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Civilian Mk1 Militant

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I think, if anything, the Militant is a bit lighter, but only a bit. It could be just that because it is rolling better it turns easier, but that said it does seem to understeer, so you have to turn the wheel more to get the same lock.


I have only done a small drive round, so far, so not really a definitive test. I do think they look a lot better

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  • 3 months later...

Show time is here again, first one of the season. Kent Heritage Transport Show and South East Bus Festival at the Kent County Showground this Saturday. I get accepted in both camps, work on buses, play on trucks


Not a bad day all together except they made me park next to that modern "thing"




There was quite a few MV's on the other side of the showground, don't know if that was any one from here.


Drove up there in the morning, no problem, come to going home time and I thought the old girl sounded a bit "throaty" as I followed the parade round to the exit.


Pulled out onto the main A249, and put the pedal to the metal and the roar was.... well deafening!! Even with the ear muffs on it was hurting.


Trying to drive home quietly was a bit of a laugh, every time I touched the throttle people were looking round and pointing etc.


Got back to the farm and was able to have a good inspection of the trouble.




Due to the knackered flexi tube, the exhaust is by passing the silencer. Not a real problem to fix, hopefully we will have a bit at work I can acquire, it's only about a foot long, clamps are still in good condition, so we should be good.



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Militants are quite small really!!


On the way back from the AEC Rally at Newark this weekend, couldn't resist a comparison photo next to a modern DAF at Peterborough services on the A1.


Was the old girls first big run out since fitting the new tyres last year so was monitoring the driving to see how things were. She certainly runs faster, for a start. We are going to do a proper test at some point, but conservative estimate is a shade under 40 mph, 37/38 ish. Shaved half an hour off the 160 mile journey time


More importantly, is the diesel used or rather Not Used!! No dispute on this one, we measured it to the exact gallon/mile.


380 miles travelled, 26 gallons of diesel used works out at 14.6 mpg Incredible return.


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Just tried to edit my last post, but every time I went to save the changes I just got a message saying I hadn't typed enough.


Anyhow, wanted to say we met up with Andy (Truck257) and had a cracking weekend, bumped into Neil (Artistsrifles) on the Sunday, he'd been shopping, and had a bag full of bits for his Militant.

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Militants are quite small really!!


On the way back from the AEC Rally at Newark this weekend, couldn't resist a comparison photo next to a modern DAF at Peterborough services on the A1.


'tis always interesting seeing how these older trucks weigh up compared to modern stuff. I guess they just have a presence about them that makes them feel bigger, until you have them parked next to a new wagon.

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  • 10 months later...

Another year has gone by already, I can't keep up .  It was only 2 posts ago that I put photos up of the Militant at Detling last year, when the exhaust cracked.

And here we are again, in 2018


There was a good turn out of commercials, and military stuff, even though it is really a bus spotters gathering.  I know it looks like we are Billy No Mates here, but this was taken late in the day, after many had gone home.


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Noticed a couple of bits of rust breaking through on the front of the cab lately and as we are off to the big AEC Rally at Newark  next weekend, thought I'd best do something about it.



Not a disaster, but not exactly show worthy


Dig out the rust, and skim over with filler


Primer on and flatted down


Mask up and spray on fresh red


Vast improvement, just got to make the rest as shiny as the new bit and we'll be ready to show off to our adoring fans


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  • 10 months later...

Got a sick truck!

Was on my way to the Kent Heritage Transport Show at Detling this morning.  Everything going well as I pass Sittingbourne Train Station, then suddenly a violent banging noise from the engine.

Panic stations, pull over and shut down. Jump out to look, expecting a hole in the engine or something but nothing obvious.  Oil and water levels still OK, not over hot either.

Sounded terminal anyway so phone for help.  Now there has been many threads on here with horror stories about recovery companies picking up our sort of vehicles, so was a bit nervous about what to expect.

I've been paying Autohome £109 every year for the last seven years as they guarantee that recovering a dead Militant would be no problem.  Pleased to say it was no problem.

Spoke to a guy called Sam who took all the details, where from and to etc, and what the problem was.  He sent a text back to say truck was on its way.  Just over an hour later I got a call from the actual recovery gang to confirm vehicle type and location and shortly after that we looked like this


 Blocking the traffic as usual.  Took about twenty minutes to get loaded and chained down.  Low loader driver had googled Militant to see what he was meant to be collecting first so knew what to bring.  About an hour later the old girl had been dropped off at our workshop in Otford.

