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Thinking of first V Purchase - FV1601, some basic questions


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Hi Everyone,

 

I've been wanting an MV for years (ever since I got to sit in a Chieftain as an 8-year old :)) and really like the look of the Humber 1-Ton pickups (love the swoopy/curvy 1950s styling), and I' finally in a position where I've got somewhere to put one and work on it, and lo and behold, there's one up for sale on Milweb (http://www.milweb.net/classifieds/large_image.php?ad=73546&cat=3)

 

I've done a lot of researching on the web, and details seem to be a bit sketchy (or just hard to find -sorry if this has been posted on here before and I've just missed it!), but what I have been able to find out is that a lot of parts are unobtainable (not too bothered about body panels, got a few mates into Hotrods and a lot of time and effort can re-create those), so I've got a few questions I'm hoping the HMVF collective can help with:

 

Are there any real problem parts to source from the drivetrain, and are there more easily sourced alternatives (I've seen FV1609's post that he's had to cannabalise a thoroughly knackered FV1601 for drivetrain parts for his other FV1600 variants)?

 

Other than the dreaded tinworm, are there any other key areas of concern to look out for?

 

Does anyone know the vehicle in the Milweb ad? I've not spoken to the guy selling it yet, as I didn't want to waste his time before I'd done a bit more research... I'm not after something to just hop in and drive, I like the idea of a longer term project, but don't really want a complete and utter basket case! :)

 

Am I right in thinking that these weigh about 3.5 tons, and does anyone have any rough idea what it would cost to get it Transported from Kent up to Cumbria (where I live, South Lakes area just near Ulverston)?

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From what I understand, rust can be a major problem, as can rear axle breakage. Other than that, they are fairly overcomplicated 50's military vehicles and are pretty much just a bigger version of the Champ, with all of its complexities and shortcomings, but aren't anything that can't be fixed with a lot of elbow grease and a new set of rubber seals.

 

The chassis and driveline is pretty much the same as the Humber Pig and as they make use of the B60 engine, parts aren't too hard to find there. Body wise, they are unique and you'll have to do a lot of metal surgery to fix it up, but many fittings and accessories are common to all 50s era military vehicles.

 

Cheers,

Terry

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I like them and they're supposed to be a good comfortable truck to drive (by '50s standards), but every unrestored FV1601 I've seen has been full of rot and they are mechanically very complex compared with most '50s commercial vehicles. I think the main problems are driveline issues but I would also think that if you get a good one and look after it you should be OK. Clive (FV1609) or another Pig / 1 ton owner are probably the best placed to comment. I don't want to put you off, but the ad does mention rot in areas that can be quite complex to repair.

 

Go and give it a thorough going over before you buy and if you can, make sure it drives - it may have been parked up because it's already got problems.

 

There are people here who may be able to transport it, or you could try getting quotes from a website like Shiply or Uship. My guess would be around £400, but it's just a guess really.

Edited by Sean N
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Yes, go for it. Fair price, even with a lot of welding work, you may be lucky and get a good one.

I ran a FV1604A, hence “the handle” and really miss it now. You have to enjoy lying on your back with a grease gun. They are a great truck to drive, bags of power. If you want to keep your clutch intact, careful gear changes are important as there is a lot of heavy metal rolling around down there, but a very rewarding experience. Can’t advise doing a three-point-turn in the High Street though!

 

Like you, I loved the look of them, how or why they designed them that way, can’t quite understand, but all the wings unbolt, so you can get to most of the rust. The cargo body likewise is bolted and can be removed by two people. Cab top/door bottoms and lower section of the spare wheel cover usually rotten.

There are at least two, maybe three, running examples near to your location and a possible source of used spares in Northumberland.

 

The real expert on hmvf is, as Sean says, the extremely helpful Clive Elliott, who will no doubt, be on this post soon to give affirmation to all words on the subject. (Hope your broken Shorland following your axle breakage at War and Peace is fixed by now, Clive)

 

Unless health and safety/road regs changed since my time of ownership, it can be carried on a standard car transporter. Cost? I would budget for around a £1 per mile, if you can get a backload, but I could be living in the past. Sean's estimate is probably nearer the mark.

Good luck;

Mike

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I recall that the owner visited me a few years ago. He had an interest in the general Humber brand & this truck was to compliment his civilian collection. I don't recall that he had any issues with it but as he says it has not been run.

 

Forgive my laziness but here is my circular for prospective Pig owners.

 

Pig purchase.doc

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Thanks Everyone,

 

I've had a good read through the Pig purchase document and I'll give the seller a call, and see about going to have a look at it :)

 

Clive - I don't suppose you could post up/send me a quick summary of the FV1601 dimensions and weights could you, as I think that would help me when getting some transport quotes?

 

I'm not 100% but I think that 3.5 tons is over the capacity of normal recovery trucks...

 

Cheers,

 

Fatboy

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I like the whole of the FV1600 range. The FV1601/2 tends to get a bit neglected & many people assume a mention of Humber 1 Ton means Pig, but not necessarily.

 

It is worth noting that the only FV1601 at War & Peace won the overall best post-war vehicle award :-D

 

App0017a.jpg

 

App0017b.jpg

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My pleasure if I can lead someone towards Humberism & save a vehicle. I find it disappointing that there is so little interest in this iconic range of British vehicles derived from the 1950s.

