is just as bad; seized, missing the rotor windings, commutator and brushes. Quite a lot of research to be done on this one too. So it is a compound wound, 1200RPM 110Vdc 27A 3kW generator connected to what appears to be two cylinders from a 10HP 4 cylinder Austin built in 1914. Now I need to try to work out how the armature should be wound, I guess I should start by looking at the one in Duxford. Does anyone have any photos or information?
  12. I forgot to say that I have finished making the missing jets, covers, screws etc. for the Zenith carb. I will try to drive a few more miles with the Claudel before fitting this one.
  13. We have continued to tinker over the past month despite the cold conditions. Another job off the list was fitting the door pocket covers. We had some friends over a couple of weeks ago and they helped us fit a ceiling in the garage. This should reduce the risk of anything from the loft space falling on the vehicles and now I have added some insulation it is also possible to get it several degrees hotter than outside. This was useful when sewing up the gaiter for the rear universal joint as it had to be sewn in-situ. I need to trim the leather at the front and find some more appropriate pipe clips. We used up all of the first batch of petrol. Draining it out the tank several times and passing it through a filter collected plenty of sediment but by the time we were down to the last gallon it was quite a brown colour.
  14. I look forward to reading about the progress on this project and will have to look in this location for a number on my Thornycroft chassis.
  15. The Morris is a bit of a distraction but I am trying to maintain some progress on the Dennis. We had another day of driving it around as the weather was good and there was no salt on the roads. 311218trimmed.mp4 After running around for a while we emptied the petrol filter bowl into a jam jar. The one on the left is new clean petrol and on the right shows particulates and a little water. No stoppages today which is a definite improvement but I think I will continue to flush the contaminated fuel through a filter each week and burn all this brown fuel off before putting fresh fuel in. I have been making the covers for the door pockets. Starting with the leather off cuts from the seat cushions I used a cardboard template to mark out the leather and started to stitch the edges. After stitching the whole way around I treated them with some leather balm.
  • Create New...