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BenHawkins

1914 Dennis Lorry

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I have mentioned this vehicle in another thread but thought a thread of its own might be of interest as we intend to start reassembling it over the next few weeks now I have the space to do so.

 

The chassis number is 3539 and this shows up in the Dennis logs as being purchased by Ernest Shentall of Chesterfield. It was delivered very early in 1914 (probably January). Ernest Shentall was a wholesale fruitier and jam maker. I don't know if ever found any military use but Dennis supplied a reasonable number of this type of vehicle to the military in addition to the "Subsidy A" model. The 3000 series of chassis numbers appears to be mainly filled with a model described as the "N Type"; the two and three ton models had a 5 foot track and a chassis assembled from rolled steel channel.

 

IMG_3951.jpg

My friend Mick sold me the chassis in 2009, having purchased it from Lincolnshire in 1997. It may have been purchased by Wallis Coal Merchants in Alford in the 1920s, using it as a coal lorry for a while before converting it to a caravan where it was towed behind a steam engine.

 

Lots of parts have turned up over the past few years (many more than for my 1908 Dennis) so it has most of the major components.

 

Ben

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One of these torque arms was quite bent. Having carried out a "spark test" they appeared to be cast steel so I warmed them with a welding torch in the bent area to straighten it out.

IMG_2631.jpg

 

This is the engine I have found. It is an Aster of around 1910 vintage; it was once part of a generator set and has virtually no compression. It is also a little under powered at a nominal 14hp; the original was a 28hp White and Poppe.

IMG_2630.jpg

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Most of the suspension components were fairly corroded. I made a drawing from the remains of the original springs and had a new set made. Each leaf has nibs pressed in that engage with a slot in the leaf above.

IMG_2626.jpg

 

All the brass greasers had been removed from the shackle pins so I have been making those over Christmas along with new shackle pins where required. The new shackle pins have been made from EN24T and I have made new phosphor bronze bushes where required.

 

IMG_2628.jpg

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Sarah has been turning the numbers off new Whitworth bolts so they do not look tool out of place when fitted.IMG_2627.jpg

 

Most parts have been sandblasted, primed and given a coat of undercoat ready for an assembly party.

IMG_2625.jpg

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I have this Dennis gearbox. It is of the slightly later design when provision was made for a PTO and the transmission brake shoes are mounted from the gearbox casting.

IMG_2629.jpg

 

The box itself is in a terrible state. It is heavily corroded and has one of the mounting lugs completely broken off. One of the gear pairs needs replacing but otherwise the internals look pretty good.

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Great to see the restoration work in progress, i,m looking forward to see it evolve. I would like to restore something similar if I was lucky enough to find something out there. Is reference material available,manuals etc for early machines,where would I go for these?

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Great to see the restoration work in progress, i,m looking forward to see it evolve. I would like to restore something similar if I was lucky enough to find something out there. Is reference material available,manuals etc for early machines,where would I go for these?

 

It depends a lot on the manufacturer. Most of the records and many of the drawings were retained by Dennis and are available at the Surrey History Centre. There is even a photo of this lorry just before delivery; unfortunately it does not show the registration number but hopefully a photo of it with Shentalls will turn up at some point.

 

Each year that goes by fewer parts are available. I was lucky with this one as it was quite a popular model but it looks like I will have to fit the Aster engine as I can not find the original. Dennis had still been using Aster engines a few years earlier but by 1914 were fitting White and Poppe engines to virtually every chassis built.

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I think this is the final major component I have in stock:

Radiator.jpg

It is the correct model of radiator for this year and in reasonable condition over all.

 

As with most radiators of this type it is heavily corroded where the aluminium is in close proximity to the brass.

IMG_2632.jpg

 

Some repairs have been done to the bottom tank in the past with lead rivets.

IMG_2634.jpg

 

I am not sure if there is any practical solution to this other than new castings.

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I think you are right Ben. Judging by the amount of effort Father put into lining, rebuilding and sealing our radiator and the fact that it still leaks like a sieve, don't waste your time. New castings are the only option. The top tank does make quite a nice ornament in the living room though!

 

Happy New Year!

 

Steve

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Thanks Steve,

 

As I will not be fitting the original engine I will just slot it all back together for the time being and get new castings once I am certain everything will line up. They do not have any complexities like the subsidy model top tank so it should be a fairly simple task.

 

Ben

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I have been making more shackle pins. A fairly simple but time consuming job.

 

 

Turning to diameter and thread cutting (1/2" Gas or BSPF and 5/8 BSW)

IMG_2638.jpg

Then parting off, facing and chamfering the greaser end.

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Drill the grease hole.

IMG_2641.jpg

Drill for anti-rotation dowel and grease outlet hole through to central hole.

IMG_2642.jpg

Drill the split pin hole.

IMG_2643.jpg

And finally filing a grease groove

IMG_2639.jpg

 

The original drawings (held by the Surrey History Centre) show they were made from "UBAS" steel. This was a trademark of Flathers steels of Sheffield. It is described in period literature as an "Acid Open Hearth Steel" and was suitable for case hardening. UBAS was used quite extensively by Dennis, does anyone have more information on it?

