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VRN on Ex Army Mini Van


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Hi all,

i was wondering if anyone here had an idea on how to find out more info on a mini van we have just purchased but currently bashing our heads against a wall. It has a VRN of 12FL41 and wondered whether that means anything to anyone.

any help would be much appreciated.

Lisa

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hello Lisa,

The VRN that you have listed looks very much like the military ERM. I've done a quick search on the RLC museum website and there is a B vehicle data card available for this number. If you contact them, they may be able to confirm the vehicle type without you having to purchase a copy of the card beforehand.

I'm not familiar with Mini VRN's and this is just an observation.

Ian.

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  • 3 months later...

I’ve got a ex mod mini van as well, been a real pain to find any info about it in service, the mod transferred all their files to computer in the nineties and lost the lot when it crashed. Managed to get a copy of the MOD vehicle transfer certificate from the dvla, that’s about all I have on my van. Did a chassis search with the RLC and they have no records of it either although they did tell me it’s ex Army and not Navy as I previously thought. Had the ERM 22 RW 00 

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Are you sure that VRN is correct? According to the MERLIN archive RW VRNs were never issued there is a jump from RN for  Royal Navy to SE for special equipment.

I also checked 22 BW 00 but again there is a jump from 63 BT 54 which is a Mercury Grand Marquis 4x2 saloon. To 06 BX 04 which is a tracked Rapier missile launcher.

 

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Letter pairs starting with R [apart from RN] went out of use, so far as I know, part way through RH in the early 1950s. I agree it looks like a W, but the clerk that wrote it out would have been doing so from a hand-written record, so I wonder if he or she mis-read RN as RW. I suggest this because the RN definitely did use minivans, and I'm not sure that the army did. Normally there would be some sort of official brass plate on the vehicle giving the number. If still present it may take some finding [in the engine bay perhaps?], but it would answer the question.

Edited by Noel7
ambiguity
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5 hours ago, Minivanjack said:

I’ve got a ex mod mini van as well, been a real pain to find any info about it in service, the mod transferred all their files to computer in the nineties and lost the lot when it crashed. Managed to get a copy of the MOD vehicle transfer certificate from the dvla, that’s about all I have on my van. Did a chassis search with the RLC and they have no records of it either although they did tell me it’s ex Army and not Navy as I previously thought. Had the ERM 22 RW 00 

May be worth investing in a British Motor Museum "Heritage Certificate" however the £ cost would buy you several PITA - rear suspension trumpet knuckle joint kits.

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 I have been going through  the records on the use of the mini vans in  military service there were a number bought and given the registration numbers in the XX KA XX  series  which was for the financial year 1982/83 some were painted dark blue but the warrant number was not the same as the one you have by  XX KG XX the military were using the metro van

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Hi Wally,

I recall seeing one of the KA series minivans in the early eighties - in common with almost all admin vehicles at that time, it was painted black. It sticks in my mind since I was on a 20 Maritime Regt. Landing Craft at Loch Carnan jetty, Benbecula. Someone had been sent down from the Royal Artillery range to clear the seaweed off the concrete ramp. In those days we used chlorinated lime which came in a galvanised drum which had to be opened by cutting around the top seam with a cold chisel - really nasty stuff which the environmentalists banned years ago. Anyhow - this almost new minivan arrived, reversed to the top of the ramp where he took out the drum and opened it. He then proceeded to scatter the chlorinated lime powder onto the seaweed with a shovel. Shame he didn't check the wind direction since a lot of it was blown straight back over the minivan! I seen the same van some days later and the paintwork on the rear doors had almost gone and there was some fairly substantial rust patches all over the vehicle.

The FL series minivans (I don't recall ever seeing one) would probably have been painted deep bronze green with green seats and upholstery. I drove a Mk. 1 Escort regularly in the seventies (58FL91) and this was DB green, as were contemporary admin vehicles such as Austin 1800's. Ours was replaced by a Chevettte which was black with black upholstery. If I recall correctly, this colour scheme was common through the Mk2 and 3 Escorts, Cavaliers etc. until replaced by what the MOD called "Sober Colours" - white, silver grey, dark green etc. the first I seen being with the introduction of the Mondeo and the Mk 4 Escort.

 

Regards - David

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THE attached is from a sale in Ruddington in 1977 in this sale there are mini vans for sale from all three branches of the service's  as well as from government department .DAVID as you rightly say later on these came in a number of colours but the early ones did come in  D B G  just like the morris travellers the contract and warrant numbers would give the clue to who got them

mmv.jpg

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My first car (1967) was a bog Morris Mini Minor manuf. 1962 or 63 , a total heap of £rap.  I then purchased a 1966 Austin 7 Mini  (deluxe with a 2" instrument each side of speedo head) , the engine was blown - so I purchased a ex-police Mini van that was bent BER , swop-out the engine & gearbox  .  Then I purchased a tripod from 3 qty. scaffold poles + a huge Yale Pullift, there was a trade in fitting engines & radiators from Austin A35 into Morris Minors.  By now my parents garden/paddock had the appearance of a scrap-yard.  I had people coming offering the raw material, I offered to take away their problems for conservative £  - so myself,old man & uncle would push these Mini up two planks into his bosses Thames Trader tipper truck that transported.  I had a few Mini VAN through my hands , I was a source for A Series stuff.  Often the vans were ex-police , AFAIK in 60's /70's Mini Van were all Ex-Works in  GREY - that was little more than a holding primer.  Grey van man days was prior to white van man.

Edited by ruxy
spelin
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