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WW1 Dennis truck find

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Now it will all make sense:

Image%209_zps77fslfb4.jpg

This was the house that was demolished to reveal the Dennis chassis (with diff) which features in one of the first Dennis posts.

I received a super e-mail from HMVF member Phil B who knows the owner and over the last 40 years frequently sat above the chassis drinking cups of tea with him, little knowing what lay beneath.

 

He corrected me on some of the facts. The Dennis was at Porthtowan (not Hayle) and it was saved by Laurence Fleming who contacted Nigel White of Winchester who recovered it and delivered it to us.

 

It is a fantastic story and a very small world.

 

Thanks to everyone for reading this thread over the years. With the restoration complete and the thread not having many new posts I am still amazed at the number of hits it gets on a daily basis. Anyway, this post brings us almost full circle. Until the next time……….

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I have always been inclined to believe in the saying "Meant to be" and this is another example of that............The Goslings' part of this story started with a letter received in Axminster all those years ago from Nigel W telling us that he had acquired a chassis of an early Dennis and that he wanted to find a good home for it where it could be used.

 

Nigel explained in his letter to us that he himself was in the Recovery business and that his friend Laurence F in Cornwall had been asked to demolish an old Chalet. Much to Laurence's surprise, he found an old Dennis chassis underneath the Chalet when it came down and that Laurence knowing of Nigel's interest in such things, contacted Nigel to say that he had found the chassis and that if Nigel wanted it, he must come down from Nigel's base near Winchester to collect it that very day as otherwise it would go to the "Scrappy".

 

It was another case of "Meant to be" as on that very day, Nigel was unusually free and being in the Recovery business, he was already fully "tooled up" to collect it and so he went straight down to Cornwall to pick it up, to bring back to Winchester.

 

So Nigel was then left wondering what to do with it as he did not restore anything himself. Just at that time, the book "The Leyland Man" written by Mike Sutcliffe had been published so Nigel contacted Mike S to ask him if he wanted the chassis. Mike said that he did not want a Dennis but suggested that he contacted the Goslings in Axminster as they might be interested as they were working on one. So that was when Nigel wrote to us.

 

At this stage in our restoration of our Dennis, we had all the major parts except a Differential and from the photographs which Nigel included in his letter to us, it did appear that the "Diff" might still be in the Back Axle. It was not easy to see as it was upside down - and furthermore, the chassis was not instantly recognisable as a "Subsidy" until I realised that part of the back end of the chassis had been cut off!

 

So I was instantly on the phone to Nigel and arranged to call on him that day to have a look. At that time, our Postman always called quite early in the morning - any time after 6 a.m. so by the time my wife had appeared for breakfast and where I always get up early, the arrangement for the Winchester visit had been made for that day. I asked my wife if she would like to go out for lunch, that day - she said "That would be nice, where are we going?" I said I thought that she might like to go to Winchester - which of course caused some raised eyebrows!

 

Anyhow, we found Nigel, and sure enough, the complete "Diff" was still in the back axle and it was just what we were looking for. It seemed to be a very common arrangement some years ago for old lorry chassis' to be used in the construction of these sort of small buildings, and whether that was a method of getting around Planning Permission where any such building could still be deemed to be portable as it would be on wheels and not a fixed and permanent structure, I do not know. It was not usual for a "Diff" to be left in a back axle, and these old chassis' are still turning up and almost always, the valuable "Diff" has been removed.

 

Nigel readily agreed that we should have the chassis - he did not want anything for it other than that his transport costs be covered including delivery to Axminster - and of course we were pleased to agree.

 

We have never seen another one and would have been left with a difficulty in finishing off the Dennis with original parts!

 

What do you think - "Meant to be?"

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With a story like that there can only be one answer.....DEFINITELY!

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Dad has painted up the footsteps so it only remained to fit them.

 

DSCN5893.JPG

 

DSCN5897.JPG

 

They look nice and that is one more 'finishing off job' ticked off the list!

 

Steve :-)

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I have just undertaken a minor modification. The throttle pedal as built is too high and is crippling on th ankle after a couple of hours so I have taken a leaf out of a very old book and fitted a heel block.

 

DSCN6046.JPG

 

DSCN6048.JPG

 

Nothing very clever but it should be more comfortable to drive next year!

