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Bedford MWR restoration

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Having spent a many hours taking inspiration for other peoples restoration blogs i thought i was time to start my own having spent the 10 months prior to going to Normandy for the 2014 70th anniversary on the excellent tour organized by the MVT restoring my Bedford MWR the full story of which is told here ,

http://www.yorkshiremvt.co.uk/articles/bedford_mwr/bedford_mwr.htm

on the yorkshire mvt web site it would have been nice to do a restoration blog at the time but i had my hands full just finishing the truck on time i new when the truck was first put back on the road that there was still a lot more work to do but when i started looking at other trucks i began to realize just how much work there was still to do ,this blog will cover the work to complete the truck to as it would have been when first put into service in 1942 .The most major job for this winter will be the installation of all the MWR specific parts in the rear of the truck

WD PHOTO 3.jpg

 

the fittings in the back are left side large tin box with canvas cover running nearly the full length of the rear body this box would have carried the various radio aerials ,wood cupboard with door to rear carried parts for the vehicle, behind which is wood box with a drop front to carry a spare radio set , in front of this is the charging control box for the PTO driven generator and the mounting to carry the no 5 generator control panel which is used to charge the radio battery's either from the PTO driven generator or the little chore horse generator which is stored in the box fitted in place of the cab step on the drivers side ,mounted either side of the radio operators table are clamps to hold the radio battery's and down the right hand side are a second spare radio box and either another long steel box for radio aerials or third drop front box similar to the spare radio box and at the rear end with the doors to the tail board another wood cupboard , fitted down the center are the seats for the wireless operator and two radio decoders ? as you can see from the other photos with a full crew of five there was not lot of room left for the crews equipment and personal stuff which why all MWRs had the spare wheel on the back and a roof rack

TC Vehicle E Troop 288 Bty.JPG

nicky

Winter conditions on the 5th Army Front in Italy, during World War II, have resulted in sharpene.jpg

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Having spent a many hours taking inspiration for other peoples restoration blogs i thought i was time to start my own having spent the 10 months prior to going to Normandy for the 2014 70th anniversary on the excellent tour organized by the MVT restoring my Bedford MWR the full story of which is told here ,

http://www.yorkshiremvt.co.uk/articles/bedford_mwr/bedford_mwr.htm

on the yorkshire mvt web site it would have been nice to do a restoration blog at the time but i had my hands full just finishing the truck on time i new when the truck was first put back on the road that there was still a lot more work to do but when i started looking at other trucks i began to realize just how much work there was still to do ,this blog will cover the work to complete the truck to as it would have been when first put into service in 1942 .The most major job for this winter will be the installation of all the MWR specific parts in the rear of the truck

[ATTACH=CONFIG]99866[/ATTACH]

 

the fittings in the back are left side large tin box with canvas cover running nearly the full length of the rear body this box would have carried the various radio aerials ,wood cupboard with door to rear carried parts for the vehicle, behind which is wood box with a drop front to carry a spare radio set , in front of this is the charging control box for the PTO driven generator and the mounting to carry the no 5 generator control panel which is used to charge the radio battery's either from the PTO driven generator or the little chore horse generator which is stored in the box fitted in place of the cab step on the drivers side ,mounted either side of the radio operators table are clamps to hold the radio battery's and down the right hand side are a second spare radio box and either another long steel box for radio aerials or third drop front box similar to the spare radio box and at the rear end with the doors to the tail board another wood cupboard , fitted down the center are the seats for the wireless operator and two radio decoders ? as you can see from the other photos with a full crew of five there was not lot of room left for the crews equipment and personal stuff which why all MWRs had the spare wheel on the back and a roof rack

[ATTACH=CONFIG]99867[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]99868[/ATTACH]

nicky

 

Looking forward to seeing this progress. With 5 people it would have been very very cramped!

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Looking forward to seeing this progress. With 5 people it would have been very very cramped!

Nice photos!

 

only note- last picture is MWC water bowser (think), I see too in Normandy very,very nice MWR,

 

i have still only wreck MWR and dream, "have dream...." missing much, much parts,

 

good luck

 

Tom

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Hello Tom is this the truck you have,

00000066 (1).jpg

if it is could you help me answer a couple of questions i need to make the steel cover for the rear control box for the PTO driven generator did you get this cover with the parts you bought if possible can you check if my drawing for the cover is correct

Nicky

img228.jpg

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PART 2

 

Before i start to install the new interior i need to add the extra plank which fits on three sides of the existing body planks

DSCF0044.jpg the empty body ready for work to start

 

i have seen several posts on this forum saying that the additional planks are used to stop things from sliding off the wireless operators desk but the real purpose of the planks is much more important they are used to lock together all the tilt frame hood sticks and help carry the extra stress which is created on the tilt frame by the two radio aerial mountings if the truck was fitted with a no 19 set the A set would have an 8ft or 12ft rod aerial ,the B set a 2ft aerial with the maximum length of aerial 34ft the aerial mountings are welded directly to the tilt frame and an additional central support bar fitted to the front hoop

