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This is another marque that makes the standard of engineering of the contemporary Dennis vehicles look rather amateur. 

Those cross-members and torque tube look very expensive, and very hard to make and rather lovely.

It's interesting to compare this fact to the continued existence of both the Dennis company and an awful lot of their vehicles. 

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OK, if you felt a little cheated by the last post, this one has more substance to it. General topic: getting stuff off the floor and back on the lorry.  I needed a small quantity of 5/16" BSF sin

A  few parts from ww1. original photo taken from my glass neg. ASC stores 1918, don`t know if they fit a Karrier.  Keith  

Having briefly subverted the thread with talk of roofing techniques and crane envy (which is perfectly fine with me by the way) it's time for another update on the Karrier.  I've marked out and d

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Wow! What an amazing photograph. So much detail. 

Torque tubes (think I can make out the small brass plate) different pattern to mine; the ball is bolted on, Leyland-like, but mine is cast in one piece with the socket that is riveted to the tube, half shafts, even a couple of inlet manifolds c/w carburettors hanging on the wall. 

Not sure about the chain sprockets- B series? 

Thanks for sharing this. 

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18 hours ago, andypugh said:

This is another marque that makes the standard of engineering of the contemporary Dennis vehicles look rather amateur. 

Those cross-members and torque tube look very expensive, and very hard to make and rather lovely.

It's interesting to compare this fact to the continued existence of both the Dennis company and an awful lot of their vehicles. 

The standard of engineering on the Karrier is extremely high, as you note.

I have no direct experience of Dennis vehicles but your comment does raise an interesting discussion as to the survival of companies and the survival rates of their products.

Certainly the survival rate for pre-1920 lorries is far lower than pre-1920 tractors.

Has anyone attempted to collate this for say AEC, Albion, Dennis, Leyland, Thornycroft apart from the minor marques.




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On 4/20/2020 at 5:14 PM, Doc said:

Has anyone attempted to collate this for say AEC, Albion, Dennis, Leyland, Thornycroft apart from the minor marques.


Hi Andy.

I have just had a quick look through my list of pre-1920 lorries in UK and have come up with:


Albion 6

Dennis 3

Leyland 7

Thornycroft 14

This is by no means definitive as it has been created be me writing them down when I see them or know of them. I think I will have to sit down with Tim to try to put together a more comprehensive list. Come to think of it, your brother's Leyland isn't on there so it is time it got an update! The numbers are not big, however.

Steve   :)

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23 hours ago, Old Bill said:

Hi Andy.

I have just had a quick look through my list of pre-1920 lorries in UK and have come up with:


Albion 6

Dennis 3

Leyland 7

Thornycroft 14

This is by no means definitive as it has been created be me writing them down when I see them or know of them. I think I will have to sit down with Tim to try to put together a more comprehensive list. Come to think of it, your brother's Leyland isn't on there so it is time it got an update! The numbers are not big, however.

Steve   :)

Is that list showing only operational vehicles, and or those under restoration? Does it include museum display lorries?



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Bit of a mixture really. I started off collecting only lorries of all conditions. However, one of these Thornys is the bus. Also, of the three Dennis, one is ours, one has had the engine replaced for film work and the third is in a shed, pretty well untouched. The owner very kindly let us measure up his water pump to copy. These are all vehicles in the UK. Tim has a much better idea of what is around the world.

Steve  :)

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Thought i'd have a quick go at this...early Leylands in Australia & NZ.  I'm sure Doug and Steve can add to these...

1916 unrestored RAF type in NSW; 2 x restored 1919 lorries in NSW & AWM; c1912 S2 under restoration VIC; 1920 4 ton lorry NSW also under restoration (last i heard); 1912 Fire engine (Hobart Fire Museum); 1913/14 X4 & 1913 S4 - mostly original - NZ; 1920 chassis NZ; 1916 wreck but 'mostly complete' NZ.  


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10 hours ago, andypugh said:

So, that's your one and Ben's two? (There are several fire engines, of course) 

I haven't counted Ben's. Did the list before he did the lorries! Needs a revision.

I have a list for my personal interest. However, need to be very careful about publishing things because of security issues. Also, making a list could be your life's work if not careful!

Sorry. Bit of a diversion!


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New thread is a good idea.

Probably best not to name private owners; limit to country or state / province.

Anyway, it's midweek, so time for another post.  This time from August 2019.

Like many lorries of the period, the hand brake acts on the rear wheels. To ensure both brakes pull up evenly a compensating linkage is invariable used. 


Hand brake compensating linkage.


