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Old Bill

Maudslay Subsidy Lorry

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Last Friday, I had the great good fortune to go and see the Maudslay Subsidy lorry under restoration at the Museum of Transport in Coventry. We had a great time with Chris and the Friends who are doing the work. Unfortunately, with the Maudslay, information is scant and there are no vehicles to inspect in this country. There is, however, a survivor of 1918 vintage in Australia. This was rebuilt by the Geralka Farm Museum with a slightly unconventional bus body and used to transport visitors around the museum. In my trawlings of the net, I find that the museum sold up in 2010 and the Maudslay has gone to new owners. Does anyone here know of its whereabouts or how I might contact the new owners? I would very much like to ask a few questions about it and whether a few photographs might be taken to help the Coventry lads on their way?

 

Someone on this forum will know, I am sure!

 

Many thanks,

 

Steve :)

Geralka Maudslay 2c.jpg

Bonnet left c.jpg

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Geralka Maudslay 1.jpg

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Im sure my friend in bristol has a maudsley chassis I know he has a large engine that is restored and looks very similar to the one in the photograph. I will telephone him and find out!

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Compliments of my mate Bob Moseley in SA.....

 

2010 - bought by the Alice Springs Road Transport Hall of Fame.

Regards....Rod

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Im sure my friend in bristol has a maudsley chassis I know he has a large engine that is restored and looks very similar to the one in the photograph. I will telephone him and find out!

 

Thanks Jason. We would be very pleased to hear about it. We thought that we knew what was left in this country but things keep turning up! A local one would be of enormous help.

 

Cheers!

 

Steve :-D

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Thanks Rick. Great pictures!

 

I had forgotten that Tim had already posted so much about it so sorry for the duplication. Thanks for the Alice Springs photographs. Their vehicle looks different in a number of respects and I am wondering whether it is post war? It looks smaller than the Coventry lorry and the engine appears to be a monoblock but it is very much from the same stable. One thing the Coventry lads don't have is an original steering wheel. Do you think this one is original or perhaps a bit newer? Is that the edge of an enamel instruction plate hiding behind the steering column? It really is great to see another!

 

Cheers!

 

Steve :-D

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Ah, but it might have been!

 

Tillings are interesting too. Riding in one is like being in a vehicle with a badly slipping clutch! Is this one war time or later?

 

Thanks for investigating!

 

Steve :-)

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I have to say I find the Maudslay endlessly fascinating. Alas the restoration photos published on their internet site come at such a slow pace! Would love to see more photos... Robert

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It is looking great. I had not seen it for a few months and it is really coming along. Steve is going up again soon so I will ask him to take some more photos of it.

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Steve has been to see the Maudslay again and it is making good progress. The chassis is now an appropriate khaki-brown colour and the engine has gone away for rebuild.

 

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The transmission brakes shoes are terribly worn as the previous owner wore right through the lining and 3/8” into the iron! This has left them very weak around the anchor point so Steve has made up a pattern so that new ones can be cast.

 

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First, he glued some segments of MDF together and then sanded them off to form a curve. This he reinforced by gluing ribs straight onto it.

 

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He fitted fillet leathers as he went before fitting a boss at the end with a smaller boss for the grease cap hole.

 

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Then it was simply a case of a bit of car body filler to finish the radii followed by a good rub down and the usual two coats of Bondaprime.

 

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The extra semi-circular piece is made to support the main pattern whilst it is being rammed up. It is slightly tapered to ease its removal before the second side is rammed.

 

The pattern is now with the Friends of the Museum ready for casting.

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I have been doing some research on the history of this particular vehicle on behalf of Chris at CTM, and I will post a bit more about it, once I have exhausted all of my leads that I am currently working on.

 

So far the info that has came to light, indicates it was in use with the RFC at Montrose Air Station in North East Scotland the UK's first operational Air Base, certainly the largest military motorised transport user in the region, and a stones throw from where the vehicle was then used in its "Civilian" guise until it eventually found its way to the museum.

 

Here is a photo that I obtained from the RAF Museum showing another Maudslay in service, although not dated, going by the faded RAF painted onto the rear body, I would put it sometime after April 1918.

016.jpg

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Some more "in service" pictures of Maudslay's, these mainly show the people who worked with them, rather than the lorry, but they are no less fantastic for it, they really show the people behind the scenes. The first two are RFC/RAF, the last two are of vehicles used by the Army Supply Corps for the Ministry of Munitions.