 

img229.jpg

 

my local timber company supplied all the wood last year when i built the new body and they have supplied all the timber again in scotch pine a few hours work soon had the parts assembled

 

DSCF0043.jpgcorner bracket

 

DSCF0042.jpg front hood stick support

 

DSCF0016.jpg

the completed support frame the four curved brackets on the side hood sticks are also used to strengthen the tilt frame

Nicky

DSCF0018.jpg

DSCF0017.jpg

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PART

 

Before i start to install the new interior i need to add the extra plank which fits on three sides of the existing body planks

[ATTACH=CONFIG]99960[/ATTACH] the empty body ready for work to start

 

i have seen several posts on this forum saying that the additional planks are used to stop things from sliding off the wireless operators desk but the real purpose of the planks is much more important they are used to lock together all the tilt frame hood sticks and help carry the extra stress which is created on the tilt frame by the two radio aerial mountings if the truck was fitted with a no 19 set the A set would have an 8ft or 12ft rod aerial ,the B set a 2ft aerial with the maximum length of aerial 34ft the aerial mountings are welded directly to the tilt frame and an additional central support bar fitted to the front hoop

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]99961[/ATTACH]

 

my local timber company supplied all the wood last year when i built the new body and they have supplied all the timber again in scotch pine a few hours work soon had the parts assembled

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]99962[/ATTACH]corner bracket

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]99963[/ATTACH] front hood stick support

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]99964[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]99965[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]99966[/ATTACH]

the completed support frame the four curved brackets on the side hood sticks are also used to strengthen the tilt frame

Nicky

 

Hi Nicky,

 

yes its my wreck MWR, now is dismantled, wait for restoration, but must finnish work on Willys and Minerva, have only one pair hands, but look for information about all details MWR and missing parts, unfortunately lacks many important parts, but I have the original basis and that we can build a new MWR.

 

Therefore, I thank you for every photo and information or assistance . Tom

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Tom i have been working on a list of the Z numbers and contract numbers for the MWR have you got any idea of the date of manufacture of of your truck or the contact number it was built under

Nicky

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Oh, thanks,

 

but wreck was without doors, Bonet, date plates...

 

only Chassis number, must clean rusty, and look for number,

 

Have idea, one MWR was in small Czech unit, back home 1.may 1945, have few photos,

 

make restoration by this photos.

 

Tom

S7300988.JPG

S7300995.JPG

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part three

The next set of photos show the results of my recent very successful trip to Pete Gains i came away a happy man with these

 

DSCF0012.jpg

 

DSCF0014.jpg

 

the first two photos are the rear radio operators seat ,the truck would have had three of these in the rear fitted with very basic canvas seat covers , i can now use this one as a pattern to make another two

DSCF0007.jpg

 

The next item i had not expected to find and was in pile of unknown items ,it is the mounting bracket and cover for the no 5 charging panel something i was expecting to have to make.

 

img238.jpg

 

This is the no 5 charging panel i am still looking for this part anybody help with one ?

 

DSCF0003.jpg

 

Another good find was the rear control box this was used to control the charging system for the rear of the truck

 

DSCF0011.jpg

 

The next photo shows the frame work for the radio operators table and the clamp frames to hold the radio battery's the new battery boxes are being made and should be ready to collect from Stoneleigh

 

DSCF0039.jpg

 

Nicky

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part four

 

I have been working on the layout and drawings to make the wooden lockers to kit out the rear of the truck as i have only found one of the big steel boxes (i think they would be used to store the radio aerials )so far, i have decided that i am going to fit two spare radio set boxes and a radio spare parts box this layout i am told is correct for a radio intercept equipped truck ,this will also give more space for camping gear and can be changed if i find the missing box the timber has now arrived so i can start to make up the boxes more next week

Nicky

 

 

img236.jpg

img231.jpg

img232.jpg

img233.jpg

img234.jpg

img235.jpg

img237.jpg

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Nick, going back to your post on the extra plank, would the coach bolts through the tilt hoops normally have the heads on the inside / nuts on the outside? Doesn't that encourage the tilt to chafe on the nuts?

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Hi Sean

yes your correct just checked on the factory interior photos they are the other way round will fit the correct way on final assembly

Nicky

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Hi Nick,

 

its very good, pictures and plans, thanks! Please you holder for reserve tyre? need dimedsion,

 

thank you for help

 

Tom

!BZG4RP!BGK~$(KGRHGOOKISEJLLL5PU2BKLD(E3M6Q~~_12.JPG

100_1996.jpg

3054583300_153bbf2497_b.jpg

glos09238.jpg

MWR (51).jpg

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PART FIVE

making steady progress ,all boxes now made ,the drawings seam to work fine with only slight modifications needed to make the drawings work correctly for manufacture ,photos show test fitting of table ,battery clamps, mounting for no 5 switch board ,control box and newly copied wireless operator seats

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]100622[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100630[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100629[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100628[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100627[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100626[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100625[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100624[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100623[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]100631[/ATTACH]