Not the best photograph but does show the shaft running across the chassis and the link arm to operate the near side brake.


As can be seen, there was considerable wear in the hardened steel bushes of the compensating link. Fortunately these bushes are common to various parts of the mechanism. The tea-chests referred to previously yielded these two spare links with serviceable bushes. Some rudimentary tooling was made from off-cuts of copper and aluminium, allowing the bushes to be driven out.


They were then fitted into the compensating link, which now looks a lot more respectable.

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It's that time again. Time for a catch-up on the week's activities. This week has been what weather forecasters sometimes call "a mixed bag".

Re-fitting the off side rear spring ground to a halt when I realised that I didn't have a 1"BSF tap in Suffolk to clean the threads of the links. Fortunately our favourite online auction site came up trumps and one arrived in the letter box on Friday.



Spring on its short journey round the workshop. So many memories associated with the old trolley. It's what our father used to move various of his stationary engines around when we were too young to be of any help.


Spring fitted. Thanks to David for lending a hand with this job.


Brake shoes, actuating cam, spring, pivots and link all pre-assembled.


Lifted into place, a light tap with a hammer and block of wood on the bolts to drive everything home. (scuff marks on the actuating cam and pivot bolts just visible)


Bolts in undercoat.

Next out of the "mixed bag"

Re-fitting the radiator mounts and the front bonnet support brackets.


Front chassis member had been replaced by a previous owner. Holes weren't quite big enough for 3/8"BSF bolts, so I opened them out a little. 


Extra nut on the front bolts is for a P-clip to retain the gas pipe for the headlights.


While I was de-cluttering the painting shed it was the turn of the steering box to go back on the chassis.



All nuts and bolts have been worked up to top coat now, though I don't have a photograph. I also realised that the front bonnet support brackets were the other side of the line, so to speak, so ought to be black not green. This has now been rectified.

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It's midweek again. You know the drill...

I've made mention in the past of the tea chests and the treasures contained within. So here follows some pictures of treasure.

First of all, a small cast brass disk reminding drivers to clean the oil filter.IMG_0317.thumb.JPG.e178e1a2bc753e6d084a4f644fb396ed.JPG

The holes line up with those in the remains of one of the valve chest covers.IMG_0318.thumb.JPG.c5faad266b237bda1a5834296f6cf860.JPG

Which, when mounted on the engine, neatly coincides with the oil filter.IMG_0319.thumb.JPG.95cf00954b1f58b5710f4741662382fc.JPG

Finally! a photograph that's ended up in the correct orientation.

Next out of the treasure chest...


The remains of the fan shroud. There's enough left to discern the constructional details.


Alongside a radiator side-panel that had been used as a pattern. Sanding off the paint revealed the locations of the bolt holes for securing the fan shroud.


And finally, most of two rear mudguard brackets. Those who are paying attention may recall that Messrs. Clayton stopped  supplying chassis-mounted mudguard brackets - these would have bolted to the body.

And finally, not from the tea chests but treasure all the same - the remains of the under pan.









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The last pictures Andy, got me pondering on something I had thought about when looking at my Leyland parts list. 

Namely, underpans, or undershields (Leyland parlance) - were they a requirement of the extant law (either police regulations in London, or county traffic commissioners); or was it common practice to fit them due to the oily/leak-prone designs of the day; or further was it because of the mixed traffic of horse and lorry that demanded no drips of oil onto pavements?   I wonder when they stopped fitting them, and does anyone know?

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I seem to recall that the requirement for under shields was covered in the Thackery AEC books. The requirement to minimise noise in the early days resulted in AEC using chains instead of gears in their gearboxes. So I think it related to noise related regulations in certain areas. My 1926 Albion came with an undershield so the idea was around for a while.

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Social distancing precludes "Pinch, punch, first of the month" (and no returns!) so instead an extra post.

The steering wheel had seen repair at some point in the past. Gone was the wooden rim; in its place a rolled and welded piece of galvanized pipe, with tabs brazed on, bolted to the spokes. Functional, yes. Ingenious, possibly. Elegant, no. 


Slitting disc in the angle grinder made short work of the tabs.



In its place, a new laser-cut rim.



Steering wheel casting is steel, so the rim could be welded on. (Thanks to my brother Gerald for doing this)



A bit of work with the flap wheel on the grinder


After filling and sanding and a couple of coats of primer, it's looking quite respectable again.



At some point in the future (when free movement returns) this will be encased in wood.

Another small job ticked off the list.


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Been a busy old week, so thought I would post early.

