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Mk1 Militant Tanker


Zero-Five-Two

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  • 3 weeks later...

Bodging or improvise and overcome?

There has been much discussion on this forum and other sites about extra lights on your MV for travelling to and from shows.  I'm very much in favour of it, there have been far too many accidents to MV's over the years, a lot of which have been attributed to the other motorist not seeing the rear lights on the slower moving MV. 

Now you would like to think that a Militant would be able to with stand some clown running into the back, but if a fully loaded Stolly can get punted into the woods (see the thread about the one in Australia) a Militant could easily suffer the same fate.

The Tanker isn't short of rear lights and reflectors, it has tail, outline and side markers, but more is always better 

I have a magnetic beacon on the other Militant and it certainly helps to light up the back of the truck both in daylight and at night  Best bit is, it only takes seconds to fit or remove when you get to a show.  So I need sort one out for the Tanker.

Tanker has 2 trailer sockets on the back.  A standard NATO 12 pin and an American Warner one.  I want to leave the NATO one alone, just in case I want to plug a trailer in one day, so plugging the beacon into the warner socket would be ideal.

Warner socket looks like this

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The four cross shaped plates inside are the terminals, so just need a plug to fit

Plug looks like this

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Given that these were fitted to all American trailer stuff during WW2 and on into the fifties you'd think there would be a few of them still around.  But can I find one?  Yeah, found just one. Bloke in the states has one, but he wants £125 for it plus another £30 postage, add on whatever British Customs deem necessary to bring it into the country, and well...... Not going to do that.

Sure I can make something that will "do", but how?  Bit of head scratching later and an idea turned up.  Heavy gauge copper wire bent up like in the photo to make the terminals, set them into a mould, then fill with fibre glass resin. Once set it would be solid enough to push in and pull out, and as it's plastic it's insulated as well.

Conveniently, a standard silicone mastic tube is the perfect size to fit the socket, so an empty one was cleaned out and used as the mould.  Connect the beacon cable to the copper wire terminals and seal that in as well so it all becomes one piece

Comes out like this

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and plugs in thus

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Needs the sharp edges sanding off now, and a coat of paint to finish it off.  Might be a bit of a Heath Robinson bodge, but the important bit is, it does work ! Job done

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Regarding Warner plugs and sockets, I suggest trawling for either Bofors L/70 equipment spares because they had them as well. We always had the cables in the CES tool and spares boxes that came with each gun. Also, I remember that the italians used to have these sockets on their vehicles as well, at least up to the early 80s, so that might be another source. 

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In regards to the Oz Stolly, it got hit by a road train so depending on the layout could be the equivalent of getting rear ended by a Scammel Commander carrying a Challenger 2 doing 60mph.

But your light set up looks like a great idea to stop the tailgating clown cars :)

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8 hours ago, radiomike7 said:

Does that suggest it was RAF at one time, I thought only they used electric trailer brakes?

The Warner plugs and sockets were originally intended for electric brakes, but were commonly used for basic lighting functions.  Good system, just short of one circuit for what is really needed.

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I'm sure one will turn up at some point.  Most of my searching so far has been carried out under covid conditions, so basically just on line, including a post on here.  As there hasn't been any trade stands at shows or autojumbles etc to rummage through, things have been a bit restricted.

I've been told quite a lot of early fifties British Army kit was fitted with these sockets because of the large numbers of American trailers that were still over here after WW2. I didn't know the Italians used them as well, and early eighties is quite recent in comparison.

As for the Oz stolly getting shunted by a roadtrain, I was thinking of overloaded foreign artic with no speed limiter and the driver busy watching telly.  Happens a lot down our way as they rush to and from Dover.

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On 2/26/2021 at 10:18 AM, Zero-Five-Two said:

 

As for the Oz stolly getting shunted by a roadtrain, I was thinking of overloaded foreign artic with no speed limiter and the driver busy watching telly.  Happens a lot down our way as they rush to and from Dover.

 

Yeah I bet that isn't pretty, bit like that Texas pile up due to ice.

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Finally got a decent days weather to do a bit more on Tanker work.  I thought I was done with the cut and weld malarky ages ago, and was well peeved when I found these holes in the pump room floor the other week.

160937989_1316FloorinRedOxide.thumb.jpg.da39cf130e9e95fae64cbcf8223d4d99.jpg

Can't pretend I didn't see it and just hope it goes away, so dust off welder and fetch the grinder again

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Might as well chop the whole square out, because the remaining metal is pretty thin  as well.  Corralex sheet stuffed underneath helps to protect the diesel tank top from sparks.

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Weld in new plate.  It's 3mm thick so a lot more forgiving than thin body panels.

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Usual coat of Bonda to finish off.

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Unfortunately there was a little collateral damage on the out side, a few bubbles in the DBG which will need a bit of treatment, but the floor is fixed and that was plan A so not a bad effort.

 

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10 hours ago, Zero-Five-Two said:

Weld in new plate.  It's 3mm thick so a lot more forgiving than thin body panels.

