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G506

WW1 Napier 30cwt lorry

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There is one great benefit here - basically it isn't scrapped and is stored for the future, whatever happens.

 

When I was a lad I passed by a whole pile of stuff that I knew I couldn't restore or would never get round to, and now it has all been melted down I'm sure.

 

Last ten years or so if I run across anything unique that really should NOT be melted, regardless of condition, I've managed to find time and money to grab it and get it under cover, or pass it on to someone who could - at a last resort via fora like this one.

 

 

There would have been a really good case for buying this, cleaning and conserving it, and just keeping it stored somewhere even if it is another hundred years before someone can get it all back together - well done.

 

Gordon

 

 

 

Thanks Gordon,

one of my theories was it had survived for nearly a century, it just seemed wrong after all that time for it end up being scrapped. Even more so as it turns out there seem to be very few of the 30cwt in existance. I decided that if I bought it, realised I had bitten off way too much, and couldn't do it, it didn't matter because it was safe and someone else could take it on. But when the time is right, I'm confident I can make it happen, however knowing the pace of my restorations, VERY slowly! Anyone who has seen my Chevy restoration plod on will verifiy this!

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Gordon far be it for me to throw the cat among the pidgeons but I have an image of a full page Feb 1916 Australian Advert. (Brit. image content) for a W^D Napier which has identical running gear to your new acquisition and clearly on the side is the signage "LOAD NOT TO EXCEED 3 TONS" .....trust that helps.....Regards....rod

 

Rod,

I would love to see that image, could you PM it to me?

The plot thickens!

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I think this is the same sort of Napier as Mark has. It does also have the hooks on the front of the dumb irons which suggests to me that it is an ASC wagon. As you say it does have the less common round spoked wheels which did feature on some of the military lorrys. I cant make out the hub on Marks one to make a comparisson though. Any chance of another photos Mark?

 

 

Hi Tim,

as promised, further photos showing hubs and wheels, first the front

 

 

 

then rear

 

 

 

More to follow later!

pic8.jpg

pic2.jpg

Edited by G506

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Rod,

I would love to see that image, could you PM it to me?

The plot thickens!

 

Mark, pleased to assist. jpg copy attached. London rego noted. Have just finished a book on the 'Mechanicalization' of the Australian Army 1901 to 1919 (based on British Establishments and transport) and this is one of the over 450 images in said publication which is at the printers at the moment. Regards....Rod

AustMnapierTruck.jpg

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Mark, pleased to assist. jpg copy attached. London rego noted. Have just finished a book on the 'Mechanicalization' of the Australian Army 1901 to 1919 (based on British Establishments and transport) and this is one of the over 450 images in said publication which is at the printers at the moment. Regards....Rod

 

Hi Rod,

many thanks for attaching that, I hadnt seen that image before, she is a beauty!

Slightly diffferent running gear to mine, as the pictured truck has eight spoke front wheels, against six on mine. I'm surprised to see plain round profile spokes, the larger models (from the images I've found so far) seem to have the more intricate Y shape, as also noted by Runflat.

As per Redherring, put me down for a copy of that book!

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Hi Rod,

many thanks for attaching that, I hadnt seen that image before, she is a beauty!

Slightly diffferent running gear to mine, as the pictured truck has eight spoke front wheels, against six on mine. I'm surprised to see plain round profile spokes, the larger models (from the images I've found so far) seem to have the more intricate Y shape, as also noted by Runflat.

As per Redherring, put me down for a copy of that book!

 

Yes Mark that was rather slack on my part. After counting spokes for around 5+ years in various images I should have picked up on same however I am pleased the content is still of interest. Michael Y, Tim G, Richard P, Roy L and specific key members of the Thornycroft, Talbot, Crossley etc. etc. (all recognized in the publication I would hasten to add) groups from over your way have contributed to the book and I trust it is the basis for much more on the subject by others. Still have a bit of homework or fine tuning to do re getting same to the Northern Hemisphere but in the meantime I will send you the Aussi blurb. Regards Rod

PS....almost forgot....book title is "The Benzine Lancers".