Decided to make a start on the buttresses for the bulkhead. The originals were thin steel castings that must have been very badly corroded in that they had been discarded. It is much easier now, with the ready availability of plasma cutting,  to produce faithful replicas, than in the 1970's when the replacements were made.

I've had a kit of laser cut parts for a while now, stored in the airing cupboard. Some fettling was required: the bolt holes needed to be measured from the chassis and drilled into the bottom plates, some other parts needed the ends ground off at an angle to fit. 


Trial fitting of the off side bottom plate


And the near side.


Loose assembly of buttress parts.


Near side buttress loose assembly. The front plate has been left over long and will be cut to size after welding.



Frank the welder sent these two photographs of the buttresses tacked together, to check he'd got everything in the correct place (which he had!). Difficult to explain the job whilst maintaining social distancing. 

Now, turning to the bulkhead itself. The skirt along the bottom would originally have been supported by a piece of angle iron that ran across the whole width of the bulkhead.


Somewhere in the bottom of the treasure chest were these:


Remains of the skirt, angle iron support and the two spacer blocks - yes! they are originals. You can just make out the part number on the left-hand block.


Here, trimming down a piece of 30 x 30 x 3 angle iron. Slitting disc in the angle grinder with another piece of steel clamped on as a guide. Final fettling with a flap disc,


To match the height of the spacer blocks.

I will return to this topic later, when the buttresses are back from being welded.


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It has been a particularly busy few days. The subject matter this time is wheels.

The off side rear wheel was re-fitted (sorry for the lack of photographs) in order that the axle stands could be recovered for use on the near side. The wheel has still only had first coat gloss, but it was hard and so didn't scuff when lifting. Top coat will be applied in-situ.


Wheel nut in position


Fitting the retaining plate




Removal of the near-side wheel presented no difficulties. First: remove the locking plate. Next the castellated nut. Jack up and rock and slide the wheel along the axle. Then on with a strap and let the crane take the weight. Finally swing the wheel away from the chassis and place on the wheel stand.


Wheel nut and locking plate. Original bolts on the left. Will have to make a couple more of these.



Beautifully cut eccentric oil groove on the thrust bearing


Sliding the wheel off


A bit of help from the crane



And safely on the stand.


No great surprises in the brake department


Brake parts removed and awaiting cleaning.


Removing the shoes from the callipers


Ready for wire brushing.


Preparing to remove the spring




Spring safely removed.


Wheel washed, wire brushed / emery clothed / conversion coating applied and first coat of red oxide primer.


Brake parts after phosphate conversion coating. Red oxide primer in the morning before work...

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In a change to the advertised programming...

It's mid-week so, by rights should be a catch-up post. Really excited to have the bulkhead buttresses back from being welded, so wanted to share them instead.


Trial fitting.





I had to relieve the off-side buttress where the gear-change shafts pass through.

Next task is to account for the position of the bolt holes for the bulkhead. 



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Two days of blue skies and sunshine; guess who's spent most of it in the workshop!  More fettling, hole - drilling and trial fitting of the new fabricated bulkhead buttresses.


Our rather archaic radial drill pressed into service. Drilling the front face of the near side buttress



Trial fitting with the bulkhead stiffener plates.


Finding the correct location for the angle -iron stiffener.



Drilling holes for the angle iron and floor-board in the near-side buttress.


Same holes in the off-side buttress. Note the extra material up in the top corner - the accelerator pedal shaft has to come through here somewhere...


Drilling the remainder of the floorboard holes. Apart from some filling and sanding, that't the near-side buttress finished.

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Spring Cleaning.

The plan was to give the near-side rear spring a good "going over" with the angle grinder and a cup brush. Unfortunately, we have run out, most places are shut and, as our local supermarket does not deem these essential items (although 18" high plastic gnomes are, apparently) I found myself having to improvise. We had some M10 threaded cup brushes that seem not to fit any angle grinder we have ever possessed, so to one of these was added a cut-down bolt and a lock nut, thereby adapting it to fit the electric drill.

Incidentally, even now whenever I use the phrase "I found myself", I'm reminded of my o-level French teacher's criticism of my translation of "il se trouvé" which was, apparently, too literal. I digress...

Actually my makeshift wire brush did a good job: the spring was successfully de-rusted, paraffin washed and allowed to dry.



With the spring out of the way, it was a good opportunity to clean up and paint the spring hangers. In a contrasting colour, one can appreciate the strength and elegance of their design.



It's very much been a painting week: spring, pins, links, brake parts and rear wheel have all transitioned from red oxide, through grey undercoat, to their final colour - black or dark green.












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