 

Steve :)

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It is amazing what turns up. One of my pals has just sent me this:

 

Radiator Dennis c.jpg

 

I hadn't realised that Dennis had bought their radiators out although it is not surprising really. They are a very tool specific item to produce. Another little gem!

 

Steve :)

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I cannot open this picture - is it me or is something gone wrong somewhere?

4 hours ago, Asciidv said:

I was just sent this rather nice picture of Steve's lorry!

22424227_2102586293100148_5520726801261902799_o(3).jpg

 

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26 minutes ago, Minesweeper said:

I cannot open this picture - is it me or is something gone wrong somewhere?

 

I think something has gone wrong. Oddly it is visible in the email notification I was sent.

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If you received your email notification on the same computer as where you saved the image then it will show up - if you sent the link rather than the image ;)

 

trevor

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It was fine when I opened it at work at lunch time but I can't see it now.

Thanks for posting, Barry. It is a nice pic. They are early subsidy lorries with the slat side body and hard cab so much closer to John Arthur's example in appearance. I haven't seen that one in colour before. How did you find it?

 

Steve

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Looking more closely, none of the pictures I have posted are showing either. I post mine by using 'attachments' whereas Tim usually uses someone like photobucket to host them. Is there a clue there?

 

Steve

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In a few weeks time my photobucket account will close and all the photos that i have published will be lost. I can upload them again using a different method but that will take some time to complete. I do plan to do this with the Thornycroft thread but my question is that as now the Dennis thread is pretty much finished is it worth my time to do this? Are people still looking at it? Or does it still make an interesting read and is worth saving even though it will be a lot of effort (albeit my effort). Does anybody have any strong opinions on it?

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I recently read both the Dennis and Thorny threads from start to finish.

Too hot to go outside!

Both inspiring reads.

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I appreciate it is a lot of effort, but threads like yours are inspirational and a great resource for the future...

 

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20 minutes ago, cordenj said:

I appreciate it is a lot of effort, but threads like yours are inspirational and a great resource for the future...

 

You might not appreciate how _much_ effort. 

 

I would rather he was working on his truck. 

 

But, it might be worth asking the moderators / others with raw database access if there is way to script the changes. 

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Please make the effort. I enjoyed reading the blog and found it inspirational. I am sure many others will too. Without the images the words struggle to reflect your work and it would be a shame for others to miss out on this. Of course the priority has to be the truck but the history is also important.

Many thanks for making the effort to publish your work and please continue to do so.

Dave.

 

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Hi Tim

Instead of uploading all the pictures again would it be an idea to copy the text of the thread and the pictures into one or more documents that can be added to the thread and downloaded from there? It would at least give you some more time.

Regards

Marcel

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   They must be preserved at all costs, with the pictures, please. Lest we forget, (and have to read them all again.)

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Please, save the photos, these threads are great!!

BTW what's the problem with the Photobucket account? Is it going to be completely shut down and the photos erased, or the photos will be there in the account, but the links to the forums will be broken? I am asking, because the problem for the broken links is already solved, there are add-ons both for the Chrome and the Firefox, which directly open the photos in the threads. No more broken links, the photos appear just like before, works like a charm!

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The problem with Photobucket is they set up what was a cheap service - about £18 a year to host the photos (i have posted over 12,000 photos using photobucket on this and other forums). Photobucket have now increased the price to about £350 a year which really is rather prohibitive.

Over the weekend i downloaded all of the photos from the Thornycroft forum into an order where i could repost them. My photobucket closes in March so i have a few more weeks to get them into a file which i can then reload directly on to HMVF. You may have noticed on the Thorny forum that Dads photobucket has already closed down and the photos on pages 52, 53, 63, 78 and 85 have now gone. We should be able to locate those and add them back on manually given a bit of time. Thankfully Steve took over a lot of the posting which i had done and did not use photobucket so his photos are ok. The Dennis thread is a different kettle of fish so to speak as that was all done through photobucket and downloading that and then reloading them again will be a lengthy task. But i have a few weeks to do it so i better make a start on it.

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I have found your restore-a-logues enormously useful over the years.  It has enabled many of us to have a go at  restoration/rebuild jobs we otherwise would not have attempted.  A general discussion often follows some aspect of the rebuild, and so often this has provided valuable insight into materials and techniques.

Can we say... the most successful blog of it's type?  Clearly an enormous effort from your team, and costly in time and $.

In the future, might the large e-footprint be edited down to a stand-alone 'ebook' with index... ? 

Rob 

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