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I have been making more shackle pins. A fairly simple but time consuming job.

 

 

Turning to diameter and thread cutting (1/2" Gas or BSPF and 5/8 BSW)

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100187[/ATTACH]

Then parting off, facing and chamfering the greaser end.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100188[/ATTACH]

Drill the grease hole.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100189[/ATTACH]

Drill for anti-rotation dowel and grease outlet hole through to central hole.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100190[/ATTACH]

Drill the split pin hole.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100191[/ATTACH]

And finally filing a grease groove

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100193[/ATTACH]

 

The original drawings (held by the Surrey History Centre) show they were made from "UBAS" steel. This was a trademark of Flathers steels of Sheffield. It is described in period literature as an "Acid Open Hearth Steel" and was suitable for case hardening. UBAS was used quite extensively by Dennis, does anyone have more information on it?

 

Great work Ben. Fabulous project.

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Top Tip! You can make a tool for the Dickson Toolpost clamps by bending a big Socket Head Cap Screw ;-)

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The original drawings (held by the Surrey History Centre) show they were made from "UBAS" steel ... does anyone have more information on it?

 

A quick Google suggests UBAS stood for Unbreakable Axle Steel or Universal Best Axle Steel. Several references to it; the most relevant suggests Alford & Adler used it for motorcycle swivel pins in the 1920s and by the 1960s were using EN16T for the same job, if that helps.

 

This page has some great adverts for it:

 

http://www.gracesguide.co.uk/W._T._Flather

Edited by Sean N
Add Ads

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I googled too (and remembered that I have done the same search before).

This article is fascinating:

CHANGING GEARS IN COMMER TRUCK - Type Used in Construction Does Not Belong to Clashing System. - Article - NYTimes.com

 

It appears that "It goes with out saying that" and "It is self-evident that" means "This journalist has no idea why"

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Thanks for all the information and adverts for UBAS.

 

I sent some drawings to the laser cutters before Christmas and picked them up today. They have a minimum order charge of 60 pounds so I have to group quite a few things together.

IMG_2644.jpg

The engine and gearbox mount on two 3" channels mounted off the main chassis by two bracket and the back, a pivot at the front and two additional brackets at each side. Most of this was removed when it was being used as a trailer.

 

This is the new laser cut pivot being turned down on my little lathe.

IMG_2646.jpg

 

I have one original rear bracket and had interlocking pieces of steel cut to match.

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Tacking the flange and bending at approximately 2" intervals.

IMG_2649.jpg

And the finished fabrication. Just requiring a little bit of tidying up.

IMG_2652.jpg

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You're really getting into it now Ben. I hadn't thought of replicating cast brackets that way, great idea. What thickness of sheet was used?

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Thanks, it is great to be making some lorry progress again after two years of house/garage building. They say a change is as good as a rest!

 

The front wavy bracket I think was originally a steel pressing 3/16" thick. I opted for 5mm S275 steel for this application. The welds obviously give it a slightly lower fatigue strength than the originals, but for the use it will get I really don't think this will be a problem.

 

The other brackets were originally "blackheart malleable cast iron" when production first started and later went to steel casting. I think for this chassis date they were probably steel. Here I opted for 6mm S275 in place of the original 1/4". I think the fabrications probably have comparable properties to the original castings. I quite like pattern making but I don't currently have a supplier for steel castings and for small quantities the fabrication route does lead to much faster progress.

 

IMG_2655.jpg

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Well done Ben for taking this 'restoration' on, your as mad as the Goslings :undecided: find a bolt and build a truck around it :thumbsup:

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The brackets for the false frame that carry the engine and gearbox were finished in the week along with manufacturing the pivot pin and nut.

IMG_2656.jpg

 

I had some friends over for the weekend for a birthday party. It has given the project a bit of a boost.

 

After fitting the false frame it was decided the best place to drain the oil from the engine was in the chassis.

IMG_2661.jpg

The valves and seats were examined; they need some cutting and regrinding to sort them out. There was a little water in the very thick oil so the next obvious step was to take off the sump for a look.

IMG_2662.jpg

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Hiding in the oil were a number of pieces of broken bronze.

IMG_2666.jpg

 

Further investigation showed they were from the cam roller followers. This photo does not show them well but does show the general condition of the interior of the engine. These are slotted bushes that prevent the roller follower from rotating. They were probably broken by a mechanic that was a little heavy handed when adjusting the tappets (possibly only using one spanner).

IMG_2663.jpg

 

These guides could not be driven out because the cam shaft is in the way. I will have to strip down the timing case to remove the cam shaft and I think it would make sense to remove the cylinder blocks at the same time to make sure nothing else is wrong.

 

With the rest of the weekend we loosely fitted a selection of parts to make sure everything went together.

IMG_2664.jpg

Quite a promising start to the project.

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Hiding in the oil were a number of pieces of broken bronze.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100645[/ATTACH]

 

 

Quite a promising start to the project.

 

Ah, the optimism is so refreshing :D

 

trevor

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