Edited by BSM

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From the photos shown in this thread, I'm trying to identify the casting marks shown on the spokes. Can you list those numbers?

I'm trying to identify wheels as used by different manufacturers. With no bearing caps it becomes an interesting exercise.

thanks

:-)Doug

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Hi Doug,

that can be done, no worries. Give me a week or two, I need to examine some details on the rear axle anyway. I will post what I find, unless you prefer PM?

Cheers

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A few more photos!

 

Front passenger side dumb iron and WD hook at top, then driver's side below.

 

If my luck holds, I may be able to reuse the front tyres, but I have to confess zero experience with 'solids' so this may be a little optimistic?

FNS hook on chassis corner.jpg

FOS hook on chassis corner.jpg

Edited by G506
Poor grammar :-(

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This Napier is quite interesting, although all is mentioned as a 30 cwt, this being in WD loading, I belive Napier produced two models during this period, the smaller being 40/45 cwt and the larger 3/3.5 ton B 74 model. An unrestored but complete B 74 exists in Cheshire it being one of two which were rescued from Beedons, Northampton in 1963/4. The other from Beedons I believe to be the smaller model, this is restored with a replica LGOC 'B' type bus body and resides in a collection in Yorkshire. I also believe that half the front end of one of the smaller models exists in the Science Museum collection at Wroughton, this I think was given to the SM in about 1923 when Napier moved from Acton Vale, London. The Automobile Engineer has at least two articles on the B74 in Vol. 5 1915 and Vol. 9, 1919. After WW 1 many ended their days as charabancs including this one in North Devon, still complete with WD towing hooks and radiator brush guard.

 

 

Richard Peskett.

Napier.jpg

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Hi Richard,

thank you for posting that photo, not one I had seen before. Very useful as it is very clear, and shows a lot of detail of the truck's fittings. Interesting you mention there were only two models, as I have seen a factory shot of a chassis/cab awaiting delivery to the body builders and it looks exactly the same as mine, and descibed as a 2 tonner.

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Hi Richard,

thank you for posting that photo, not one I had seen before. Very useful as it is very clear, and shows a lot of detail of the truck's fittings. Interesting you mention there were only two models, as I have seen a factory shot of a chassis/cab awaiting delivery to the body builders and it looks exactly the same as mine, and descibed as a 2 tonner.

 

Mark, I suspect that what Napier refer to as a 2-Tonner, the WD refer to as a 30-cwt.

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Hi Roy,

that makes a lot of sense actually; two tons on a well made metalled road is a lot different to two tons across a muddy shell-holed track!

Edited by G506

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A couple of further points. Several of these smaller versions found their way to the Isle of Man in 1919/20 as war surplus and were bodied as 18/22 seat charabancs, Isle of Man taxation records show at least one as a 'Napier 50cwt'. They were probably well suited to the smaller I o M roads. I think we have had this discussion before regarding weights, the WD in general classified vehicles in 2 categorys viz. 1 ton 10cwt. or 3 ton irrespective of what manufacturers claimed.These categorys were for the rerspective load weight over 'rough terrain'. I now think the smaller Napiers were classified as 45 cwt by the manufacturer. Once vehicles were begining to be sold as war surplus most '3 toners' immediately became 4 ton etc. and of course in many cases were put to use carrying considerably more !.

Richard Peskett.

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A couple of further points. Several of these smaller versions found their way to the Isle of Man in 1919/20 as war surplus and were bodied as 18/22 seat charabancs, Isle of Man taxation records show at least one as a 'Napier 50cwt'. They were probably well suited to the smaller I o M roads. I think we have had this discussion before regarding weights, the WD in general classified vehicles in 2 categorys viz. 1 ton 10cwt. or 3 ton irrespective of what manufacturers claimed.These categorys were for the rerspective load weight over 'rough terrain'. I now think the smaller Napiers were classified as 45 cwt by the manufacturer. Once vehicles were begining to be sold as war surplus most '3 toners' immediately became 4 ton etc. and of course in many cases were put to use carrying considerably more !.

