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WW1 Thornycroft restoration

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Posted (edited)

Excellent progress again, Guys! Thanks for keeping us updated with all these recent jobs......very inspiring as usual.

I love the work on the prop shaft. Did you line up the flanges on the ends by eye? It probably doesn't even matter if they are not "clocked" exactly the same, but it's probably is more satisfying if they are!

regards,

Alex

Edited by Alex van de Wetering

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We are still keeping busy. Dad has been cleaning up the half shafts and has found that one of them is loose in the flange. I am sure that this wasn't whatstopped the original lorry from running so we will just live with it. If we get into trouble in the future, we will just have to make another.

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He has also been busy painting the lamp brackets at a coat every twelve hours or so. These are now complete and fitted, complete with a splendid side lamp found by Tim.

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Front number plate is on as well.

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In the above picture, you can just see the bonnet catches lying on the bonnet boards because they have no way of attaching them. Looking through our collection of catches, I found this one with the mounting arrangement. If this were longer, it would be ideal so I have turned some up.

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They can go on over the weekend.

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Finally, I have just turned up an 1/8" BSP plug to go in the oiling hole in the top of the steering column.

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Not a lot more I can do from here now. It is so hard being 200 miles away when I want to get stuck in! Oh well. We still intend a test run on Sunday. That is causing me some trepidation as well!

Steve   :)

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Dad has been busy whilst I have been at work. He has finished off the footstep and also fitted the rear licence plate as well.

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That is another tick in the box. Tomorrow is going to be busy if we are to have a test run on Sunday. I need to set up the footbrake and clutch, oil in the engine and back axle, fill all the greasers, fit bonnet catches, fit the step and also the cushions. The cushions are actually quite important as we test ran the Dennis without them and whenever I tried to turn the wheel, I just slid around on the seat without maneuvering the lorry. With the narrowness of our roads and the steepness of the drive, that is one variable I could do without!

Steve   :)

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We have had another good day with plenty of progress. It is feeling a bit relentless at the moment though! We started off by finishing the bonnet catches and fitting them to their new mountings. That all went well and I drilled the holes in the bonnet boards for the front ones without issue. However, the rear ones are so positioned that they are right over the chassis rail. I am not drilling a hole in that so I will have to take the boards off and counterbore them so that the nuts sit inside the timber. One for another day as we are pushing to be ready for the test run tomorrow.

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The front one does look quite nice though.

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Then I spent the rest of the morning setting up the footbrake linkage and pedal. Nothing very interesting to see, unfortunately, but we do now have a working footbrake.

If we are going to drive it tomorrow, we need some half-shafts. Dad has cleaned these up so it was just a simple fit, or so we thought. Nothing is ever quite that easy!

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After clearing enough space to swing it, the half-shaft was pushed home

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I don't remember it being that rusty but the back of the garage is a bit gloomy!

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The 5/8" bolts are fed through from the rear. The holes are very close fitting so the bolts had to be tapped into place which was quite tricky considering the limited access.

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Then the hubcap was fitted and the bolts tightened a little bit at a time until everything was in contact.

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They were finally done up with my 3/4" drive Chinese socket and tommy bar.

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Then the other side. As has been noted here before, space is a bit limited. We had to push the lorry forward until the axle aligned with an empty shelf!

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Then it was a case of simply bolting up as before. The flange on this half-shaft is very loose on the spline and has obviously been working over a long period. I think it will be OK in the short term but we will have to make another sooner or later.

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The brake setting up brought the pedal into line with the clutch. This looks nice but the stroke is a bit short so we will have to be careful about keeping it properly adjusted. I have no doubt that the shoes will bed in very quickly so we will probably have to stop to adjust them on the run itself. With the padel in its final place, I can now see what I am going to have to do with the floor board.

After setting the clutch springs and bolting up and pinning the coupling between the clutch and gearbox, I fitted the outer floor panel.

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And then the footstep.

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We put oil in the differential and I moved the lorry back into the garage by winding the handle with it in reverse. So far so good! Just water and oil in the engine and we will be away tomorrow. Let's hope all goes well and it will drive back up the hill into the driveway!

More tomorrow.