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My pleasure if I can lead someone towards Humberism & save a vehicle. I find it disappointing that there is so little interest in this iconic range of British vehicles derived from the 1950s.

 

Here, Here Mr Elliott.

 

It is a fascinating vehicle.

 

However I did recently have the challenge of explaining to my OH and son that the FV1601 in front of them at a local event was how our FV1611 started life, back in 1953.

 

All good fun though and it was nice to see a CT out and about locally.

 

The owner wasn't around, so I was unable to say hello to a fellow Humberite ;)

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That was unusual Wayne. I trust you have photos & looked at the chassis plate for the ERM so I can see if it is a "known" one. :-D

 

Photo yes but other info.....Oooops!

Had civi reg plates on KTB112C

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Clive, am I right in remembering that parts of the cab are double skinned, or at least quite complex? I recall looking at a few in years gone by for other people and noticing that they had rotted in the edges of panel skins, around the roof gutter and such places, and thinking that they were going to be difficult and time consuming to make a good job of repairing.

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Sean yes it is a real nightmare around the cab roof. The space is filled with a sort of ribbed plastic packing. These are the places where you sometimes get newspaper & filler repairs :(

 

I was involved in the sale of several Humbers from my friend's estate 4 years ago. One of the Humbers is undergoing a meticulous restoration. I thought the cab was in a not too bad state, but I saw some pictures of the work recently & it is alarming how extensive the damage was.

 

I say a meticulous restoration as it is being undertaken by Roger Graystone who won the W&P best post-war vehicle prize this year. So I'm looking forward to seeing the completed restoration.

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Fatboy, it's certainly worth having a very good poke around the rusty areas and being very realistic, not to say pessimistic, about the condition of the vehicle and your ability to repair it before committing - not that I want to put you off and not that I know anything about your abilities.

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Ooops indeed Wayne :-D

 

Don't worry I took pictures of all three contract plates.

 

It is 06 BK 36

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]94732[/ATTACH]

 

That's the girl. Do you know the owner / home location and did they travel far to do the Marcle show?

 

Would be nice to meet a fellow Humberist :D

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When I owned them, I moved the Humbers on 5 separate occasions, all using professional companies with standard AA recovery-type winch-on or Brimec transporters, obviously legality has moved on since then.(see threads 4,6 and 7)

This is a problem in reflecting on life in the eighties, in my view, a more sane time.

Bw,

Mike

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Not meaning to hijack your thread fatboy, but I'm sure you will be pleased to learn just how resilient these Humbers really are. In the 1960s KTB112C was used for banger racing, an activity not liked by classic car enthusiasts as it normally results in the destruction of the vehicle.

 

But not so with Humbers! It was saved by John Marchant & rebodied by the current owner.

 

003.JPG

 

DSCF0871 (Large)a.jpg

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Thanks everyone - I've spoken to the owner (seems a very nice chap) and I'm hopefully going to have a look at it the weekend after next, if it doesn't sell in the meantime (there's someone coming this weekend)...

 

I'll bear in mind the advice here, and will have a really, really good look and a very hard think about what I might be taking on...

 

Clive - always good to get snippets of history :) Do you know any more about its banger incarnation - is that a mk2 Jag upper body or the whole body (less bonnet) bolted to the Humber chassis?

 

Given the weight I'd assumed they are pretty robust beasts :)

 

What's the insulation between the skins like - was it just for tropical/arctic protection?

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I'm not up in cars but thought the main body was a Humber Snipe as it had a connection in name with the basic chassis. I think have a picture of a Humber with a rather stretched Land Rover body!

 

I think the insulation was dual purpose. It underwent some trials in Australia, although mechanically it did not do too well due to poor technical back up. None the less the Australian Army bought some although they were officially designated as Commer FV1601.

 

Cold weather trials were done in Canada.

 

They were pretty robust. The FV1601, 1620, 1621, 1622, 1623, 1624 variants did well in the desert.

 

If you are after a Pig that is pretty up together I know of one for sale.

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[ATTACH=CONFIG]94751[/ATTACH]

 

 

 

Can you imagine that appearing in your rear view mirror?

 

It does indeed look like the jag, and it must have been an interesting project to both build, and return to its original look.

 

trevor

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I'm really after a softskin variant, partially because I really like the look of them and partly because I think a Pig would be a bit much for a first MV (although I guess panel rust isn't such an issue for the Pigs :))

 

I'll see what happens over this weekend, but if it doesn't pan out I'll join up to that newsgroup - I remember there being another couple of restoration projects on Milweb over the last 12 months, wonder what else is out there :)

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Yes the soft skin is a rarer thing. The engine bay is more roomy than a Pig, but I find the Pig engine is easier to work on as you can kneel on the flat wings, but the GS are rounded & you slide off unless you remove the wings.

 

The GS may have been less stressed as it clearly has a lighter body to carry around. The tracta joints on the GS are the same front & rear. But the Pig had Chobham joints in the rear, these were meant to be stronger but had a poor reputation particular during service in N.Ireland with the clips retaining the articulating pads failing. In fact at one stage GS rear joints were fitted.

 

When you get to the up-armoured Mk 2 Pigs troubles really went from bad to worse there is an article on the forum about all that.

 

You may notice the FV1601 being referred to as CT & sometimes GS. CT = Combat Type but the spec was changed to cut about £250 worth of extras & designated GS = General Service.

 

I have never found a definitive list of what these economies were.

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