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This may be of interest, (I am sure somebody will put me right) but it would appear that Maudslay had two models of truck in service during WW1, the last picture shows a vehicle that looks smaller and with a different radiator, which looks very much like the Australian museum bus, mentioned earlier in this post.

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Walter Powell MT ASC on Maudslay 3 Ton.jpg

Walter powell.jpg

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The smaller looking radiator is the same fitted to the pre-WW1 North Eastern Railway Maudslay motor omnibuses which were converted into lorries in October 1914 for the War Department (can supply photos privately if of interest)

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I have been fortunate to visit the museum in Coventry again to see how the Maudslay is getting on and see that there is good progress being made with the body. The seat box has been put together and the crossmembers for the body have been cut. Sorry about the picture quality but it is an awful place for photography!

 

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The engine has been sent away for professional attention but it was due back last Tuesday and should be in the chassis by now. There is nothing major left to do so the target has been set to have it on the road in the next five months. I am helping out with a steering wheel and some other odds and ends so it is all getting quite exciting!

 

One thing the Gang are concerned about is starting it for the first time. I have suggested using an impulse starter on the magneto but, unfortunately, they don't have one. Can anyone offer a clockwise Simms impulse starter please?

 

I hope to report more progress later this week.

 

Steve :)

Edited by Minesweeper

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One thing the lorry is short of is a proper period steering wheel. The one it has, has been 'adapted' but does not fit very well and looks too new. From the best pictures we can find and looking at other Maudslays in the museum, it appears to be remarkably similar to the one we should have on our Thornycroft so Father had two castings made with one allocated to the Maudslay.

 

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To attach it, I have made a 3/4" BSP nut and spigot to be attached to the column.

 

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Today, I set the wheel up on the faceplate and bored it through to fit the spigot which has a 4.5° incl taper and a keyway. I had the spigot available to try in the hole in order to get the depth right and allow some space for the nut to pull up.

 

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Finally, I cut the keyway using a boring bar with the bit ground to suit the slot and planed it out by winding the carriage back and forth. It was a bit laborious but effective.

 

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Once I have faced the front, I shall present the wheel to the volunteers for someone else to polish the casting!

 

Steve :-)

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I have been doing a bit of blacksmithing today, by bending the steel parts of the hood bow frame. These are simple flat strips but have the ends curved upwards and a joggle to dodge the vertical parts of the frame when the wooden bows are the same width. I am a very inexperienced blacksmith so the quality of work is nothing special and will require a lot of cleaning up to hide the hammer marks but they should do the job.

 

The process starts with the lighting of my home-made firepot. This is fed by the fan from my dust extractor.

 

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Then knock the curve over the beak:

 

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Flatten it out.

 

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Bend the first part of the joggle one way.

 

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And turn it over to bend it back.

 

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Repeat for the opposite hand and there are two hood bow irons.

 

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No time at all to bend but a lot of hours still needed to clean up and finish!

 

Steve :-)

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The Museum has now confirmed that the Maudslay has been entered for the London to Brighton run this May. It is now all hands to the pumps!

 

The hood bow hinges were drilled for screws and filed to remove the sharp edges. A polish with the flap wheel finished them off.

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Then the special pivot bolts were fabricated using silver solder.

 

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And the complete set of parts were laid out for a photo. They were mounted on the seat box yesterday to confirm the heights and the hood bows will be fitted to them this week, ready for the canvas man to make the hood. This is the last major part outside of the direct control of the Team so the sooner the bows are away, the better.

 

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The steering wheel continues. As you can see, it is too big for my mill to be able to face the boss so a mate in Taunton very kindly allowed me to use his. The wheel is now with one of the TEam for polishing before sending to the powder coater.

 

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The bonnet has broken hinges and only one handle so I have made up some new ones. This is the pattern:

 

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First, I made a plasticard template and filed out four blanks.

 

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The arms were than dished by tapping them into a curved groove cut into the top of a piece of MDF.

 

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The main shape was dished by beating on a leather sand bag with a bossing mallet.

 

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The edges were tapped over a stake before polishing.

 

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Two replacement bonnet hinges were fabricated using my favourite silver solder.

 

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The engine is now in as you can see from this terrible picture. Quite a lot of work is still needed to connect it to the rest of the vehicle, however!

 

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The body mounting brackets arrived this week as well. They have been made by a local fabricator and have come out rather well, needing only a little tidying up and filling around the welds.

 

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Still a lot to do but I will keep you posted!

 

Steve :-)

Edited by Old Bill

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