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WW1 Dennis truck find

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There is a chap called Berni the Bolt who sources most things for us. We have however cleared him out of certain threads and sizes, so i shop abroad. Anyway, with a wife, two kids we have (had) a very big luggage allowance between us. The time before last i caused lots of trouble and had to remove a WW2 generator from one suitcase to a spare folding suitcase that i had with me. It was very stange but the internal security men passed it so it must have been ok.

 

Anyway, while on the subject of posting, Steve has been working on the fuel tank. He had the steel rolled by a chap near him. He spun the ends on his lathe, and they were a perfect fit first time. Clamped the ends in place, drilled holes, secured with bolts and then rivetted the holes up. To do this he made a special jig for his vice, looking like this:

 

DSCN1672.jpg

 

The completed end looked like this, which he then soldered to make watertight:

 

DSCN1675.jpg

 

And after he had made and inserted a fuel filter the finished fuel tank looked like this

 

DSCN1677.jpg

 

As you can see it is being tested for leaks - just the one found. The end result is a new fuel tank exactly to 1918 drawing specifications. It is now sitting in red primer and once mounted under the seatbox, it will never be seen again. Shame!

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Good question. Steve is as you say a bloody good engineer, he is the driving force behind our restorations, a visionary perhaps (no not a missionary) as he can see trucks when any normal person can just see piles of rusted metal, an altogether bloody fine bloke and my brother to boot. One of his favourite sayings is "I am an engineer, i can make anything" and you know, i think he is right.

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I think you are right, please pass on my admiration for his work from one engineer to another (he is much better though)

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I am (as usual) in awe about the amount of work on this truck - well done!!

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Hi Tim and Super Steve, Well what can I say but it was great to look at all the photos of what all you men have been up to,when do you get time to look after the girls Tim??? how do you fit it all in. Very envious would love to be able to work with metal and all the tools - lathes etc ............................ really enjoyed reading about it all thanks Steve for giving me the web site have duly joined up :schocked: :-D Bridge

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Hiya Bridget

 

What a suprise seeing you post here. Now what sort of military vehicle can i tempt you with? Something with wheels or tracks, armoured or soft skin? Lots of people here ready to sell you something!

 

Tim (too)

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More progress. Steve has made a tap for the petrol tank. This photo shows his against a copy of the original drawing.

 

DSCN1692.jpg

 

To be correct, our scuttle required a general instruction plate on it. We had an original which was very badly damaged, but from that could copy the lettering. A friend redid the artwork on his computer and we sent the artwork to a firm that makes these enamel signs. The whole thing was not cheap, but the end result is very pleasing.

 

DSCN3270.jpg

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Tony and Steve have been having a busy day. Sadl, due to other commitments i was unable to lend a hand. However, today they fitted the petrol tank, fuel tap, hold down straps and enamel sign.

 

DSCN3311.jpg

 

We have been stripping down the engine, identifying problems and trying out our new jet paraffin bath. This is how it was looking this morning.

 

DSCN3294.jpg

 

The stand is the one that it was mounted on as its previous incarnation as a water pump at a factory. However, the stand does not allow easy access to the sump, so it had to be moved. We therfore put it on a proper engine stand which had just been vacated by a Wisconsin engine, which is now on blocks.

 

DSCN3300.jpg

 

Can you see which bit has had the benefit of the paraffin bath? Every home should have one.

 

Tim (too)

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Tim this is just utterly fantastic work! Steve=Legend. By the looks of things! That tank looks bloody good, and that engine doesn't look in bad shape either, are all the valves free?

Regards,

Mick.

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Hmmm, 'Legend'. I don't know about that. I'm still alive! But thank you for your kind comments.

 

I must emphasise that this is a family project and we all do what we can. Tim is a wizard with the paintbrush and isn't afraid to tackle the muckiest and most tedious of jobs. Dad can make anything I can and can also handle a brush which I hate! We all do our bit and get our fun out of what is, at the end of the day, a completely pointless exercise except for the fact that we enjoy it. Wouldn't life be dull if we didn't have these things to do?

 

Cheers!