So top marks for Autohome for organising it and many thanks to Cedars for doing the job.

The rest of the day was spent finding the problem.  First off, carefully start the motor and have another listen.  General opinion was a dropped exhaust valve.  The banging noise was the compression stroke blowing back through the air intake when the inlet valve opened.

Rocker covers off to find the guilty party.  No.4 cylinder now fitted with a 2 piece pushrod


Further investigation revealed a bit of an own goal on this!  3 years ago she had an oil leak from the side plate that covers the pushrod gallery.  This was repaired with a new gasket and replacing some missing bolts.  One of the replacement bolts I fitted was a tad too long and has spent several thousand miles rubbing against the rod. eventually making a hole in it and causing the failure.


On the good side it is not a major disaster, like a knackered big end or piston, and it is relatively easy to repair.  As long as I can find a replacement push rod.

So, begging time, anybody got a push rod for a Mk1 Militant, or do you know somebody who might know somebody etc.


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@Zero-Five-Two  i was just enjoying this new to me resto blog, got to the page where you went on your first test drive.  instantly recognised teynham, then notice LTR boarded up, checked the date, laughed out loud.  it was my wifes car that went through the shop window (shoved through in fact, T boned by the guy from black lion lynsted) 😮

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On ‎4‎/‎10‎/‎2019 at 4:17 PM, Butch said:


I've got one you can have if you still need one.  Give me a call on 077791489079

cheers  Gary

An absolute mega thank you, mate!!  :thanx:

Rushed up to north Essex this morning to collect said rod, fitted it this afternoon, adjusted all the tappets, and the old girl sounds sweet again.  Did smoke a bit when first started, but that'll just have been cleaning out the cylinder, I reckon.

Earlier this week I made a full inspection of the other push rods and side cover bolts.  All the bolts are of the same length, so they can't be my replacement ones.  There were 5 others which were very close to push rods, and a couple of which had actually left marks of their closeness, but only that one had caused damage.  They've all been trimmed down now, so it can't happen again.

 The rocker cover gasket didn't appreciate being disturbed, so need to make a new one, before we venture out on the road again.  Not a problem though, good old fleebay has provided, big sheet of the stuff should be with me on Monday.  Cut out, fit up, and off we go.  Watch this space!

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  • 1 year later...

Any one who has seen the Tanker thread lately will have read the bit about visiting the other woman for diesel distribution, and as I said there, haven't been near the old girl for ages what with the restrictions etc and concentrating on the Tankers restoration.


 Feeling guilty about neglect and so on, thought I'd best give her a bit of love too.  So spent a day giving her a once over, oil, water, tyre pressures etc, and planned a run out for the not too distant future.

A good many months ago now, had a discussion with the Guv' nor at work about moving a container office in the bus yard where the Tanker is kept


Wants to be moved along the concrete slab up towards the fence.  Rather than pay some one to come in and do it, suggestion was it could be done with the Militant.  Just put the winch rope through the fence and pull.

So, plan was hatched.  Good run out for the truck it's about 50 miles each way, shift the container, thereby earning a few brownie points, and use the bus washing kit while we are there.


 Nice early start yesterday, and stop for a breakfast bite on the way


Took a few shunts to get in the right place for a straight pull


Hook a couple of chains and the winch rope on, engage gear and pull


Job done.  No effort at all, truck didn't even notice there was a weight hooked on the winch rope, despite the container being stuffed to the gunnels with all sorts of kit.


Finished off with a good shampoo and pressure wash.  She looks much better for it too, but I think she could do with a respray at some point.  The red is fading badly with living out side all the time, and there is a few places where a bit of rust is bubbling up.  Perhaps it's just as well having no shows this year, we wouldn't have looked our best.  It'll have to be done before next years show season.



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Still on the theme of gaining brownie points at work, had another job for her this week.  Bit of shed erecting.


Like building giant meccano, with M16 bolts.  Start at the back and work forward


Was rather warm this afternoon, had to make full use of the trucks air con facilities


One shed frame in position.  Well just, it's all a bit wobbly in places as some of the bolts have been left deliberately slack to allow for fine tweeking of uprights and levels, before the cladding goes on

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