Steve :)  

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23 minutes ago, Old Bill said:

Let's hope all goes well and it will drive back up the hill into the driveway!

I am sure it will do, good luck tomorrow and have fun!

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Your loose half shaft spline might be a candidate for a metal spray repair rather than a new shaft.

I have to keep remiding myself how massive all these parts are when there is noting for scale.

Well done and I'm sure you will make the run.

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Posted (edited)

And the %$^********ing weather for today is! Nature always has a sense of humour. Best of luck, we all await result,

Edited by Tony B

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Posted (edited)

Today has been one of mixed successes. Not a bad one for a new lorry but not quite as good as I had hoped considering our timescales. This is what we have been up to.

We started off by fitting the seat cushions. I first drove the Dennis with no cushions and every time I tried to steer, I slid around rather than turning the lorry and I didn't want that to happen again.

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We drained some more water from the sump which, to be honest, is causing us some concern. I took a side cover from the crank case and then poured water over the top whilst Father looked in with a torch. Water could plainly be seen coming in at quite a rate so that is where it is coming from. The best solution will be to seal up the water hoses and stop the leaks  at source. At least we know how it is getting in there now.

We then filled the radiator with water and the sump with oil.

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Time for a swing!

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It didn't want to know so one of our guests, a young and fit student type had a go and, of course, it went.

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It idled for a while but didn't want to pick up very much. However, I decided to move it out which it did nicely. The clutch works anyway!

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I had a bit of a go at manoeuvering and it was OK but it would not rev and the engine kept dying on me. We decided to stop for a bit and fit the hood and tailboard whilst there was plenty of manpower about. and then have a think about it.

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It idles quite nicely but any move to open the throttle and it fades and pops and bangs through the carburettor. If we choked it a bit and tried to open the throttle it was much more responsive so we diagnosed a weak mixture and I turned up a new main jet. The original had a number 56 drill through it. Our 55 and 54 were missing from the rack so I used a number 53 which is 0.012" bigger. That was a much bigger step than I intended but we fitted it and it was much improved so we decided to have a go.

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Coming down that hill certainly proved that the brakes work!

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We were away!

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Unfortunately, fifty yards up the road we came to a sudden stop as the engine stiffened up and seized. I could not turn it. We sat there for ten minutes whereupon it freed itself and I could re-start it. We reversed to the bottom of the hill and then started to drive back up whereupon it seized again. Another delay whilst it freed up and then I drove the rest of the way back. That hill start was fun! We then parked it in the driveway and left it idling for two hours which it did very smoothly. I did try to accelerate it just before we shut down but it was very sluggish and then stiffened up again and stopped. We are hoping that it is only a running in issue and that perhaps I made the pistons a bit tight. We intend to idle it some more during the week and see if it frees itself up. In the meantime, there are still the straps for the hood, the tailboard catches, the wing irons the cab floor and the hood frames to do. Fortunately, I have the week off!

TIm has some clips which he will post when he gets home.

Steve    :)

Edited by Old Bill
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The odd water leak you can live with but an engine that keeps tightening up like that is a major cause for concern.  Hope you get to the bottom of its issue this week and make it to the run.

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If it will idle for a couple of hours, but sticks almost right away when you need power, then it is probably piston expansion.  They will be keeping cool enough while idling but expanding past some critical limit when used hard.

It might run in if you idle it for hours and hours and hours, but if you push it and they expand too much you would be risking the cylinder barrels.  How long would it take to pull the barrels and inspect?  It might just be the one cylinder you could dress down right away.

 

It does look much better than post #1 though.  8-)

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60 miles to Brighton and then crawling through traffic the last few miles to the sea front on may be a roasting hot day would send shivers down my spine if I knew my engine was likely to seize. Like Gordon has just said I think it would be far safer to pull off the barrels first thing tomorrow morning and take a look. With a hone you could ease out each cylinder a thou or two in minutes compared with hours of running at tickover. You could have the barrels back on by lunch time confident that you will be eating ice creams on the sea front next Sunday!

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Posted (edited)

The Thorny out on its first drive. The dinging noise is the fan clipping the edge of the radiator. 