 

all have now been removed the no 5 switch panel needs shot blasting and then i can start painting the inside of the boxes will be BS216 eau de nil and the out side and every thing else will be British olive drab

more soon

Nicky

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these are the photos to go with part five i think they must have timed out whilst i was doing the post sorry

 

DSCF0005.jpg

 

DSCF0007.jpg

 

DSCF0008.jpg

 

DSCF0009.jpg

 

DSCF0015.jpg

 

DSCF0032.jpg

 

DSCF0031.jpg

 

 

 

DSCF0004.jpg

 

Nicky

DSCF0010.jpg

DSCF0014.jpg

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Time for an up date

part six

 

DSCF0049.jpg

 

DSCF0048.jpg

 

DSCF0075.jpg

 

DSCF0066.jpg

 

 

DSCF0069.jpg

 

DSCF0071.jpg

 

DSCF0072.jpg

 

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DSCF0074.jpg

 

The last couple of weeks have seen some slow progress ,trying to paint in this winter weather is hard work and very time consuming the red oxide paint being the worst needing a week to dry fully i think this because it is an oil based paint as you can see all the lockers ,battery clamps ,radio table and extra planks for the top of the body have now been painted in a base coat of red oxide and top coat of British olive drab the interior of lockers has been painted in eau de nil as planned , it looks better in the photo than i actually is but is making the inside of the lockers much brighter ,looking forward to some warmer weather so the truck can be run out of its tent and i repaint the inside of the body ready to start the final assembly

DSCF0067.jpg

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PART SEVEN

The warmer weather is beginning to arrive and the Bedford came out of winter hibernation this weekend

photos one and two are the truck coming out of the machine mart tent were it has spent the winter

 

DSCF0080.jpg

 

DSCF0082.jpg

 

photo number three is my newly restored air cleaner it took a very long time time to find the missing air cleaner and the only one i could find was in Scotland and after stripping and shot blasting looked as though it had spent a long time full of water it was repaired by using the oil pan from the bottom of a landrover air cleaner which was exactly the correct size

 

DSCF0081.jpg

 

photo number four shows the rear body and hood frame after a fresh coat of British olive drab now this is done i can start assembling the rear body interior

 

DSCF0086.jpg

 

photo number five shows the final pre-assembly work on the rear control box mounting the ammeter and the covers for the control box and the no 5 generator control panel are now all finished and need to be fitted before the extra body planks as the back edge of the covers is screwed to the top edge of the GS body i think that this may be to give the electrical items some better weather protection

 

DSCF0084.jpg

 

I mentioned in an earlier post i had been working on the Z number registrations and contract numbers the observant amongst you will have noticed that the number on my truck is not an MWR Z number it is in fact a modified phone number i made up for Normandy last year .

Bart Vanderveens kaleidoscope of bedford & vauxhall military vehicles lists MWR total production as 5,500 trucks under 4 contracts ,having managed to get a copy of Rob Van Meel allocation of b vehicle wd numbers and cross referencing both i have the following

contract number , number built , description znumber

 

294/v/m5275 974 units truck 15 cwt 4x2 adapt for conversion to wireless Z4908541-Z4909515

 

294/v/m5058 829 units truck 15 cwt 4x2 adapt for conversion to wireless Z4909516-Z4910345

 

294/v/4714 1699 units truck 15 cwt 4x2 g/s adapted for wireless Z4903700-Z4905399

 

294/23/s3053 1999 units truck 15 cwt 4x2 wireless Z5252268-Z5254267

 

B8834 7 units truck 15 cwt 4x2 wireless Z4577022-Z4577029

 

N/K 6 units truck 15cwt 4x2 wireless Z4577030-Z4577036

 

TOTAL 5514 UNITS

i think the last two on the list could be pre production batches looking at the low Z number

 

MWR production is said to have started in 1942 the chassis number on my truck is 1942 i need to know how many MW were built per month i can then work out what month my truck was built in and the correct number will be some ware in the batch Z4908541-Z4909515 just have to work out which one to use are there any other MWR owners in this batch that i compare details with ?

Nicky

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Thats looking grand! The weather is feeling a bit better for doing stuff isn't it.

 

Those Machinemart temporary shelters look quite handy, I thought of getting one myself but then the farmer where I store my stuff offered me a barn for

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Hi Nicky

Interesting info about Z numbers , I am in the process of trying to work out what Z number should be on my truck, I think it was made under contract 294/T/8102 and its chassis No. is 2947 but I have failed so far to find the Z numbers allocated to that contract.

 

Cheers J

 

Ps. thanks for the donation of the rear can bracket, it all helps :-D

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According to the "B Vehicle WD Numbers" book contract no T8102 included these GS vehicles:

Z4144914 to Z4144919

Z4144921

Z4144923 to Z4144937

Z4144939 to Z4144942

Z4144944 to Z4144955

Z4144958 to Z4144959

Z4144961 to Z4146413 (although this final batch included a mix of all body types as I've listed below)

 

These GS trucks were part of a contract for a batch of 1499 of various body types (GS, anti-tank portee, water tanker and wireless) which started at Z4144914 and ran consecutively through to Z4146413.

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