 

Steve :beer:

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Tony has been very busy making the steering column support bracket. We had a very badly corroded original which he used as a pattern. He cut some steel to length, got it red hot, then put a bend in the sides. Drilled some holes, milled a slot, put a curve on the ends and then put it all together. The end result is quite pleasing.

 

Tim (too)

 

DSCN3320.jpg

 

DSCN3355.jpg

 

DSCN3374.jpg

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We have had a rare weekend with all of us at home on the Dennis and it has been very productive so thought that i should post up a few more photos.

 

Mick asked if the valves were all free. Well they certainly are all now. We got the first one out a few weeks ago, and on Saturday we got out the remainder. Everything was all very nice with little or no wear and just needs cleaning up ready to put back again.

 

DSCN3390.jpg

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Apologies if i post all these photos seperately. I tried to do it all in one go and then my computer tripped up, so i have to start again.

 

Anyway, the next thing was to get the heads off. We took off the 6 bolts securing each head and then with a chain block lifted them off. A bit sticky to start off with, but a gentle tap with a mallet freed them.

 

DSCN3391.jpg

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After the heads were off we took a look at the pistons. They are in great shape, with no wobble and the bores are perfect with no sign of scoring. It means that we will probably just leave the crank case alone apart from cleaning it. However then there is the sump.

 

Steve had already drained out a couple of gallons, so we thought it would be empty! Ha, not so!

 

After securing it with a rope from the chain block we undid the bolts and lowered it down ever so gently.

 

 

DSCN3397.jpg

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After (wisely i must say) putting it in a drip tray we tipped it over and were slightly suprised to find gallons of the most horrible thick, rank black sludge come out. In fact we filled up the drip tray three more times. Just to share this moment, this is what it looked like as we started to fill the third tray.

 

DSCN3399.jpg

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This suprise was caused by the oil filters. Designed to keep the sludge within the filters (at the bottom of which are the drain plugs), it prevented the sludge that had formed elsewhere in the sump from reaching the drain plugs. That was of course until we tipped it up.

 

Interesting to see that one of the filters had not been fitted properly and as a result had been crushed. This did nothing to allow the good oil to get back to the engine, so a previous operator had poked a screwdriver through all the gauze to leave a broken mangled mess. Steve is going to have a go at remaking one and repairing the other. I will let you know how he gets on. This is how they were today.

 

DSCN3417.jpg

 

Overall it was a productive weekend and we got a lot done. We also left poor old Tony with a pile of bits to clean up. He has gone looking for a plastic tub large enough to put the sump into to soak it in paraffin.

 

Tim (too)

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Its really good to see the engine being worked on now, its very pleasing to see its still in pretty good shape. :-)

That steering column bracket is very well done :-)

 

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Yes, we are very fortunate that the engine is so good. Most of the damage has been done by me, getting it apart!

 

It came from the West Midlands Fire Service and was in a lock-up in Birmingham. It had been used as a ring-main pump for a large factory, possibly Avery. This use has been quite gentle to it and there is no shake in any of the big ends or gudgeon pins. The valves and camshafts are good too. The main damage was done by keeping it full of water ready for use as that caused all of the radiator corrosion shown in an earlier post. Dad has spent the last couple of days digging the rust out of the blocks and generally cleaning it up. The biggest challenge for us will be to make a new water pump as the scrappies (I guess) removed it at the same time as the main pump. We have been fortunate to be able to see the only known survivng pump in pieces and spent three hours measuring it and taking 140 photos. Believe it or not, that wasn't enough! Still we have enough now to make a pretty good stab at it and I am hoping that only HMVF subscribers will know that it isn't the original.

 

Tim will keep the photos coming. I must get him to explain to me how to do it....

 

'Til the next time,

 

Steve :wave:

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As you will see, we have been quite busy, although not with anything that exciting, just cleaning jobs. The disgustingly vile sludge from the sump has been removed and it has been given a good clean in a paraffin bath.

 

DSCN3465.jpg

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Then, a jet of water was blasted through the blocks to clean out any rust deposit's. You would think that we were putting orange squash through it. After a few minutes the water became clear and the blocks left out in the sun to dry off.

 

The next big step is repairing all the damage we did in taking the engine apart and then put it back together.

 

DSCN3712.jpg

 

Tim (too)

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