Richard Peskett.

 

Hello Richard,

I'm still in the British/Canadian WW2 vehicle mindset of weight categories 8cwt, 15cwt, 30cwt, 60cwt, and US counterparts being 1/4 ton, 1/2 ton, etc, etc, which I need to get out of for this project. What you say makes sense, in WW1 there were less weight categories, but each category was much wider. This would explain lorries identical to mine being described as both 30 and 40cwt, but Im sure Ive seen photos of Napiers with the more intricate Y shaped cast wheels described as 45 cwt; but then it could be the photo caption was wrong or as you say it was purely a manufacturers classification.

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A further quote from The Supply of Munitions pt.IV Mechanical Transport 1914-18 : Napier both '30 cwt' and ' 3 ton' are listed but in both cases marked as 'These makes were allotted for Home Service only' and ' These makes were acquired to a limited extent only'.

Richard Peskett.

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Hi Richard,

from what you and Roy have mentioned, it certainly sounds as though predominantly the 30/40 cwt were used on the home front. Could this explain why many seem to have made it through the war to be converted to charabancs, considering so few were made (400)?

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Yes Mark that was rather slack on my part. After counting spokes for around 5+ years in various images I should have picked up on same however I am pleased the content is still of interest. Michael Y, Tim G, Richard P, Roy L and specific key members of the Thornycroft, Talbot, Crossley etc. etc. (all recognized in the publication I would hasten to add) groups from over your way have contributed to the book and I trust it is the basis for much more on the subject by others. Still have a bit of homework or fine tuning to do re getting same to the Northern Hemisphere but in the meantime I will send you the Aussi blurb. Regards Rod

PS....almost forgot....book title is "The Benzine Lancers".

 

When will it be available? Would definitely like to pick up a copy

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So, a few more photos showing a little more of the detail of the chassis;

 

 

Rear off side forward shackle pin and brake linkages. Some old paintwork on the rear axle visible, looks more grey in daylight than blue as in this photo. Traces of drab green elsewhere

 

 

Front near side chassis view, I think the alloy plate with a bolt through it could be the radiator mounting?

 

 

A very empty space in the rear axle = No differential.

:cry:

ROS forward shackle pin and brake linkage.jpg

pic10.jpg

pic17.jpg

Edited by G506

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A few more photos...........

 

Top photo of the Rear Nearside looking forward, evidence of green paint on the rear axle banjo area

 

Lower photo showing Rear Offside brake drum and spring leaves.

RNS swinging shackle, looking forward.jpg

ROS wheel and brakes, from inside.jpg

Edited by G506

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Time for an update!

Have been chasing a second 30 cwt chassis; after a little 'Google Earth detective work' I managed to track it's location down, made contact with the owner, a deal was done, and a couple of weeks ago she was brought home.

Springs are shot, but wheels are good, chassis is good, and most important of all, I now have a differential!

 

:yay:

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Time for an update!

Have been chasing a second 30 cwt chassis; after a little 'Google Earth detective work' I managed to track it's location down, made contact with the owner, a deal was done, and a couple of weeks ago she was brought home.

Springs are shot, but wheels are good, chassis is good, and most important of all, I now have a differential!

 

:yay:

Brilliant! You really are on your way now!

 

Tony

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Hi Tony,

yes, very pleased indeed. The diff was probably the biggest hurdle, and although it isn't complete (input worm shaft missing) I'm still a huge way ahead.

Whilst I'm still on a roll, wonder if I can find an engine?

 

:-)

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Hi Tony,

yes, very pleased indeed. The diff was probably the biggest hurdle, and although it isn't complete (input worm shaft missing) I'm still a huge way ahead.

 

:-)

 

Ben H who is a regular contributor to this forum has had some experience of this and may be able to guide you in the right direction in the way that he coped with it and give you details of the company that he dealt with.......... And possibly some idea of the costs, too!

 

However did you hear of this chassis, by the way? Sounds as if there might be more of a story there!

 

Tony

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