3mm thick !! You lucky lucky &*&*&*& 😬  I can only dream of using 3mm.

Looks good and had to be done, it would have always bothered you if you had just slapped filler over it and pretended it was ok, bit annoying that the paint bubbled but I am sure it won’t be seen once you’ve touched it back in. 

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Correx sheet is typically used in the building industry for temporary protection to finished work etc. Can be bought from most good builders merchants or retrieved from skips! Think it is all class O flame retardant so handy when doing hot works.

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  • 1 month later...
Posted (edited)

Haven't been near the old Tanker for the last few weeks, what with naff weather and I had  a few domestic issues to attend to, like decorating, and laying a block paving path in the garden, so getting back to it today was good news all round.

Been planning a good run out for a while, we've done a couple of short trips,  but a real jaunt out to shake down any faults and just drive the thing was what was required.

So, early start, half seven on site, quick check round, oil, coolant etc and fire up.

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Like a good old British truck, she did puff a bit at first, but to be fair it was a tad fresh at that hour.  She still started first turn no trouble

IMG-20210424-WA0007.thumb.jpg.243f7b9ae6980e4e8a8fbffc91e6665c.jpg

 Air built up, smoke cleared, two dozen buses moved out of the way, and we can squeeze through the gap and venture out.

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Check speedo and fuel gauge before leaving, just over 3/4 of a tank full and 26 miles on the trip.

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First priority after getting out, find somewhere for breakfast.  Both the two normal haunts were shut, so ended up 30 mile into our run at Munns Buns in Sittingbourne.  Nice bit of scoff though, highly recommended.

For those who may be interested, our route took us from Swanley on the A20 towards Maidstone, A249 up to Sittingbourne then A2 through to Canterbury.  Right turn here onto the A28 down to Ashford.

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Stopped in a layby just outside Canterbury, to change driver.  I'd done an hour and a half by then, time for our Stuart to have a turn.

With him at the wheel we continued down to the end of A28, past Ashford, Tenterden, and Rolvenden.  Right onto the A268 through Hawkhurst and into Sussex at Flimwell.

Tea stop here, and top marks to Stuarts other half, she sent him out with a box of sausage rolls.  They went down well with a brew.

With me now back in the hot seat it was up the A21 onto the M25 and back into Swanley.  Once parked up back at base, I was supposed  to take a second photo of the dashboard for the mileage and fuel consumption and have to admit I failed badly.  The last time I can remember looking at it the trip showed 131, so we had covered 105 miles.  So whole journey was a bit more than that.

As for issues, nothing serious.  Tickover wants raising a fraction to be more comfortable.  Tracking needs doing, front tyres are feathering a bit, and the steering doesn't feel "quite" right.  No.2 axle brakes aren't working as hard as No.3, but after 100+ miles I guess they have bedded in somewhat, so bit of adjustment required.

No major dramas, and she drives very well, not as racy as the timber tractor, but that is understandable, she is longer and heavier, and a bit slower away from the lights.  Top speed is good (for a Militant) and plenty of power on the uphill bits  

I did do a short vid of our Stu negotiating Ashford, hope he forgives me for including the bit with the filter light.  Best watched with sound turned right up 😁!  She makes a lovely noise

 

 

 

Edited by Zero-Five-Two
spellling
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23 minutes ago, Zero-Five-Two said:

I did do a short vid of our Stu negotiating Ashford, hope he forgives me for including the bit with the filter light.  Best watched with sound turned right up 😁!  She makes a lovely noise

 

 

Ha, ha, I know those wretched lights at that junction! Wish I had seen you come through Ashford. I bet it goes a bit faster the the Militant with the Coles bridging crane, they weighed about 25 tons.

Richard

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21 hours ago, Richard Farrant said:

Ha, ha, I know those wretched lights at that junction! Wish I had seen you come through Ashford. I bet it goes a bit faster the the Militant with the Coles bridging crane, they weighed about 25 tons.

Richard

Had a bit of experience with the Mk5 Coles, I remember they were real top heavy too, rolled terribly on corners

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1 minute ago, Zero-Five-Two said:

Had a bit of experience with the Mk5 Coles, I remember they were real top heavy too, rolled terribly on corners

Hi Rob,

The Mk5 Coles had a 760 engine and a bit more poke than the Militant Mk1, as you say, a lot of weight up top!

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Back up to the Tanker today, needed to get a few measurements for a colleague who is scratch building a tanker model.  I was supposed to do that that yesterday and failed again too.  Did give me the chance to take that dashboard photo and check mileage too.

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As you can see 139 on the trip now, so 113 miles done yesterday.  Tank gauge shows we used about a quarter, which would be about 12 gallons.  So "about" 9.5 mpg.  Just as the handbook suggests.

Having said there were no issues yesterday, she looks like this today

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 Couple of spots of oil, not to much to worry about, but a significant and persistent coolant drip, which does need worrying about.  Looks like it is coming from a hose on the water pump, so hopefully just a jubilee clip that needs tightening.  Will get a better look next week when I am better dressed for crawling under the thing.

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