 

Edited by Great War truck
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6 minutes ago, Asciidv said:

 Like Gordon has just said I think it would be far safer to pull off the barrels first thing tomorrow morning and take a look. 

You could also re-check the ring-end gaps too. Maybe there is a tapered bore? 

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Steve

Just be wary that you are not being given a message by the vehicle that you are "pushing it" by trying to make your deadline.

There seems to be multiple issues happening there.

Would not like to hear that it gave endless trouble on the event or that you broke down part way there.


Would it be more prudent to take one of the other vehicles and stop stressing the 3 of you?

Regards

Doug 

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Good morning one and all!

Well, the phone was red hot last night and again this morning. Many thanks everyone for your thoughts and suggestions. We have just discussed our options and have decided not to go which is a great disappointment. However, it really needed everything to be spot on yesterday for us to be able to finish the rest off in time and the hours are just not there to fix it. It would be a great shame to get there and fail or, worse still, bust a rod and do catastrophic damage for the sake of lifting a block and having a look. We shall carry on this week and have a day out in Brighton to watch our friends come in.

Thanks to everyone who has been rooting for us.

Steve 

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8 minutes ago, Old Bill said:

Good morning one and all!

Well, the phone was red hot last night and again this morning. Many thanks everyone for your thoughts and suggestions. We have just discussed our options and have decided not to go which is a great disappointment. However, it really needed everything to be spot on yesterday for us to be able to finish the rest off in time and the hours are just not there to fix it. It would be a great shame to get there and fail or, worse still, bust a rod and do catastrophic damage for the sake of lifting a block and having a look. We shall carry on this week and have a day out in Brighton to watch our friends come in.

Thanks to everyone who has been rooting for us.

Steve 

Steve,

That is a wise decision. Having been rebuilding engines for 50 years, I was alarmed at the tightening up of the engine, and as you say, it could end up with a rod through the block and that would be unthinkable. Take your time in investigating and hope you can get the lorry out for other events during the year.

You have all done fantastic work to a deadline, but you cannot afford to damage anything at this stage. Well done to all involved.

regards, Richard

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I think Richard has it.  Everything else could have been overcome, but that locking up is just too risky.

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As with everything on this rebuild a wise decision logically arrived at. It may be a disapointment for the team not to reach their self imposed deadline, but for me watching it has been a fantastic journey. I applaud your efforts.

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29 minutes ago, john1950 said:

 It may be a disapointment for the team not to reach their self imposed deadline.

The deadline was, rather, imposed by the Armistice of Compiègne.

I don't think it is wise to take the truck as it is, but with a week (or so) to go I think I would be looking for the problem to see if there is a solution. But I can imagine that the team is somewhat burned out by now. 

 

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Posted (edited)

Well, once we had finished cancelling all the arrangements, we had quite a nice steady day. I started off by cutting the tailboard hinge pin to length and drilling for split pins. I also fitted the tailboard catches leaving only the pins to make.

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I also took the bonnet boards off and fitted the rearmost bonnet catches  so they are now secure.

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With the lorry out in the sunshine we could see the faults in the paintwork so Dad has been touching up and finishing off. I am amazed at how well father does in such a cramped shed in the dark. It still narked him to see the odd patch of primer showing through!

Then our pal, Mark D turned up with the cab straps. Mark is an amazing craftsman and can turn his hand to anything. He previously made up the leather drive shaft joints for us and very kindly offered to make the straps as well. I gave him the measurements but he was keen to see them fitted in person so that he could adjust them as necessary.

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A brief moment of doubt when he thought they were too short! However, Mark's work is spot on and when I pulled the canvas tight, they proved to be perfect first time.

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And then the other one.

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The straps pull out the canvas and the lorry is looking really nice.

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I think we will have a look at the valve plugs tomorrow and see if we can seal them up. Two were blowing, one quite badly, so it would be nice to fix them before we try the engine again. Then I want to finish the floor and start on the wing irons.

Steve   :)

Edited by Old Bill
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You guys did a great job bringing this fine beast back to life....

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It lives! Fantastic work, but to quote the old adage 'Don't spoil ship for 'aporth of tar'. Easier to sort out problems at home than on the road.

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